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GRAND NATIONAL: ante-post shortlist of seven for Aintree’s great race

With the Cheltenham Festival just around the corner, it seems incongruous to start talking about the Grand National.

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Altior (right) on his way to victory, and a classy comeback, in the Betfair Exchange Game Spirit Chase at Newbury on Saturday.

COUNTDOWN TO CHELTENHAM: Altior and Native River back with a bang

The weather didn’t play ball, but since when has it? Behind the veneer of sheeting rain and icy winds, Newbury’s pre-Cheltenham Festival meeting at the weekend very much fitted the ‘Super Saturday’ template that was created for it.

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Briggs selected to be part of the British Cycling junior set up

Briggs selected to be part of the British Cycling junior set up

Matlock’s Sarah Briggs is celebrating after being selected to be part of the British Cycling team.

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MAC’s ladies clinch team title in BDL Cross Country Series

MAC’s ladies clinch team title in BDL Cross Country Series

Matlock Athletics Club’s ladies have clinched the team prize in the Booths Decorators League (BDL) Cross Country Series.

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Classy Matlock breeze past Dronfield with impressive all-round team display

Classy Matlock breeze past Dronfield with impressive all-round team display

Matlock claimed a convincing 41-7 win over Dronfield after an impressive all-round team display.

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Total Recall, who was one of seven winners for champion trainer Willie Mullins at the new Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown.

Ireland showcases the cream of Jumps racing -- ahead of more dominance at Cheltenham Festival

The decision to switch TV coverage of Irish racing from At The Races to Racing UK from next January has caused consternation and triggered quite a kerfuffle.

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Alex Powell tries to bulldoze his way through during Matlock's win at Newark. (PHOTO BY: Colin Baker)

Muddy marvels Matlock produce best display for several seasons

Muddy marvels Matlock played some of their best rugby for several seasons to pull off a tremendous 24-8 away win against fellow high-fliers Newark.

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Matlock's Tom Cruttenden ploughs his way through a West Bridgford challenge. (PHOTO BY: Colin Baker).

Brave Matlock give leaders a fright in entertaining duel

Battling Matlock gave top-of-the-table West Bridgford a fright before succumbing to a narrow 26-22 defeat at rain-soaked Cromford Meadows.

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In-form Dobney steers new signing to vital win

In-form Dobney steers new signing to vital win

A RE-MATCH between the two Edgefold teams contesting first and second place in the Darley Dale and District League Ashford Arms Premier Division again ended in a thrilling climax.

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Racing remains the second-best attended sport in the UK, behind only football.

Ditch the myths -- it’s cool and hip to go racing, especially on the Flat

A couple of myths that tend to sit lazily, and largely unchallenged, on racing’s debating table, have been exploded by the latest research released by the Racecourse Association (RCA).

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An exclusive collection of 25 horses to have caught the eye this Jumps season and likely to go on to big-race success. (PHOTO BY: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

COUNTDOWN TO CHELTENHAM: horses to follow from the Jumps season so far

Inexorably, inevitably, the Cheltenham Festival is swinging into view. The rest of the Jumps season, which now resembles one, long dress-rehearsal, one, long schooling session, has hit the home straight and the winning post of mid-March is on the horizon.

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Tom Cruttenden in the thick of the action during Matlock's 20-20 draw with Loughborough.

Frustrated Matlock held to draw by strugglers

Frustrated Matlock were held to a disappointing 20-20 draw at home to struggling Loughborough to fluff a chance to go second in the Midlands 2 East (North) division of the National League.

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Craig Pollard

COLUMN: Top golf tips for winter practice sessions

Happy New Year to you all.

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Dele Alli

RUMOUR MILL: Spurs keen to tie down Alli, Keita could arrive at Liverpool early;

Spurs are in contract talks with Dele Alli while Naby Keita could be heading to Liverpool earlier than planned.

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Matlock return from Lincoln with the points

Matlock return from Lincoln with the points

Matlock RFC travelled to Lincoln for the first time at first team level since the 2003/04 season and came away with a deserved victory, winning 16-3.

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Winner Peter Middleton (centre) and runner-up Tim Gould on the podium.

Zepnat teammate helps Middleton clinch national cyclo-cross title

A sterling effort by riders from the Matlock-based Zepnat racing team was the highlight of the final round of the National Trophy Cyclo-Cross Series.

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The favourite, Poetic Rhythm (right), pounces late on Mulcahy's Hill, to win the Grade One Betfred Challow Novices' Hurdle at Newbury on Saturday.

CHRISTMAS RACING REVIEW: from Faugheen and Might Bite to Sizing John and Buveur D’Air

Like unwanted presents strewn at the bottom of the Christmas tree, a sackful of shocks and surprises rocked the racing programme over the festive holiday.

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Good results recorded as cycling club served up a real Christmas mudfest

Good results recorded as cycling club served up a real Christmas mudfest

After heavy snow the day before the traditional turkey burner, Bakewell Showground was a quagmire for the ninth round of the NDCXL League.

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A new weeky parkrun will launch at Hassop station, December 30.

Peak District parkrun group to launch in Bakewell this month

The worldwide parkrun phenomenon is stretching its legs into the Derbyshire Dales, with a new weekly event being launched later this month.

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Blaklion, impressive winner of the Randox Health Becher Chase over the Grand National fences at Aintree on Saturday.

Gold Cup hero back with bang in weekend that was Sceaux (or Sceau) good

You had to know your Sceaux from your Sceau when analysing and assessing a weekend of racing action that warmed the cockles of even the coldest of hearts amid the ice and snow.

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