THE Yorkshire point-to-point year got underway in style at Sheriff Hutton, with good jumping ground after unusually dry weather for the winter months.

Though southern entrants took five of the eight races on the day, local success came for trainer Cherry Coward who struck a treble.

She started her trio of victories in the second division of the opening conditions race with Path To Freedom, partnered by John Dawson. The pair came through to win convincingly under a 7lb penalty, beating You Too Pet by eight lengths, whilst third went to Bletchley Castle and Tommie O’Brien who set a strong pace for much of the way.

She also took the Men's Open race with course specialist One Conemara, despite him being a doubtful runner earlier in the day due to the dry ground.

Again with rider John Dawson, the pair stayed on strongly to fend off Dale Peter's Wither Or Not, who was returning from a lengthy absence, whilst Black River ran another creditable race under Will Easterby in third.

The fast conditions were not ideal for the Grimthorpe Gold Cup winner, but Cherry Coward said: "I didn't want to run Conemara as I didn't think he would be as good on the faster ground, obviously I was proven wrong... John Dawson had the faith."

The Dawson/Coward jockey and trainer combination completed their hat trick in the final race, the 2m 4f Open Maiden race with Eden Collonges.

The race was run at a strong pace and the pair made good headway, drawing well clear after the last, with Dressedforsuccess runner-up and Coniston Spa a further twenty five lengths back in third.

Elsewhere, a possible Cheltenham-bound contender was seen in the Ladies' Open. Former Willie Mullins inmate Haymount under Gina Andrews drew clear of Golden Tobouggan to win well, whilst Lottie Crane showed Ballinahow Bill still looks a potent force in Yorkshire, as he chased the pair home.

The Open Maiden was split on the day. In division one Latenightpass always had the upper hand and pulled clear close to the line. Tonganui, ridden by Christy Furness, was second.

The second division was run at a sedate pace, but it would be Tour De Pub who would come out on top. Love Around chased him home, whilst Major Minus ran another good effort in third for Will Easterby.

The most impressive winner of the day came in the Restricted race which was won by the Sheila Crow-trained Rob The Getaway, ridden by Henry Crow. The 6-year-old was described as a "force to be reckoned with" in the coming season.

Division one of the Club Members' race went to the Dale Peters team. Peters saddled and rode Benefit Of Luck to an impressive win, ahead of Mydor and with the locally-trained Ravished back in third.