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Boy's family affair at Wetherby

THERE was a real family affair at Wetherby as Work Boy provided permit-holder Richard Drake with his first ever winner in the New Racing UK Anywhere Available Now Handicap Chase.

Drake's daughter Samantha was in the saddle, and she was wearing the colours of her mother Janet.

Work Boy won four races for Sue and Harvey Smith, but was troubled by tendon problems and had well over two years off before the Drakes picked him up.

The irony will not have been lost on the Smiths as Work Boy wore down their Whiskey Ridge after the last to win by half a length at 7/1.

"As a family, we've had winners pointing but they were never in my name," said Richard Drake, who is based in Ilkley, West Yorkshire.

"This is my first winner officially and my first under Rules.

"He'd been stood in a field for nearly three years when we got him and Sue said to see what we could do with him.

"He'd had a leg (problem) and was one of the fattest horses you'd ever seen.

"It took us about four months to get him fit enough to run and he ran okay at Sedgefield and we thought he'd come on for it."


Henry Brooke could come in for a lot of nice mounts in the closing weeks of the season as Jason Maguire recovers from serious injury.

Brooke is understudy to Maguire at Donald McCain's yard and was seen to good effect on Askamore Darsi (7/2) in the Wetherby Racecourse Family Sunday – 13th April Novices' Hurdle.

Having looked beaten over the last, the five-year-old rallied to beat Almost Gemini by three-quarters of a length.

"The cheekpieces helped, but it was still hard work," said Brooke.

"You'd think the way he is he'd like deep ground, but he never went a yard on it last time.

"He'll be better off over fences next year."

Oliver's Hill (7/1) benefited from a change of scenery to open his account at the first time of asking for Charlie Longsdon in the Watch Racing UK On Sky 432 Maiden Hurdle.