Haydon Preview 2013
By Peter Burgon

The Haydon Hunt stages the penultimate fixture of the Northern Area season at Hexham Racecourse on Sunday.
It has attracted a bumper total of 130 entries, including 26 from Yorkshire, on a seven race card starting at 2pm.

The main action is preceded at 1pm by 2 pony races, with 8 entries for the 138cm contest and 4 entries for the 148cm contest.

The 6 entries for the opening Members Race are headed by Coastley. David Carr's gelding won twice between the flags in 2009
before landing a Perth Hunters' Chase and the following year he scored over hurdles at Sedgefield and Kelso.
Despite being off the track for more than two and a half years, he can make a winning return from Omme Antique (right, 5) and
Viking Rebel (right, blue&white).

The two and a half mile Open Maiden Race for 4, 5, 6 and 7 year olds has 17 entries and may chiefly concern Anddante (left), Roy's Gallery and Have One For Me. The former duo have improved with every run this term and filled the minor placings behind Sedano at Easingwold last Sunday, while the Victor Thompson-trained gelding, Have One For Me has been placed on his last three outings.


The Open Maiden Race looks a competitive affair as 11 of the 18 entries have some decent placed form this season. Baileys Benchmark and Tom's Pride were not beaten far when 2nd and 3rd respectively behind Never Forget Poppy at Easingwold, the improving Mr Shahady (right) found only Red Myst too good at Aspatria, while Filbert Fox, who was carried out at the sixth at Aspatria, will be hoping that the forecast rain arrives before Sunday to ease the ground in his favour

Almost half of the 25 entries for the Restricted Race have lost their maiden tags in 2013 and it looks another tricky puzzle for punters to solve.
The testing Hexham point-to-point track always exposes any stamina limitations but should hold no fears for the likes of Call Mrs Jones, Raifteiri, Red Myst, Leney Cottage (left) and Cherry's Bay.

The Northern Area's only Mixed Open Race of the campaign has a quality list of 23 entries, which includes Gunner Jack, Narciso, Noir Et Vert, Ocarina, Radharc Na Mara, Sotovik, See You There and Tommysteel. Narciso is a proven stayer and has won here four times including this race in 2011, the in-form Ocarina has won three times on the adjoining National Hunt track including a hunters' chase last month, Radharc Na Mara (right) trounced her Ladies Open rivals at Mosshouses and Aspatria but has 19lb more to carry here, while the prolific Tommysteel has won six of his last eight starts between the flags.

Course specialist, Barachois Silver and Marfleet (left) are among the 24 entries for the NPPA Club Members Race. The former is unbeaten on her last three visits to the track and comes here on the back of two good placed efforts in hunters' chases at Kelso and Hexham, while last month's Corbridge scorer, Marfleet beat Silk And Roses and Cast Iron Casey in the 2012 renewal. Winning hurdler, Habbie Simpson ran a blinder when a close 4th to Buckstruther on his comeback  outing at Tranwell six weeks ago, the progressive Jimmy The Jetplane is on a hat-trick after striking at Tranwell and Mosshouses, while the ultra-consistent
Senor Alco will have to defy a 9lb penalty to supplement last week's Aspatria success.

The concluding Intermediate Race has 17 entries including the Cherry Coward-trained duo, Alforone (right) and On Holiday, as well as Chris Dawson's dual Crossford scorer, Miss Chatterbox. The latter was left in her box at Aspatria last Saturday due to the testing underfoot conditions.

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