Brian Hughes enjoyed a red-letter day at Newcastle
Last Updated: 04/01/14 7:57pm
Brian Hughes: Newcastle treble
Brian Hughes enjoyed a red-letter day at Newcastle with a treble on Retrieve The Stick, Dingo Bay and Oleohneh.
Retrieve The Stick (11/8 favourite) got the ball rolling when following up a Kelso victory on Sunday with a game win in the Catherine Dornan 90th Birthday/EBF Mares' Novices' Hurdle.
"She's from a tough family - it's only six days she last ran. I trained her mother (Anabranch) years ago and she won lots of races for me," trainer Malcolm Jefferson told At The Races.
Hughes made it a brace on the John Wade-trained Dingo Bay, who put in a fine round of jumping to win the Barbour Handicap Chase for the second year running.
The 9/4 favourite pulled clear from the second last to beat Samson Collonges by seven lengths.
Hughes said: "He had a horrific fall the last day in better company but he usually jumps well and he likes this place.
"He loves that ground but didn't beat the most competitive field. I've had three wins on him now, so I'm not complaining."
Hughes and Jefferson combined again to take the concluding EBF Stallion Mares' Standard Open National Hunt Flat Race with Oleohneh.
The 5/4 market leader was travelling ominously well before drawing eight lengths clear of Conjola.
Jason Maguire's late switch from Sandown's abandoned card paid off when he steered Knockgraffon King to capture the feature Marriott Interactive Handicap Chase
He kept Knockgraffon King (7/2 joint favourite) fairly close to the pace set by Bertie Milan and War On before going on some way out.
Market rival Rolecarr tried to put it up to the leader, but Knockgraffon King scored by two and a half lengths for trainer Donald McCain.
"He's done it well. If you go back long enough in form you'll see he had a run round at Navan which was good form," Maguire said.
"He goes on the ground and he stays, so I let him go to the front down the back straight. He was dossing in front over the last couple of fences when he was out on his own but he picked up again when they came to him."
Locally-based Simon Waugh enjoyed a welcome winner when Total Assets (16/1) took the S V Rutter Handicap Hurdle.
"At Musselburgh (over three miles) she seemed to empty a little bit just before the last and didn't run on after that, so we thought the best thing to do was to bring her back a couple of furlongs," said the Morpeth handler.
"I'm absolutely delighted for the owners. We set up the Northumberland Racing Club about four months ago. We lost a horse at Sedgefield but they are such a great crowd of people. It's brilliant.
"I took my licence out a couple of years ago, but it's quite difficult moving up from point-to-points to the National Hunt scene and being competitive. We're trying to improve the number of horses and get the quality up as well."
Sam Lord (11/2) denied Circus Star a hat-trick of victories when picking up the long-time leader on the run-in in the St James Place Handicap Hurdle.
Dominic Elsworth timed his run to perfection as he forced the Jimmy Moffatt-trained 10-year-old to the front to win by a length and a quarter.
The Stuart Coltherd-trained Cloverhill Lad (5/1) had too many guns for the opposition as he claimed the Straightline Construction Handicap by a decisive two and a quarter lengths under 7lb claimer Daragh Bourke.
He said: "He loved the ground. He winged the last and was pricking his ears so I knew if anything came to him he'd pick up again."