Cox celebrates first winner as champion rides a double

Amy Cox celebrates her William Powell Ladies' Open success with Beggar's Velvet. Photo: Andrew Norman
Amy Cox celebrates her William Powell Ladies' Open success with Beggar's Velvet. Photo: Andrew Norman

Amy Cox celebrated her first ever winner as Beggar’s Velvet stayed stoutly up the Mollington hill to land a thrilling William Powell Ladies’ Open at Saturday’s North Warwickshire Point-to-Point meeting.

Cox, 28, who trains the gelding herself at Crockwell Farm in Eydon, secured a popular victory – prevailing by a length from Fran Nimmo’s Current Exchange – and was welcomed back into the winner’s enclosure with rapturous applause.

I’ve been riding for five seasons and it’s amazing to finally have a winner

Amy Cox

She said: “I’ve been riding for five seasons and it’s amazing to finally have a winner. It’s been an ambition for a long time and my parents have been massively supportive.

“We bought Beggar’s Velvet privately from Drew Holmes, who has been very helpful and I’d love to run him in a hunter chase now.”

Will Biddick moved closer to securing a sixth consecutive national title after riding a double for Devon trainer Ed Walker.

Despite having never visited the undulating track before, the champion rider put on a master class as each of his mounts were ridden in contrasting styles.

Biddick made all on the progressive Fly West in the Connolly’s Red Mills Intermediate, with the Westerner gelding now unbeaten in three starts on British soil.

A patient, waiting ride on the consistent The Flying Doc saw Biddick complete his double in the Hatton Arms Mens Open.

Produced late, the nine-year-old mare jumped ahead at the last and scurried up the hill for a sixth career success.

The winner will now bid to go one better in the Mares’ Hunters’ Chase at Cheltenham next month after finding Edgcote handler Pauline Harkin’s Popaway too good last term.

Six years after being narrowly denied in the Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot, Solar Sky provided Sophie Walker with her initial pointing success in the Listers Group Restricted race.

Lily Pinchin guided Paul and Lucy King’s Knockaderry Flyer to a surprise success in the Lodders Solicitors Maiden race to record her third winner of the campaign.

Stationed at Weston-sub-Edge, the eight-year-old gelding showed a glimmer of promise in three Irish Points in 2015 but missed last season after suffering from a virus.

Tim Underwood’s likeable grey mare Cheltenham Mati scored for the third time in five starts in the Openfield Conditions race.

Appreciating the watered surface, the five-year-old outstayed her rivals in taking style under Phil York.