Before that tho’, a quick review of the racing on Saturday, and the first selection put up by the blog was COCKTAILS AT DAWN who ran exactly as I hoped he would, from the front in a trail-blazing ride, putting those novice chasers have their debut over fences under pressure from the off. Quite why this proven chaser was allowed to drift in the betting from a morning price of 5/1 to an SP of 6/1 is beyond me, as I thought he should have gone off the 5/2 fav. He didn’t show any improved form on Saturday when winning, so he’s played his hand with regards his handicap mark now, and may prove tricky to win with again in handicap company this season unless he finds some improvement. So I wouldn't be tempted to take antepost odds about him going for the Paddy Power handicap chase at Cheltenham, which is where he's expected to go next. I reckon I've found one that looks primed to go well in that race - and he's not in the betting lists!
The other selection was DROP OUT JOE who was well fancied in the betting, shortening from a morning price of 7/1 (I did advise on the blog when it was posted at 10:30am to take those odds quickly) to an SP of 5/1. He went off the 2nd-fav to Sausalito Sunrise, who was looking ominous 4-out. However, he never led, and he looked outpaced by DROP OUT JOE approaching 3-out. For some reason, jockey Richard Johnson eased Sausalito Sunrise before 2-out and he was pulled-up. A vetinary inspection post-race found nothing wrong with him, and trainer Phil Hobbs could offer no explanation for the horse being pulled-up. As the horse was a well-supported 11/4 fav, that isn’t good enough from the trainer or the jockey. Despite that, I really could not see anything beating blog selection DROP OUT JOE the way he finished the race, as he was 10-lengths clear 2-out and still 6-lengths clear jumping the last. He’d been on his own in front for so long it was no surprise to see him idle on the run-in, but he rallied again when the runner-up challenged, giving the impression there was plenty left in the tank.
There is a meeting at Sedgefield this afternoon, but I can’t see any value.
The response to the winners posted on the blog on Saturday was great but, strangely, not as enthusiastic as when I posted a 25/1 winner in November 2013 with my sole selection of that day (it was Midnight Appeal on 13thNovember 2013). From the numerous requests to be included on a blog email list, I have had less than 20% respond to my introductory email. So this blog is only being emailed to those who have responded and acknowledged the terms.