Mark Johnston records double at Catterick

Catterick Racecourse

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By Jo Scott 

Catterick Bridge Racecourse, Richmondshire’s own track, held its local businesses meeting today in blazing sunshine.

The only district-based trainer to land spoils was Middleham’s Mark Johnston, with a fine double.

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Jason Hart was a replacement partner on the first, Rebel Assault, as the booked jockey Franny Norton was delayed on the way to the Yorkshire course.

Hart broke well on the Johnston runner and was never headed in this second division of a novice fillies’ 5 furlong sprint.

The first div went to a trainer who is only just across the River Tees at Piercebridge, Michael Dods, with the Paul Mulrennan-ridden Time Trail.

Franny Norton made it in time to land Johnston’s second winner on La Vie En Rose.

This was in the Leslie Petch Handicap over just more than a mile and a half, and was the 57th winner sent out by the trainer this term from Kingsley House.

The race is run in memory of the late Major Leslie Petch, who was Clerk of the Course from 1946.

His nephew, John Sanderson, took over as Clerk and MD in 1972 and there has been racing on the site since April 1783.

Just about half an hour after Catterick ended, fellow Middleham trainer Karl Burke landed the Listed National Stakes (5f) with Havana Grey. P J McDonald had the ride.