KELSO owner Deborah Thomson and jockey Peter Buchanan celebrated a first-ever treble at a well-supported Halloween meeting on Saturday.
All three winners were trained by Lucinda Russell, whose in-for Milnathort stable accounted for half of the afternoon’s card.
The yard had a great start to the day, completing a quickfire double in the first two races.
Big River followed up a bumper win at the track in March, with an impressive success in the opening Carnacrack National Hunt maiden hurdle race.
“He’s a really nice horse - very athletic - and he could be one of our nicest novice hurdlers this season,” enthused Lucinda of the 13-8 fav.
“He might go over 2m 4f soon, and he´ll be even better over fences,” she added.
Deborah Thomson, originally from Kelso, runs the gelding under “Two Black Labs” – named after her dogs Bolly and Krug.
Thirty-five minutes later, Russell and Buchanan were back in the winner’s enclosure, when One For Arthur posted a 4-1 success in the Clifford & Martin Firth Memorial novices’ chase.
Victorious three times over hurdles last term, the progressive six-year-old held the challenge of the Sandy Thomson-trained Seldom Inn by two lengths.
The winner carries the colours of “Two Golf Widows” – Deborah Thomson and Ancrum-based Belinda Wares. The pair were school friends from Casterton and the name emerged from their partners being members of Muirfield.
The Russell/Buchanan victory trail continued when the pair completed a treble after Alizee De Janeiro headed the Sir Maxwell Harper Gow Memorial handicap hurdle race.
Deborah Thomson’s 8-1 chance held the challenge of Claude Carter, trained at Hawick by Alistair Whillans.
Alizee De Janeiro , returning to action from a break, posted a career-best victory to complete the Russell/Buchanan/Thomson hattrick.
Gold Futures produced a class display to land the feature £17,000 EDF-ER handicap chase.
The race has been won by the top weight for the last three years, and Nicky Richards’ gelding maintained that trend with an impressive performance.
It was a longer trip for the bay, who has been contesting decent handicaps over a variety of distances, and won over three miles at Bangor in July.
Richards describes his charge as “a grand horse.
“He wants decent ground and that might be his last run for a while, and I´ll bring him back for the spring,” he explained.
“He might be a Scottish National horse, or the bet365 Gold Cup or the Irish National,” he added.
There was a thrilling finish to the Eric Gillie Transporting Horses 40 years novices’ hurdle race, where Hexham maiden winner Oscar Blue got the verdict over 25-1 chance Sunny West by a neck.
Brian Ellison’s charge stayed on strongly, to make it two out of two over hurdles.
Another well-supported and exciting afternoon’s racing, concluded with the BARK conditional jockeys’ training series handicap hurdle race.
Eight went to post in the finale, where the first hurdle in the home straight was omitted due to low sun.
Hawick jockey Blair Campbell rode 12-1 chance Andhaar to a comfortable seven-length success, for Kinneston trainer Nick Alexander.
Racing returns to Kelso on Saturday, November 7.
1.55 – BIG RIVER (P Buchanan) 13-8 fav; 2, Just Georgie 4-1; 3, Petapenko 14-1. 12 ran. L Russell, Milnathort.
2.30 – ONE FOR ARTHUR (P Buchanan) 4-1; 2, Seldom Inn 9-2; 3, Blakemount 3-1. Eight ran. L Russell.
3.05 – GOLD FUTURES (B Harding) 15-8 fav; Straidnahahanna 7-2; 3, Ballybed 100-30. Seven ran. N Richards, Cumbria.
3.40 – ALIZEE DE JANEIRO (P Buchanan) 8-1; 2, Claude Carter 10-1; 3, Baraboy 17-2. 11 ran. L Russell.
4.15 – OSCAR BLUE (S Bowen)10-11 fav; 2, Sunny West 25-1; 3, Major Ivan 5-4. Six ran. B Ellison, N Yorks.
4.50 – ANDHAAR (B Campbell) 12-1; 2, Willie Hall 9-2; 3, Marrakech Trader 3-1 fav. Eight ran. N Alexander, Kinneston.