REIGNING champion jumps jockey Brian Hughes and Caoilin Quinn were very much in form in Britain in the past eight days.

Hughes rode six winners between last Thursday week and Wednesday just gone including the Evan Williams-trained Everyonesacritic who landed the two and a half-mile handicap hurdle at Musselburgh on Sunday.

The five-year-old Hillstar gelding was bred by Mayne Kidd out of the point-to-point-winning September Storm mare Loughbricklandrose, a half-sister to Rose Of Tracarta and from the family of King Wah Glory and Western Rose.

Quinn’s four wins comprised doubles at both Fakenham on Friday last and at Haydock on Saturday while Danny McMenamin, who rode one winner at Newcastle last Thursday week also had a double at Carlisle on Monday. Sam Ewing won the Careys Cottage Cup Handicap Chase at Gowran on Saturday on board the Shark Hanlon-trained Teescomponentsyess.

Also at home, Dylan Browne McMonagle recorded a double at Dundalk last Friday evening while, across the water, there were wins for Darragh Keenan at Chelmsford on Thursday and for Oisin Orr on the Anthony McCann-trained Big Dream on Saturday at Wolverhampton where, on Monday, the Tom Foy-bred four-year-old Bossy Parker (Kodiac – Cute, by Diktat) notched up his third career success.

Another locally-bred winner was Classic Maestro who landed the two-mile, one-furlong handicap hurdle on the Quinnbet-sponsored card at Newcastle last Thursday week for the Jennie Candlish yard. The six-year-old Jet Away gelding was bred by Graham Morrow out of the unraced Shantou mare Shantelle Line, a half-sister to Present In Court and from the family of Line Ball, Rocco, Mighty Mogul, and Court Leader.

Three former northern-trained runners caught the eye when winning during the week.

Previously in the care of Gary McGill, for whom she won two point-to-points, the seven-year-old Fame And Glory bay Springtime Promise made it three wins from three starts for Fergal O’Brien when landing the Grade 2 Weatherbys Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide Jane Seymour Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle at Sandown last Thursday week.

Two of the winners are now with Willie Mullins. The former Colin McKeever-trained, Wilson Dennison-owned Moira maiden winner Tullyhill justified favouritism in the Listed Madigan Group Irish EBF Sheila Burke Novice Hurdle on Sunday at Punchestown where, on Wednesday, Cuta Des As won the near three-mile mares’ maiden hurdle. The seven-year-old daughter of It’s Gino claimed the mares’ maiden at Farmacaffley this time two years ago when trained by Kevin Ross.

Buchanan ascends with Ladder

THE win of the Noel McParlan-ridden, Peter Buchanan-trained Jacob’s Ladder at Oldtown last Saturday is well-covered in the results pages of the point-to-point section and possibly on page 42 of the sales section as well as he was due to go under the hammer yesterday at Cheltenham.

Many congratulations to the trainer’s uncle, former top amateur Ian Buchanan, whose colours were carried to a two-length success on the well-related five-year-old Mount Nelson gelding who was making his debut at that Ward Union point-to-point.

On Sunday, the former Peter Buchanan-trained Glenmount, who ran four times unplaced here last spring, won the first of three divisions of the maiden at Badbury Rings in England.

The six-year-old Court Cave gelding was bred by Peter’s sister, Jane, out of the Zaffaran mare Zaffarella, dam previously of Windsor Avenue and Ravenhill Road.

Back to Oldtown and commiserations are sent to Maeve Carlin who, on her first ride in a point-to-point, was beaten a head in the six-year-old and upwards geldings’ maiden by the experienced James Walsh aboard Cash Cut.

Former pony show jumper Maeve partnered her own seven-year-old Dylan Thomas bay Josies Dylan who is trained by her father, Stephen.

Two local riders on the mark over the weekend were Toni Quail and Cormac Abernethy who both partnered winners at Knockanard on Sunday.

On the breeding front, there were wins for the Colm McHenry-bred seven-year-old Prophet’s Corner (Westerner – Knocklayde Rose, by Even Top) and the Paul Ferguson-bred eight-year-old God Help Us (Watar – Huncheon Siss, by Phardante) at Nenagh on Sunday.

A Dream for Holly

LAST Saturday, the final points-scoring round was held in this year’s Baileys Horse Feeds flexi eventing series at The Meadows where Treo Eile sponsored the highest-placed thoroughbred.

At the end of six weeks’ action, only a point separated the winners, Banbridge’s Holly Rice and her mother Julie’s Supreme Dream (38), from the runners-up, Felicity McConnell and her mother Joyce’s Easy Pleased (37). The league was won by 69-year-old Denis Currie and his 19-year-old Irish Sports Horse gelding Arodstown Aramis who amassed 62 points.

McConnell had the edge over her rival going into the final round but 16-year-old Rice edged ahead when finishing second in her Intro dressage test while McConnell placed third in her Novice section. At today’s prize-giving, both riders will be picking up two extra prizes apiece sponsored by Area 17 of The Pony Club, McConnell (East Antrim) faring the better when it came to cumulative dressage scores rather than placings.

Supreme Dream is an eight-year-old British-bred mare by Captain Gerrard who finished third once from 19 runs on the flat from the ages of two to four, being trained first by Ollie Pears and then by Shaun Harris. Sixteen-year-old Holly, a member of the Iveagh Branch, started eventing Supreme Dream last year and they ended the season by finishing reserve in the EI80 national championship, a placing which won them another Treo Eile-sponsored prize.

A level student McConnell, who lives in Ballyclare, would be better known to readers of this column as she has won the racehorse to riding horse class at Balmoral for the past two years on Easy Pleased. The seven-year-old Mahler gelding ran once for Warren Ewing, unseating Dara McGill five out in a four-year-old geldings’ maiden at Tattersalls in November 2021.

Martin double

THE ground was described as ‘holding’ when the Tynan and Armagh Harriers ran their point-to-point at Farmacaffley on Wednesday, March 9th, 1994.

Tony Martin recorded a double on the seven-race card while there were individual wins for John Quinn, Brian Hamilton, John Bryson and Paul McMahon.

The mid-week fixture had gone by the bye in 2004 when the meeting was held on Saturday, February 21st. Thankfully it was a dry, bright day and the going was good as there were nine races following divides to the five and six-year-old geldings’ maiden, the five and six-year-old mares’ maiden and the seven and eight-year-old maiden – no need for a four-year-old maiden back then.

Two riders landed doubles that afternoon – Brian Hamilton and Jim Keeling – with Ronan McNally, J.D. Moore, Derek O’Connor, Tommy Peoples and Saul McHugh also returning to the No 1 spot.

Given that he was to go on and finish second to fellow Northern Ireland-owned, trained and ridden Tammys Hill at Cheltenham a few weeks later, the most significant winner at Farmacaffley on Saturday, February 22nd, 2014, was the Jim Monaghan-owned, Colin McBratney-trained, Noel McParlan-ridden Carsonstown Boy who landed the open by six lengths from Send For Paddy.

The trainer and owner/rider duo of Stephen McConville and his son, Michael, claimed the opening confined hunt race while the Crawford brothers, Stuart and Ben, took the following five and six-year-old geldings’ maiden. The other successful riders were Jamie Sloan, Derek O’Connor and finally Ray Cody who recorded his first win in the concluding seven-year-old and upwards geldings’ maiden.