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Record of the blog selections

Profit for the 2016-17 Jumps Season = £84.38

from wagers on 26 individual selections (4 winners, 6 placed)

Total Staked = £280.00


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This blog is based on finding winners - if you want to lose your money then read another blog.
advising selections on which to wager, since March 2010.

Tuesday, 31 August 2010

What is value?

In today’s blog:
Review of last week’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of last week’s racing

The each-way blog selection on Friday, YELLOW FLAG, was 2nd beaten by the progressive West With The Wind. What I like about jumps racing is that the jumps are there for a purpose – they have to be jumped! The fav Grand Lahou was well clear and looking the most likely winner – till he fell. As such, I never feel tempted to take very short odds about a horse in a chase race, unless I am near certain that it is an exceptional talent. I was unable to post a blog on Saturday due to lack of time, but for those who follow me via twitter, you will have noted that I gave a couple of good value selections; Bated Breath who ran unplaced @ 2/1, and NO PANIC who won @ 7/2 but was a 5/1 chance when I named him. Peter Bowen has his stable going well, but my main reason for choosing NO PANIC was that it was the youngest chaser in the race and therefore held the most potential for showing improved form. In my opinion, horses don’t get better with age (in fact, Nick Mordin wrote recently that a statistical study suggested that horses were at their fastest at 4yo and got slower thereon) they merely get more capable at jumping fences and more experienced at racing. I always think that in handicap chases, the youngest horse with the highest weight (if more than 1 of the same age) should be seriously considered for a wager.
I also received a comment about Bated Breath not being “value” at odds of just 2/1. Tricky thing is value when considered in the context of having a wager. Most people, whether racing fans or not, can quickly ascertain which horse in a race is the quickest and the most likely to win. But very few have the acumen to rate the chances of that happening. Value is getting more for something than you think it is worth. For instance, if your usual brand of toothpaste is available at “2-for-1”, ie half-price, then that’s value. You would normally buy it anyway and pay full price, so to get it at half-price is a no-brainer. It’s the same with having a wager on a horse. Prior to racing (and losing) I rated Bated Breath about 7lbs clear of the next-best in the race and, as such, I considered that its odds should have been more like 5/4 as everything appeared to be in the horse’s favour. With the odds being 2/1, Bated Breath was (in my book) a “value” wager. Now, if Bated Breath had been priced at odds of “evens” or 10/11, then that would not have been value compared to my assessment of its chances – and I would not have had a bet. Many things can happen in a race, and they can affect the result, and these chance events have to be considered and accounted for in deciding whether the odds represent value or not.

Today’s Racing Selections
There is nothing worth a financial interest at Leicester this afternoon, tho’ the 2yo maiden may be worth watching, especially UNEX EL GRECO who’s half-brother beat Tartan Bearer when a 2yo and was once considered Group 1 potential. At Ripon, there is the class 3 City of Ripon Handicap which is 50 yards short of 1¼ miles. This race looks wide open and the betting is a bit skewed with Barry Hills’ Be Invincible the 11/4 fav. Hills has come a long way for this, and at Ripon he has a great strike-rate (12 from 38 with 3yo’s), it’s his only runner today too; but at 11/4 the odds are a bit skinny (I rate it more a 4/1 chance). As so many in this race would prefer faster going (including the fav), it may pay to have a punt on one at longer odds and ARIZONA JOHN, a winner at this trip, looks likely to go well at 14/1 as he’s proven at the trip and will enjoy the likely strong pace.
I’m going to give Folkestone a wide berth, and the AW at Southwell is never inspiring. Much as I want to find one at Newton Abbot, the racing there looks uncompetitive. As such, no selections today.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
After I published my “final” list of chasers & hurdlers to follow for 2010-11, I was advised that I had missed one out – and I had. On 4th August I wrote a narrative about the merits of PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE and somehow it was omitted from the final list. As such, the shortlist is now 19 horses. Here is the complete list of names (in no particular order):-
1) ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo 2nd season chaser trained by Chris GORDON
2) CESIUM, 5yo 2nd season chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
3) EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
4) PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON
5) QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
6) KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes
7) PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE, 7yo chaser trained by J Howard Johnson
8) FREE WORLD, 6yo chaser trained by Paul NICHOLLS
9) GENTLE RANGER, 8yo chaser trained by David PIPE
10) GOING WRONG, 7yo hurdler (novice chaser) trained by Ferdy MURPHY
11) MIDNIGHT HAZE, 8yo chaser trained by Kim BAILEY
12) MONT PRESENT, 6yo chaser trained by Phil HOBBS
13) PICKAMUS, 7yo chaser trained by Henry DALY
14) ZANIR, 6yo hurdler trained by Tom GEORGE
15) SKIPPERS BRIG, 9yo chaser trained by Nicky RICHARDS
16) PLEIN POUVIER, 7yo chaser trained by Venetia WILLIAMS
17) RAPID INCREASE, 7yo chaser trained by Jonjo O’NEILL
18) AFISTFULLOFPEBBLES, 6yo chaser trained by Jonjo O’NEILL
19) WEIRD AL, 7yo chaser trained by Ian WILLIAMS

For the individual write-ups, see the attached page of Chasers & Hurdlers.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Friday, 27 August 2010

Chasers & Hurdlers 2010-11, complete list

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing

The blog selection DOCOFTHEBAY was a non-runner. I’ve added him to my horse alert list as I think he is on a cracking mark of OR84 and if he can find a race in the next 10-14 days in class 4 at 8-9f then I reckon he’ll bolt in.
I made a mental note of some trainers in form with a single runner yesterday, and JJ Quinn obliged with his only runner of the day Zomerlust at Ayr at 6/1. Quinn has his stable in tip-top form. Mick Jarvis also only had a single runner out in Cansili Star, and it duly obliged at 11/2. Today, he again has just one out, Tanjung Agas in the 3:30 at Newmarket.
Nigel Twiston-Davies had his 6th winner in 7-days from 14 runners, with Mad Moose at 100/30 and his other runner was 2nd btn under 2-lengths. He has 2 runners at Ffos Las this afternoon.
Keiren Fallon made a big thing about his ride on Dubai Media in his column in Wednesday’s Weekender, and it won at 9/4. I have found it pays to read his column as he usually gives readers the name of his most likely winning ride in the next couple of days.

Today’s Racing Selections
There is an interesting couple of jumps races at Ffos Las where there is a mixed meeting (flat & jumps). The 2-mile C2 chase at 4:50 looks a cracking contest, and the fav Grand Lahou will be hard to beat if allowed his own way again today as he was when winning last week; but I think YELLOW FLAG is yet to find his ceiling and off OR123 he can stalk the fav and take the race after the last fence. At 6/1 he rates decent eachway value.
The wet weather is causing havoc with the going, it’s probably going to be good-to-soft at Ffos Las, and it’s soft at Bath. Thirsk looks like holding onto its good going, and the 3:15 looks a race to find decent odds about a horse with a winning chance. If LEGAL LEGACY can repeat his last level of performance at Thirsk when 4th on 1st May (off OR77) then he’ll take some beating. He’s 10lb better-off with Glenridding on that form, and Glenridding was well behind him that day too! Worry is, he may dwell again at the start, but he needs a good pace (which he’ll get) and he comes with a late rattle, so perhaps the best ploy is to have a “side-bet” in-running at say 10.50 early on, and then if that’s taken try and lay-off at 3.05. Current odds of 6/1 look more than fair as I think he should be more like 4/1 for this race.
Nothing at Newmarket, Hamilton, or Newcastle – tho’ John Gosden makes a rare visit to the North-East with African Wave in the 7:55

Selections:
Ffos Las 4:50 YELLOW FLAG, ½pt e/w @ no less than 6/1

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
After several weeks of form study, I have now completed my review of my personal “horse-alert” list from last season, and reduced it from 180-odd names down to 119. And from these, I have selected a shortlist of 18 horses that I think should win more often than not in the coming season and provide anyone who wants to make a note of them with a profitable years betting. I have already provided the names of 14 for the list, here are the remaining 4:-

PLEIN POUVIER, 7yo chaser trained by Venetia WILLIAMS
In 2009-10 PLEIN POUVIER had only 4 races. Given that he has never finished in the places in 14 career runs with the going being good-to-soft or better, and only been placed once in his 5 runs beyond 21f – and that was when the going was soft – the first 2 of last season’s runs (which were over 24f on good-to-soft and good going) can be ignored. When getting favourable going (soft) and a trip less-than 22f (as he did on Boxing Day), PLEIN POUVIER won – it’s as simple as that. It was therefore disappointing that he was beaten in his final start but, then again, that was a hot novice chase as of those in front of him that day, Midnight Chase (in 3rd) won 3 of his next 4 starts, Edgbriar (in 2nd) has also won since, and the winner Hey Big Spender lost his rider when looking the potential winner at the Festival (race won by Copper Bleu) and then fell at Aintree in the race won by Mad Max. Venetia Williams has a knack of placing her chasers well when she has them right, and PLEIN POUVIER could be the sort to run up a sequence of wins.

RAPID INCREASE, 7yo chaser trained by Jonjo O’NEILL
AFISTFULLOFPEBBLES, 6yo chaser trained by Jonjo O’NEILL

“Two horse’s for the price of one”, the reason being these are full-brothers (both are sired by Sonus) and they are half-brothers to the useful Massasoit (by Supreme Leader). AFISTFULLOFPEBBLES has only had 2 chase runs, but won both; in the latest beating the very useful and progressive Sound Stage. His older brother, RAPID INCREASE, ran unplaced in his first 7 chases and looked unremarkable. But, when stepped up in trip to 3-mile, his performances were transformed. From his next 5 chases at between 24-26f he won 2, was 2nd twice and ran 3rd. Both times he was 2nd he suffered from making a late jumping error which (in my opinion) cost him those races. When 3rd, he was under hard driving from McCoy for most of the race and clearly was not enjoying the going which was perhaps the fastest he’d encountered. Their half-brother Massasoit is trained by Paul Nicholls, and is rated OR141 having run 3rd (off OR138) to Monkerhostin at Sandown in February. As such, both RAPID INCREASE on OR112 and AFISTFULLOFPEBBLES on OR125 look to have the potential to improve dramatically over the coming season, especially over trips of 24f+ and with the word “soft” in the going description.

