16th Oct 2023

5 Day Entries for Friday 20 October Sky Bet Raceday – posted


And they’re off … or at least they will be on Friday (October 20) as Fakenham Racecourse welcomes all to the first National Hunt fixture of its 2023/24 season.

The Sky Bet Raceday meeting consists of six races with the feature contest, the 4.53pm Sky Bet Handicap Chase over three miles, worth £30,000, including £15,800 to the winner.

Thirteen initial entries have been made for the contest on predicted good to soft ground certain to be in perfect condition after the summer break at the north Norfolk venue.

Even at five-day entry stage there are plenty of possibilities for the feature headed by trainer Stuart Edmunds’ seven-year-old gelding Arizona Cardinal, last seen winning at Uttoxeter in May.

Neil Mulholland has Brief Times, a Bangor and Southwell winner, Charlie Pogson has likely favourite Swapped, a Southwell winner and Dr Richard Newland has Yccs Portocervo, twice a Uttoxeter winner after previously finishing third at Fakenham a year ago over hurdles.

And a meeting at Fakenham would be missing a trick without its 2022 Norfolk National winner Tommie Beau from Seamus Mullins’ stable. The eight-year-old has won three times at Fakenham and was fourth last time out at Newton Abbot earlier this month.

The final race of the opening meeting is also very valuable with 15 entries for the 5.25pm handicap hurdle worth £12,500.

Ben Case has previous course and distance winner Bashers Reflection among the possibles while Ludlow winner Enthused is entered by James Owen and may feature towards the top of the betting market along with Alex Hales’ Hiconic and Alex Dunn’s Idilico.

The day, and season, gets under way at 2.33pm with a maiden hurdle in which in-form trainer Olly Murphy has three of the 13 entries. His main chance, however, would appear to be Perth runner-up Iddergem. Doc McCoy and Parade Away are interesting hurdle debutants for Jamie Snowden and Milton Harris if taking their chances.

Murphy has Act of Authority, a Bangor winner earlier this month, and En Avant, a Fontwell and Worcester scorer, among the 13 entered for the 3.08pm Opening of Adrian Flux Bar Today Novice Hurdle while another in-form trainer, Nigel Twiston-Davies, has entered Norman Fletcher for his hurdling debut after a National Hunt Flat Race victory at Ludlow in April.

Gone In Sixty for Hales and Alan King’s Theonlywayiswessex catch the eye in the entries for the 3.43pm novice chase while there are 22 entered for the 4.18pm novice hurdle with Twiston-Davies’s Awesome Foursome looking to follow up a Perth success.

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David Hunter