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Wednesday, April 12, 2000



WILLIAM HILL ANTEPOST PRICES





Ladbroke Casinos Scottish Grand National

Paris Pike 4
Marlborough 8
Edmond 9
Browjoshy 10
Cavalero 10
Young Kenny 10
Birkdale 11
Earthmover 14
Red Marauder 14
Spendid 14
Samlee 14
Scotton Green 16
Soldat 16
Trouble Ahead 16
Golden Drum 20
Lord Of The West 20
Mister One 20
Moondigua 20
25-1 Bar


The Vodafone Derby 1m 4f
Epsom - June 10


Beat Hollow 10
Shakespeare 14
Aristotle 20
Dubai Two Thousand 20
Inchlonaig 20
Kutub 20
25-1 Bar

The Sagitta 2,000 Guineas

Distant Music 9-4
Giants Causeway 9-2
Misraah 7
Monashee Mountain 10
Bernstein 14
Bachir 16
Primo Valentino 16
20-1 Bar

Sagitta 1,000 Guineas

High Walden 8
Teggiano 10
Petrushka 10
Inkling 14
Seazun 16
Lahan 16
Arabesque 20
Kalypso Katie 20
Saintly Speech 20
25-1 Bar

The Vodafone Oaks 1m 4f
June 9


High Walden 10
Teggiano 10
Petrushka 12
Love Divine 14
Kalypso Katie 16
Dignify 20
Farrfesheena 20
Interlude 20
Melikah 20
25-1 Bar



DORANS PRIDE HEADS 47 LEFT IN THE WHITBREAD GOLD CUP





DORANS PRIDE, who has run with great credit in the last four runnings of the Tote Cheltenham Gold Cup, heads 47 horses left in the £115,000 Whitbread Gold Cup, the race that will bring down the curtain on the National Hunt season at Sandown Park on Saturday, April 29.


The Irish-trained 11-year-old was today declared a definite runner by his trainer, Michael Hourigan, who may also run the lightly weighted TELL THE NIPPER, fifth in the race in 1998: "DORANS PRIDE is definitely going for the Whitbread and I may well run them both. DORANS PRIDE wants quick ground, so I hope the rain stays away."

Assuming Hourigan's stable star does line up, he will carry 11st 10lb with all the weights from the original handicap rising by 3lbs following the defection of the original top weight, Go Ballistic, at yesterday's forfeit. This puts 16 horses in the handicap proper, including YOUNG KENNY, a probable runner int he Ladbroke Casinos Scottish National this weekend; Alan King's pair SPENDID and MULLIGAN; the last fence faller in the Martell Grand National, ESCARTEFIGUE; last year's National winner, BOBBYJO, who could manage just 11th this time and who was 6th in last year's Whitbread; two of Nicky Henderson's Cheltenham Festival winners, STORMYFAIRWEATHER and MARLBOROUGH; Nigel Twiston-Davies' high class novices, BEAU and KING'S ROAD; and Kim Bailey's fast improving chaser, TROUBLE AHEAD.


Just one horse is in line for the £100,000 bonus payable if one of the first four home in last Saturday's National can go on to win the Whitbread. BRAVE HIGHLANDER was the only one of the first four entered in the Whitbread and, although he has stood his ground at the forfeit stage, he is 25 pounds out of the handicap.


Other National horses to have stood their ground include ESPRIT DE COTTE, who was travelling so well when he fell at the 22nd, and DARK STRANGER, who started favourite but gave Tony McCoy a heavy fall at the third.


"We are delighted to have 47 left in at this stage, with 19 either in or within three pounds of the handicap proper," commented Sandown Park's Clerk of the Course, Andrew Cooper. "It promises a hugely competitive and high class race to end the season."

Whitbread "Finale" Day will feature its usual unique blend of top class flat and National Hunt racing and, for the first time, will finish with special celebrations and awards to mark the official end of the jumping season, including a concert by the top Irish band, The Saw Doctors, and a spectacular firework display.



