TOP jockey Denis O’Regan, who took the Cheltenham Festival by storm in 2008, breaks new ground tomorrow (Saturday) when he has his first ever rides at Cartmel.

O’Regan has been on the panel at Cartmel’s highly successful Cheltenham Preview evenings for the last two years, but this will be his first chance to ride the track.

“I didn’t get the opportunity to ride there in my first season in Britain and last year I was suspended when the May meeting was on and in Ireland for the later meetings so it will be good to finally ride there.

“I have rides in five of the six races and I am really looking forward to it. I have some decent rides so it would be nice to have a winner” he said.

Making a welcome return to the Lake District course is Gloucestershire trainer Tom George, who sends three horses for the Saturday evening card – his first runners at the track for six years. Sam Thomas will ride them all.

“I have never actually been to Cartmel myself, but it is a track I am keen to visit and I may well be there on either Monday or Wednesday when I intend to have other runners” he said.

The going for tomorrow’s meeting is likely to be on the soft side of good, but new Clerk of the Course Anthea Beaumont is hoping that the weather forecast holds good and that the ground will improve over the three days of the May Bank Holiday fixture.

“We had 6mls of rain on Wednesday and a decent drying day on Thursday so the ground remains good, good to soft in places and soft on the woodside. The forecast is for a shower on Saturday morning and then for fine weather for the rest of the day and through the weekend” she reports.

It is Ladies Evening tomorrow with the first race at 5.50pm with racing again on Monday (first race 2.25pm) and Wednesday (first race 2.20pm).