WEIRD AL, 7yo chaser trained by Ian WILLIAMS
There are few horse’s that excite me as much as WEIRD AL and so, as such, you can imagine my personal disappointment when he was withdrawn from the RSA due to an injury a week before the Festival last March. At the time he was 11/1 in the betting and, in my opinion, he surely would have gone close, if not won, the RSA at the Festival beating Weapons Amnesty. He had only 3 chase runs last season as a novice and won all 3. On his debut, he beat Knockara Beau (who had already won two novice chases having shown useful form in the latter race) by a neck. He improved on that to win to win his 2nd chase (also at Cheltenham) beating subsequent Festival winner Pidgeon Island. For his final race, he stepped up to 3m 1f and easily beat Knockara Beau again at level weights. For me (as Knockara Beau went on to be 4th in the RSA) that performance showed he would have taken a lot of beating at the Festival as, with stamina proven, he would have pushed-on from the 3rd-last fence in the RSA and made it a true stamina test. Providing he’s made a full recovery, I consider his current rating of OR152 very lenient as that puts him on a par with Burton Port, and I consider that he has the beating of him thru’ the RSA form. Where will he go now? Surely, the Gold Cup has to be the main aim, but I expect that a tilt at the Hennessey Gold Cup is within his grasp, then the Cotswold chase at the Cheltenham “Trials” meeting at the end of January. Currently 25/1 for the Gold Cup, in my opinion he should be 16/1 and I expect if he runs well enough to win his next race then those odds will tumble.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Just what the Doctor ordered

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
I passed over GRAND SLAM HERO a bit too quickly when assessing the class 2 chase at Ffos Las last night. He is still clearly on the upgrade and Twiston-Davies has yet to get to the bottom of his talent seeing as he won his first race off OR113 and last night won off OR138 in a canter. The heavy rain during the day caused the going to change to good-to-soft and that wrecked the chances of most of those in the race.

Today’s Racing Selections
With rain lashing down over most of the country, it seems to me to be a good excuse to give racing a miss unless you have a notion about a real mudlark springing a surprise.
Goodwood has already been abandoned, and the meetings at Lingfield (turf) and Ffos Las are on soft going.
At Ayr in the 3:40 DOCOFTHEBAY drops to class 4 on OR84. He has looked a tricky ride lately, but I believe that the talent is still there judged by his 5th to Fareer at York in May (off OR94). He was never going to stay the 10f he raced over LTO, but before that on the AW at Lingfield, he just could not find a way through as his jockey held him at the rear of the field. There is nothing for him to fear in this race, and he will get a good pace. At 15/2 he looks a fair price, but perhaps he will drift a bit before the off.

Selections:
No selections but in such circumstances I expect DOCOFTHEBAY to run well.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
SKIPPERS BRIG, 9yo chaser trained by Nicky RICHARDS

At 9yo, SKIPPERS BRIG will be the oldest in my list, but having only had 7 chase runs (and having won 4) he has plenty of scope to improve on what he’s shown already. He ran only 3 times in 2009-10, and the first of those was – in hindsight – disappointing. Altho’ he has won at 3-miles, it was only a 4-horse race on heavy (which he handles) and SKIPPERS BRIG was top-rated in the race and merely had to complete to win. Personally, I don’t think he stays 3-mile as in his other 3 attempts at the trip he’s been well beaten. Returned to 20f NTO, he easily put the race to bed, winning comfortably. It was his next race that was most exciting, when 3rd in the Boylesports at Cheltenham. His trainer, Nicky Richards, has a poor record here (2 wins from 35 runners and worse, 0 from 18 with chasers) so a win was not on the cards (clearly, Richards does something wrong sending runners to Cheltenham, in fact anywhere beyond 100 miles from his Cumbrian stable base). However, SKIPPERS BRIG ran the race of his life to be 3rd to Poquelin (NTO 2nd in Ryanair), and Razor Royale (won Racing Post Chase) and record an RPR148 rating. Remarkably, the handicapper has dropped him 1lb for that run to OR139. He was due to go back to Cheltenham for the William Hill Trophy but was withdrawn and put-away after knocking a knee the week before the Festival. Hopefully, Nicky Richards will find a race on a northern track for SKIPPERS BRIG this autumn and as he’s won 1st-time-out in 06 and 08 (missed 2007-08 season) then, so long as he’s not raced over 21f+, he should be a good thing as Richards won’t chance him on going quicker than good-to-soft.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

The saint - Simon TEMPLER

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
The favourite backers got it right in all 3 races that I looked at yesterday with Hamloola winning @ 1/2; Wake Up Call winning @ 13/8 and Senate winning @ 2/1; and what’s more, they all won their races very easily. Sometimes it pays not to oppose the market. The one horse that I thought had the best chance of causing an upset – ELLA – threatened about 3f out (touched 2.50 in-running) but was soon seen-off by the winner. I said earlier in the week about not ignoring the place-only market on Betfair, and yesterday I received an email from the excellent blog writer Daniel Kelly (the nhcblogspot.com – see adjacent link) who spotted ALL ANNALENA in this race who he thought was a great ew chance in this 8-runner race (there were 4 non-runners). Although starting at 33/1, ALL ANNALENA paid 12.80 on the place-only market! At quarter-odds, 33/1 represents a return of £46.25 for a £5.00 ew bet (£10 staked); that’s equivalent to odds of 7/2. Had that £10 been staked on the place-only market (and, being realistic, 33/1 winners do not come along every day) the return would have been £128.00 less 5% commission; or £121.60, equivalent to odds of 11/1. Admittedly, this was a particular situation, but there’s value to be had on the place-only markets every day – do not ignore them.

As an aside, I have a trawl through the blogsites and websites every week, and I came across this via the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) website – it’s a request to find new faces to promote horse-racing via http://www.lovetheraces.com/terms.php.

Today’s Racing Selections
Another ordinary day’s racing. There are 3 meetings on the flat this afternoon at Ayr, Catterick and Brighton. There is nothing at Ayr that interests me, tho’ Willie Haggas sends a solitary 2yo for the opener, Red Riverman.
At Catterick, there are 5 low-grade handicaps and they all looks wide-open. With races like this it can all hang on which horse is feeling like running best on the day and form-study does not really count for much. No thanks!
Despite Brighton being my local “flat” track, it’s not one that I like as it can make a horse unbalanced – even track specialists. It’s not often that Sir Michael Stoute sends one here and today he has two running for him and both ridden by Fallon. (Ryan Moore still absent thru’ injury). The 2yo Profondo Rosso is likely to be a lot better than OR90 as a 3yo and as such should prove good enough for this. It’s his other runner in the class 3 handicap at 4:00 MR IRONS who looks the most interesting, tho’ it looks like we’ve missed the boat on the value as he’s just 5/2 (from 7/2) now. Fallon got the best out of him LTO and he should do the biz again in this. The final 2 races are both 5-runner affairs and I’m not a fan of races with a few runners as they tend to depend on jockey tactics – but Mujood loves these sort of races where he can dominate a small field, and he can prove dangerous as the rank outsider in the 4:30.

There is a cracking class 2 handicap chase at Ffos Las at 7:20 tonight where a previous blog selection (and winner) Sea Wall runs again, but I fear this time he’ll not win. The 2009 fav for the Thyestes Chase in Ireland Hoopy looks primed for a big run after winning over hurdles LTO, as is Lyes Green who is on the comeback trail from injury. I don’t know what to make of Grand Slam Hero after pulling-up LTO, so he needs to make amends. Nostringsattached was 2nd in this race last year off OR136, so down to OR128 today makes him of interest – but last year he was in good form and looking for a hat-trick of wins. Gordon Elliot, who won the race last year, clearly wants to win it again, with 3 entries; but one horse who never seems to run a bad race and comes here his trainers only runner today is TEMPLER. He was rated OR134 after winning a C2 chase off OR130 at Stratford in May 09, so running today off OR127 when we know he’s in good form seems a good omen. He went hunter-chasing in the Spring mainly to get his confidence back, and it seems to have worked judged by his close-up 5th in the Summer National LTO. That was a hard race, but he’s been given plenty of time to recover and he’ll get the strong pace he loves in this race (from Sea Wall and others) and he can stay on strongest of all. Odds of 10/1 look fair.

Selections:
Ffos Las 7:20 TEMPLER, 1pt e/w @ 10/1

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
There are no new names on today’s list, but for new readers of the blog, here is a complete list of those described so far. They are:-

1) ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo chaser trained by Chris GORDON
2) CESIUM, 5yo chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
3) EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
4) PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON
5) QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
6) KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes
7) FREE WORLD, 6yo chaser trained by Paul NICHOLLS
8) GENTLE RANGER, 8yo chaser trained by David PIPE
9) GOING WRONG, 7yo hurdler (novice chaser) trained by Ferdy MURPHY
10) MIDNIGHT HAZE, 8yo chaser trained by Kim BAILEY
11) MONT PRESENT, 6yo chaser trained by Phil HOBBS
12) PICKAMUS, 7yo chaser trained by Henry DALY
13) ZANIR, 6yo hurdler trained by Tom GEORGE

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

MAANY rivers to cross

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
Nothing much of interest in yesterday’s racing.

Today’s Racing Selections
It is a very ordinary day’s racing, which has been hit by the wet weather causing a number of early withdrawals – so check the non-runner lists.
At Yarmouth, there is not much on offer. I find it interesting that Mick Jarvis has upped in trip MAANY (cost US$500,000 as a yearling) to 7f, and on paper it looks like it is unlikely to beat the fav Hamloola. But at 9/2, it may be worth a small investment that the required improvement may come to enable a win in the 4:30 at Yarmouth. Later on the card, at 5:00, there’s been an early move for C&D winner Wake Up Call, who is now 7/4 from 3/1. As such, a couple of the others have relaxed in the betting with AVON LADY at 11/2 and STARCLASS at 7/1. Both of these look well up to giving the fav a good run for the money, but I’ll await the day’s weather before making a choice.
At Leicester the 6:30, a class 3 handicap over 12f, is my sort of race. Again, the rain has cut-up the field and of those left in ELLA looks well up to taking the race. She’s Geoff Swinbank’s only runner on the flat today and she is likely to take some catching on this ground (soft) if she goes at it from the front, as it likely. At 7/2, she looks worthy of a small wager, but I’d wait to see if she lengthens in the market as I’m sure the Newmarket trio of Burnett, Senate and Cool Judgement will shorten closer to the off which will hopefully push ELLA out to 4/1, or maybe 9/2.

