Morestead gets magical send-off at Fontwell Park

Fontwell Park in the sunshine
Fontwell Park in the sunshine
  • Veteran can’t hold early lead
  • Owners presented with memento of race career
  • Four winners from Observer selections

IT WAS all about Morestead as Fontwell Park punters enjoyed a sunny afternoon of jump racing.

The veteran racehorse was running his last of more than 100 races at a course that’s become his spiritual home during his running career.

And for a while, it looked like the ten-year-old crowd favourite might just sign off in style.

Ridden by Brendan Powell for his trainer dad of the same name, he was the early leader in the specially-renamed Morestead Retirement Handicap Chase. Sadly, he faded – though in his typical style, he stayed on well to finish fifth from seven starters, if well behind 4/1 winner The Informant.

Afterwards, Fontwell officials presented Morestead’s owners with a special trophy to mark the horse’s famous running career, which saw him run more often at the figure-of-eight track than at any other course.

The Informant, ridden by Andrew Thornton for Seamus Mullins was one of four winners on the day tipped for success at our website – and our forecasts also included a second-placed horse and two that finished third.

The jockey-trainer partnership of Paul O’Brien and Colin Tizzard scored a double – for themselves and our tips – with success on Buckhorn Timothy (15/8) and Xaarcet (11/2).

Tom Cannon, riding Leo Luna (30/100 favourite) for Sussex trainer Gary Moore, brought home our other win.

Cannon, Fontwell’s top jockey for the past three years, completed a double when Chris Gordon’s 2/1 favourite Very Noble carried him home in the Handicap Hurdle.

Opening Batsman, ridden by Ryan Mahon for Harry Fry, took the Neil Madgwick Memorial Sponsored By Les&Jim Handicap Chase at 100/30 while Sam Twiston-Davies triumphed in the last on board 7/2 shot Cougar Kid for Philip Hide, now a trainer after successful times at Fontwell in the saddle.

Next up at Fontwell it’s Ladies’ Evening on Friday, May 1, featuring seven races followed by a DJ set by Radio 2’s Jo Whiley. For tickets see or call 01243 543335.