August is always an action-packed month for Bangor-on-Dee, and Friday 30 was no exception. For the first time the fixture was named Gentleman’s Day; kindly sponsored by local tailors, Crichton Bespoke, who are based within the famous city rows in Chester.
There was plenty of action on and off the track, with 8 races and a Best Dressed Gentleman’s competition which took place throughout the day. Crichton Bespoke’s Director, Patrick Barker judged Tony Elliott as the winner, who took home a collection of prizes including a bespoke shirt fitting and lunch for two in the on-course Paddock Restaurant.
A photo was needed to separate Carpool and the eventual winner Glorious Lady in a thrilling finish to the Saughall Rotary Purple4Polio Mares’ Maiden Hurdle. Now three wins from four runs, the Keith Dalgleish trained runner went off the 2/1 favourite under Brian Hughes and just held on to victory from the 20/1 shot for Evan Williams and daughter Isabel.
The Jill Wilcox-Jones Memorial Handicap Chase went the way of Anteros. Steered to victory by Adrian Heskin, who was partnering the 11-year-old for the first time. It was also the horse’s first success since claiming a listed contest at Cheltenham in 2016.
Ruthless Article made it two wins from two visits to the North Wales venue as he cruised to victory in the Crichton Bespoke Novices’ Hurdle. Champion Jockey Richard Johnson set the early pace on Chapati, but was passed by the Rebecca Curtis trained gelding who quickly asserted his authority over the field under Sean Bowen.
Brian Hughes timed his ride to perfection on Zolfo to bring up a double on the afternoon in the Genesis Wealth Management Handicap Chase. With a 20-length lead turning in, Bletchley Castle was a sitting duck under Brian Carver who had held a significant lead since the off. However, Hughes and the Jennie Candlish trained gelding brushed them aside to cross the line 5 lengths clear, ears pricked.
Just 35 minutes after recording his second winner of the afternoon, Brian Hughes scored for the third time under willing partner, Beach Break. Positive from the off, the combination never saw a rival during the Colin Kershaw Retiring from Brookes Bell Handicap Hurdle run over the two-mile trip. As usual, Donald McCain wasn’t leaving Bangor empty handed, training both the winner and Nefyn Bay who finished second.
Another close finish concluded the main card, as Sackfullofdreams held on in Utilities Connections Management Ltd Handicap Hurdle. Baron Von Chill made a strong challenge in the final furlong but couldn’t quite get to the Dave Roberts trained gelding in time, denied by just a neck.
Two pony races in the Charles Owen Pony Racing Series followed the main card. A fantastic finish in the 138cm race saw Tyler Fisher and Maesteg Ruth win a gallant battle with Churchill and Tom Hutsby up the home straight. In the 148cm race, Edward Vaughan was calm and confident as he guided White Water to an easy victory, rounding off the afternoon’s racing action in style.
The next meeting at Bangor-on-Dee is the Timeform October Meeting on Wednesday 2 October. Gates will open at the earlier time of 10.30, with the first race off at 12.15. Ticket prices start from £7 in advance for adult racegoers, with children under the age of 18 and accompanied by a responsible adult admitted free of charge. A Punter’s Package is also available for this fixture – jump to it, this savvy package is only available in advance. For more information please visit the fixture page here or call the box office on 01978 780 323.