Lingfield hosts Three Feathers Cup to kickstart event
Saturday marks the start of Racing Staff Week with the inaugural running of the Betfair Three Feathers Cup at Lingfield, in which 12 members of stable staff contest a 1m4f race on the all-weather aboard a horse trained by their boss.
The charity race, which is followed by the third running of the Betfair Clock Tower Cup at Doncaster on Friday, offers the winning rider a scholarship at the British Racing School or Northern Racing College, where they can either attain a Category A amateur licence or undertake a training course to advance their career in the sport.
The winning rider will also receive a commemorative Gibson race exercise saddle in the Betfair colours, with those taking part raising money for Racing Welfare.
The race offers a return to the track for Aaron Warwick-Parker, who rode under rules and in a point-to-point contest in 2012, and harbours ambitions of regaining an amateur licence.
Warwick-Parker, 29, rides the Roger Ingram-trained Awesome Rock and said: “I can’t wait for it – it'll be brilliant to get back into it and this race was a perfect opportunity for me to get another experience of race-riding.
“I hope he'll run well – he’s a bit quirky but in good order and ran well at Lingfield in the past.”
Eloise Chapman bids to maintain her 100 per cent strike-rate after winning a charity race at Chepstow last year on her first ride and partners Alan King’s McCools Gold.
Chapman, 19, said: “I’ll be trying my best to keep my record after winning at Chepstow! This is a great chance to gain a little more experience and I’m hoping to ride over jumps as an amateur one day.
“I ride McCools Gold every day – he’s a cheeky horse and should have an alright chance."
It is not just those riding in the two races during Racing Staff Week that will benefit, with the 41 meetings staged during the seven days each celebrating the work of stable, stud and racecourse staff in a variety of ways.
A complete list of racecourse, BHA and NASS initiatives is available at racingstaffweek.com.
The riders taking part
Heidi McGrath riding for Murty McGrath
Eloise Chapman//Alan King
Tom Eyers//John Best
Natasha Hill//Adam West
Brogan McKarrick//Paul Webber
Oliver Brophy//Linda Jewell
Amber Blaney//William Knight
Danielle Smith//Amanda Perrett
Rosalee Lampard//Nick Lampard
Aaron Warwick-Parker//Roger Ingram
Hope Williams//Phil Middleton
Elinor Jones//Jamie Osborne