THE 44TH WHITBREAD GOLD CUP (Handicap Chase)
3m 5 1/2f Sandown Park, Saturday 29 April 2000
£115,000 total prize fund (£66,700 to the winner) 47 horses remain engaged

Horse Age Weight Trainer


DORANS PRIDE 11-11-10 Michael Hourigan, Ireland
YOUNG KENNY 9-11-05 Peter Beaumont
SPENDID 8-11-01 Alan King
MULLIGAN 10-11-01 Alan King
ESCARTEFIGUE 8-11-01 Paul Nicholls
BOBBYJO* 10-10-09 Tommy Carberry, Ireland
STORMYFAIRWEATHER 8-10-08 Nicky Henderson
ROYAL PREDICA 6-10-06 Martin Pipe
TULLYMURRY TOFF 9-10-06 Malcolm Jefferson
MARLBOROUGH 8-10-05 Nicky Henderson
BEAU 7-10-04 Nigel Twiston-Davies
KING'S ROAD 7-10-04 Nigel Twiston-Davies
BOUCHASSON 7-10-02 Peter Hobbs
TROUBLE AHEAD 9-10-01 Kim Bailey
VILLAGE KING 7-10-00 Peter Hobbs
MOONDIGUA 8-10-00 Martin Pipe
SENOR EL BETRUTTI* 11-9-13 Susan Nock
ESPRIT DE COTTE 8-9-13 Nicky Henderson
JOCKS CROSS 9-9-11 Venetia Williams
LANCASTRIAN JET 9-9-07 Henry Daly
EAU DE COLOGNE 8-9-07 Lydia Richards
LINTON ROCKS 11-9-07 Paul Nicholls
DARK STRANGER 9-9-06 Martin Pipe
SUPREME CHARM 8-9-06 Kim Bailey
JATHIB* 9-9-04 Martin Pipe
TORDUFF EXPRESS 9-9-04 Paul Nicholls
PADDY'S RETURN 8-9-03 Ferdy Murphy
SCOTIA NOSTRA 8-9-03 Venetia Williams
CASTERBRIDGE 8-9-03 Mandy Bowlby
MONTROE 8-9-03 Richard Rowe
CHOISTY 10-9-02 Ted Haynes
FLAKED OATS 11-9-02 Paul Nicholls
ART PRINCE 10-9-02 Martin Pipe
GRIMLEY GALE 11-9-01 M Jackson
MENESONIC 10-9-00 Robert Alner
LAST OPTION 8-9-00 R Tate
ACKZO 7-8-13 Ferdy Murphy
GENERAL PONGO 11-8-13 Paul Webber
AVANTI EXPRESS 10-8-12 Charlie Egerton
CELTIC GIANT 10-8-12 Len Lungo
THERMAL WARRIOR 12-8-10 Jim Old
GIGI BEACH 9-8-09 Paul Nicholls
TELL THE NIPPER* 9-8-09 Michael Hourigan, Ireland
BRAVE HIGHLANDER 12-8-03 Josh Gifford
AARDWOLF* 9-8-02 Jim Old
FOLLY ROAD 10-8-02 Dai Williams
MASTER KIT 11-6-13 J Billinge

PREVIOUS WHITBREAD PERFORMANCES
Jathib: 3rd in 1999 Bobbyjo: 6th in 1999 Senor El Betrutti: 15th in 1999
Tell The Nipper: 5th in 1998 Aardwolf: U.R. in 1998





SANDOWN PARK UNVEILS PLANS FOR £23 MILLION REFURBISHMENT





Sandown Park today unveiled its plans for a major £23 million refurbishment programme, commencing in May 2000, to ensure Sandown Park retains its position as one of the UK's top racecourses.


Funding for the project has come from the Levy Board, Racecourse Holdings Trust and United Racecourses, with the Levy Board lending a record £8.5 million, the largest sum of money they have lent in any single transaction.


Robert Hughes, Chairman of the Levy Board commented: "Sandown Park is one of Britain's leading racecourses and the redevelopment is good news for racing. The Levy Board has supported improvements to racecourse facilities for many years and it is delighted to be helping this major project."

