50 comes up for Kennedy

A review of the action from Catterick on Monday, where Will Kennedy made his first seasonal half-century on Raise A Spark.

Will Kennedy: 50 winners for the season.

Will Kennedy reached the 50-winner mark for the first time in his career as Raise A Spark landed the racinguk.com Handicap Hurdle at Catterick.

Having moved past his previous top tally of 47 at Bangor on Friday, Kennedy"s new personal best was posted as Raise A Spark completed a double on the day for the rider and winning trainer Donald McCain when obliging by a length in the two-mile event.

The Cholmondeley handler said: "That was Will's first 50. He is a very hard worker and is always in the right places when riding them.

"He is very enthusiastic and good with the owners. It has been very positive this season and hopefully it will keep going."

Of the 9/2 winner, McCain added: "That is what he wants, two miles on that sort of ground. He went up quite a bit for his win at Bangor then he ran well at Haydock and went up again.

"He was slightly down in grade today, but he deserved that. He has his own ideas but he is tough when he gets to the races. We might just take our chance in a better race off a light weight with him next."

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Same Circus (8/15) earned a potential step up to Listed company when getting the ball rolling for Kennedy and McCain in the Racing To School Mares' Novices' Hurdle.

After finding one too good on her last three starts, the six-year-old ground her rivals into submission to take the three-mile-one-furlong contest by 13 lengths.

McCain said: "We were not quite sure about the ground as it was the slowest ground she had run on. She is tough and stays very well. She had deserved to win another one as she had been knocking at the door.

"I think last time the other horse (Impulsive Star) pulled up a bit in front and that's why she finished so close, but she was against geldings then and ran a solid race.

"In about three weeks there is a Listed mares' novice hurdle at Doncaster, so we might just take a punt at that as she has run well there before."

Tom Gretton celebrated a rare winner at the course where he had scored his first victory as a trainer after Kauto Riko (15/8) claimed the Dine And View At Catterick Races Handicap Hurdle.

The six-year-old added to his Market Rasen success on Boxing Day with a six-length verdict to initiate a double on the day for winning jockey Brian Hughes.

Gretton said: "I wasn't sure he would handle the ground, but he was fit and ready to go. We said if he didn't win over hurdles first time out this year, he would go chasing.

"We will keep him over hurdles now and he will go chasing next year. He improved from Market Rasen and he will improve again. He ran some solid races in novice hurdles last year, but he has just needed more time. He won't be turned out quickly as he is quite fragile."

The Tim Easterby-trained Milly Baloo (7/2) completed Hughes' brace when profiting from the late fall of likely winner Powerful Symbol in the three-mile-one handicap chase while I Just Know (13/8) from the yard of Sue Smith took the feature Weatherbys Hamilton Handicap Chase by six lengths.

Brecon Hill (17/2) made a winning debut with a length-and-a-quarter success in the concluding bumper for Alan Swinbank.

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