The Fields Stable’s Bob Le Beau kicked off a stellar 2015 season in the $50,000 National Hunt Cup (Gr. 3), and he will attempt to get the current season rolling when he meets a strong field on Saturday for the Radnor Hunt Races’ featured hurdle race.
Also on the program for the 86th annual meet at W. Burling Cocks Memorial Race Course in Malvern, Pa., will be the $30,000 Radnor Hunt Cup over timber fences. First post time is 1:30 p.m.
Trained by Elizabeth Voss, Bob Le Beau closed ground to win the 2 3/8-mile National Hunt Cup by 1 1/2 lengths and then collected victories in the New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1) and Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1). His 2015 earnings were $220,250, the year’s second-highest total.
The National Hunt Cup will be his first start of the year, and Jack Doyle again will be his rider.
Voss, who notched three wins at last year’s Radnor meet, also will saddle Atlanta Hall Racing’s Royal Bench, winner of a Virginia Gold Cup allowance hurdle on May 7. Gus Dahl has the mount.
Leading owner Irv Naylor has won major four stakes races this month, and he entered the horse who started the hot streak, Charminster, for the National Hunt Cup. The Irish-bred won the David Semmes Memorial (Gr. 2) at the Virginia Gold Cup. No rider was named for Charminster, who is trained by Cyril Murphy.
Currently the sport’s leading trainer by wins and earnings, Murphy also will saddle Naylor’s Able Deputy, who is looking for his first victory since winning the David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3) in 2014. Ross Geraghty will ride.
Reigning champion trainer Jack Fisher entered Edith Dixon’s Schoodic and Woodslane Farm’s Overwhelming for the National Hunt Cup. Schoodic finished second in the Semmes, and Overwhelming was sixth. Paddy Young will be aboard Schoodic, and Sean McDermott rides Overwhelming.
Completing the field is Armata Stables’ Rudyard K, who finished third in the Temple Gwathmey Handicap (Gr. 3) at the Middleburg Spring Races on April 23. Trainer Todd Wyatt named Ross Geraghty to ride.
Here is the field for the $50,000 National Hunt Cup (Gr. 3). The horses’ handicap weights are in parentheses at the end of their profiles.
Rudyard K. 2009 b. g., Kipling—Two Bridges, by Major Impact. Owner: Armata Stables. Trainer: Todd Wyatt. Breeder: Frances Hill Myers (Oh.) 2016 record: 1-0-0-1, $5,000. 2015 record: No starts. 2014 record: 3-1-2-0, $57,000. Finished third in Middleburg Spring’s 2016 Temple Gwathmey Handicap (Gr. 3). Coming back after a year’s absence. Won 2014 Saratoga allowance hurdle in final 2014 start. Just missed in Marcellus Frost Novice Stakes at Nashville’s Iroquois Steeplechase after respectable second in Dogwood Classic allowance hurdle at Colonial Downs. (144)
Charminster (Ire). 2006 b. g., Broadway Flyer—Monteleena, by Montelimar. Owner: Irvin S. Naylor. Trainer: Cyril Murphy. Breeder: Raymond Cahalane (Ire). 2016 record: 1-1-0-0, $45,000. 2015 record: 5-1-0-1, $63,500. 2014 record: 2-0-1-0, $11,700. Charged to 3 3/4-length win in 2016 David Semmes Memorial (Gr. 2) at Virginia Gold Cup. Finished sixth in Grand National (Gr. 1). Finished third in Saratoga’s New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1) on Aug. 27, then fourth in Belmont Park’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) on Sept. 24. Won Ratings Handicap at Iroquois Steeplechase on May 9. (148)
Overwhelming. 2010 b. g., Hard Spun—Oh What a Windfall, by Seeking the Gold. Owner: Woodslane Farm. Trainer: Jack Fisher. Breeder: Phipps Stable (Ky.) 2016 record: 2-0-0-0, $2,250. 2015 record: 6-3-1-0, $136,300. 2014 NSA record: 6-1-2-1, $27,250. Pulled up in Middleburg Spring’s 2016 Temple Gwathmey Handicap (Gr. 3), then was sixth in David Semmes Memorial (Gr. 2) at Virginia Gold Cup. Won Steeplechase at Callaway’s 2015 AFLAC Supreme Hurdle. Won Belmont’s William Entenmann Memorial Novice Stakes, then fell in the David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3) at the International Gold Cup on Oct. 24. (144)
Bob Le Beau (Ire). 2007 dk. b. or. br. g., Big Bad Bob—Shine Silently, by Bering (GB). Owner: The Fields Stable. Trainer: Elizabeth Voss. Breeder: Anamoine Ltd. (Ire). 2015 NSA record: 5-3-0-0, $220,250. 2014 record: 4-0-1-0, $9,450. Won Belmont Park’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) by a half-length on Sept. 24. Scored runaway victory in New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1) on Aug. 27 after fourth in Saratoga’s A. P. Smithwick Memorial (Gr. 1) on Aug. 6. Opened 2015 with win in National Hunt Cup (Gr. 3) at Radnor Hunt Races in suburban Philadelphia on May 16 and won Parx flat race for hurdlers on July 12. (158)
Schoodic. 2010 b. g., Tiznow—Aunt Henny, by Hennessy. Owner: Edith R. Dixon. Trainer: Jack Fisher. Breeder: Edith R. Dixon (Ky.) 2016 record: 2-0-2-0, $18,900. 2015 record: 4-0-2-2, $58,000. 2014 record: 6-2-0-1, $67,500. Finished second in 2016 David Semmes Memorial (Gr. 2) and Middleburg Spring Ratings Handicap. Finished third in Belmont Park’s 2015 William Entenmann Memorial Novice Stakes and in Foxbrook Champion Hurdle at Far Hills. Kicked off 2015 season with second in Queen’s Cup MPC ’Chase near Charlotte, N.C., then was second in Saratoga’s New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1). (146)
Able Deputy (GB). 2007 b. g., Lomitas (GB)—Island Colony, by Pleasant Colony. Owner: Irvin S. Naylor. Trainer: Cyril Murphy. Breeders: Charles and David Hodge (GB). 2015 record: 3-0-0-1, $5,000. 2014 NSA record: 2-1-0-0, $30,000. Returned from year-long break to finish third in International Gold Cup’s David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3), then was pulled up in Montpelier’s Noel Laing Handicap. Finished seventh in Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup (Gr. 1). Won 2014 Ferguson and Worcester’s Toteplacepot Handicap. (150)
Royal Bench (Ire). 2007 b. g., Whipper—Hit The Sky (Ire), by Cozzene. Owner: Atlanta Hall LLC. Trainer: Elizabeth Voss. Breeder: Kilfrush Stud (Ire). 2016 record: 1-1-0-0, $27,000. No starts. 2015 record: No starts. Won allowance hurdle at 2016 Virginia Gold Cup. Delaware Park flat stakes winner in 2013 also won his maiden start over fences at Charleston that year. (142)