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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

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.

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Thanks from Wayward Lad

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