Nikki Stubbs recorded a winner on her first ride when Kashmir Peak triumphed in a thrilling finish to the King’s Head Inn, Bledington PPORA Club Members’ Conditions race for Novice Riders at Sunday’s Heythrop Hunt Point-to-Point meeting.
The 22-year-old took up the running on the Nick Pearce-owned and trained nine-year-old at the final fence.
However, Tempelpirate (Sam Burton) fought back and looked as if he may get up only for Kashmir Peak to prevail by a head.
Stubbs has a background in eventing and also worked for Howard Pauling, who trains at Chadlington.
And Pauling ended several years of trying to land the Knight Frank Heythrop Hunt Members, Subscribers and Farmers race when En Passe carried his colours to a convincing victory.
The nine-year-old mare, who won the intermediate race at Cocklebarrow 12 months ago, jumped her way into the lead seven fences from home under Peter Mason, before sealing a three-lengths victory over 2016 winner Buck Magic with a fine leap at the last.
Pauling, who recalled he had been second several times as a rider and owner, said: “You always want to win your members but it seems to have taken me a long time!”
Sixteen-year-old Milo Herbert, from Abergavenny, notched his third winner when Ballycahane, owned by his mother, Sara, took the Carter Jonas Restricted race by ten lengths from Double You Be.
The nine-year-old gelding is trained by Nicky Sheppard at Eastnor, near Ledbury, having been bought out of Arthur Moore’s yard in Ireland.
There was another special connection for the Herberts as the race trophy – the Daly Cup – was presented by the Daly family, who are close friends.
Clerk of the course Nick Phillips admitted luck was on his side after partnering Silent Warrior to victory in the Red Savannah Four, Five And Six-year-olds Open Maiden over 2m 4f for Bibury trainer Dibby Brown.
The six-year-old looked held when Shaman Du Berlais blundered at the second-last and unseated Charlie Price, leaving Phillips’s mount to come home four lengths clear of Mistercobar.
Silent Warrior was previously trained by Chipping Norton handler Charlie Longsdon and Brown said: “Charlie [Longsdon] said that he would be a nice horse.
“The big key to him is the massive drop in grade and jumping fences rather than hurdles.”