North Yorkshire-based Hughes teamed up with Donald McCain to win on Golden Investment and then William Of Orange, the latter denying Irish Roe – trained by Northallerton farmer Peter Atkinson.
Jumping’s ‘Northern Powerhouse’ rounded off the card with a novice hurdle success aboard Schiaparannie for Malton’s Malcolm Jefferson.
On a bracing winter’s afternoon, Richmond trainer Phil Kirby enjoyed a double courtesy of Wemyss Point and Skipthescales. Both were ridden by promising conditional Tommy Dowson whose apprentice rider’s weight allowance now drops to 3lb. In both races, he produced his mounts with well-timed runs after the last hurdle.
The most exciting contest was the feature handicap chase that saw the Sue Smith-trained Wolf Sword prevail under a never-say-die Danny Cook ride.
Wolf Sword looked beaten in the home straight before Cook got to work after the last and denied Poker School in a thrilling tussle after the last. With both horses coming close together on the run-in, there was a tense wait for the result to be confirmed after a stewards’ inquiry. Wolf Sword is a typical Smith steeplechaser on the upgrade.