Pointing the way ahead at Friars Haugh

WINDY HILLS flies the ditch to give Callum Bewley his first winner in the Novice Riders race at the Berwickshire  Hunt PtPt 2/4/11  Photograph by John Grossick
WINDY HILLS flies the ditch to give Callum Bewley his first winner in the Novice Riders race at the Berwickshire Hunt PtPt 2/4/11 Photograph by John Grossick
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SCOTLAND’S first point-to-point of the season comes under orders on Sunday when the Jedforest Hunt stages its 2012 meeting at Kelso’s Friars Haugh course.

The first of seven races is off at 12.30pm with a 12-strong members’ race, kindly sponsored by Storage Express and Busby Market.

Kath Bewley from Jedburgh saddled Windy Hills to take runner-up last year and bids to go one better, while Di Walton from Hawick hopes for another good run from Amour Daria, third last year.

Kenny and Karen Lynn send out their grey gelding Pas de Baratin, while Bromley Bay represents Clive Storey’s Yetholm yard. And One Black Cat could be one to watch, having finished second in the mares’ maiden race in 2011.

The Dodson & Horrell PPORA Club members’ race for novice riders is at 1pm, and has attracted 13 entries.

Rathowen was in the frame last year when finishing fourth for Billy Hamilton from Hawick. See You There won the men’s open at the Racheugh Racing Club meeting at Alnwick in December, and would be worthy of note, while Olmetta is trained at Langholm by Briony Ewart. Katie Scott sends out Crashtown Hall from her busy Galashiels yard.

Eleven entries have been received for the AGA ladies’ open race at 1.30pm.

The Fife-qualified King’s Envoy represents Jean and Amy McGregor, in what promises to be an exciting contest, with Cast Iron Casey, Justwhateverulike, Rayshan and Tynedale in the potential line-up.

The men’s open race at 2pm is kindly sponsored by Brewin Dolphin.

Gunner Jack landed the spoils last year for Jockey Club steward Nicholas Wrigley.

Alistair and Rachel Bell pin their hopes on Buckstruther, who has already shown a liking for the track.

There are 12 entries in the David Merry Farrier restricted race at 2.30pm, including Saddlers Singer, who finished third last time.

The Jockey Club/Scotty Brand PPORA mares maiden race, at 3pm, has 10 entries. Beverley Beck could be worth watching from Di Walton’s Hawick stable.

The concluding Billy Stenhouse Memorial open maiden race at 3.30pm has attracted the largest number of entries, with 22 possible candidates, including Alnwick runner-up Northern Flame.

A new venture this year is a carvery roast lunch tent, where you can view televised racing while enjoying lunch, and also take advantage of a tipster.

Tickets, at £38, can be purchased from Kirsty Fitzgerald (tel 07949 712843). With a bar and catering, trade stands, and entry at just £10 per person, including a free race card, it’s well worth heading to Friars Haugh for a great day’s sport on Sunday.

Other fixtures on the Borders point-to-point calendar this year are: Saturday, March 17 – Duke of Buccleuch at Friars Haugh; Sunday, April 1 – Berwickshire at Friars Haugh; Sunday, May 6 – Lauderdale at Mosshouses.