Racing returns to Fontwell

Minellatillmorning won the Happy Birthday Sarah Cotty Handicap Hurdle. Picture: Fontwell Park

Balding celebrates Glory at Fontwell

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FONTWELL stages a seven-race card this afternoon featuring many of the jockeys and trainers who helped make the Cheltenham Festival another one to remember last week.

Racing gets under way with the Rossetts Mercedes-Benz Commercials Novices’ Hurdle (2.20pm) when Richard Johnson’s mount – the Philip Hobbs-trained Oscar Davy – will be bidding for a second consecutive win at the West Sussex course.

The field for the Platinum And Lace Gentlemen’s Club Brighton Handicap Chase includes Cypress Grove, who Dave Crosse rode to victory at the track recently.

Meanwhile, one of the 10 entries for the Weatherbys Bloodstock Insurance Handicap Hurdle is Marie Deja La, who was all set for a Fontwell victory a fortnight ago until unseating his rider at the last.

The Paul Nicholls-trained Current Event sets the standard in the Weatherbys Bank Novices’ Chase.

And the Chris Gordon Racing Club 07975 668888 Handicap Hurdle could well have a Gordon runner as favourite – Bon Spiel, ridden by Tom Cannon.

Joe Tizzard, who rode Third Intention to victory in the National Spirit Hurdle last month, will partner Rateable Value in the Richard Venn Bloodstock Handicap Chase.

In the bumper, all eyes will be on Utopian, trained by Findon’s Nick Gifford.

The horse sparked emotional scenes when he won at Fontwell last month on a day when the crowd paid tribute to the late great Josh Gifford, Nick’s father.

Entry is from £15 on the gate.