Stayers featured at Pontefract’s race meeting today

Ennistown, ridden by Mickael Barzalona, wins ahead of second-placed Croquembouche, ridden by Mark Coumbe (far side) at the last meeting at Pontefract. Picture: BRIAN LUNN
Ennistown, ridden by Mickael Barzalona, wins ahead of second-placed Croquembouche, ridden by Mark Coumbe (far side) at the last meeting at Pontefract. Picture: BRIAN LUNN

Pontefract’s penultimate race meeting of the season takes place today and features The Phil Bull Trophy Conditions Stakes.

The seven-race programme gets under way at 2.10pm and the longest race of the afternoon, the 27th renewal of The Phil Bull Trophy, a conditions contest for stayers over two-and-a-quarter miles, is named after one of the legends of the turf, who founded the renowned Timeform organisation.

The original headquarters of Timeform was at Hemsworth and Mr Bull, who passed away in 1989, had a long affinity with Pontefract racecourse, it being the first course he visited as a boy and where his famous ‘cerise, white circle’ colours were first carried to victory as an owner.

The Phil Bull Trophy is the penultimate race in this season’s Pontefract Stayers’ Championship and going into Monday’s race, Riptide – trained in Herefordshire by Michael Scudamore – has a commanding lead with 22 points.

Maiden two-year-olds take part in the opening race, a contest supported by The European Breeders’ Fund in conjunction with British Stallion Studs, while The Many Thanks To Di Price Handicap Stakes (a contest for three-year-olds over one mile-and-a-half) refers to the imminent retirement from the Stewards’ Panel at Pontefract of Di Price.

The giant screen situated opposite the main stands will enable racegoers to follow all of the action.