Tag Archive for: Enqarde

Enqarde makes no mistake in Tommy Whittle this time

Enqarde made amends for crashing out in the Virgin Bet Tommy Whittle Handicap Chase 12 months ago when returning to land the stamina test in style at Haydock.

Dr Richard Newland’s seven-year-old unseated his rider at the 13th fence in 2020 – but there was no repeat this time as Enqarde (8-1) put his rivals to the sword with a authoritative performance.

Jockey Charlie Hammond brought him into the race steadily after Calipso Collonges and Remastered had looked to be the two principals early in the home straight.

Challenging on the far side of the course, Enqarde began to pull away going to the final fence and went on to win by 10 lengths from Remastered. Calipso Collonges was four and a quarter lengths away in third place with Just Your Type fourth.

“It’s our second Tommy Whittle win and I thought a very good ride by Charlie Hammond,” said Newland.

“We’ve trained him for the race. He was running well in the race last year when he lost his rider. He’d been training well and I was hopeful of a good show, but I thought it was a competitive race in paper – I’m thrilled to bits with his performance.

“He lost his way a bit last year and I think it might be best to keep him a shade fresh and go for another good race but not rush him.

“He might go back to Haydock for the Grand National Trial. He ran in it last season so we might have another go at that. The alternative would be a race like the Midlands National at Uttoxeter. He looks like an out-and-out stayer.

“We’d consider a race like the Eider as well, but I haven’t got a clear plan yet.”

Newland completed a double when Jesuitique ran away with the Virgin Bet Fives Handicap Hurdle.

Ridden by 5lb claimer Cillin Leonard, the 11-4 joint-favourite kicked on in the straight and won unchallenged by five and a half lengths from Tokyo Getaway with Padleyorowncanoe a head away third.

“I was looking forward to running him over three miles on soft ground and he didn’t let me down. It was a very good performance,” Newland said.

“If the ground came up soft he might run in the Pertemps Final at Cheltenham, but I think we’d probably have to run him somewhere before because he wouldn’t get in at the moment.”

Adrimel got back on track with a convincing display to get off the mark over fences in the Virgin Bet Novices’ Chase.

Pulled up on his chasing debut at Exeter earlier this month, Tom Lacey’s six-year-old was helped by the application of first-time blinkers as he returned to the promise he showed as a hurdler in the first half of last term.

Jumping well throughout, Adrimel (7-2) pulled clear of the favourite Dreams Of Home from the third-last fence to win by 15 lengths in the hands of Stan Sheppard.

Lacey said: “Exeter was completely my fault, the ground wasn’t to suit. We schooled him over a mile and a half on the grass and he went with such enthusiasm that we thought we wouldn’t even bother with cheekpieces, but it backfired on me and he’s a horse that we wouldn’t ever considering running again without headgear.

“I don’t think he’s an ungenuine horse at all, he’s just one of those horses who goes around with his head elsewhere and again at Exeter I was probably guilty of not doing enough sharp work with him before hand to engage his brain. I let the horse down at Exeter as much he let me down.

“He’s more ground dependent that trip, but it was really important that we got through today before thinking of anything else. Warwick is an option for the Kingmaker, but I’m sure there are other options for him as well.”

Haute Estime (11-1), ridden by Derek Fox, held on in a desperate finish to take Listed honours for Lucinda Russell in the Virgin Bet Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle.

Haute Estime and long-time leader Current Mood looked to have the race between them, having pulled several lengths clear of the pack at the final flight.

However, Nina The Terrier, the 11-10 favourite finished with a flourish and got within a half a length of the winner at the line to finish runner-up, a nose ahead of Current Mood.

Peter Scudamore, Russell’s assistant and partner, said: “We’ve always been very fond of her, but trainers say that sort of thing when they’ve won!

“We have Paul McIvor to thank who does our form for us, he told us to run her here and we have to thank Derek too who gave her an unbelievable ride.

“He’s riding better than ever now and I’m very glad that he doesn’t get too many outside rides because he’s priceless for us – I’ve rarely seen a better man on a horse, he’s a bit like me in that he’s not the most stylish but effective!”