26th August – 1st September
Ailsa Craig ran at Newcastle on Monday in the 1 mile 4 furlong 0-65 handicap with Kevin Stott taking the ride. The plan was to sit behind the pace and to make ground and headway up the home straight and try and produce her inside the final furlong. Kevin took the blindfold off quicker this time and settled the horse in midfield against the rail for much of the race until around 3 furlongs from home when he switched Ailsa off the rail and begun to make headway through the field. At the furlong pole Kevin produced Ailsa in between two other horses and the race was between these three horses. It was nick & tuck inside the final furlong with the eventually winner just edging across Ailsa who stayed on all the way to the line finishing a gallant 3rd beaten just over a length. A good run and pleasing to see her keep her form.
Sygnature ran at Southwell on Wednesday in the 1 mile 4 furlong 0-55 handicap with Neil Callan rode. From the stalls Neil tried to get Sygnature into a prominent position but it was clear Neil had to work hard and push the horse along. Neil managed to get Sygnature into third place and followed the two leaders. Down the back straight Neil was continually pushing the horse that appeared to be racing lazily. Rounding the home turn Sygnature was overtaken by a few other horses and up the long home straight Neil accepted the situation and allowed the horse to come home in his own time. It was the horses first run for 6 months.
Piceno on Wednesday ran in the 0-75 handicap at Southwell and Billy Cray rode. Breaking from the stalls Piceno was overtaken on his outside by another horse and Billy settled Piceno in behind the early leader. Howe haver this horse was manoeuvred to the outside and Piceno took up the running. Into the home straight it was clear that Piceno had many of his rivals in trouble. The only horse to come and challenge him was another Southwell specialist, Piceno and this horse begun to have a battle for the win. Piceno was giving everything and at several points looked to be getting on top, howe haver just inside the last 100 yards the other horse went on and Piceno had to settle for a brave 2nd place well clear of the third horse.
Piceno was already entered at Chester and after keeping a close eye on the horse Scott allowed Piceno to run at Chester on Friday in the gentleman’s handicap over 7 ½ furlongs. He was ridden by Kevin Locking. From the stalls the horse on Piceno’s outside came across him and Piceno was slightly hampered and had to be settled in midfield. As ever there was a strong pace and the jockey got Piceno into a nice rhythm. Piceno seemed to be enjoying the tight turns and gradually made headway and rounding the home turn he had moved into third place and was taking aim at the leader. Kevin gave the horse a crack with the whip which he responded to and drew alongside the leader. Kevin then pushed Piceno in front and with the field closing he made it to the line winning by just over a length. A great training performance by Scott and Kevin’s first ever winner. Well done to all connections, a thoroughly deserved win for this consistent horse.
Blue Maisey ran fifteen minutes later at Thirsk in the 0-80 7 furlong handicap. This looked a very competitive handicap and Maisey unfortunately had another nightmare draw in stall 14. Kevin Stott rode again. From the stalls Kevin took a pull on Maisey and took her to the inside rather than staying on the wide outside. This meant rounding the turn for home she was in last position. Up the home straight Maisey begun to make some progress and two furlongs out Kevin took Maisey to the outside and she responded by beginning to make headway. At the furlong pole Maisey was still in 8th place but she put her head down and begun to make rapid headway. Closing all the way to the line she managed to get up for 3rd place never being able to get to the winner who had managed to nick an unassailable lead. A fantastic effort from Maisey to get so close to winning from a bad draw. A great fifteen minutes for all connected with these two horses and everyone involved with Ontoawinner.