A competitive crowd heads for Ben Venue

Betsy Burke Parker | Rappahannock News
Last Noble, ridden by Jacob Roberts, wins the maiden hurdle at last year’s Old Dominion steeplechase at Ben Venue.

The promise of perfect spring weather conditions, thick turf and the lure of the open, rolling Ben Venue Farm racecourse have attracted an overflowing entry box for Saturday’s Old Dominion Hounds Point-to-Point. Post time is 12 noon for the first of nine races.

Featured is the three-mile open timber, which drew 16. Heading the list is two-time Virginia Gold Cup winner Bubble Economy, joined by three others from trainer Jack Fisher’s Maryland stable. Winner of the Steeplethon and Alfred Hunt race last year, Swimming River carries the silks of former ODH master David Semmes in the lineup. Maryland Hunt Cup prepper Battle Op races for owner Northwoods Stable and new trainer Lilly Kurtinez.  

Other timber races include a ladies’ timber, owner-rider and foxhunters. Hurdle races include maiden, open and amateur, with novice rider and Virginia-bred turf races also scheduled. A junior field masters’ ‘chase opens the card.

Ben Venue Farm is on Route 729, just north of U.S. 211. Complete entries can be found online at CentralEntryOffice.com. Ticket and parking details are available by calling 540-364-4573.

Old Dominion Hounds will host a hunter pace on Easter Sunday (April 8), also at Ben Venue Farm. Divisions for fast time, optimum time, juniors and hilltoppers are offered.