LEIGHTON ASPELL and David Bass both rode an odds-on favourite first past the post then a 10/1 winner as a huge crowd enjoyed Fontwell Park’s biggest raceday of the year.
It was a fabulous afternoon’s racing at the track as the weather behaved and punters made the most of the chance to get out of the house after Christmas and enjoy fresh air and some great Boxing Day sport.
Aspell often finds form at Fontwell, one of his local tracks, and he did so here - first guiding Oliver Sherwood-trained 1/7 favourite The Organist home safely and without any trouble at all in the Selftrade Stock And Shares ISA Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle, then notching up a more impressive victory on Findon trainer Prouts Pub (10/1) in the - Winterfields Farm Handicap Hurdle.
Bass had as a good a day as Aspell. But his first victory saw him cross the line first - and last, in fact - in one of the most bizarre races you will see, as four of the five runners fell by the wayside before the finish.
Three parted company with their jockeys and one was pulled up, leaving Showboater, the 4/6 favourite trained by Ben Pauling, to negotiate the final flight and come home safely to take the Selftrade Smarter Investing Handicap Chase.
Bass was later a winner again, taking the Selftrade Mobile Investing Mares’ Handicap Hurdle on board David Weston’s At First Light.
Showboater and The Organist were both tipped as winners on this website.
The meeting opened with Shane Quinlan claiming the Southern Cranes And Access Ltd Juvenile Hurdle on Harley Rebel (8/1) for Neil Mulholland, while 2/1 favourite Call The Detective was first home in the Southern Cranes Access Handicap Chase for Felix de Giles and trainer Ali Stronge.
The last, the Thank You Winner For Your Support Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle, went to Harry Cobden on 5/1 shot Hassadin for Michael Blake.
The fixture brought down the curtain on Fontwell’s 2015 programme but there are 24 meetings scheduled for 2016 and you can win a pair of member’s badges for the year here.
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