Local community out in numbers supporting Worthington’s Armed Forces Raceday
Worthington’s Armed Forces Raceday on Saturday was a resounding success as people of all ages came to the track to witness the launch of the 2014 Poppy Appeal for Berkshire and the Vale of White Horse.
Racegoers paid tribute to the Armed Forces and enjoyed a multitude of on-course attractions, as well as top-class racing. The meeting got off to an exciting start when the Army Freefall Display Team, ‘The Tigers’, parachuted in, delivering the ceremonial poppy and kicking off the day.
Following a short Remembrance ceremony, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant for Berkshire, Mrs Mary Bayliss JP, then formally declared the Poppy Appeal open for business. Over £6,000 was raised for the Appeal on Saturday.symbol of Remembrance and hope, The Royal British Legion is encouraging people to support the Poppy Appeal for the memory of the fallen and the future of the living.
Jockeys showed their support for The Royal British Legion throughout the afternoon by wearing special yellow armbands.
Mounted troopers from the King’s Troop were in attendance and led in the winners of the first four races, while the Waterloo Band of the Rifles played throughout the day and led a sing-along with the crowds after the final race.
The highlights on the track were the two Group 3 contests, the Worthington’s Whizz Kidz Stakes (Registered as the Horris Hill) and The Worthington’s Burlison Inn Stakes (Registered as the St. Simon).
Richard Hannon Snr won the former a record four times in his long training career, including last year’s renewal, and his son Richard Hannon wasted no time in adding his name to the roll of honour.
Smaih, ridden by Frankie Dettori, stayed on best to win the prize at 7/1. Dettori delighted crowds by performing his trademark flying dismount in the winner’s enclosure. The favourite Lexington Times, also trained by Hannon, was unplaced.
Sky Hunter absolutely bolted up in the Worthington’s Burlison Inn Stakes for jockey James Doyle and trainer Saeed bin Suroor.
Long-time leader Battalion looked to have opened up a race-winning advantage coming down the home straight, but Sky Hunter responded to his pilot’s urgings to surge clear and win by nine lengths as the 7/2 favourite. Island Remede was second with the gallant front-runner Battalion holding on for third.