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- Credit: Phil Mingo/PPAUK
Most of the major Horse Racing interest at the weekend was across the Irish Sea with the staging of the Dublin Racing Festival.
The magnificent equine stars of the Emerald Isle were parading their talents in the last big warm up before the forthcoming Cheltenham Festival in March.
It was, however, a successful Saturday on these shores for two of the South-West's finest stables.
Somerset's Philip Hobbs had a double on Sandown's card but the real positive outcome was a change in fortune for Dorset's Colin Tizzard, who so far has had a very difficult season of professional disappointment and personal tragedy, with his horses suffering a lack of form and he himself having to cope with the tragic loss of his daughter Kim, who was an integral part of the training operation.
Saturday saw stable star and veteran Native River return to form with a thrilling win in the Cotswold Chase, which puts him in line for a shot at the Cheltenham Gold Cup in March.
There has been a growing feeling in racing that the stable is returning to its expected level of success and maybe worth following in the weeks ahead.
Last week also saw another winner for the in-form combination of Bryony Frost and trainer Lucy Wadham, who scored with Miss Heritage at Warwick.
There was also another winner for Ashburton's Chris Honour, who is enjoying a very encouraging season and scored with Grumpy Charley at Chepstow on Friday. The winner is one of three horses Chris has entered at the Cheltenham festival.
This week’s racing in the South West took place at Taunton on Tuesday with a competitive card.