Harris and Turner are hot to trot on 2021's hottest day
Sutton Veney' s finest, Milton Harris, enjoyed his best season since the heady days of 2010-11 last season, notching up 18 winners from his new set up outside Warminster.
He consolidated his start to the new season with a double yesterday at Newton Abbot, bringing the seasonal tally to 3. With a limited number of fixtures and a close eye on ground conditions in the hottest months, choosing your races to target is a must. In Achy Breaky Heart, winner of the Mares' Handicap Chase, he found one such suitable contest: just 3 runners and a chance to make all and dominate. Grageelach Girl from Fergal O'Brien's chased the leader from 3 out, but was soon shaken off. The winning margin of 2l is perhaps kind to the winner, giving 26lb to the runner-up, who also lost a shoe. Nevertheless, one can only but win.
Another horse running off bottom weight, Presenting Yeats followed up 30 minutes later in the concluding 3m handicap hurdle. Sadly, he won't be doing a great deal to enhance his sire's reputation in this modest event, but all the same it's a pleasure to see offspring of the 4 time Ascot Gold Cup winner on the West Country circuit.
The day's headlines however, were taken by Bill Turner and his young jockey Harry Kimber who scored a treble. Somerset -based Turner has been around the racing block a few times, he'll be the first to admit, but is an excellent trainer, and not just of thoroughbreds: he trained a zebra some 12 years ago! It was good to see him back where it started, over the jumps, instead of the flat where he focuses his efforts nowadays.