ONE of the most iconic Ryedale partnerships in racing is the Richard Fahey and Paul Hanagan team and they remain potent on the track, writes Lucy Russell-Hughes.

They have enjoyed as much success in the winner’s enclosure in recent times to suggest they still hold all their prowess and more.

The pair recorded a fine double at Redcar last Friday. Firstly, it was the talented two-year-old colt Shark Two One who put his best foot forward to claim the class five novice stakes over six furlongs.

Then Hong Kong Harry made the most impressive debut when he landed a similar event over the same trip but for three-year-olds and upwards.

The good fortunes continued into this week when the smart colt Pythagoras scored in Pontefract’s most valuable two-year-old race of the year, the Listed Silver Tankard Stakes over one mile.

Sent off at odds of 5/1 he was by no means fancied by punters, neither was he gifted the race as Hanagan made a decisive move by switching to the near side a furlong out. The move perhaps sealed the race, for the pair won by the narrowest of victories in a neck.

“I saw the gap there, he’s very professional and I like him a lot,” said Hanagan.

Owned and bred by the recognisable pink chequered silks of Sir Robert Ogden, the almost black son of Zoffany is eye catching and talented too. For that was his third victory this season in five starts.

“It was my first official ride on him today, I’ve rode him a few times at home and he gives you the feel that he’s got a bit of class about him and it was great for him to win today,” added Hanagan.

Not only was it a welcome winner for connections, but it also provided the Musley Bank trainer with his 100th domestic winner this season. Society Queen added to the tally on the day and again in the hands of Hanagan to prove the rich vein of form him and Fahey are in.

After his Group Three success and emphatic Cambridgeshire win last month, Monday’s success was Hanagan’s second Listed winner this season after his return to the saddle following a serious injury earlier in the year.

A remarkable feat in itself and in such a short space of time for he only returned to race riding in August.

Hanagan is also closing in on the illustrious 2,000 career winners, with only five to go.

Another local trainer in rampant form is Tim Easterby. It proved to be a stellar Saturday for the Yorkshireman for he saddled a treble at Catterick’s final flat meeting of the year.

Kidyounot, Bollin Joan and Bollin Neil were the heroines on Saturday’s card, the latter two were ridden by yard Apprentice Ella McCain who enjoyed her first career double.

Easterby was ever so close to recording a four timer on the day when Count D’orsay was beaten just a head in the feature race on the card, the class two Catterick Dash Handicap.

The prize did however land in the hands of another Ryedale trainer as the Kevin Ryan trained Justanotherbottle was the unlikeliest of winners.

He was outpaced early on in the five-furlong affair but was galvanised by jockey Kevin Stott as the pair came thundering down the home straight from last to first to land the spoils.

One Easterby horse who was heroic in defeat last Saturday was Art Power.

The talented sprinter finished a beaten fourth in the Group One Qipco British Champions Sprint Stakes at Ascot’s signature showpiece event.

Despite his finishing position he was beaten by just over a length from the eventual winner Glen Shiel.

The stunning three-year-old grey colt has been a revelation this year for connections, after winning at Royal Ascot and securing Group success in Ireland he has since tried his luck in top level races in Britain and has ran consistently well every time.

One horse to far outrun his odds in the same race was Brando. The eight-year-old put up a mighty performance to be beaten by a nose into second at odds of 80/1.

With the National Hunt season beginning to unfold, one Malton trainer already enjoying a fine time over the obstacles is Brian Ellison.

He saddled a fine winner last Sunday when Mrs Hyde landed a Listed Novices’ Hurdle event at Kempton over two miles. The seven-year-old mare kept on well in the closing stages to win deservedly in the hands of top jockey Nico de Boinville.

It was Mrs Hyde’s third winner in only four starts for Ellison, since her switch from previous trainer Fergal O’Brien. And the connections have been dully rewarded.

Ellison could enjoy even more success this weekend with potential runners at both Cheltenham and Aintree’s opening meetings of the new season.

Forest Bihan could line up in the Grade Two Monet’s Garden Old Roan Limited Handicap Chase, a race he won twelve months ago and has not been seen since. It’ll be interesting to see if the Phil and Julie Martin-owned gelding takes his chance in becoming back to back winners of the race.