WITH the recent snowfall wiping out last weekend’s point-to-point programme entirely, owners and trainers are obviously keen to run their horses and organisers of the Hampshire Hunt point-to-point at Hackwood Park have been rewarded with 114 entries over 30 more than last year – for their six-race card, which kicks off at 1pm on Sunday.

Clerk of the Course Bill Welling visited the course last Sunday and said: “Apart from small drifts around four of the jumps and by the running rail on the run-in, the course is completely clear of snow. The recent spiking of the course means that, even though we have had a rapid thaw, there is no water lying on the surface. The going is currently soft.”

The point-to-point racing starts at 1pm and will be preceded by the Lucy Lines Leading Rein Dash at 11.30 followed by the Rhiannon Lines Pony Scurry and a parade of hounds at midday. There will be a funfair, bouncy castle and face painting for children, plus trade stands including artwork, jewellery, fashion, country clothing, hats and gifts. New for 2018 is a Food Village with pizzas, pies, cakes, cocktails, alcoholic drinks and tea and coffee.

Charlie Corbett of the Hampshire Hunt said “We’re really excited about this year’s event, which promises to be bigger and better than ever before, with lots of activities to suit all tastes both on and off the track. We would like to thank all our sponsors for their continued support and look forward to a great day’s point to point racing.”

Hackwood Park is a left-handed course on a slope with a downhill back straight and an uphill finish. The course has a mixture of permanent and portable fences and the top and bottom bends are now fully equipped with plastic rails.

It is about two miles south east of Basingstoke and signposted off the A339 (Alton road), leaving the M3 at junction six.

Entry is £10 per adult, with under 16s going free. There is a £10 supplement for the premium car park. For advance booking, visit the website hackwoodparkracecourse.co.uk to buy tickets.