1 Festival release

Perth Racecourse kicks off 2018 season in style

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Today (Wednesday 25 April) sees the opening day of the Perth Festival, the racecourses’ annual three-day season opener. 

 Daryl Jacob, crowned leading jockey at Aintree's Grand National meeting, will be traveling to the UK’s most northerly track for just one ride as Perth begins its new season in style with the opening card of the traditional April Perth Festival.

 His mount is on Nigel Twiston-Davies' 142-rated Calett Mad for owners Simon Munir and Isaac Souede in the first day feature, the Listed £25,000 EBF Stallions Gold Castle ‘National Hunt’ Novices' Hurdle.

 Jacob, who has recorded a healthy four winners from just six rides at the Scone track in the past five years, said: “He has won from the front and from hold up tactics as we did at Musselburgh in February.

 “He also won over course and distance on easy ground last backend, and he's also got winning form over fences. It's a nice prize to go for at this time of the year.”

 Lucinda Russell's Bialco, Knockrobin for Donald McCain, and Jamie Snowden's Lambourn raider Scorpion Sid complete the impressive line-up for the three mile event.

 Allysson Monterg shoulders top-weight for Gloucestershire trainer Richard Hobson in the £20,000 Phil Nelson Handicap Chase over nearly three miles.

 Trained near Cheltenham, he has finished third at Uttoxeter since being pulled up in the RSA Chase at his local course on just his second start over fences.

 Among the opposition in a competitive eleven-strong field is Ballyben, the first Perth runner for Ruth Jefferson who took over the license following the death of her father Malcolm in February.

 The 2018 Perth action gets underway with the aptly-named Joseph Perrier “The Party Has Started” Maiden Hurdle.

 Lovely Schtuff, a winning point to pointer, is an interesting contender trained by Britain's most northerly handler, Inverurie-based Jackie Stephen.

 The seven-race card sees runners trained in Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales with leading trainers such as Venetia Williams, Tom George, Nicky Richards, Nick Alexander, Iain Jardine and Sandy Thomson all represented.