Selections:
Leicester 6:30 ELLA, 1pt win (take nothing less than 4/1)

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
Despite not posting any new names on the alert list, I have not been ignoring it. From last season, I brought forward a list of about 180 horses that I thought were under-valued by the Official Handicapper and likely to outstrip the current rating. I’ve currently whittled that list down to 132, and I’ve posted the names of 11 of those on my blog alert list. They are:-

1) ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo chaser trained by Chris GORDON
2) CESIUM, 5yo chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
3) EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
4) PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON
5) QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
6) KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes
7) FREE WORLD, 6yo chaser trained by Paul NICHOLLS
8) GENTLE RANGER, 8yo chaser trained by David PIPE
9) GOING WRONG, 7yo hurdler (novice chaser) trained by Ferdy MURPHY
10) MIDNIGHT HAZE, 8yo chaser trained by Kim BAILEY
11) MONT PRESENT, 6yo chaser trained by Phil HOBBS

Today, there are two more horses to add to the list which makes 13. I won’t be naming all 132, but I do have perhaps a few more to add to the list which will end up at about 18 in total.

PICKAMUS, 7yo chaser trained by Henry DALY
No doubt about it, PICKAMUS looks poised for another winning season. This horse never stopped improving during 2009-10. He’s been brought along slowly with chasing always in mind and, after losing his maiden over hurdles in February 2009, he was put away for the rest of the season. A pipe-opener in October over hurdles set him up for his final hurdles start, a class 3 handicap over 2-miles at Leicester in which he ran 2nd to Zanir who went on to run 4th in the County hurdle at the Festival off a 10lb higher rating. His chase debut over 21f at Huntingdon brought an immediate win. Dropped in trip to an extended 2-mile and upped in grade to a class 3 handicap, he was exposed; but Russian Flag who was 2nd went on to win a class 2 chase NTO off 3lb higher, in 3rd De Boitron has also won twice since. His next run at Ludlow, back up to 20f saw him win in a particularly impressive manner. Making all and always in command he beat a good novice field with the 2nd and 3rd both winning NTO (the 3rd Song Sung Blue being raised an enormous 17lb for his win). Only raised 8lb for his win, PICKAMUS naturally won again in his final chase outing of the season over 20f at Stratford, with the reliable Kew Jumper in 2nd. He’s been raised 9lb for that win to OR139, but that means he should still have the beating of De Boitron should they meet again, and with 3 chase wins from only 4 runs there is plenty of scope for more improvement, provided he is kept to trips of 20f and more. He usually makes all and is a good jumper and I think he’ll improve to OR150 this season as he’s yet to be seriously challenged over 20f.

ZANIR, 6yo hurdler trained by Tom GEORGE
The County hurdle at the 2010 Festival witnessed perhaps the biggest (secret) gambling coup staged at Cheltenham in recent years that no-one outside the stable involved new about, when Thousand Stars won at 20/1 – and then went on to run 3rd in the Punchestown Grade 1 hurdle totally defying his OR140 rating! Since then, County hurdle 3rd Dee Ee William has won at Aintree; and Noble Prince (5th) ran Quevega close at Punchestown. Zanir- 4th in the County hurdle - was down the field in that Aintree race won by Dee Ee Williams, but he was ridden prominently that day and he runs his best races when covered up (as he was in the County hurdle). He may well have had 16 hurdle starts in his career, but most of those were when highly tried as a novice hurdler. He was then off a year between Oct 08 and Oct 09, returning for a “pipe-opener” before easily beating Pickamus (who then won 3 of his next four races over fences) at Leicester. Both his wins have come on RH tracks. Only raised 2lb for his County hurdle 4th (and his Aintree run can be forgiven) he starts next season looking on a competitive mark of OR134 and he can pick up a decent handicap hurdle over 16-17f so long as he can be covered up till the 2nd-last flight.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Monday, 23 August 2010

Is the summer over now?

With the close of the Ebor meeting at York, my attention swings away from the flat racing and contemplates the onset of October and the start of the jumps season "proper".
I've already made a good start to my HTF (Horses to Follow) List which I log onto the horse alert facility proveded by easyodds. I've whittled-down the list of 180 horses brought forward from 2009-10 to a more manageable 130 or so; and I've posted a selection of some of the better placed horses on the alert list attached to the blog (see adjacent pages).
Consequently, my selections over the next few weeks shall be few and far between. Despite having some relative success on the flat racing this summer, for me it is a tricky medium to make a decent margin on unless you are prepared to spend an inordinate amount of time in form-study.
I don't particularly enjoy having a wager in the sprint races over 5-6f as too many of these races are won by luck in running, the draw, or jockey tactics - and nothing to do with the form of the horse! I don't have wagers on 2yo's either; unless you have intimate knowledge of how a 2yo has been performing on the gallops then you are at a disadvantage. However, I will be watching the 2yo maiden races from now until the end of October to try and spot another Derby winner like "Workforce".
For me, flat racing revolves around the handicaps raced over trips between mile and a mile-and-a-half.

I've read some interesting comments from racing pundits lately; Nick Mordin and Jon Gibby (his book How to Spot Under-rated horses is a great read) spring to mind; and the way racing is run over the jumps - with horses progressing from 'bumpers' to hurdles and then to chasing as they age from 4yo's thru' to 11 & 12yo's - means that you are able to build-up your own opinions of how they are best-placed on the track. You can back your own judgement with great authority.

I'm more confident of achieving success at jumps racing than flat racing and I cannot wait for to tread the Cheltenham turf again!

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Sole Power takes the Nunthorpe

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
The big story from yesterday is the 3yo SOLE POWER winning the Nunthorpe at 100/1 (and 263.0 on Betfair). Let’s be honest, the horse was not a 100/1 chance given he entered the race having a better chance in the formbook than the other 3yo’s, Rose Blossom at 20/1 and Mister Hughie at 28/1. Even so, he was probably no better than a 25/1 chance (I reckon local trainer Fahey had hoped his “blitz” tactics would earn a placing and that confidence had affected his odds). For me, I reckon the incredible early pace took runners by surprise, but I also think that the going may have been an important factor as the winner seemed to cruise into contention on a “favoured” strip of ground about a 3rd of-the-way out from the stand side rail. Watch the race and you’ll see the ground on the middle to far side was cutting up badly, it looks very loose. It may well be good-to-firm on the going stick, but it seems to be crumbling under the hoof, and false. I rate SOLE POWER at 110. My selection, Kingsgate Native, ran poorly (again) and now looks in need of some sort of refresher. He is impotent (that’s why he returned to racing) so he’ll remain in training, but I think perhaps a change of stable is what he needs now.
My other selection, Desert Recluse, never got into the race at all.

Today’s Racing Selections
There is an enormous amount of racing today. Why we have such a glut of racing on a Saturday I have no idea. The weather forecast is bleak, and there is a full football programme of matches to compete with; lots of people will be on holiday with their kids - and we all know just how child-friendly race-courses are (not!). It seems to me another own-goal by the race-planners.

Sir Michael Stoute is starting to get his stable back on track again after a run of poor form, and he sends 3 to Chester today including JEDI. This horse is a course-winner, and has been crying out for a trip beyond 12f. He’s 9/2 as I write, and that looks fair value.
Mick Jarvis has his horses in unbeatable form this week and top-weight in the handicap at Sandown, Kings Destiny may be 20/1 but he’ll be in the mix no doubt.

Selections:
Chester 2:50 JEDI, 1pt win @ 9/2

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No new entry for the list today, but will be back with a couple on Monday.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Friday, 20 August 2010

Ebor meeting at York - Day 4

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
Both my long-odds eachway selections in the class 2 handicap at York ran well, but both were unplaced. I managed to secure a tiny profit by laying-off in-running with long-time leader BALCARCE NOV; and I consider that the other selection LIGHT FROM MARS could have been placed had he not been squeezed for room inside the 2f-marker. He ran on to be 5th when seeing daylight.
I was not disappointed with SNOW FAIRY despite it being a 2pt win selection and coming 2nd in the Yorkshire Oaks. Again, I managed to lay-off my stake when some big-player took everything above 2.00 when Sariska refused to race at the start (I had a place-lay for the value of my stake at 2.40). Some consider that SNOW FAIRY did not find anything when asked, but the filly did beat 5 others rated OR110+ (and very easily too) but is perhaps not quite as good as thought. There were some stamina doubts over her breeding before the Oaks, and tho’ she won the Irish Oaks with some authority nothing has come out of that race to confirm the form. Hats off to Midday who was having her first run over 12f since being beaten in a photo by Sariska at Epsom last year. She has clearly improved a lot since then and unlike SNOW FAIRY, she has no stamina doubts. Henry Cecil wants to keep Midday racing against her own sex, but she would certainly be of interest if she were entered in the Arc.

Today’s Racing Selections
It’s day 4 of the Ebor meeting at York but, before looking at that, don’t omit to take account of Frankie Dettori flying from York to Salisbuty for the 6:30. It’s a listed race for 2yo’s over a mile and he rides BORUG there for Saeed bin Suroor. BORUG is a half-bro to Arc winner Marienbard.
At Sandown, I really like the look of MAJOR PHIL in the class 3 handicap at 3:50 as Luca Cumani makes a very encouraging comment about him in this week’s Weekender, but there are too many unexposed 3yo’s for my liking in this race.

The opener at York at 1:45, the Melrose handicap over 1m6f, looks a cracker. This class 2 race for 3yo’s only has 17-runnners going to post. This race looks ultra-competitive and for me, any 1 of 10 could win this. It is likely that the trip and pace will find out any with stamina doubts, and that makes DESERT RECLUSE at 20/1 very interesting as an eachway wager. He’s won at this trip and at York and has been found wanting over 2-mile on his latest 2 runs.

The rest of the York card is tremendous, it just cannot be faulted. All very competitive races, including the Strensall at 2:15 which I think may not fall to the fav Rainbow Peak, but I don’t know which will beat him. The City of York stakes could again go to any one of half-a-dozen contenders. In the Nunthorpe, the proximity of Equiano and KINGSGATE NATIVE in stalls 3 & 1 respectively, should set up the race for speedster KINGSGATE NATIVE, and at 8/1 he is the value with going and draw in his favour.

