Williams hits hat-trick

Trainer Evan Williams was the man to follow at Ludlow as he sent out a hat-trick highlighted by a double for rider John Flavin.

Trainer Evan Williams was the man to follow at Ludlow as he sent out a hat-trick highlighted by a double for rider John Flavin.

Flavin scored aboard Soviet Sceptre and Brenin Cwmtudu to complete his comeback from a fractured skull and cheekbone sustained in a horrible fall at Wetherby in April 2006.

The conditional rider had to be forceful with Soviet Sceptre (7-4 favourite) in the Teme Conditional Jockeys’ Selling Hurdle, just holding the challenge of Arthurs Dream by a length and a half.

Flavin, who was with Richard Guest at the time of his fall, recalled: “I had ridden six winners in the previous eight days and I had already ridden a double at that Wetherby meeting.

“I was riding the odds-on chance and looking for the treble but a horse fell in front of us and brought my fellow down.

“As he got up, he stamped on my face and I suffered a fractured skull and cheekbone. I was stood down for 12 months.

“I have been with Evan Williams for the last few weeks and that’s my first winner since my injury.”

Williams added: “I despaired of winning a race with this horse but this is John’s day.

“He is the type of lad who has a tremendous work ethic and he deserves to get his chance.”

Flavin then completed his brace aboard Brenin Cwmtudu (2-1 favourite) in the closing Vyrnwy Intermediate National Hunt Flat Race.

That 10-length success sealed a 131/4-1 treble for Williams after Chrysander ran out an impressive winner of the opening Corve Novices’ Hurdle.

Making every yard of the running, Chrysander allowed Nakoma to get to within three-quarters of a length of him before Paul Moloney pushed on again to settle the issue.

Williams said of the 8-11 favourite: “We know he has an engine, it’s just a case of keeping all the other bits together.

“Christian Williams deserves a great deal of credit for the win. He has done a lot of schooling on him at home and he would have ridden him today had he not been serving a ban.”

Williams was denied a four-timer as his Gan Eagla could finish only third behind veteran performer Cassia Heights (11-2) in the Weatherbys 2008 Point-to-Point Annual Handicap Chase.

Winning trainer Steve Brookshaw said: “He likes it round here and has been running well through the autumn without getting any reward.

“I will keep him on the go while the ground is right for him.”

Alan Bailey ended a losing run stretching back 185 days as Andorran lifted the Onny Handicap Hurdle.

Despite the yard’s lacklustre recent form, Andorran was sent off the 11-4 favourite and duly came home a two-length victor over Sawpit Sunset.

Bailey joked: “I’m not on the trainers cold list, I’m in the deep freeze!

“He will be put up 34lb on Saturday for finishing second at Huntingdon last week and that is ridiculous.

“If this race had been on Saturday, he would have been giving the top weight 10lb.”

Good Old Days (16-1) opened his account for Kim Bailey in the Alfa Aggregates Novices’ Handicap Chase while even-money favourite Hitaaf made hard work of it on his debut in the Severn Maiden Hurdle but eventually got up to beat Dasher Reilly by a short head in the hands of Tony McCoy.

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