I’m not sure when our last runner at Ayr was before yesterday – it could well have been Looksnowtlikebrian winning at the track in February 2018 – but we were delighted to make the long journey pay off with a double to get the season underway in style!

Isle Of Aron had been running consistently well in defeat, placing over hurdles and fences on his last two starts, so he fully deserved to get his head in front.  Fitted with cheekpieces for the first time, he travelled enthusiastically and looked to be going best on the turn for home.  However, he really had to battle to get the better of the eventual runner-up and showed a gritty attitude to hold on and shed his maiden tag.

The handicapper is unlikely to move him much, given the margin of victory, and now that he has got that win under his belt, he should remain very competitive in the future.  Congratulations to his owners Oceans Racing!

Half an hour later, Bells Of Stamford got off the mark at the sixth time of asking in the second division of the handicap hurdle.

He was prominent throughout and, as was the case with Isle Of Aron, was going as well as anything turning in and hit the front on the bridle. He won with a little in hand, but looked to be idling late on when the placed horses closed and he looks sure to improve again for the experience.  A well-bred individual, he is on a workable mark and should enjoy further success this summer. Congratulations to his owners Steve and Mick!