Selections:
York 1:45 DESERT RECLUSE, ½pt each-way @ 20/1
York 3:25 KINGSGATE NATIVE, ½pt each-way @ 8/1
York 3:25 KINGSGATE NATIVE, 1pts win @ 8/1
Total = 3pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No new entry for the list today.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Ebor meeting at York - Day 3

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
Willie Haggas sent 2 runners to Folkestone, including the blog selection CLOUDS END and both were well beaten. I was particularly disappointed by CLOUDS END as he had everything in his favour. At the same meeting, Cumani’s only runner ISOBAR met one that was too good for him, but if he can’t win off OR62 then there is no hope. At York, John Dunlop’s TIMES UP ran extremely well, in the circumstances, to be 4th. Jockey Jamie Spencer had him last of the 16 entering the straight, and he tried to find a run up the stands rail but was ‘chopped’ by the eventual 2nd Dazzling Light. He recovered from that to come with a rattle, but too late. He is certainly one to consider NTO. Spencer employed the same tactics and enjoyed success on Gordon Elliot’s Dirar in winning the Ebor. For me, the going alongside the stands rail appears the fastest. Something to note from the Ebor was that Sir Mark Prescott’s FORTUNI (mentioned on the blog) was tracking the fancied Overturn, but when that one “stopped” abruptly 3f-out, he badly impeded FORTUNI who was pushed into the far-rail while the rest of the field moved over to the near-side. He tried to run alone along the far rail but, on the slower ground there, stood no chance. He can win NTO. John Dunlop’s other entry, AKMAL, tried to make it a true stamina test from the front but wasn’t able to lead them all the way and faded when beaten.
The only success for the blog came from following Adrian Nicholls in non-handicaps; his win on SILAAH at Carlisle (mentioned on the blog) made it 33 winners from 103 non-handicaps this season (compared with just 13 wins in 142 handicaps); that’s a strike-rate of 32%. And this rate of success in non-handicaps goes back over the past 3 seasons!

Don’t forget the jumps! Paul Nicholls (who needs no introduction) sent out another winner yesterday @ 2/1 making it 5 wins from his last 6 runners in the past 14-days, and 9 wins from 16 since 1st July. He works hard during the winter, so if he sends one out during the summer months then he’s not doing it for a day out, is he?

Today’s Racing Selections
It’s day 3 of the Ebor meeting at York, and I’m going to leave alone the opening two 2yo races as the class 2 handicap over a mile at 2:50 looks a juicy proposition. Luck in running will play a part in this as they will no doubt all spread across the track for the final half-mile, and then it’s a cavalry charge to the finish. Luca Cumani’s only runner today Acrostic, was 3rd in this last year and with Fallon aboard and a fair draw (10) has a decent chance. I’ve previously tipped here Capponi when he won over C&D, but his draw (20) looks tough and he’ll need to be well ahead of the handicapper to succeed here from that draw. With 20 starters, it’s always worth taking a longshot and there are 2 that look worthy of an ew punt; LIGHT FROM MARS and BALCARCE NOV. LIGHT FROM MARS is a course winner and was 3rd in the Bunbury Cup and despite being thought best at 7f, he has won 3 of his 4 races at a mile and at 20/1 he looks fair value for a place. BALCARCE NOV is local York trainer Tom Tate’s only runner today. He was a close 3rd in the Hambleton over C&D (with Acrostic in 4th) and that is top class form. He was then outclassed by Rio De La Plata (no disgrace in that) and he hates Ascot so ignore his run in the Royal Hunt Cup. At 16/1 he will give you a good run for your money and Jamie Spencer is in tip-top form here.
The journalists keep knocking SNOW FAIRY and she keeps on winning, and they are doing it again today and 7/2 as I write looks to me to say “game on” for the Yorkshire Oaks.

Selections:
York 2:50 LIGHT FROM MARS, ½pt each-way @ 20/1
York 2:50 BALCARCE NOV, ½pt each-way @ 16/1
York 3:25 SNOW FAIRY, 2pts win @ 7/2
Total = 4pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No new entry for the list today.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Ebor meeting at York - Day 2

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
That was a great opening day at the York Ebor meeting, and full marks to Johnny Murtagh for his ride on Rip Van Winkle as - in my opinion - the horse looked held and beaten entering the final furlong. There is not much between Byword and Twice Over, tho’ Twice Over is a very tricky ride as the moment he gets his head in front he thinks he’s done enough – I’m sure had he come from behind to nab Byword closer to home and challenged alongside Rip Van Winkle then he’d have found a bit more and prevailed. But that’s racing for you!
What is interesting about this meeting at York is that all the runners are foregoing the rails on either side, and coming down the middle of the course. The draw seems to be irrelevant, and it’s more jockeyship that is the key. In the Great Voltigeur, Rewilding looked immense and I would not be surprised if connections decided to bypass the St Leger (note: no ‘d” in Leger) and go straight for the ‘Arc’ at Longchamp.
The other impressive performance was that of Sweet Lightening, who was cantering over 2f-out and picked up the leaders without breaking sweat, before unleashing a turn-of-foot that took the race inside 100 yards. He is another that thinks he’s done enough when his head is in front, but he held on to the lead to win by just a “head”.

Today’s Racing Selections
It’s day 2 of the Ebor meeting at York, but first a glance thru’ the rest of what’s on offer today.
Nothing much at Carlisle, other than Adrian Nicholls rides in a claimer for Dandy Nicholls, and this pair have a tremendous strike-rate in such races (about 35%), so don’t ignore Silaah in the 2:05.
There is more of interest at Folkestone, where Willie Haggas sends CLOUDS END for the 6:00. He did not stay the mile LTO, and this return to 7f should see this half-brother to Group 2 winner Airwave, back in the winner’s enclosure. Also, when Luca Cumani visits Folkestone take note; he sends his only runner of the day here for the 7:30 ISOBAR. Cumani won 2 from his only 2 runners at Brighton yesterday, and he is 10 from 30 here, and if you dismiss his 2yo’s (1 from 9) he is 9 wins from 21 runners from older horses, and a remarkable 4 wins from 5 with 4yo’s and up. If that’s not a pointer, I don’t know what is. I cannot see anything of interest at Hamilton despite it looking an attractive day’s racing.
Onto York, and when John Dunlop sends runners here then he usually means business, with 10 wins from 38 runners (26% strike-rate). He has 2 here today, and I think he may have a winning double. In the opener at 1:45 TIMES UP may have top-weight with 9:13 but then his trainer John Dunlop sent Camrose to win this race in 2005 with 9:12 so it can be done. Drawn 2 of 18, he should be handy enough and can lead them into the final furlong. There are a few with chances in this competitive race, Thin Red Line, Anhar, Chilly Filly, Tepmokea quickly jump from the page – so not a race to invest heavily in. Next on the card at 2:15, John Dunlop has his other runner AKMAL. On Official ratings he has much to find off OR109, but he easily beat Illustrious Blue (OR116) when receiving 2lb in a Group 2 at Sandown and I think he’s the only true Group 2 class 2-miler in this race and at 9/1 he looks worthy of an each-way selection in this 9-runner race. A big danger could be Samuel if he can follow-up his promising return after 2 years off the track with injury.
In the Ebor, it looks a tough nut to crack, but Sir Mark Prescott put FORTUNI away after winning LTO – and that looks red-hot form in hindsight – and he won’t be far away. But this is a race I will be watching rather than having a wager.

Selections:
York 2:15 AKMAL, ½pt each-way @ 9/1
Folkestone 6:00, CLOUDS END, 1pt win @ 3/1
Folkestone 7:30, ISOBAR, ½pt each-way @ 5/1
Total = 3pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
MONT PRESENT, 6yo chaser trained by Phil HOBBS

Possibly very unlucky to meet some progressive types, the 6yo MONT PRESENT could have matured this summer to take advantage of what could be a lenient mark. He won his last start over 2m 7f, but that was not his finest hour, nor was the previous race when 3rd over 3m 1f at Ayr. That run possibly showed that he does not stay beyond 3-mile. It was his 2nd to Carrickmines at Ludlow in March and, before that, when 2nd to Sunnyhillboy (also at Ludlow) that were his best runs. Both those horses went on to much improved runs NTO and are now rated 15lb and 12lb higher respectively. MONT PRESENT would meet those two on much better terms and yet, being just a 6yo, he has time to mature on his side and the likelihood to do it. Looking at his form, I don’t think he really stays beyond 2m6f (was probably fortunate to win his final start) and if we see him over 20f-21f on good going this autumn we could see a chaser that makes a mockery of his OR122 rating, and he is one that I expect to see being well over OR130 (maybe even OR140) by the end of the next season.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Ebor meeting at York - Day 1

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of last week’s racing
A did well keeping my money in my pocket yesterday as all 3 horses that caught my eye were well & truly beaten. The Confessor did not get a good start – major error for me as I thought low-numbers were best at Kempton, but it’s a RH track and high-numbers are more favoured – and tho’ he tried hard to get back on terms he had no chance really. My error with the draw demonstrates that when you step out of your comfort zone (the AW is not my forte) then you have to read carefully. Kipchak also suffered from a wide draw, and Cabal ran a stinker!
There were some bright spots from the trainers in form tho’, with Andrew Balding (5 wins; 8 placed; from 30 runners in past 14-days = 43.3% strike-rate) getting a 13/2 winner from his only runner of the day, Kakatosi. Other in-form trainers were; Henry Cecil (4w; 3p; 16r = 43.8%) with his only runner Miss Antonia winning at 6/1; and Saeed bin Suroor (10w; 10p; 29r = 69.0%) winning with his only runner Layali Al Arab at 8/11; and don’t overlook Paul Cole with 2 winners from 2 runners (that makes it 4 winners from 8 runners in past 4-days). Only 4 trainers with 40%+ placed strike-rate in past 14-days went into yesterday with just one runner, and 3 had winners Balding, Cecil, and Suroor – the loser being Clive Cox with Xeralda at Wolverhampton. That would have been a great yankee!

Last, but not least, a great welcome back for Ruby Walsh who rode his 1st race since that crashing fall on Celestial Halo on Grand National day in April. Let’s hope he rides his next winner soon.

