Ardmayle’s sights are on a Fakenham classic as he chases a hat-trick

Edward Elgar pictured on his way to victory at Fakenham in February. He returns for this afternoon�s

Edward Elgar pictured on his way to victory at Fakenham in February. He returns for this afternoon�s 2.15pm contest.Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Ardmayle, a five-year-old gelding from Ali Stronge's Lambourn stables in Berkshire, aims to complete a hat-trick by taking the feature race on today's seven-race card at Fakenham.

Ridden by Gavin Sheehan, Ardmayle won at Leicester in February and Lingfield in March and has his sights set on the 2.50pm David Keith Memorial Chase over three miles, worth almost £10,000 to the winner.

He steps up in trip from those last two victories, but has just four opponents to overcome. Main rivals are 10-year-olds Turban and Open Hearted.

The former, under Nick Schofield for Paul Henderson, was a Plumpton winner last time, while Open Hearted, under Sam Davies-Thomas for Dan Skelton, won at Wetherby a fortnight ago.

There's a more competitive field of 11 for the Cecil and Sheila Buttifant Hurdle at 2.15pm in which Edward Elgar, Andrew Tinkler riding for Caroline Bailey, tries to repeat his course and distance success of February.

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Grey gelding Caprice D'Anglais won at the course at the last meeting and has since changed hands, now trained by Sam Thomas. Glimpse Of Gold, under Alan Johns for Tim Vaughan, is another last time out winner, having scored at Uttoxeter a fortnight ago.

The opening 1.10pm selling hurdle sees Johns and Vaughan run recent Hereford fourth Ballyrock, although Gambol is a real threat, bidding for a hat-trick for Stan Sheppard and trainer Ian Williams after Exeter and Stratford successes.

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Sheppard has another good chance in the 3.25pm hurdle, partnering Boher Lad, a recent Southwell winner. Main rival is Thomas Garner on Oliver Sherwood's Fontwell runner-up Serpico.

Two Hunter Chases complete the action and both could go to jockey Joe Hill, riding for his dad Alan. He has Man Of Steel in the 4pm Bentley Cambridge Hunter Chase for the Queen's Cup while at 1.40pm, he rides Pride Of Parish, a recent point winner at Kingstoun Blunt, in the Robert Hoare Memorial Novice Hunter Chase.

Terry's Tips: 1.10pm Knocknanuss, 1.40pm Pride of Parish, 2.15pm Glimpse of Gold, 2.50pm Ardmayle, 3.25pm Boher Lad, 4pm, Man Of Steel, 4.35pm Sunshade.

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