The new year at Huntingdon Racecourse started with a bang for one leading trainer last Friday.
Nicky Henderson sent out three winners as the local track staged its first of 18 fixtures scheduled for 2017.
Henderson’s haul included the feature race as British debutant Divin Bere prevailed by a neck in a thrilling finish to the Equimark Horseboxes Sport Pro Chatteris Fen Juvenile Hurdle.
Ridden by Noel Fehily, the 7/4 shot got the better of evens favourite Master Blueyes, from the yard of another hot Huntingdon trainer, Alan King. Both horses could be contenders for one of the juvenile prizes at the Cheltenham Festival in March.
Divin Bere’s success was soon followed by a smart performance from O O Seven for Henderson Equimark Horseboxes The UK’s Premier Horseboxes Limited Novices’ Handicap Chase.
Ridden by Barry Geraghty, the odds-on shot held off chasing debutant Mad Jack Mytton by half-a-length and could also now be headed to the Cheltenham Festival for the RSA Chase.
Henderson’s treble had been launched by Burbank, another odds-on shot who obliged in the Equimark Horseboxes All New Racing Collection EBF ‘National Hunt’ Maiden Hurdle for jockey Jeremiah McGrath.
Trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies took a step closer to sending out 100 winners in a jumps season for the first time when Wicked Willy – the 7/2 favourite - took the honours in the opening equimarkhorseboxes.com Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle.
The Jugopolist (7/1) triumphed at Huntingdon for the second time in the space of six weeks when delivering a fine front-running display in the Equimark Horseboxes ‘The Professionals’ Choice’ Handicap Chase. Leicestershire trainer John Cornwall’s charge had also triumphed on the Betfred.com Peterborough Chase card at the beginning of December.
There was a big-price winner to close the card as young Newmarket trainer Amy Murphy sent out Mariah’s Legend to land the Equimark Horseboxes Back At Huntingdon 27th January Mares’ Maiden Hurdle at odds of 33/1.
The next fixture at Huntingdon is on Friday, January 27. It is another of the track’s #GoRacing Days where adult admission is available at £10 in advance.