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Tuesday, September 23, 2003


A highly-successful 2003 season at Salisbury Racecourse comes to a close on Wednesday, October 1, with a competitive-looking six-day card set to end the year on a high.

The day begins at 2.20pm with the final leg of the Axminster Carpets Apprentice series and everything is still to play for in the bid to land the £1,000 first prize for the leading rider. Neil Chalmers and Robert Miles share the lead on 14 points but there are seven other apprentices with between nine and 12 points and any of them could snatch the title with 10 points if victorious.

Further highlights include the £10,000 Weatherbys Bank Rated Stakes (3.20pm), a six-furlong showcase handicap, and the £10,000 Averti Conditions Stakes (3.50pm), sponsored by Oakgrove Stud in honour of one of last year’s top first-season stallions and won in 1998 by Island Sands, who went on to classic glory in the following year’s 2,000 Guineas.

The card is completed by the Heritage Audi EBF Maiden Stakes (2.50pm), the PVC Building Supplies Handicap (4.20pm) and the Racing Welfare Doreen Rackham Appreciation EBF Novice Stakes, which rounds off Salisbury’s season at 4.55pm.

Admission prices are £16 Members, £10 Tattersalls and £5 Course with FREE admission for accompanied children under 16 and FREE car parking.

Paying attendances in 2003 are up around 5,000 on last year and there have been some top-class performers on show, including Passing Glance and Priors Lodge, who were split by a short-head in a great finish to the Listed Sovereign Stakes on August 14 and both horses have since scored in Group 2 company.

There have also been many two-year-olds on show who look destined for big things including Punctilious, winner of the Butler & Co Equine Tax Planning EBF Novice Stakes on September 4 and a leading contender for Saturday’s Group 1 Meon Valley Stud Fillies’ Mile at Ascot.

Jeremy Martin, Salisbury’s General Manager and Clerk of the Course, said: “This year has been one of the best we have ever had at Salisbury both in terms of quality of racing and crowd numbers.

“Our October 1 meeting promises to end the season on a high note and we will be spending the next six months looking to build on our achievements for 2004.”

Next year’s season begins nine days earlier than normal with an evening fixture on Thursday, April 22, kicking off the 2004 campaign.

For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink Archive

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