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Between March 2010 and April 2017, this blog recommended wagers on 520 individual races on Jump Racing in the UK, resulting in a PROFIT of £1,525.39 on cumulative stakes of £5,726 - this is equivalent to a Return On Investment of 26.60%.


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advising selections on which to wager, since March 2010.

Friday, 18 March 2011

The Commander to take the Gold Cup

The horses love to make a fool of you when they have the chance.
Regular blog readers will know that last Saturday, I made HOLMWOOD LEGEND my only wager of the day and he went on to win at 14/1. Despite that, I passed him over yesterday even tho’ I knew he was fit to race, and had the going and trip in his favour. Why? Because I thought he was best running right-handed! That just about summed up my efforts yesterday – ignoring the obvious and trying too hard to find a winner and, as a result, missing the wood for the trees.
Take the opener. I had Noble Prince high on my shortlist, prior to the Festival, for a wager, hoping that it may run in the Arkle as I was sure it was better than Realt Dubh (who came 3rd in the Arkle). I also had Wishful Thinking on that shortlist and when I had to choose between them, I chose the latter. It looks like my opinions have been strongly influence by the ratings of the Irish horses by the Racing Post Ratings (RPR). It is now fairly clear that the Irish horses, especially the chasers but the hurdlers too, have been rated at least 10lb below the English trained horses. Why? For no other reason than they are running in Ireland.
The only reason I had an antepost on BOSTONS ANGEL for the RSA was due to him winning the PJ Moriarty which has been a huge pointer in recent years for the Irish challenge, and having Mikael d’Haguenet in 3rd that day, and RPR only ever seems to respect Mullins trained Irish horses.
Yesterday went from bad to worse for me when BUENA VISTA repeated last year’s tactics to win the Pertemps Final again at 20/1.
This brings me to the 2nd point in that the going is far too fast at Cheltenham in this Festival to give any more than 10% of the horses a chance of winning. It was the same going as last year, and when Buena Vista won it seemed that a repeat of last years winners going in again was a distinct possibility – and that’s how it proved!
David Pipe again sent out 2 winners on the Thursday, with Junior taking the Kim Muir – and he also sent out Faasel to be 2nd in that race.
Poquelin was disappointing but, as he did not handle the going last season when beaten by Albertas Run, once I knew how fast the going was after Buena Vista romped home I was resigned to his fate before the off yesterday.
The only glimmer of light for the blog yesterday was predicting the forecast of the World Hurdle. It was close tho’ as for the first time in his life over hurdles BIG BUCKS actually had to do some work.

Onto today, and the Friday Festival racing has never been a favourite of mine. The Triumph Hurdle this year with 23 starters looks wide open and I’m not tempted to evaluate the race. Ditto the County Hurdle with 28 runners declared. From my Horse Alert List, ZANIR was 4th in the County Hurdle last year (won by Thousand Stars with Noble Prince in 5th – it was a great race for form). At 33/1 (now gone), with most bookies paying 5-places, he looks a good ew wager.
I will also give the Albert Bartlett Hurdle a miss as on this going, as Buena Vista proved yesterday, one horse will get away from the field and not be caught – but which one?
The Gold Cup is also affected by this going issue. It was won decisively last year by IMPERIAL COMMANDER and as I have 2pts win on him on my antepost wagers at 9/2 (on 22/11/2010) there is nothing that can persuade me to desert him today. He has very few miles on the clock, just 12 chase starts compared with Kauto Star’s 26 starts, and Denman’s 17 starts. I cannot have Long Run for this as 6yo’s have an awful record in chase races beyond 2m5f. He has also found nothing when asked to run up the hill in last years RSA chase when it looked like he had the race at his mercy till outstayed, and again in the Paddy Power. I cannot see either Kauto Star or Denman winning today, and for me the unexposed Kempes who has won on good going over 3-mile at Punchestown is the danger. However, IMPERIAL COMMANDER is 9/2 this morning with William Hill and the Tote and I am having another 1pt on him at those odds to repeat his performance of last year on this similar going.
The last race I will look at is the Foxhunters. I quote from my Day 4 review of the last Festival: “More interesting was the 7yo GENTLE GEORGE who was ridden with a lot more restraint than usual and when he finally got going he rallied well but too late to catch the leaders. He could be the one to take from the race for next year.” GENTLE GEORGE was 4th last year at 10/1, this year he is 50/1 with Sportingodds. He’s my wager.

Cheltenham 2:05, ZANIR, ½pt eachway @ 28/1 (Paddy Power, best odds guaranteed, 5 places)
Cheltenham 3:20, IMPERIAL COMMANDER, 1pt win @ 9/2 (William Hill)
Cheltenham 4:00, GENTLE GEORGE, ½pt eachway @ 50/1 (Sportingodds, 3 places)

Overall, 3pts staked today.

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