Once completed, Sandown Park will boast an impressive array of new and upgraded facilities for its racing and events and leisure clients, ensuring Sandown Park retains its status as one of the UK's leading racecourses, whilst keeping its unique character.

The superb facilities include:

* New Lawn Complex: Will replace the existing building just beyond the Winning Post, creating a modern, flexible unit which will house 23 boxes and an executive suite fitted out to the highest quality specification. The new glass fronted Lawn Complex will command a fantastic view across the racecourse providing hospitality guests and
sponsors with flexible, modern, up to date facilities.


* Main Grandstand: Will be fully renovated, to provide many additional benefits. These will include; a covered walk way from the main entrance through to the Grandstand, improved food court and catering services, increased bar footage and a new improved Grandstand Sports Bar. A video wall will be erected in the Surrey Betting Hall, the lifts, escalators and toilets will all be upgraded, better disabled access throughout, improved CCTV/PA services, increased number of Tote outlets, and re-decoration of all areas.


All boxes in the main Grandstand will be upgraded and redecorated, providing better facilities for sponsors, box holders and conference & banqueting clients. Balconies will be built onto the Wolsey and Claremont Suites providing guests with an improved view across the course.


In addition to this there will be increased covered viewing areas overlooking the Parade Ring.

* Internet Café: Sandown Park will become the first racecourse to have a dedicated Internet Café, ensuring Sandown Park has a firm foothold in the 21st Century.


* Main Entrance: Will be upgraded and improved with a covered drop off point and a turning circle, allowing traffic to move more easily around the site. The entrance foyer to the front of the building will be greatly enhanced providing improved first impressions and easier access into the Main Grandstand.


* Car Park: Improvements will be made to the entrances and internal circulation routes to ease access and egress from the site.

* Racing Surface: Investment in the quality of the racing infrastructure is of paramount importance to Sandown Park, and the following improvements to the racing product will be made:

The racing surface between the Winning Post and 5 furlong course will be widened by up to 10 metres. The existing concrete and wood around the pre parade rings will be replaced with plastic installations. All the racing service roads on-course will be re-tarmaced as will both parade rings. A canter down will be introduced on the outside of the Chase course, which will be used for all races with the exception of 3
mile races over jumps.

The course irrigation system will be upgraded and improvements made to the drainage areas of the Pond and Back Straight.


Sue Ellen, Managing Director, URL commented: "This is a very exciting time for Sandown Park, where there has been no significant expenditure for many years. The refurbishment programme will ensure improved facilities across the board, providing both our racing and events and leisure clients with a venue of the highest specification."

She added: "The considerable amount of money the Levy Board has lent us obviously speaks for their faith in the project and we believe that Sandown Park will confirm itself as one of London's leading sporting venues."



NEWBURY LOOKS FORWARD TO MOST EXCITING FLAT SEASON





Racehorse owners, whose support of Newbury is much appreciated, will gain free admission to all except one of Newbury's Flat fixtures this year.


This is the most widespread use by a major British racecourse of the Racehorse Owners Association's Owners' Pass Card System, which involves 2,000 owners.

It means that all owners registered with the scheme will gain free admission to the Newbury Members' Enclosure when they do not have a runner at the Berkshire course.

The only exception out of Newbury's 17 days of Flat racing is May 20. Owners are also entitled to hire Newbury private boxes at special rates.


Every owner with a runner at Newbury automatically gains free admission, with four extra badges for sole owners and eight for partnerships and syndicates. Any other badges needed are offered at a discount.


Lisa Ward, Marketing Manager at Newbury Racecourse, commented: "Newbury is particularly committed to looking after owners and is delighted to announce this extension of the Owners' Pass Card System."

Michael Harris, Chief Executive of the Racehorse Owners' Association, declared: "It is excellent news that Newbury is looking after owners so well. Owners contribute a huge amount to racing and it is good to see Newbury recognising this."

Newbury welcomes plenty of new sponsors during the 2000 Flat season, as well as thanking those who already support races at the Berkshire track.


