Frosty morning, warm Yorkshire welcome, great racing, nice people, the return of Amicelli, impressive AGA ladies winner, an AGA ladies title challenger from the north-east, Channel 4 Racing man in attendance, and lots of Easterby's wearing AGA hats - that pretty much sums up a great day at Sheriff Hutton!
Towards the end of the 2012 season Cherry Coward gave me some great advice about my blog, she said “I like it, but you go on a bit sometimes”. I took the advice and ever since I have tried to keep the words to a minimum and let the photos do the talking, so lets hope Cherry approves of this weeks effort!
So, here goes, there are 29 photos featuring people, horses and AGA hats – which were just as popular in Yorkshire as in the rest of the country! You’ll also notice an AGA Dual Control cooker in some of the pics, that’s our latest electric cooker and I need to sell some, so if you currently own a tired old oil AGA and it’s ready to meet its maker, please get in touch!
Yes, that’s right, at the grand old age of 15, Amicelli was back on a racecourse! I’d written a blog piece last season celebrating his retirement, but the former AGA champion was now strutting around the paddock as if he owned it!
What a performance, he lead nearly all the way and was only headed approaching the last fence, and that was by a horse 9 years younger than him! Something tells me that we’ll see him again soon, maybe in an AGA ladies race!
We had been loaded down with delicious cakes when we arrived, in aid of the Yorkshire Air Ambulance. They were baked by Mrs S and two of our AGA Home Ambassadors, Ursula Evans and Carolyn Chesshire, and there wasn’t a crumb left by the end of the day!
The third AGA ladies open race of the season was always going to be competitive for two reasons, the entry was good and this is Yorkshire!
Ockey De Neulliac was an impressive winner, piloted by Catherine Walton, who is the reigning Amateur Lady Jockeys Flat Champion. She was in great form after the race and we’re delighted to have a live AGA title challenger from the north-east! The winning connections – Neil Mechie, Justin Landy & Kristy Kettlewell – were also in great form, and very pleased to learn that the 10 points has put them firmly in the running to win our owners championship, and a new AGA!
Mick Easterby had appeared on the Morning Line on Channel 4 the previous weekend and had done a very fine job of promoting the Yorkshire Area Point-to-Point Club meeting. He had also managed to persuade presenter Nick Luck to chuck his wellies in the boot and head up to Yorkshire following his Saturday stint on Channel 4 Racing’s programme from Warwick Racecourse.
Nick was great fun and very kindly agreed to join me to present the trophies to our winners, although I would imagine that when he woke up on Sunday morning he probably didn’t think that by 2pm he would be stood in a field wearing an AGA hat!
Claire Hart had travelled up to Yorkshire to ride last seasons star performer Palypso De Creek, but connections decided to sit this one out. That’s a shame because I would have loved to see Ockey De Neulliac go head to head with Palypso, that would have been some race!
That’s about it from me, after the AGA race I concentrated on social shots (as you can see from the photos above), and there are quite a few people featured who are great supporters of the AGA series, they also like AGA hats! Some are AGA owners and some would like to be, hopefully they will watch this fabulous new AGA film and be inspired to buy one … they know where I am! PS – how did I do Cherry?