Winning debut over fences for Camptown-trained racehorse Brandy McQueen at Kelso
Galashiels jockey Ryan Mania rose the six-year-old bay gelding to victory by 19 lengths in the 3pm Scottish Racing Academy Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase at 5/1, claiming its £7,922 top prize.
That was the 5/1 outsider’s fifth win overall and second at Kelso, following a previous success there in May last year, and Stripend stables training partnership Harriet Graham and Gary Rutherford are eyeing up a return to the Berrymoss track later in the month in the hope of adding to that handful of first-place finishes.
“We thought he’d run really well and he was a bit novicey over the first two or three fences but Ryan made sure he warmed to it,” said Graham.
“We’re delighted with him and we’ll look at coming back here or going to Carlisle later in the month.”
Their winner was one of only three, out of four, horses to complete the two-mile-and-seven-furlong course, the others being runner-up Donny Boy, ridden by Lorcan Williams for Fife trainer Nick Alexander, and third-placed Swallow’s Song, trained by Iain Jardine at Carrutherstown in Dumfries and Galloway and with Hawick jockey Craig Nichol riding.
Kelso trainer Sandy Thomson also claimed a win on Sunday, with 3/1 second favourite Kilbrainy in the last race of the day, the division-two Join Racing TV Now Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle at 5.30pm.
Ridden by William Maggs, the seven-year-old brown gelding claimed his first win in 14 outings, earning prize money of £3,697, over the two-mile-five-furlong course by over eight lengths from 18/1 outsider Artic Mann, trained by Alexander and with Hawick’s Bruce Lynn in the saddle.
Alexander and Lynn didn’t leave Kelso empty-handed, however, having won the previous race, the 5pm division-one Join Racing TV Now Conditional Jockey’s Handicap Hurdle, with 5/2 second favourite Eloi du Puy, taking its top prize of £3,697.
Strike of Lightning, ridden by Edward Austin for Cumbrian handler George Bewley, was runner-up, just over a length behind, in that two-mile-five-furlong race, with Bella Bluesky, trained in Hawick by Ewan Whillans and with Dillan Hurst as jockey, third.
Victory in the meeting’s feature race, the £40,000 NSPCC School Service Simply Ned Handicap Chase at 3.30pm, went to 5/4 favourite Tommy’s Oscar, trained in Northumberland by Ann Hamilton and ridden by Sean Quinlan.
“He’s a good horse on his day and he tends to run well on his first run of the season,” said owner Ian Hamilton, husband of the Capheaton permit-holder.
Runner-up, over six lengths behind, was 10/3 joint-second-favourite Cedar Hill, a five-time winner at the track for Thomson, with Derek Fox riding.
Gold des Bois, trained by Jardine, formerly of Hawick, and ridden by Nichol, finished third in that two-mile-one-furlong race.
Perth and Kinross trainer Lucinda Russell’s Bois Guillbert, with Sean Quinlan in the saddle, won the opening Welcome to Family Day Handicap Hurdle at 2pm and she went on to pull off a 100/1 treble with Cadell and Destiny is All, ridden by Fox and Patrick Wadge respectively, in the 4pm Springwood Holiday Park Kelso Novices’ Hurdle and 4.30pm Peter and Gillian Allan Catering Handicap Chase.
Dripsey Moon was second in the former for County Meath’s John McConnell and rider Ben Harvey and Half Shot in the latter for Jardine, with Dylan Johnston riding.
First place in the other of the day’s eight races, the 2.30pm Simpsons Malt Novices’ Hurdle, went to Slugger, ridden by Quinlan for Jardine.
Kelso’s next meeting is on Saturday, October 28, starting at 1.40pm.