Today’s Racing Selections
It’s the 1st day of the Ebor meeting at York and so I cannot be tempted to engage in the class 5 & 6 offerings at Brighton this afternoon.
I will give the opener at York a miss as I’m not one for sprints, but a blog that does is SPRINTERSTOGO – check it out (see link). Me? I would not underestimate Barney McGrew who has the rail from stall 1 and could be very tempting at 25/1 if he’s in the right mood.
With the Derby form looking dodgy, I would not take 2/1 about Rewilding in the Great Voltigeur, as such, I think there’s some value to be had about the places (¼ odds a place 1-2-3, and its 8/1 the 3rd fav). Monterosso @ 8/1 and Total Command @ 12/1 are at longer odds than they should be; Total Command is relatively unexposed. The International Stakes also looks ripe for an upset and a winner at long odds. Despite Rip Van Winkle having much the best form based on his 2nd to Sea The Stars in the Eclipse last year, the fact that O’Brien has him entered for several Group 1’s over a mile this autumn suggests that this extended 10f trip may expose his stamina and I cannot have him at just 9/4 (Hills). I’m not sure Cecil’s Twice Over enjoys going left-handed and he did not seem to handle York when he ran in the Dante as a 3yo whereas his Royal Ascot conqueror BYWORD can go LH, and now he’s shown that there are no stamina doubts over 10f he looks the one to beat. But, this is a funny old race and cases can be made for Suroor pair Cavalryman and Cutlass Bay, and the French horse Jakkalberry who are all 20/1+, so this is another watching race for me.
Finally, if Mick Jarvis runs ALMIQDAAD in the 4:40 then take note. It’s his only runner today, and he’s had 3 winners in the past week from just 8 runners (with a couple of 2nds too!). ALMIQDAAD was considered his best 3yo last season, but had no luck. He’s been running very well this season in top handicaps and was perhaps unsuited by the undulations at Goodwood last time and York does suit a front-runner. He’s 10/1 and worth an eachway interest.

There is no blog selection today as nothing jumps out the page at me, but it could easily be a day for the long shots and I would not put anyone off having a punt.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
MIDNIGHT HAZE, 8yo chaser trained by Kim BAILEY

The 2009-10 season saw a welcome resurgence in the fortunes of Kim Bailey who, in 1995, won the Gold Cup with Master Oats and the Champion Hurdle with Alderbrook. That training ability never goes away, and there is no doubt that Bailey can prepare a horse to win. MIDNIGHT HAZE looks a horse destined to take advantage of what looks a lenient mark of OR120 having raced just 3 times in 2009-10 and winning twice. With only 5 chase runs to his credit there is plenty of scope for improvement. In the first of those races he beat Sydney Sling, who won NTO and has since looked competitive off a mark 5lb higher, by 14-lengths. Also beaten that day was Senor Shane (won 3 times since and raised 19lb), Prince Des Marais (won twice since and raised 17lb). Next up, he was 2nd with 12st, trying to give Far More Serious 2lb. Far More Serious has gone up 27lb since that race, so it was no surprise that MIDNIGHT HAZE was beaten. But, also in the field that day were Bradford Boris (won twice since and raised 29lb), Mr Prickle (also won twice since and up 11lb). All-in-all, it would not take too much imagination to consider MIDNIGHT HAZE had already shown himself capable of running to OR130+ measured against such opposition. His last start also resulted in a win, albeit by just a head, in heavy going. The front 2 were well clear of the remainder and the race seems to have taken its toll as the runner-up Dune Raider has not run anywhere near the same form in 3 outings since. It looks as tho’ Bailey has given MIDNIGHT HAZE plenty of time to recover from that race and, as he is well able to win when fresh having won both his seasonal debut’s, he looks to be one to have an interest in first-time-out in the coming season, as he also appears well handicapped on OR120.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Monday, 16 August 2010

Do not ignore the place-only markets

In today’s blog:
Review of last week’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of last week’s racing
Not a great week for the blog following the stupendous performance of the week before that (23pts profit from 11 points staked, 3 winners from 6 selections), and 5pts lost. Even so, a good day for the blog on Saturday despite not providing a “solid” selection, as SHAKESPEAREAN ran out a good winner @ 3/1, having led all the way. I can never quite understand Betfair sometimes as Shakespearean only had the fav - Ouqba - to fear, yet the Betfair place-only odds were 1.95 for Shakespearean to be placed 1-2-3 only 15 mins before the off! Given the lack of opposition (just 7 went to post), the place-only odds should have been less-than 1.20.

Do not ignore the place-only markets; there is sometimes huge value available on these markets as the vast majority of punters do not understand how to value the odds for a place.

Some great training performances last week, with Saeed bin Suroor hitting top-form with 8 winners from 20 runners in the 7-days (4 winners on Saturday from 10 runners). John Gosden also sent out 8 winners but from 21 runners in the 7-days. Ed Dunlop sent out 4 winners from just 9 runners, and Mick Jarvis maintained his consistent high standards with 3 winners from 8 runners.

Today’s Racing Selections
There are 2 afternoon meetings on the AW at Kempton and Wolverhampton, and 2 evening meetings on the turf at Windsor and Yarmouth. The Kempton meeting features a class 2 handicap over 7f that looks made for THE CONFESSOR. He won’t have things all his own way early on as there are a couple of other front-runners, but he’s out of stall 2 and he has easily the best speed-rating and the 6lb penalty for his win last week does not look anywhere near enough to stop him.

At Wolverhampton, a previous blog selection Glenridding has won twice since then and he may run well again today. But I thought he was beaten (when my selection) as he did not like sharing the lead and he won’t have things his own way today either. As such, I’m more inclined for another front-runner to come good in KIPCHAK who has won over a mile and won’t be lacking stamina for a battle. The odds of 12/1 suggest that “place-only” is the way to go as if Mountain Cat is in the mood today he’ll be hard to stop winning. There are a few with winning chances, including Smalljohn, but KIPCHACK place-only (should be able to get 3.20+) as if he’s disputing the lead at the furlong pole he should hit 1.40 in-running and you can lay-off your stake.

Tonight at Windsor, there’s an interesting fillies handicap at 7:10 and Sir Michael Stoute’s CABAL looks to hold the key. Seems to handle soft going and appears genuine enough, there is a lack of finishing pace in this race and she can grind out a win having a useful 3lb claimer riding.

Don’t bother with the meeting at Yarmouth. As such, there is no blog selection today mainly as the rain about the country can cause havoc with the going, but I would not put anyone off having wagers at small stakes on the 3 horses named above (THE CONFESSOR, KIPCHAK, and CABAL), especially on the place-only markets.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No new name for the list today.

I’m about to embark on an analysis of the trainers over the jumps to try and give you a few pointers of what to expect and where they best of them will be placing the better horses and looking for winners. For instance, Peter Bowen has had 16 winners at Aintree from 78 runners in the past 6 season; but 11 of those winners have come over hurdles from just 36 runners (31% strike-rate) returning a huge profit of £82.63 to a £1 level stake; ie those 11 winners started at average odds of 10/1 so they were not the form-book selections and you are unlikely to have found them by any other means other than trainer-form. There will be more like this to come in the next few weeks as we begin the run-up to the jumps season.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Busy Saturday at the races

There are days when there is just too much racing and you canot see the wood for the trees. As such, up late and after a relaxing morning in bed (cooked a fantastic meal last night of cod in parsley sauce, with asparagus and new potato's - all my own work and from fridge to plate in 25 mins), I'm not going to attempt to review the day's racing.

That's not to say there are not any runners today that don't catch my eye. At Newbury in the 4:15 FLOTATION @ 11/2 seems to have escaped notice, yet he's a winner at this trip (made all, so no stamina doubts) and is likely to handle the going and his breeding suggests there's more to come. In the 3:05 SHAKESPEAREAN would be 3/1 fav but for his latest run, and still looks the one they have to beat in this as Suroor has his stable hitting top form.

At Newmarket, if BATED BREATH goes for the 3:20 then take note. This horse is potentially a Group 3 horse already and I reckon it's already shown form worthy of a OR115 rating. However, the rain-softened going is a problem.

I'm not really a sprint-race tipster, but if FAVOURITE GIRL takes the Great St Wilfred at Ripon and in doing so wins her 5th start in 6 races then I think I'll start looking at sprints in more depth, as I spotted her back in April as having great potential before she'd won her 1st race this season.

I'll be back here on Monday. There's plenty to read on this blog, and I'd be especially pleased to have some comment about my Cheltenham Reviews and any thoughts of the coming jumps season.

Friday, 13 August 2010

CALATRAVA CAPE beaten in a photo-finish!

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
Another of my blog selections beaten in a photo-finish! CALATRAVA CAPE must have lost the lead just a yard before the post. The subject of a serious gamble (from 5/1 to 3/1) that has to go down as one that hit the bar! And the “2nd-string” Mishrif ran a much better race than the one he ran on Tuesday, coming in 2nd @ 15/2. My other blog mention went to TOQIAK, who was 3rd at 7/1 (from 12/1). So, potentially a cracking ew treble there.
Readers of the blog will know I’m a follower of trainers in form and, after my blog selection was beat, I didn’t bother returning to post an evening selection – big mistake! Willie Haggas (3 wins from 9 runners in past week) sent out just one runner yesterday, Up At Last which won at 8/1 at Chepstow. Her dam has thrown some very useful horses and it seems that Haggas was struggling to get the horse fit to race, or perhaps this drop to 6f from a mile suited it best. Even so, this horse should be followed until it’s beaten.

Today’s Racing Selections
Too much racing today to take an in-depth view of. As such, I’ve looked at trainers who have only a single entry at any particular track, and matched it with a high strike-rate.
At Newbury, there’s only Jeremy Noseda who meets the criteria (and he’s an in-form trainer as well) and he has MOUNTAIN HIKER in the 3:10. His half-bro is Darley Sun, so he could be well in off OR89 today, but he’s not for me at just 9/4.
At Newcastle, the 2:45 has two meeting the criteria; Ed Dunlop’s Gifted Apakay and Mick Channon’s EXCELLENT DAY and I fancy the latter, mainly as it has won LTO and at 7/2 it offers the better value.
At Nottingham, the 4:05 has a couple meeting the criteria in Prescott’s Sumerian, and Bell’s Bakongo, but I fancy the relatively unexposed SEA OF GALILEE from Henry Candy who has already been the subject of some money.
The evening meetings will have to wait until a 5pm bulletin (if there is one). So please return to the blog after 5pm for any evening racing selection.

