WHTIN the Wessex area there are a number of trainers of point-to-point horses and prior to the start of the season BOB BRACHER is talking to some of the rising stars about their hopes for the season and the horses they are expecting to race over the coming months.

THE surname is very familiar but the first name is new to point-to-point enthusiasts who are now counting down the days when the new season starts on Sunday, November 19.

For this coming season, there is a new trainer in charge at Higher Peckmoor Farm, on the Dorset/Somerset border near Crewkerne with Jade Barber taking over the reins from her husband Jack who is now a fully licensed trainer.

Jade who has been working alongside her husband since he first started training point-to-pointers hopes to have about 15 horses to run this season and it has already been announced that Martin McIntyre will have the first choice of rides for the stable ahead of champion jockey Will Biddick.

Jade has mostly a stable of new and young horses to race but some old faces will return to the point-to-point scene rather than all moving across to Jack’s stable.

Older and already raced horses

Aikideau 2007. The winner of 10 of his 15 point-to-point races so far he will continue to race for his very enthusiastic group of four lady owners and the plan is to continue to run in Ladies races. With Bryony Frost now a conditional jockey a new lady rider is currently being sought and it is hoped that the new jockey will be announced within the next few weeks. The winner of 5 races at Larkhill so far it is no surprise that a return to the Wiltshire course is very much on the radar.

Golden Hoof 2008. The winner of 2 of his 4 point-to-points last season at Badbury Rings and Charlton Horethorne he has recovered from the injury to his hind leg suffered in his final outing and he is expected to mix point-to-pointing with a possible Hunter Chase campaign.

Ballyjim 2011. A 6 year old gelding owned by Bill Dupont he had 5 races last season culminating in a third at Flete Park in a Maiden race. It is expected with another summer behind him and the experience he has already had a Maiden race ought to be well within his compass on route to better races.

Doyoumind 2012 . A 5 year old Grape Tree Road gelding who had just the one race at the end of last season at Bratton Down. He has had a wind operation since that race so it is hoped that he will progress in the new season.

Alternatif 2010. A recent arrival in the stable having previously raced for David Pipe who won a Hurdle and a Chase with him before being purchased by his current owners. He had a single outing for James Young at Badbury Rings last season but did not seem to enjoy the faster surface. It is expected that he will be one of the first of the stable to race in the new season.

Ahha 2012. A 5 year old Milan gelding owned by Paul Barber who has two starts to date in Irish points. Brought down at the last fence when in contention on his latest run this big strong gelding has been showing good attitude at home. He is a half-brother to Emerging Talent also owned by Mr and Mrs Barber and the winner of four races to date.

Blackwater Bramble 2011. A 6 year old King’s Theatre gelding owned in partnership by Paul Barber and David Martin.

The winner of a Maiden point-to-point at Dromhane in April 2016 he has not been seen since having suffered a minor leg injury. It is hoped that he will return to action in the New Year with Larkhill the likely venue.

Three In One 2012. A five-year-old Court Cave gelding owned by Jack and Jade. Bought by Jack in May as a wedding present for Jade he has had four races to date in Irish points. He is likely to be one of the first to run for the stable.

Unraced Horses

The remainder of the stable is made up of unraced horses with those to look out for later in the season including two for owner Colm Donlon one called Serralunga and the other an unnamed son of Flemensfirth.

Polkat Magic, a four-year-old gelding is owned by Tony Hayward, a three-year-old Doyen gelding called Eggardon Hill, a five-year-old Daylami gelding called Chalkwell who has had a recent wind operation, a three-year-old gelding Wylye Coyote and What’llbewillbe, a three-year-old Mahler gelding bought by Jack at Doncaster in May.

In addition to McIntyre and Biddick, Jade will give an opportunity to Gordon Treacy who has joined the stable as an amateur jockey.

Previously with Paul Henderson, Treacey is still eligible for novice rider races and is looking forward to the new point-to-point season.