Competitive racing on the cards at Pontefract meeting

Reloaded gets ahead in a driving finish at Pontefract's most recent meeting. Picture: Alan Wright
Reloaded gets ahead in a driving finish at Pontefract's most recent meeting. Picture: Alan Wright

With just shy of a month left in the 2018 flat calendar, trainers are looking to finish their horses’ campaigns off in good style when the third of the All About the Racing Racedays is held at Pontefract Racecourse tomorrow (Monday).

Expect plenty of competitive and thrilling racing and some great perks. There are seven exciting races on the card, which gets under way at 2.05pm.

The track holds a 1m2f two-year-old race which is one of the longest two-year-old races run in the UK. With a stiff finish, Ponte is one of the more testing courses in Britain and a tough gritty horse is needed. The first two home in last year’s event, Austrian School and Making Miracles have both proved themselves to be strong, talented stayers for the country’s winningmost trainer, Mark Johnston, competing in some of the best staying handicap races in 2018. Who will add their name to the role of honour this year?

The feature race on the card is the £15,000 Leslie Burton (Fisher) Handicap which was won last year by Richard Hannon’s The Grape Escape who was campaigned in some of the best handicaps in Dubai over the winter.

There’s also the penultimate round of the 2018 Pontefract Stayers Championship in which Micky Hammond’s Becky The Thatcher looks to have an unassailable advantage.

This round of the Stayers Championship produced one of the finishes of the year in 2017 when the enigmatic Madam Lilibet put her best foot forward to win her final race.

We also caught glimpse of a future Grade 2 placed juvenile hurdler when Cornerstone Lad took the 1m4f handicap. There may be a few future hurdlers lurking among the entries again this season.

On the remaining two racedays, there will be a soapbox for punters to have their say on what they think has a great winning chance as well as a guest racecard tipster to point you in the direction of a few winners! There will also be a guest pundit on the day to guide you through the runners in the Parade Ring and offer valuable guidance and knowledge about the day’s equine action.

Early Bird discounted advanced tickets are available on the course’s website at and, as part of the All About The Racing theme, if four or more tickets are booked for this race meeting, you can pick up a free Timeform from the Racecourse Office to help to study the form.