No solid blog selection today, I was a bit disheartened by yesterday’s photo-finish loser. I would also like to see a bit more feedback from readers. I’ve posted my review of the whole of the Cheltenham Festival for 2010 on the attached pages, plus a statistical review – does anyone have any comment? I’m also about mid-way thru’ my review of last season Chasers & Hurdlers and I should have the name of another horse to include on your alert list tomorrow. Those already identified are – I hope – potentially well-handicapped and, being un-exposed, should be profitable to follow in the early part of the season.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
As above, no new name for the list today, but there should be another tomorrow. Currently, I’m expecting the final list to have between 15 – 20 names.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Thursday, 12 August 2010

CALATRAVA CAPE is on a lenient mark

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
Yesterday’s blog selection GO GO GREEN held every chance 250 yards out being in 2nd on the shoulder of the leader with the eventual winner in-behind in 3rd; but then found nothing. If the horse was in the form of last autumn (or even earlier this year) it would have been in the places, so one to avoid until it shows some promise. The winner and 2nd, Mey Blossom and Discanti, ran exceptional races for the grade and can be followed.
Other performances to note from yesterday were the hat-trick (3 wins from 4 rides) by Kieren Fallon – he is riding exceptionally well lately.
Barney Curley had a winner with SIR MOZART who was highlighted on the blog, no tomfoolery about this horse.

Today’s Racing Selections
There’s plenty of racing today.
Can’t see anything of interest at Beverley, nor at Chepstow (both are low grade meetings). At Epsom there’s some good racing, especially the 3:25, a class 3 handicap over 7f which looks wide open. One I mentioned on the blog on Tuesday – Mishrif – runs again in this and he will ensure a decent pace. It would be just my luck if he nicks this race (ran in a Listed race here off OR97 when with Peter Chapple-Hyam) from the front.
The afternoon meeting at Salisbury has some good racing. In the 3:40, I came across CALATRAVA CAPE last year when she ran at Goodwood. She was unlucky in running that day, and again NTO; but she’s looked much better this season over 12f and appears to be on a lenient mark of OR79.
The meeting at Goodwood looks interesting and I’m taken by TOQIAK in the 7:35 who makes a huge drop in grade for this class 3 handicap. The only runner today for Ed Dunlop, he could be the dark horse in this @ 12/1.

Selection:
Salisbury 3:40, CALATRAVA CAPE, ½pt each-way & 1pt win @ 5/1
Total = 2pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
Going Wrong, 7yo hurdler (novice chaser) trained by Ferdy MURPHY

I took a long time thinking over whether to include this one as he could well go novice chasing this season and there’s no way of knowing how he’ll cope with jumping fences. He had just two hurdle runs last season, but both were great efforts. First time out (off a 310-day break) he beat the subsequent OR148 Wymott at level weights by 2-lengths in a gutsy performance from the front. He was ridden with a lot of confidence that day despite starting at 11/1. On his next run, he was caught close-home and btn just a neck by Bygones Of Brid (who ended the season on OR142) and to whom he was giving 5lb. Both those runs suggest GOING WRONG is probably an OR145+ hurdler, but his current mark is OR130. Why? The first race was under-rated due to the slow time, but the 1st-2 pulled well clear of the remainder who were annihilated. In the next race, GOING WRONG ran off OR126 and easily went clear after the last flight only to idle in the last 50 yards and be caught. Had he been ridden out to the line and maintained his advantage he’d be on OR140+. No reason has been given for his absence from the track since that run on 28-Nov (he was his stables only runner on that Saturday afternoon), but if nothing was seriously wrong he looks extremely well handicapped as a hurdler. Ferdy Murphy has always considered him a chaser in the making and the potential is certainly there whichever field he aims the horse for. He is a real RSA candidate from a tremendous chasing family (related to Dublin Flyer).

I’ve added a new page for the master list of Chasers & Hurdlers, so refer to that for all the previous write-ups that have been posted on the blog. If you have any comments, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Go Go Green to take the spoils at Beverley

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
My reading of the Lingfield 4:00 was all wrong. Both Mishrif and the blog selection ILLUSTRIOUS PRINCE ran disappointingly.
Over the jumps at Newton Abbot, the West Country trainers Nigel Twiston-Davies and Paul Nicholls declared their intent for the season sending out 5 winners between them; 3 from 3 for Twiston-Davies, and 2 from 2 for Nicholls (making it 5 winners from his last 7 runners for him).
Other in-form trainers visiting the winners enclosure were Mick Jarvis who’s only runner Forjatt won at 9/4; and Ed Dunlop who sent two to Lingfield and had a 9/2 winner with Kanaf.
Jockey Adrian Nicholls won another non-handicap when steering Masta Plasta to win a Class 3 conditions race at 4/1. Take note whenever he has a ride in a non-handicap race (or on a none Dandy Nicholls trained horse) his record in these races is phenomenal.

Today’s Racing Selections
There’s a couple of interesting races at Beverley, including the 5f race at 3:45. Not sure what went wrong LTO as he was well supported, but GO GO GREEN again has it all in his favour in this race and the last time he ran over 5f in a Class 4 he won. Trainer DH Brown has 4 wins from 11 runners (4yo+) here, and jockey Graham Gibbons has won 2 of his 6 rides for Brown this season. So I reckon they mean business, as such the 12/1 now on offer looks generous. The Class 3 handicap over 10f at 4:20 looks ultra-competitive and if you can find the winner then fair-play, you’ve done well.
I can’t see anything of interest at Hamilton, nor at Salisbury.
At Yarmouth, Mick Jarvis sends his only runner today MAANY (cost $500,000) for the 2:20. Jarvis is 8 wins from 28 runners with his 3yo’s here. The only other runner of interest at Yarmouth is Barney Curleys SIR MOZART in the 3:25.
The evening meeting at Sandown needs a bit more form study, if I find anything of interest, I will return with a comment to this blog at 5pm, but checkout Cecil’s only runner today WHIRLY DANCER in the 7:10 along with Saeed Bin Suroor’s only runner today, ASRAAB ,in the same race.

Selection:
Beverley 3:45, GO GO GREEN, ½pt each-way & 1pt win @ 12/1 (Bet 365)
Total = 2pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
Gentle Ranger, 8yo chaser trained by David PIPE

There are not going to be many aged over 7yo in my list of Chasers & Hurdlers, but if there is to be one then it has to come from the “king” of the handicap trainers, David Pipe. I believe that he will over-shadow his father’s record given time, and I expect him to confirm himself as the master of the handicap this season. In GENTLE RANGER he has a horse that can be a force to reckon with in the National trial handicaps, and is a possible National winner given his jumping ability and running style, being always “in the van” with a gentle, lolloping action.
I’ve included the 8yo GENTLE RANGER as he has so few miles on the clock, not seeing a racecourse ‘proper’ till March 2008 in a maiden hurdle. He went chasing in 2008-09 but just did not seem to get the hang of it. After a summer at grass, he returned in Nov-09 to win a 3-mile handicap chase at Exeter with a tremendously game performance; and behind him that day were the likes of Dancing Mist, Present M’Lord, Bertie May, Qhilimar, and Grand Slam Hero. The heavy ground at Chepstow stopped him NTO, but he ran another cracker at Newbury on Good-to-Soft, and then a game race at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day on Soft. He was found out again by heavy going at Wincanton in January, before he went to the Festival for the National Hunt Chase. As usual, he was with the leaders and jumping superbly till he fell when missing a stride at the 4th-last. I reckon he’d have been placed (at least) that day but for falling, and he repaid the faith with a game win when he returned to Cheltenham in April. He’s only been raised 4lb for that win to OR134 which I think is very lenient as the runner-up Minella Four Star ran 4th (btn 3-lengths) in the Summer National off a 1lb higher mark, and the rest of this solid field were beaten a long way out. With only 10 chases on his record (2 wins and 3 x 2nds) he looks to have a lot more improvement in him so long as he stays away from the heavy going; and I can see him being OR140-145 next March when I expect him to line-up in the National as one of the market leaders.

I’ve added a new page for the master list of Chasers & Hurdlers, so refer to that for all the previous write-ups that have been posted on the blog. If you have any comments, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

I’ve also prepared a booklist for the coming Jumps season, and I’ve written a review of the latest Cheltenham Festival with some statistical trend analysis that will (hopefully) help find the winners come March 2011. I’ll be adding race-by-race reviews for the entire meeting over the next few days.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

ILLUSTRIOUS PRINCE to score at Lingfield

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
My thoughts on yesterday’s meeting on the AW at Southwell were correct – not a single fav won, it was a great afternoon for the layers. The blog selection HIGH ROLLING was 3rd behind the 16/1 winner and 20/1 runner-up; both of whom ran well above their recent form levels. Not a great result as HIGH ROLLING did everything right and beat all known dangers, at least being an eachway wager at odds of 9/2 meant no stake money lost.
Jeremy Noseda’s only runner LOST IN THE MOMENT (highlighted in the blog) won @ 4/6.
But Paul Cole’s only runner Strategic Mission didn’t. As was mentioned on the blog, the three 3yo’s dominated this race, heading the betting and filling the 1st-3 places.

Today’s Racing Selections
Not a bad day’s racing ahead. The meeting on the AW at Lingfield is well supported and features some competitive races, notably the class 4 handicap over 7f at 4:00. Mishrif (drawn 9) will make the early pace, and should set the race up for a finisher (if not making all, as he did last time he ran here), even so at 8/1 he looks place value as there are 2 non-runners leaving 8 going to post. My Gacho is a rogue, Yankee Storm has never run well at Lingfield (in 5 starts) and the others look outclassed apart from Jeremy Noseda’s only runner today ILLUSTRIOUS PRINCE. He’s a C&D winner and ran well at Newmarket in a hot class 4 handicap in June (plenty of winners have come out of that race), but probably found the going to quick LTO, so a return to this easier surface should suit. Blinkers 1st time will keep his mind on the job. At 9/2, he’s looking very tempting. Don’t ignore Mishrif in the place-only market on the exchanges; he’s worth taking 2.40+ about.

There are a couple of interesting meetings this evening at Ffos Las and Nottingham and if I consider something of value there, then I will return with a comment at 5pm.

