PONTEFRACT hosted the final day of the tenth annual Go Racing in Yorkshire Summer Festival on Sunday.
With over 100,000 racegoers going racing in Yorkshire over the week, it was a great promotion for racing in the county.
Despite a poor forecast, it was a beautiful afternoon for one of Pontefract’s family day meetings, with families enjoying their picnics while watching some superb racing.
The feature race on the card was the £50,000 Sky Bet Go-Racing-In-Yorkshire Summer Festival Pomfret Stakes.
It was a tight race on paper with former winner of the race Custom Cut giving weight to his rivals who included the ultra consistent Gabrial who has been running well in high class races.
Custom Cut took up his customary front running role and still led as they turned for home but he was joined and headed in the last furlong by the doughty Another Touch, stablemate of Gabrial, who was disappointing back in third.
The winner, trained by Richard Fahey and ridden by the Tony Hamilton, has been contesting some tough, high class handicaps, most recently the John Smiths Cup and the Royal Hunt Cup and enjoyed the smaller field at Pontefract.
David Allan and Tim Easterby were the leading jockey and trainer respectively over the summer festival and both continued their rich vein of form at Pontefract.
Allan had three rides on Sunday and they all won, starting with Regal Mirage.
Riding for his boss Tim Easterby, Allan always had Regal Mirage in the first two or three before sending him to the front in the home straight.
He was quickly challenged though by Thorntoun Care and the pair had a protracted duel over the final two furlongs with Regal Mirage putting his head down in the right place to score by a nose as they flashed past the post together.
It was a fourth win in a row for Regal Mirage and Allan reported that a further step up in trip would not be an issue for the brave winner.
The jockey and trainer doubled up when Bossipop took the tiesplanet.com Handicap.
Enjoying the softer ground for the first time in a while, the gelding made every yard of the running and fended off all challengers to win well by just over two lengths.
Allan’s treble came up when he took the finale on Scott Dixon’s Crosse Fire.
In similar fashion to Bossipop, the gelding bounced out of the stalls and made every yard of the running to win by almost three lengths.
The opening race on the card went the way of James Bethell’s Wensley who showed the benefit of experience by routing his rivals in the EBF Novice Stakes.
He’s improving quickly judged on his near three length victory over rivals who had already shown a good level of form.
Beverley Bullet was a popular winner of The Ron Vause Memorial Handicap for Joe Fanning and Lawrence Mullaney.
Miningrocks ensured a frenetic gallop but the winner, stepping up to the one and a quarter mile trip for the first time, stayed on resolutely to gain the upper hand in the closing stages.
The Pontefract and District Golf Club Ltd Maiden saw the shortest price favourite of the day in the shape of Roger Varian’s Sharja Bridge. The 2-7 favourite, who cost 500,000 guineas, travelled well and had every chance but had no answer to the finish of Kings Will Dream who put his head in front on the line for the team of Micky Hammond and Paul Mulrennan. The pair pulled well clear of the remainder of the field.