HORSERACING: PUNTERS made the most of the Spring sunshine at Warwick on Sunday afternoon as the course welcomed another large crowd for its annual Countryside Raceday.
Though attractions including shire horses, ferret racing and various falconry displays were on view, it was trainer Venetia Williams who stole the limelight with a superb treble.
The Hereford-based trainer firstly saddled Grand Turina in the opener before Buttercup made it a quick double in the second race while Shivermetimbers pulled clear in the final furlong to take the concluding National Hunt Flat race.
Returning from a second at Ludlow in January, Grand Turina dictated the pace of the race before being ridden by Charlie Deutsch heading home.
The six-year-old defied a late challenge from odds-on favourite Count Meribel to win by seven lengths.
Buttercup then made it two for Williams, winning impressively by 18 lengths from second favourite Kayfleur.
To complete a near perfect day for Williams – who holds an impressive record at Warwick – Shivermetimbers went clear inside the final 200yards to beat Another Stowaway in the finale.
The most impressive winner on the day though came in the third race when talented youngster Sean Bowen steered Robin Of Locksley to a tapes to flag win in the Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance Handicap Hurdle.
Despite making a couple of untidy mistakes, the seven-year-old was in complete control of the race turning home and made all to win by 35 lengths carrying 11st 12lbs.
Grand National winning trainer Dr Richard Newland was in the winners’ enclosure too as Sam Twiston-Davies, taking his only ride of the day, pushed home 8/1 chance West of the Edge in the Handicap Chase over 3m 5f.
Previous Classic Chase winner Rigadin De Beauchene ran disappointingly as did the Nigel Twiston-Davies runner Deputy Commander.
Act Four and Poole Master took the honours in the fifth and sixth races.
Warwick next open their gates on Wednesday, March 22, for their mid-week jumps fixture.