Kaizer a winner for Hawick's Ewan Whillans and Craig Nichol at Kelso again

Hawick racehorse trainer Ewan Whillans was the Borders’ only winner at Kelso on Saturday, taking the £18,000 top prize in the second-last race of the day, the 3.46pm Racing TV Handicap Hurdle.

By Darin Hutson
Tuesday, 29th March 2022, 7:59 am
Updated Tuesday, 29th March 2022, 8:00 am
Kaizer was victorious for Hawick trainer Ewan Whillans and jockey Craig Nichol in the 3.46pm Racing TV Handicap Hurdle at Kelso (Photo: Bill McBurnie)
Kaizer was victorious for Hawick trainer Ewan Whillans and jockey Craig Nichol in the 3.46pm Racing TV Handicap Hurdle at Kelso (Photo: Bill McBurnie)

The seven-year-old chestnut gelding, and sent off as 13-8 favourite, was ridden to victory by Hawick jockey Craig Nichol for West Lothian owner Elizabeth Ferguson.

That was his second success riding Kaizer at Kelso in less than two months following the pairing’s first-place finish there at the start of February.

It was also Nichol’s second win of the day as he was first past the post in the opening 1pm Terry Frame Joiners and Glaziers Novices’ Hurdle on 15-8 favourite Limerick Leader, trained by Rose Dobbin in Northumberland.

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Hawick jockey Bruce Lynn on board Eloi Du Puy in the 16.21pm Go North Jodami Open National Hunt Flat Race at for Fife trainer Nick Alexander (Photo: Bill McBurnie)

He had to settle for fourth and last place riding another of Dobbin’s horses, 3-1 second favourite Rath An Iuir, in the 2.45pm Paxtons for Kverneland in the Borders Handicap Chase, however.

Potterman, trained by Wiltshire’s Alan King and ridden by Tom Cannon, took that race’s £18,000 first prize at odds of 5-1, edging out 5-4 favourite Empire Steel, trained by Kelso’s Sandy Thomson and ridden by his son-in-law Ryan Mania, by three-quarters of a length.

Fellow Borders jockey Thomas Willmott won the £30,000 Schloss Roxburghe Go North Cab on Target Handicap Hurdle on Romeo Brown, trained in West Yorkshire by Sue Smith.

“It’s always good to have a winner at Kelso, but I suppose Wetherby is my local course now as I’m based with Mrs Smith,” said Willmott.

Borders jockey Ryan Mania winning the 2.10pm KOSB Handicap Chase on Joke Dancer at Kelso on Saturday for West Yorkshire trainer Sue Smith (Photo: Bill McBurnie)

“I won on this horse at Hexham and he ran very well when second at Carlisle last time. He’s an uncomplicated, sound horse who likes to lead and jumps well.”

The featured Herring Queen Mares’ Novices’ Handicap Hurdle at 3.15pm, offering a top prize of £26,015, was won by Berkshire trainer Nicky Henderson’s top-weight Theatre Glory, with Nathan Brennan in the saddle of the 85-40 favourite.

Rae des Champs, ridden by Nichol for Dobbin, finished second in that one, with Betty Baloo, ridden by fellow Hawick-born jockey Jamie Hamilton for North Yorkshire’s Tim Easterby, third and Jedburgh’s Callum Bewley on Whillans’ Bella Bluesky sixth and last.

Another of Henderson’s horses, 11-10 favourite Bold Reaction, with James Bowen as jockey, claimed the top prize of £15,609 in the last race of the day, the 4.21pm Go North Jodami Open National Hunt Flat Race.

Ontherouge came second in Saturday's 4.21pm Go North Jodami Open National Hunt Flat Race at Kelso, ridden by Jedburgh's Callum Bewley for North Yorkshire trainer Peter Niven (Photo: Bill McBurnie)

Saturday’s Kelso meeting was part of a three-event series starting at Musselburgh the day before and concluding at Carlisle the day after, and both those other racedays saw success for Borders trainers and riders.

Inca Prince was ridden to victory at East Lothian in the 1.45pm Go North Grey Bomber Handicap Hurdle by Hamilton for North Yorkshire’s Ruth Jefferson and Mania finished first in the 1.15pm Racing Post SupportsGo North Weekend Novices’ Hurdle on Well planted for East Ayrshire’s Mike Smith.

Mania also rode 3-1 favourite Goodtimes Badtimes to victory for Thomson in the 2.55pm Go North Brindisi Breeze Series Final, taking its £15,609 top prize.

Hamilton guided another 3-1 favourite, Wheelbahri, trained in Selkirk by Stuart Coltherd, to the £18,000 top prize in the 2.26pm Go North One Man Handicap Chase in Cumbria two days later.

Theatre Glory won the 3.15pm feature race at Kelso, ridden by Nathan Brennan (Photo: Bill McBurnie)