By Gordon Brown
ALISON HAMILTON is looking for a big run from her stable star Skyhill at Kelso on Sunday before he goes out to grass for the summer.
As the borders track stages its final meeting of the spring, the locally-trained Denholm raider is set to be ridden by the trainer’s nephew Jamie Hamilton in the Racing TV Supports Racing Handicap Hurdle.
Mrs Hamilton, who has around a dozen horses at her Dykes Farm House yard, said: “We want to give him one more race to set him up for his summer holidays as there aren’t a lot of options for him.
“He had a really good spell two seasons ago when he won four races in-a-row, including two at Kelso, but he went up two stone for that and hasn’t won since – he has only come down 9lbs.
“He is still paying for that tremendous season and we’ve given him a tiny operation on his soft palate to aid his breathing.
“Jamie gets on brilliantly with him and the other jockeys are always commenting down at the start saying what a small horse he is.
“He’s not the easiest to get on with so he has to go to post early and can pull your arms out but he always tries his best in the race.”
Skyhill is one of thirteen in the near 3m 2f event and the opposition include course and distance winners Court Baloo and Dequall, trained by Alistair Whillans and Stuart Coltherd respectively.
Cheltenham Gold Cup-winning pilot Paddy Brennan has been ‘jocked up’ on Valentino Dancer by Fergal O’Brien in the William Hill Bookmakers Handicap Hurdle.
Gloucestershire-base O’Brien enjoyed a personal-best 104 winners last season when both his runners at Kelso were successful – his overall course strike-rate of 45 per-cent is his highest on any jumps track in Britain.
O’Brien and Brennan also team up in the opener with Trailboss who romped home on his second run over timber at Newton Abbot on May 5.
For more information contact Gordon Brown on 07850 258063 for Scottish Racing