This Friday evening Wales and Border Harness Racing meeting was re-arranged because an earlier date had been rained off, but it proved to be a popular gathering on a new field alongside the A44 just outside the village of New Radnor.
The tight track provided plenty of atmosphere for an appreciative crowd.
The first races were the Novice heats, often some of the most competitive of the day. Carrie on Fred this week partnered by Lynne Boxhall for owner Liam Middleton from Llandrindod Wells secured victory from Fold Showman (Perks, Presteigne) while a hair’s breadth away in third was Talavary Crown (Greenway, Michaelchurch Eskley), another from the Hardwick/Boxhall training stable.
In the second race, Ceiron Spirit dictated the race leading from pillar to post for owner Rachel Bevan from Builth Wells driven as usual by Andrew Bevan. Fold Megastar (Perks, Presteigne) was second while Ellavalad with Andrew Hardwick onboard, was third.
The Grade B was a straight race with Ayr Major setting the pace, but on the final bend Zulu Warrior and owner Mathew Tromans from Newcastle Emlyn took the lead to win, while stablemate Beg For Mercy driven by Janet Thomas was second with Ayr Major and Shane Eggerton from Norton Canon third.
Next up the Grade A heats. In the first, Llwyns Mercy tore off from the starting gate to take command. This little mare belonging to Elizabeth Collingwood from Huntington is very difficult to pass, and so it proved as Lee Price steered her to victory ahead of Easy Company with owner Elin Bevan from Llanddewi on board while Second Affair (Perks, Presteigne) was third.
In the second heat Lee Price partnered the other Collingwood entry Luminite, on his first run in the premier grade after his Penybont victory, and again they dominated to claim a deserved success. In second was Dernol Yankee (Wozencraft, Llangurig) while Ontop Shouda Cuda (Bevan, Llanddewi) was third.
In the first Baby Novice race back marker Mahogany Batman produced an inspired run under a positive drive by David Arrowsmith for Tracy Gale from Gorslas chased home by Red Regal (Lloyd, New Radnor) while third prize was another close call with Ithon Queen (Reynolds, Orleton) getting the verdict. Mahogany Batman moves into the Novice division.
In the second race, Disquilfa Gem owned by Sydney Mason from Gladestry and driven by Jonny James from Huntington, led from start to finish ahead of the fast finishing Ithon Prince (Duggan, Howey), while third prize was divided by the aptly named Vroom (Chettwr, Stourbridge) and Fold Withstyle and Lorna Bird (Perks, Presteigne). In the third race the talented Red Cash driven by Lynne Boxhall for Dai Sargeant from Newbridge ran a classic race to gain victory from Sally M (Davies, Orleton) in second, while the fast finishing Ithon Pape (Rowlands, Rhayader) claimed third.
Only three horses lined up for the Nursery race in which Carrie on Doon driven by Lynne Boxhall for Fran Morgan from Knighton took up the running on the last lap to claim a comfortable victory from Slingshot the new horse belonging to the Greenway family from Michaelchurch Eskley on his first appearance on a racecourse, while Dollars Dream (Lloyd, Gladestry) was third.
In the Novice Final Ceiron Spirit (Bevan, Builth Wells) took up the running from the start and with Andrew Bevan in the seat dictated proceedings to claim victory from close behind Carrie on Fred (Middleton, Llandrindod Wells) and inches away Fold Showman (Perks, Presteigne).
The next race was the non-whip race in which the intriguingly named Juicy Wiggle driven by Mathew Tromans for Mark White from Porthcawl, took up the running on the final lap to win from Fold Withstyle (Perks, Presteigne) while Victoria Penlan (Thomas, Pontypridd) was third.
The final race of the day was the Grade A Final, in which Luminite with Lee Price in the seat, took advantage of pole position to lead a close bunch of competitors, and to claim victory for Elizabeth Collingwood from Huntington, in second was the always reliable Dernol Yankee (Wozencraft, Llangurig) with Easy Company (Bevan, Llanddewi) running on into third.
So at the end of the only evening meeting of the season racing moves on to the Newbridge fixture which is held on the open Cilmeri track on Saturday starting at 1.30pm.