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Chris Dixon: pundit and owner saw his syndicate land another success at Wolverhampton
By James Burn
Racing TV’s Chris Dixon had a sleepless night at the Hilton on Junction 21 of the M1 near Leicester, but he still found plenty of energy to roar home Whittle Le Woods in the 6f handicap.
Dixon, on duty at Leicester for the network on Friday, made the journey to Wolverhampton before his shift at Kempton on Saturday evening and was able to muster the necessary enthusiasm, despite a boisterous school rugby team disrupting his night’s sleep the previous evening.
His string run under the name of a syndicate known as The Horse Watchers, which is headed by himself, his brother Martin, Richard O’Brien and Matt Taylor.
Trained by Mick Appleby, Whittle Le Woods was ridden by Theodore Ladd and Dixon said: “Theo has done a great job. He’s in Mick’s all the time and other people might get the opportunities on most of our horses, but we’re going to use Theo if he’s a light weight and he knows the horse.
“He’s taken his chance there and did everything right – he was in the perfect position.”
Dixon, who also had to swerve a broken down taxi on his way to the track, added: “We’ve 14 horses in training and that’s our tenth winner of the year, which isn’t bad. It’s just good fun owning horses, although I’m the only one here!”
Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
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Roger Varian’s Tinker Toy was a notable pattern winner for dam Cursory Glance
Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
Varian country plan off
Owner-breeder Craig Bennett was soaring at over a few thousand feet on his way to Antigua and his mood will remain sky high following Tinker Toy’s success in the Lady Wulfruna Stakes.
The Roger Varian-trained homebred is out of Bennett’s Cursory Glance, who won the Albany and Moyglare Stud Stakes during a sublime, but short-lived career.
“This race has been the plan for a long, long time, so I’m delighted it’s come off,” said Varian. “I’m thrilled for Craig as he’s a big supporter of mine and the industry. Cursory Glance was a top-class filly – a champion – so to get some black type into her progeny with her first foal is brilliant.
“We thought he might win at Lingfield last time, but it wasn’t a problem he didn’t as it sharpened him up.”
Jack Mitchell, who did the steering, completed a double when Enlightenment won the concluding 5f handicap.
‘Proper horse’ buoys Loughnane
Dave Loughnane’s career is going only one way and the hands-on trainer enjoyed another winner when Dayman, who the trainer labeled a “proper horse”, landed the 7f novice.
“We’ll never have more than 70 horses, but that’s my choice – we’ve turned down horses over the winter,” he said. “We couldn’t train the way we train now with 150 horses. I ride out every day and try to sit on everything in the yard at least once a month.
“We set out every season to better the previous campaign, which we’ve done the last few years, and it will get harder the better we do, but we believe we’re good enough to compete at the top level and have a lovely team for 2022. We’ve a big year ahead.”
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