Court to duck Doncaster raid

Harbour Court is set to return to point-to-point company at the weekend after his luckless run in a Kelso hunter chase last Thursday.

The eight-year-old made the long journey north for the CGA Foxhunter Trial Open Hunters' Chase on what was his first racecourse outing since winning a top novice hunters' event at Stratford last June.

However, Harbour Court was badly hampered at the first fence and unseated rider James Tudor.

Trainer Alan Hill has entered his charge in a similar race at Doncaster on Wednesday but is planning to sidestep that engagement in favour of a point-to-point outing at Cottenham instead.

He said: "The plan is to go back to point-to-point company and we have got entries at Cottenham at the weekend.

"The meeting has been delayed by a few weeks due to waterlogging, but they are confident they will be able to race this weekend.

"Obviously time is not on our side, but if we run there that would give us three weeks until the Foxhunter at Cheltenham.

"We're not really tempted to go to Doncaster. James thinks it would be better to go back to pointing back over smaller fences and give him a confidence boost as it was a nasty incident for a young horse.

"The Doncaster race will probably have 12 or 15 runners and there are some nice horses in there, so he might have a hard race and we'll avoid that.

"We thought we were doing the right thing in going to Kelso but it didn't really work out, so it's been back to the drawing board."