Goodnight Charlie, a dual course and distance winner which shaped with immense promise back at Towcester a fortnight ago, can bring a St Valentine’s Day winner for Norfolk trainer Caroline Fryer.
The handler’s eight year-old grey mare by Midnight Legend has notched three wins from 12 career starts (two of them coming at Towcester and the other at Warwick), and is fast becoming a regular visitor to Northamptonshire, having run at the track five times.
The latest excursion was on February 1 when Goodnight Charlie was briefly produced by Jack Andrews to lead at the second last where tiredness brought a blunder, and she was allowed to come home in her own time, eventually finishing tenth of 13 behind Sheelbewhatsheelbe.
Goodnight Charlie is expected to come on for that recent run and could repeat the victory here in an amateur riders’ race in May on admittedly better ground than she will encounter here, when the astute Fryer booked Sam Davies-Thomas for the mount.
Saturday’s big race hero Jack Quinlan, successful on board the Amy Murphy-trained Kalashnikov in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury, could taste a more low key success with the Claire Dyson-trained Over My Head in the 3m novices’ handicap chase at 2.40pm.
The ten year-old has not exactly been a pillar of consistency with one victory from 23 runs and that was way back on the last day of 2013. However, Over My Head is clearly not devoid of ability, having run second at Huntingdon on Boxing Day and made his first ever Towcester appearance on February 1, when finishing seventh behind How’s My Friend. Quinlan has partnered Over My Head on his last three starts and might be worth another stab.
Quinlan could also be required to get the leg up on the James Eustace-trained Macksville in the 1m 7 1/2f novices’ hurdle at 3.40pm.
They were united for the grey’s debut under National Hunt rules in January and Eustace, who is predominantly a Newmarket Flat trainer, does well with the few jumpers at his disposal.
Local trainer Stuart Edmunds has his string in great heart and could go close with Molly Childers in the 3m mares’ handicap hurdle, with Ciaran Gethings in the saddle while the Tyingham handler also looks like being represented in the concluding bumper at 4.40pm, this time by Camaro which has run in two point to point races in Ireland.
For all of her undoubted talent, it is fair to say Molly Childers has a quirky side but after hitting the crossbar on a number of occasions she put her best foot forward over hurdles at Market Rasen in November to win by 14 lengths.