PINK Harbour justified being backed down to 3-1 joint favourite in the Manwood Wines Novices' Handicap Steeplechase at Bangor-on-Dee last Friday.
Trained at Cholmondeley by Ginger McCain, who has his string in fine form at present, the mare made all the running and only Nagano was in contention in the closing stages, but remained four lengths in arrears passing the winning post.
McCain said: 'She's as genuine as the day is long and jumps for fun. This may be the limit of her ability, she's an old-fashioned type, but she's won four this season. What more can you ask for?'
Racing began with the Premier Crew Juvenile Novices' Hurdle Race. Tizi Ouzou led the field over the two miles one furlong trip before fading at the final bend
when Tom Scudamore sent 33-1 shot Beauchamp Prince into the lead to win by seven lengths and maintained the stable's current run of winning form. Ginger Mc-Cain's charge Vicario stayed on well to occupy second place.
A steady pace prevailed throughout the extended three miles Malise Nicolson Beginners' Steeplechase after the runners had finished tired in the opener due to the prevailing soft, heavy in places, ground on the course.
Jockey Andrew Thornton struck up a rhythm with A Glass In Thyne setting the pace aboard the 5-1 shot. he result never looked in doubt as the gelding jumped accurately throughout and relished the ground conditions to keep Fullards at bay and win by 18 lengths.
Jockey Wayne Hutchinson brought 7-2 chance Dark Society with a perfectly timed run to win the bangorondeeraces.co.uk Handicap Hurdle Race by four lengths from Speed Venture.
Comete du Lac quickly had the field strung out before The Local staged a brief challenge. At the second to last hurdle three horses were in a line and Dark Society hugged the inside rail and galloped clear in the closing stages with Speed Venture finishing second.
Tom Scudamore looked to have the allsports Handicap Steeplechase in the bag with the 5-2 favourite The Villager after longtime leader Il'Athou lost his place on the second circuit.
Unfortunately, the partnership slipped when landing over the last obstacle and lost all impetus.
Tony McCoy took advantage to go clear with Classic Native, sent off at 3-1, and recorded an eight-lengths victory over the long-time leader.
The meeting, attended by a crowd of 3,097 enthusiasts, closed with the Wrexham AFC Fight For Survival 'National Hunt' Novices' Hurdle Race.
From the early stages the field was in single file and A Toi A Moi, the evens favourite, won unchallenged for Sam Thomas by 11 lengths and Shady Anne stayed on to take the second slot. by Richard Thomas, chief executive, Chester & Bangor-on-Dee Races BREAKAWAY: Gavin Woods tries to make a break for Chester against Middlesbrough. Picture by VICTORIA TETLEY. VT27112004RUGBY-003