Selection:
Lingfield 4:00, ILLUSTRIOUS PRINCE, ½pt each-way & 1pt win @ 9/2
Total = 2pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
FREE WORLD, 6yo chaser trained by Paul NICHOLLS

With a disappointing Festival by Paul Nicholls high standards, there are probably some well-handicapped horses in the stable at Ditcheat and this is my idea of one of them. He may not have won last season, but he put up some fine performances in defeat if you ignore his first run after an 8-month break and his last run at the Festival when he was unplaced (for the first time and only time in 9 chase runs) behind Pigeon Island when the race was not run to suit his hold-up tactics. It was when 2nd to French Opera on 12-Dec at Cheltenham that is the most taking result. He had top-weight that day with the impossible task of giving French Opera (OR147) 2lb which he nearly succeeded in doing. Since then, French Opera has won off OR158 and is almost certainly OR160+ and a likely contender for the Champion Chase or Ryanair at the 2011 Festival. This puts the current mark of OR152 for FREE WORLD into context and suggests he could be 8lb well-in, if not more (he is, after all, only a 6yo). Next time out he was 3rd to Kalahari King and, in hindsight, he was never going to beat him that day at the weights (FREE WORLD received just 5lb); he was also the youngest of the 15 runners in that race. He never really got into his race at Festival, but then with no winner of the Johnny Henderson Challenge Cup Handicap Chase (over 2m ½f) rated OR134+ since 1999 (or carrying 10st 11lb+) history was against him with 11st 11lb off OR153. His jumping could be a bit sticky last season but I expect he’s been well-schooled since; as such I would oppose him at your peril. He comes to hand early and can be supported first time out. Good-to-Soft suits best and he stays an extended 2-mile, I would not be surprised if he had the stamina to stay up to 20f. Despite horse’s rated in between OR148 – OR160 being difficult to place to win, I believe FREE WORLD will end the season on OR165+ and victory in a top handicap beckons this autumn.

Already on the list:
PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE, 7yo chaser trained by J HOWARD JOHNSON
KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C BYRNES
QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
CESIUM, 5yo 2nd season chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo 2nd season chaser trained by Chris GORDON
EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Monday, 9 August 2010

POET wins @ 7/1 for the blog

In today’s blog:
Review of last week’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List


Review of last week’s racing
Tremendous end to the week on Saturday as the blog selection POET won at 7/1 (having been advised at 10/1) running the race exactly as expected and capping a great week of results following SEA WALL on Tuesday (won @ 9/1) and MUFTI on Wednesday (won @ 3/1) and DOLPHIN ROCK – btn a short-head – on Thursday @ 7/1. Let’s try and keep the ball rolling this week!

The training performance of the week came from John Gosden who sent out 4 winners from 5 runners on Saturday.

And what about the dam Model Queen? Her hurdler Mount Helicon won a maiden hurdle on Thursday at Sligo, followed by Hot Prospect winning like a group horse in a handicap if ever I saw one on Saturday , and then her other gelding Regal Parade won his 2nd Group 1 in France yesterday. Regal Parade must go down as one of the bargains of this century as he was bought out of the Mark Johnston stable for just 16,000 guineas (Sheik Mohammed paid 430,000 guineas for him as a yearling and he was unraced as a 2yo); he’s won over £400,000 for his syndicate since then!

Today’s Racing Selections
After a glut of racing over the past couple of weeks, we are brought back down to earth today with some lacklustre stuff. Despite it looking a better than average meeting at Southwell on the AW this afternoon, I just cannot bring myself to sort through the form in what look some trappy handicaps.
It may be an afternoon for the layers, methinks.
The evening meeting at Thirsk looks no better but the 7:00, a class 5 over a mile may hold a value wager with HIGH ROLLING. I do not usually drop into class 4 and below, but the combination of Graham Gibbons and TD Easterby on this look interesting given the last time Gibbons rode the horse it split Leader Of the Land and Dubarra Reef and both those 3yo’s have won since and gone up 16lbs in the ratings whereas HIGH ROLLING is up just a pound as he fails to find more in the final 100 yards of his races. There’s not much to beat in this race tho’ and he can lead all the way, so 9/2 looks fair odds.
There are a couple of bits of interest at Windsor this evening. In the 7:10, Jeremy Noseda sends his only runner today LOST IN THE MOMENT for this and it could prove hard to beat, but at odds on (or thereabouts) it can run without my money. Later, in the last on the card at 8:10, Paul Cole has his only runner today Strategic Mission. This horse has returned from a long-time off thru’ injury. However, if he can recapture some of his 2008 form, he’d win this in a canter as he’s down 20lb to OR75 from his mark of OR95 after winning a class 2 handicap at Newbury in 2008. But this race is likely to fall to one of the 3yo’s, probably SUNLEY SPINALONGA who is progressive and a half-brother to the useful Resplendent Alpha.
Personally, I favour a wager on HIGH ROLLING but, with this dodgy weather forecast, I shall wait until 5pm before confirming if a selection or not.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No further additions to the Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List today.

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Poet's Day?

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
I wasn’t able to post a blog yesterday.

Today’s Racing Selections
Plenty of racing available today to choose from.
Despite there being a very attractive meeting at Ascot, it is Shergar Cup day and while there look to be some good betting opportunities on paper, just how the horses get on with their riders can change the aspect of how the races are run. My personal opinion is that these sort of meetings can go against the basic rules of racing in that not every horse is ridden to its true merits. If the Jockey Club want to improve the image of flat racing (and racing in general) they would do better to make the traditional name of heritage handicaps be retained within the race title. Flat Racing is crying out for a “pattern” that the public can associate with (just look at the success of John Smiths Day at York) yet what do we have at Haydock? A £40,000 (to the winner) “Totescoop6” handicap – what on earth is that? Why cannot it retain the name it had for many years to achieve “heritage” status incorporated in its title?
So, I’m giving Ascot a miss, but I expect the likes of Benandonner, Captain Carey, Yashrid, and Colloquial to run well as they are all single entries at the meeting from their respective trainers.
At Haydock, the soft going could be just what the ex-O’Brien horse POET needs in the 2:50. A Group 3 winner last season at 10f on similar going when beating Allied Powers (now OR114) and then just beaten by Border Patrol (now OR112) in another G3, he was messed about over the winter in Dubai, but his 2 runs for Clive Cox have seen distinct improvement. He could now be back to last years’ fitness and form which would make him very interesting in this at odds of 10/1.
Dettori has a couple of interesting rides at Newmarket including one for Dandy Nicholls – REDFORD – and another for Al Zarooni – VIBRANT FORCE. He also rides a couple for Saeed Bin Suroor and may be in the mood for a hatful of wins here.
At Redcar, the 2:30 could provide the wager of the day in CITY OF THE KINGS. This one was rated OR95 after winning a class 2 at York last season. He runs off OR86 (including a 6lb penalty for a win on Monday) today and he could take an awful lot of beating.

With the rain moving over the country there are likely to be variations in the going through the day, so I’m not making a blog selection. I will be taking a personal interest in POET though, who I feel could be very difficult to keep out of the 1st-3 and may well make all and take the race at very lucrative odds.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No further additions to the Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List today. I’m trying to find horses that are 7yo or younger and have already shown the potential to run to form at least 15lb better than their current Official Rating. In my opinion, horses already have the latent talent at 6yo and can be followed with confidence for a couple of seasons until the handicapper catches up with them.
Already on the list:
PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE, 7yo chaser trained by J Howard Johnson
KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes
QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
CESIUM, 5yo 2nd season chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo 2nd season chaser trained by Chris GORDON
EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Thursday, 5 August 2010

MUFTI wins in a canter @ 3/1

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
An interesting day for the blog yesterday.
Both the main selections - Precision Break and Cheam Forever - were not just beaten, but were very disappointing. However, the 2nd-string won again (perhaps I should just advise level stakes on each horse mentioned on the blog) with MUFTI winning @ 3/1 in a canter. He looked an OR90+ horse here as he had then strung out like washing without even trying.
And, what about Barney Curley? He had us all fooled by Allanit (his listed race winner running in a class 5 handicap) as his other runner won @ 7/2.

Today’s Racing Selections
There are 6 meetings today, loads of racing to choose from, but I’m going for a previous blog selection who won for us – DOLPHIN ROCK at Haydock in the 3:40. A C&D winner on good-to-soft, at least we know he has a good chance of handling the soft going today. He is the only runner of the day for trainer TD Barron (a man who likes a handicap gamble). Also, the form of that Haydock win is looking mighty fine. The runner-up Pintura has won since and is up 7lb since meeting DOLPHIN ROCK (raised only 5lb since); in 4th was Spoken who has won twice since and is now up 13lb. DOLPHIN ROCK probably found the going a bit too quick LTO, and at 8/1 today he looks good value as he could have 2lb or more in-hand on known form and he will handle the going and is a C&D winner

Selection:
Haydock 3:40 DOLPHIN ROCK, ½pt each-way & 1pt win @ 8/1
Total = 2pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No additions to the Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List today. It’s looking like a lovely day and I’m off to the beach with my son. I will return to this Alert List later on this month.
Already on the list:
PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE, 7yo chaser trained by J Howard Johnson
KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes
QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
CESIUM, 5yo 2nd season chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo 2nd season chaser trained by Chris GORDON
EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

SEA WALL romps in @ 9/1

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
What a stonking result for the blog with SEA WALL taking the race @ 9/1 (advised on this blog @ 10/1). As I said in my comment at 6pm, SEA WALL was more like a 9/2 chance and was virtually guaranteed to be placed. Ballycarney ran a stinker and may be in need of a break. It was a bad jumping error that took SEA WALL’s stablemate Whataboutya out of the race; at that point Whataboutya looked like winning and he’s the one to take from the race as his Irish form from 2007 is well above this class.
I also told you that trainer Geoff Harker was bang in form, and from the 3 he sent to Catterick he had 2 winners @ 13/8 and 1/2. All-in-all, a great day for the blog. If you want honest racing information backed by form at the track and intuition this is the place to find it.
Also yesterday, trainer Ron Harris sent out 2 winners to make it 3 wins from his last 5 runners, and when you consider his 2 losers were sent off at 66/1 and 40/1 and his winners were at odds of 4/1 (twice) and 7/1, it’s worth taking an interest in his runners likely to start at odds below 10/1 in the next 14-days.

