There’s a warm welcome for the AGA man in South Dorset on a very special day for Lilly and Maddie

These point-to-point fixtures just keep getting better and better, and this one at Milborne St Andrew left me with a really warm glow which lasted all the way home – just as well really, because it was cold, very cold! However, that did not seem to concern the large, good natured crowd and it certainly did not concern me, I loved it!

They don't look cold!
They don’t look cold!

Transport to South Dorset was courtesy of Derek Freathy (thank you, and thanks also go to Claire Hart for arranging said transport) so all I had to do was get myself to Moreton-in-Marsh for 9am, no problem! One of our travelling companions was Lilly Pinchin, who was excited beyond belief because her point-to-point debut was only hours away – although it should be noted that she slept for most of the journey!

Will Biddick is in the pink silks, although as of this week he is now known as 'Billy Widdick' amongst some of his pointing friends (thanks to Mark Wall)
Will Biddick is in the pink silks, although as of this week he is now known as ‘Billy Widdick’ amongst some of his pointing friends (thanks to Mark Wall)
A familiar and welcome sight on point-to-point courses across the UK
A familiar and welcome sight on point-to-point courses across the UK
Preparations are under way as Lilly walks the course with Helen Hart
Preparations are under way as Lilly walks the course with Helen Hart
Rob Hawker
Rob Hawker
Happy, happy, happy - Team Barber
Happy, happy, happy – Team Barber
Charmix and Will Biddick - 1st in Div. 1 of the Open Maiden
Charmix and Will Biddick – 1st in Div. 1 of the Open Maiden
Claire Hart and Richard Bandey are reluctant to leave the lorry due to their choice of head gear!
Claire Hart and Richard Bandey are reluctant to leave the lorry due to their choice of head gear!
Pointing has a reputation for being a very social sport and there was plenty of evidence of that at Milborne, both in the lorry park and the car park
Pointing has a reputation for being a very social sport and there was plenty of evidence of that at Milborne, both in the lorry park and the car park

I had been on course for around 10 minutes before the first invite was received to visit a well stocked car boot. It was from the Barber family (and friends), and I soon had a cup of delicious homemade soup in my hands which warmed me up a treat!

Restricted winner, Impact Area
Restricted winner, Impact Area
The Bandey team celebrate their win in the ladies open, the win coming courtesy of Alskamatic and Claire Hart
The Bandey team celebrate their win in the ladies open, the win coming courtesy of Alskamatic and Claire Hart
Here come the boys!
Here come the boys!
Last minute instructions for James Tudor, before he is legged up on Harbour Court by Big Al
Last minute instructions for James Tudor, before he is legged up on Harbour Court by Big Al
Job done! Harbour Court has got up on the run-in to win the mens open
Job done! Harbour Court has got up on the run-in to win the mens open

Next up was the PPORA-CA Club Members race for novice riders, the one that all of my travelling companions had been waiting for. Lilly Pinchin announced pre-race that she was going to dedicate her ride to family friend, Maddie Hems, and it was fitting that Maddie had travelled down to cheer her on.

Lilly Pinchin strides into the paddock
Lilly Pinchin strides into the paddock
Lilly and Maddie
Lilly and Maddie
She's ready! Thumbs up from Lilly
She’s ready! Thumbs up from Lilly
Lucy Tucker leads up Flanshan - I joined Lucy and friends in the lorry park post race for a tipple and a chat before the long journey home (very nice it was too), and they were still going strong when we left!
Lucy Tucker leads up Flanshan – I joined Lucy and friends in the lorry park post race for a tipple and a chat before the long journey home (very nice it was too), and they were still going strong when we left!
Lilly had a great spin on Marblehead and both jockey and trainer (Claire Hart) were delighted!
Lilly had a great spin on Marblehead and both jockey and trainer (Claire Hart) were delighted!
There were hugs for everyone in the paddock after the race
There were hugs for everyone in the paddock after the race
Minella Theatre won to give Big Al a double on the day, while Albert Chandler was notching his second career win
Minella Theatre won to give Big Al a double on the day, while Albert Chandler was notching his second career win

And that was it, well, not quite, as there was still time for a cheeky celebratory drink in the lorry park before heading back to the Cotswolds, and there was also time for Lilly to say a great big thank you to Marblehead (see below).

A great big hug and lots of kisses for Marblehead!
A great big hug and lots of kisses for Marblehead!

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