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Bumper Didmarton entry kicks off West Mercian season

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All roads lead to Didmarton on Saturday March 2nd for the annual running of the Duke Of Beaufort's Point-to-Point and the meeting has accrued a very healthy entry of 114 for the six-race card with an official start time of 1pm.
Ahead of the meeting, officials at the course are more than happy with conditions out on the track and have posted the ground as "good to soft and soft in places ", something of a novelty after a winter beset by rain.
With so many recent abandonments, the Bradley Gibbs team have yet to hit peak form this term but they look all set to move up a gear on Saturday with  Fier JaguenHighway Jewel and Crocodile Lounge  likely to take up their entries.
Fier Jaguen looks the one they have to beat in what appears an ultra-competitive  Mixed Open as he bids to follow up his seasonal comeback success at Garthorpe almost a month ago.
Gibbs said of his charge:" He has been in good form at home since he won at the beginning of the month and this race fits in nicely as far as the remainder of the season is concerned. As things stand he will take his chance."
However it is certainly not one-way traffic for the Gibbs representative with the likes of One For Rosie, Shantou Flyer and the progressive Regatta De Blanc also among the potential opposition at the entry stage.
Highway Jewel also holds an engagement in the Open but Gibbs is likely to favour the Conditions (Level 2) contest with the consistent mare, who has done nothing wrong - except win - on her two starts so far this season. She has been forced to settle for the runner-up spot at Chaddesley Corbett and Milborne St Andrew but Gibbs is hopeful she can regain the winning thread on this occasion.
He said:" The form of her last run at Milborne St Andrew looks all the better now as the the horse that beat her, Macklin, won a hunter chase at Taunton next time so we have got to be hopeful."
The presence of Duc De Bourbon would also make matters all the more interesting but he holds other entries so Muckamore may become a viable threat.
Crocodile Lounge makes up the Gibbs triumvirate in the Restricted race as he bids to follow up a workmanlike display to score at Milborne St Andrew when beating Glenmount.
The overall form was boosted when the runner-up won a maiden at Badbury Rings recently and there is every chance that stepping up to three miles on this occasion will also be in his favour.
Tara Storm was successful on the corresponding card 12 months ago and looks likely to try and follow up that victory in the Conditions contest for Grass Roots Riders. Although ground conditions are certain to be more testing than a year ago, Tara Storm showed his well-being when landing a comfortable victory around Larkhill and with regular pilot Eve Hobbs once again in plate things are in place for a repeat performance.
Connections of the aforementioned One For Rosie have made three entries for the gelding on the card and this appears their best chance of success so he is rated a big danger.
The card kicks off with the Members race and Sumkindofking may try to emulate last year's victory in the race but he really needs a sound surface and rain softened ground would scupper any hopes that may be harboured.
In that case, it becomes something of a conundrum but the tentative vote goes to Write It Down , who was not beaten that far at Milborne St Andrew on his previous start.
The concluding maiden has amassed 31 entries and could well divide on the day, in which case it may well prove profitable to side with the father and son team of Tim and Ed Vaughan as the pair have proper chances with the likes of Jean Genie and Ringsend John.

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