Today’s Racing Selections
There’s a meeting at my local track at Brighton. Regular readers will know it’s not my favourite track as it can make many a horse unbalanced and so the form is unpredictable. There is a good handicap here today tho’, the Brighton Mile at 3:30. Plenty of competition for this Class 4 race worth £8,000 to the winner and Fallon is an eye-catching jockey booking for Mark Johnston’s only runner at Brighton, Licence to Till. You have to strongly consider the Jenny Fielden runner Ocean Countess who has won 4 from 8 starts here and never finished outside the 1st-3. Do not ignore the chance of Roger Charlton's CHEAM FOREVER a C&D winner here. Charlton is 7 winners from 12 runners (excluding 2yo's) at Brighton and @ 9/1 he looks the value wager having a great draw (3) with the main dangers drawn wide.

At Kempton, there’s a decent meeting on the AW but as many of the races are well contested there are no standout selections. Well worth taking an interest in tho’, especially the 3yo+ maiden over a mile at 7:35 which could throw-up some decent handicappers in time. Mick Jarvis has only 1 runner today; NADDWAH in the 8:35.

At Newcastle, Jeremy Noseda sends just MUFTI 245 miles for the 4:20. He’s found a weak maiden here and this half-brother to a Grade 2 winning filly in the US may be too good for these. Noseda enjoys regular winners at Brighton, but sends none there today – it may be a hint.

Pontefract, a course I like, has a class 2 handicap over 12f today that looks ripe for an upset. I was initially drawn to Saeed bin Suroor’s only runner today Highland Glen who has a lot of talent but is a tricky horse to get right. The ground could well be too quick for some of these (Ella, Red Cadeaux) but if PRECISION BREAK starts then he could have the race set-up for him by the strong pace off the Johnston trio. Paul Cole is in rare form and this runner comes a long way for this. He needed his run last week – his first since Sept – and he can pick off the leaders close home.

Nothing of interest at Yarmouth other than Barney Curley sends a couple including the winner of a Listed race in Germany Allanit who has dropped 25lbs since arriving here in 2008 and runs off OR75. A Listed race winner in a class 5 handicap at Yarmouth; it can only be done by Curley! Will his money be going down?

Selection:
Pontefract 3:40 PRECISION BREAK, 1pt win @ 7/1
Pontefract 3:40 PRECISION BREAK @ 7/1, and
Brighton 3:30 CHEAM FOREVER @ 9/1, ½pt each-way double
Total = 2pts staked

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE, 7yo chaser trained by J Howard Johnson

There may be some thoughts that we may have missed the boat with PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE after his class 2 chase win at Haydock on 3rd April off OR132 after which he was raised to OR140. However, his half-brother Miko De Beauchene improved 18lb in his 7yo-8yo season winning the Welsh National and the Red Square Vodka Gold Cup at Haydock, so he may yet have more improvement to come. This is especially so as PRINCE DE BEAUCHENE has only had 6 chase runs. He has only finished outside the 1st-3 once in those 6 chase runs, when unplaced behind Our Vic in the Peter Marsh at Haydock – a race for which he started fav. As a result of that, it’s considered he didn’t stay the 3-mile-plus trip, but that was a very competitive race and a blunder at the 5th last fence was something he was unable to recover from in that top company. He more than showed he stayed the trip in the race before that at Carlisle, his first since the previous January, when he was 2nd to Huka Lodge. He’s never run on going better than soft; he handles heavy very well. I think we will see a much improved horse next season, one who is possibly very well handicapped if he can match his half-brothers form – and there is no reason why he should not. He has plenty of speed and will be hard to beat at any trip over 21f next season, and can be supported 1st-time-out. He’s likely to start at decent odds if that next race is over 3-miles, a trip that’s considered beyond him.

Already on the list:
KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes
QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
CESIUM, 5yo 2nd season chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo 2nd season chaser trained by Chris GORDON
EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Sea Wall to lead from the front

In today’s blog:
Review of yesterday’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of yesterday’s racing
James Given made it nil wins from 30 runners at Carlisle when AJAAFA ran unplaced @ 8/1. At Windsor, BITTER FORTUNE was disappointing for Noseda – clearly the horse is slow.
Other “trainers-in-form” were Barry Hills (8w:8p:38r = 42.1%) who sent out 3 runners and had 2 winners. Mick Jarvis (4w:5p:17r = 52.9%) sent out 2 runners and had a winner @ 11/4.
Geoff Harker sent out 2 winners from just 2 runners yesterday, making it 3 winners from his last 6 runners – he has 3 out at Catterick this afternoon.
Richard Hannon keeps rolling out the winners; he had a winner and 4 placed from just 6 runners yesterday, he sends 3 to Chepstow today.

Today’s Racing Selections
A couple of awful flat (turf) meetings at Chepstow and Catterick which should both be avoided.
The best racing may well be the jumps meeting at Ffos Las. Apart from reviewing my Chasers & Hurdlers list to follow, I’m not making selections over the jumps, but the Class 3 chase at 7:45 looks very interesting.
I had a good win (paid for Xmas) with Quattrocento here at Ffos Las on 21-Dec in a 3-mile chase. I reckoned he didn’t like it too soft then as he’d won on good-to-firm, and so it proved as he’s not won since (nor run particularly well) on soft and his rating has dropped back to his last winning mark of OR117. He has not run since April tho’ and he may need this run as he usually does. I am surprised that McCoy is not on Sea Wall as I reckon this horse has a great chance even tho’ raised 6lb for his LTO win. With McCoy taking the ride on the other O’Neill stable entry – Whataboutya – hoping to see a return to his very good Irish form of 2007, I reckon it may be best to take these all on with BALLYCARNEY. His 2nd to Putney Bridge was a cracking run (gave him 8lb then and would now receive 14lb – so no wonder he was btn 12 lengths). He didn’t stay 28f LTO (race won by stablemate Ouzbeck) so this return to 3-mile will suit him. He will handle the going (has won on good-to-firm) and the track should suit. Unfortunately, the value has gone as he’s just 3/1 for this (from 9/2). Even so, I think he is the most likely winner so if you can get 4/1 or more then grab it. With 8 runners there are 3 places win on, and at the odds Sea Wall @ 15/2 looks the value. He should be in the 1st-3 (I’d rate him a 2.10 place chance) and may well nick the race from the front.

No blog selection, but I will have a personal interest in SEA WALL tonight on the place-only market, and if I can get 4/1 about BALLYCARNEY then I'll have a wager on him too.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
No new horse for the list today. I have a few on the probable list, but they need some more form study. But it’s a lovely day here, so I’m off to the seafront at Hove with my 7yo son.
Already on the list:
KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes
QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
CESIUM, 5yo 2nd season chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo 2nd season chaser trained by Chris GORDON
EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad

Monday, 2 August 2010

Glad to be back?

In today’s blog:
Review of last week’s racing
Today’s Racing Selections
2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List

Review of last week’s racing
The “Wayward Lad” spent a great week in Cornwall last week. If you can keep away from the smell of chip-fat and do-nuts (are these a Cornish delicacy?) then you’re on the way to having a good time. The locals can be a bit grumpy yet, considering they’d be penniless without the tourist’s spending money, you’d think they’d be grateful. My maxim is that if you don’t like serving people then don’t work behind a bar, in a shop, or run a cafĂ©.

I missed “Glorious Goodwood” but if you’re a regular reader of the blog then you’d have been on CANFORD CLIFFS who won again. He may have only been at odds of 4/6, but the result was never in doubt; he’s clearly the best miler of his generation and the best we’ve seen in some time – which is what I said on this blog after he was 3rd in the Guineas!

I’m not sure what to make of HARBINGER; he certainly ran-them-ragged in the KG and he does love bouncing off the turf. For me, long winning distances are not a true representation of superiority and should not be taken literally. His RPR of 135 looks hard to find fault with tho’.

A few other horses mentioned on the blog in the past came good; GLENRIDDING won @ 7//2, and an old fav of mine KALELLSHAN won twice! At 8/1 and 11/4 – more of him later.

Today’s Racing Selections
I’m not going to take great interest in today’s racing on my first day back. However, there are some things of interest.
At Carlisle, James Given has not had a winner from 29 runners in 5-years. I’m happy to oppose his only runner there today; AJAAFA in the 6:55 as he is clearly doing something wrong when sending horses there.
I am also interested in the only runner of Jeremy Noseda today – BITTER FORTUNE in the 7:10 at Windsor tonight. This horse drops back to an extended mile having failed to stay 10f on both his most recent runs.

2010-11 Chasers & Hurdlers Alert List
KALELLSHAN, 7yo chaser trained by C Byrnes

I first noticed this horse when he won at Sedgefield last September beating a useful novice chase field. In 3rd was Schelm (now rated OR139) who was beaten on merit at level weights. He then went for a Grade 3 novice chase at Roscommon where, leading by 6-lengths at the last, he made an awful mistake (jockey error?) and lost the race. That was great form but, as a result of that bad error, he was put away for the winter with an OR126 chase rating. He returned to the track in July with a new trainer, C Byrnes, trainer of Weapons Amnesty. His first run was just a pipe-opener, but he followed that up with an all-the-way win at the Galway Festival over hurdles. Quite why he was allowed to go off at 8/1 when he’d won last summer at Perth off a 3lb higher rating over 21f is anyone’s guess. He then followed-up with another hurdle win over 18f just 4-days later, again at Galway. KALELLSHAN has had only 3 chase runs and would have won all 3 but for a last fence error with the race at his mercy. He’s shown in the past week he is back to his best and his chase handicap mark of OR126 looks very lenient – I reckon he should be on OR140 at least, and could be a OR150+ chaser. He bowls along in front, and is generally a very good jumper able to put his opponents under pressure a long way out. He looks a cert to win a good handicap chase this autumn either in the UK or in Ireland. He’s won on a variety of going, tho’ would prefer “good” or quicker, and he stays 21f.

Already on the list:
QHILIMAR, 6yo chaser trained by A E JONES
CESIUM, 5yo 2nd season chaser trained by Tom GEORGE
ABSOLUTE SHAMBLES, 6yo 2nd season chaser trained by Chris GORDON
EBADIYAN, 5yo hurdler trained by Patrick O’BRADY
PALYPSO DE CREEK, 7yo chaser trained by Charlie LONGSDON

Thanks for reading this blog to all new visitors. Feel free to tell those who you think may find the blog of interest and value and, if you are a regular visitor, please add the blog to your list of favourites.
Thanks from Wayward Lad