Welsh trainers love bringing horses to Fakenham and often make the long return trip with pockets bulging with prizemoney.
The feature race on the north Norfolk course’s seven-race card on Thursday (January 23) is the 2.35 pm Horsemen’s Group Chase and Welsh trainers Evan Williams, Christian Williams and Peter Bowen have runners among the initial 16 entries for the £15,000 contest.
Evan Wiliams has entered Agent Westy, the winner over course and distance at Fakenham’s pre-Christmas meeting on December 17 in the line-up, while Cap Du Nord represents Christian Williams and Cougar’s Gold turns out for Bowen.
Another interesting entry is Laura Morgan’s Thomas Todd. The 10-year-old was second at the course in December having previously won there at the end of October.
Newmarket trainer Lucy Wadham is another to follow at Fakenham and she has top chances in two events. In the 3.10 pm Mares’ Hurdle, she has Miss Heritage, a Fakenham winner at the pre-Christmas meeting on what was her first run since wind surgery.
Earlier, at 1.25 pm, Wadham has Little Light entered in the Novice Chase, her runner a Leicester winner in December. At that same Leicester meeting, the Nick Gifford trainer Belargus was third, and also holds an entry over a shorter trip.
Olly Murphy’s stable has hit form in the New Year and he has Gavin Sheehan booked to ride Robin De Broome in the 12.25 pm opening chase, the gelding third at Southwell in December in his first race after a long break.
Murphy has two good-looking entries in the 3.45 pm finale. He has The Wolf, runner-up in a Newbury contest on December 28 and now dropping in class, and Oscar Academy, a Leicester winner on his first run for Murphy just after Christmas.
The other two events on the card, for which there are 110 initial entries, are the 12.55 pm conditional jockeys’ handicap hurdle and the 2 pm maiden novice hurdle.
Jamie Snowden has Irska, third at Hereford in January in the 12.55 three-miler while in the 2 pm, David Pipe has three entered while most interesting entry is Nicky Henderson’s Grand Roi.
He was a Wincanton winner in December and fourth at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day, his only runs for Henderson since being bought in France from Laurent Viel.
Words by Terry Redhead
Please make a note of a new start time of the first race at 12.25 pm on 23rd January.
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