Swing Bowler delivers the perfect race for David Pipe at Musselburgh
Swing Bowler maintained her unbeaten record with a clear-cut victory in the totequadpot At totepool.com Hogmaneigh Handicap Hurdle at Musselburgh.
A daughter of the smart Lady Cricket, whose 11 career successes included the Game Spirit Chase and Thomas Pink Gold Cup, Swing Bowler (3-1 favourite) overcame a nine-and-a-half month absence in some style.
Winner of two bumpers in 2011 and two hurdles last term, the six-year-old trained by David Pipe in Somerset looked a class act as she swept to a four-and-a-half-length success over Ingleby Spirit in the hands of Conor O’Farrell.
Speaking from Exeter where he sent out Buddy Bolero to score, Pipe said: “I don’t know any other horse that’s five out of five.
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“Lady Cricket was a very good mare and she’s also has a got a great attitude.
“She did go to the December Sales to be sold as a broodmare but she didn’t make her reserve, so she went back into training and it’s great to have her back.
“That was the softest ground she’s had and she handled it well. She was at Timmy Murphy’s in the summer and she’s stronger, but she is going to have to improve.”
Home Run gave Pipe a double, and his third triumph of the day, when chalking up his fifth win in 26 days in the Follow totepool On Facebook And Twitter Handicap Hurdle.
The 6-4 favourite, ridden by 10lb claimer Francis Hayes, led three out and plugged on gamely to hold Takaatuf by a length and a half.
“When they went up to Scotland overnight, Swing Bowler did not quite eat up, but Home Run ate the lot. He’s tough, but he’s not overbig,” said Pipe.
“He’s improving but the handicapper will probably get hold of him now. We’ve had some great times with him and hopefully there will be some more to come.”
Everaard (13-2) won for the fifth time at the Edinburgh track with a gallant win under Richie McGrath in the Bet toteexacta At totepool.com Happy New Year Handicap Chase.
Never far off the pace, he shrugged off all challengers to land the spoils by a length and a half from Foot The Bill.
He was having is first run in the care of Phil Kirby, but as his former handler Kate Walton explained, she is still very hands on.
“Myself and Phil (Kirby) have merged,” Walton said.
“Basically I was a small yard and I had some empty boxes, while Phil has done very well and has outgrown his yard so we’ve gone together.
“Phil is going to hold the licence from midnight last night and I’m going to still be very much part of it, keep my owners on board, help Phil progress up the ladders and hopefully it will be fun.
“Everaard loves it at Musselburgh, he just kept sticking his head out.
“It was slightly on the soft side really and I nearly pulled him out but he’s done it well.”
Harry Haynes brought Bocciani (7-1) with a smooth run to put his stamp on the totepool.com Honest Toun Handicap Chase. Held up in the early stages, Bocciani jumped alongside the pace-setting Niceonefrankie four out and gradually pulled clear to score by seven lengths from Swift Arrow who grabbed the runner-up spot.
“He’s high enough in the weights but that’s because he’s always been so consistent,” said trainer Brian Ellison.
Conditional Jack Quinlan steered the John Ferguson-trained Cayman Islands (13-2) home by two-and-a-quarter lengths from Docs Legacy in the Bet toteplacepot At totepool.com First Footer Novices’ Hurdle. Herefordshire-based Monetary Fund (7-2) landed his second course and distance success when powering to victory in the Make It More Exciting With totepool Handicap Hurdle.