Among the new and increased sponsorships are:-

Dubai Duty Free will again sponsor the leading fillies' Classic trial, the Group Three Dubai Duty Free Stakes worth £35,000 at the opening Newbury Flat day, April 14, in addition to their major sponsorship in September.


Watership Down Stud are to sponsor for the first time ever at Newbury on Saturday, April 15, backing the £35,000-added Watership Down Stud John Porter Stakes, Group Three.


On April 15 leading American stud farm, Lane's End, have increased their sponsorship at the course by backing the Group Three £40,000 Lane's End Greenham Stakes, the Classic trial for colts.


Grundons have boosted their support at Newbury with the Aston Park Stakes, a Listed race over one mile, five furlongs on May 20.


Aegon (formerly Scottish Equitable) are sponsoring three races on June 15.


The Mail On Sunday return to the track to sponsor in July.

At the same meeting, the Robinson Keane Stakes is named after the generous purchaser for £15,500 of a Newbury Racecourse hospitality package, with extras, during the Children In Need Auction conducted by Terry Wogan on Radio 2 in November. The special package consisted of the opportunity to name a race at Newbury Racecourse, choosing the best turned-out horse and presenting the trophies to the winning trainer, owner and jockey.


A behind-the-scenes visit to the Weighing Room, Stewards' Room, Commentator's Box and Press Room will be arranged and up to nine family and friends will be entertained in a well-appointed Newbury Racecourse hospitality box, with a champagne reception, four-course lunch with wine and afternoon tea from caterers Sodexho. In addition to the fabulous day at the races, there will be a morning visit to a top trainer's yard to see horses on the gallops and overnight accommodation for two in a fabulous suite at the prestigious Vineyard Hotel and Restaurant, with a gourmet dinner in the famous restaurant cooked by a Michelin-starred chef. There is also the chance to relax in the newly-opened spa facilities.

Britain's two leading bloodstock auction houses join the list of sponsors at Newbury this year. Tattersalls sponsor in July and Doncaster Bloodstock Sales in August.


Ruinart will return in July to support the Listed Hackwood Stakes run over six furlongs.


On August 6, Newbury stages a new meeting which will be an NSPCC Charity Day.


Courage reinforce backing of Newbury in September with their big handicap run over one mile and two furlongs.


Vodafone continue their great support in October. Robert Sangster's Swettenham Stud have increased sponsorship and will now back the Listed Radley Stakes on Perpetual Day in October.


The Vineyard at Stockcross, the leading hotel and restaurant in the Newbury area, will sponsor the new Trainer, Jockey and Owner Championships throughout the Flat season.
Awards will be presented to the Champion Trainer, Champion Jockey, Champion Owner, Champion Apprentice/Conditional Jockey, Trainer with most runners at the course and Jockey with most rides at the course.


Lisa Ward said: "We are delighted that we have such great supporters of our racing and we would like to thank all past sponsors and welcome new sponsors to what we hope will be a long and prosperous friendship with Newbury Racecourse."



SCARTEEN FOX UNLIKELY TO RUN AT NEWBURY





Scarteen Fox, trained by David Elsworth, who won two of four races last term including
a Listed race at Newmarket on October 1, is unlikely to make his reappearance in the Group Three Lane's End Greenham Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.


Elsworth commented: "We're waiting on the ground. It's good to soft at the moment and I think it's unlikely he'll run. We don't want to close the door on it because it's been our plan all winter, but it doesn't look good.


"As an alternative, it might be a good idea to look at the Free Handicap at Newmarket next week, where he's got 8st 5lb."



SHAMROCK CITY TO RUN IN CRAVEN





The Paul Howling-trained, Shamrock City, who showed potential at York last August in finishing two lengths behind King's Best, before easily winning a maiden at Doncaster on September 8, will run in the Craven Stakes at Newmarket next Thursday.


Howling commented: "We're going to run in the Craven as a prep for the Guineas. My horse has only had three runs, and I'd like to give him more experience.


"He'll come on for a run but is in good form."


For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink Archive


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