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Racecourse stages final meeting of season

WARWICK’S much-interrupted 2023-24 season comes to an end this evening (Thursday) with a six-race card that gets under way at 6.10pm with the Wigley Property Raceday Amateur Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle over three and a quarter miles, reports David Hucker.

Trainer Keiran Burke has his stable in good form and although Stiletto has yet to win a race, he has put in some good placed efforts to give him a chance in the opener. Course winner Pottlerath is another to consider but, in a competitive race, the vote goes to Jessie Lightfoot, a winner over fences last time at Southwell and running off the same handicap mark of 95 here.

Champion trainer Willie Mullins had his first runner and first winner of the new season in the shape of Fine Margin at Fontwell Park on Sunday and he saddles Onlyamatteroftime, runner-up at Ballinrobe last time out, in the Get Ahead Maiden Hurdle over two miles and three furlongs. That was over a trip of two-and three-quarter miles and he has three furlongs less to travel this time which should be in his favour.

Action from Warwick earlier in the season. Photo: David Pratt
Action from Warwick earlier in the season. Photo: David Pratt

The main opposition could come from Dan Skelton’s G A Henty, beaten a neck by Zain Nights at Market Rasen in January. The winner has scored three times since to frank the form and G A Henty will appreciate the better ground here, having been pulled up on heavy going at Newbury since that run.

Chatty Chich has 12-0 to carry in the Sheldon Bosley Knight Novices’ Handicap Hurdle over two miles and five furlongs, but boasts by far the best form and, although dropping back in distance, can follow up her Huntingdon success to give Dan and Harry Skelton another Warwick winner.

Time For A Pint, an easy winner here three weeks ago, looks to follow up in the Bromwich Hardy Handicap Chase over three miles. That race rather fell apart and he had only one challenger in the closing stages, so will need to step up in this more competitive race and may find Bangor-on-Dee winner Dusautior and Huntingdon winner Flemen’s Tipple, to whom he has to concede 6lbs, much tougher opposition.

Get Sky High, running here in preference to Newton Abbot yesterday, is another Skelton runner that will be hard to beat in the Newton LDP Mares’ Handicap Hurdle. With the stable setting the pace this season, the winners are flowing and Get Sky High can follow up her wide-margin win over the course three weeks ago at the expense of the lightly-raced ex-French mare Bellbird.

Miltiades is another to have run well over the course on his last run and, with champion jockey Harry Cobden in the saddle, can take the closing EHB Residential Handicap Chase.

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