The 412th edition of the Wayward Lad blog.
Kauto the Magnificent!
In all my 50-odd years, I have never seen a horse with as much ability, bravery, resolution, and gameness all wrapped-up in one body. And I probably never will again. We will never be able to compare the relative abilities of Arkle in the 1060’s with Kauto Star today, but if you consider long-term resilience then there is no comparison. Alongside Kauto Star, a huge (and I mean huge) amount of credit has to be given to Paul Nicholls who has managed to keep the horse sound for so many years enabling Kauto Star to compete at the highest level for 7 seasons. Most horses suffer some sort of injury which curtails their career.
I rated Long Run at 168 (thru’ Nacarat in 4th) when winning the previous running of the King George, and at 170 (thru’ What A Friend in 4th) when winning the Gold Cup. Yesterday, I reckon he ran a career best of 172 and that puts Kauto Star on 173 (Racing Post have rated Kauto at 182). My ratings also put Captain Chris on 155 which was the level at which he ran for the most of last season and perhaps that is his true level of ability. I had a personal wager on Somersby at 23.0 on Betfair and laid-off at 8.0 just after the 4rd last fence when he was travelling well as any (he actually went below 5.00 in-running) but there his stamina gave out. So, Henrietta Knight was right and he is a 2½ miler at most. If Kauto can maintain this level of form then he is the one to beat in the Gold Cup no doubt but, if anything, this race showed that replacing Waley-Cohen with Barry Geraghty on Long Run might conjure up an improved performance there.
I had a decent day yesterday and placed a “yankee” based on my shorter-priced selections of Bishophill Jack (won @ 11/4), Wide Reveiver (won @ 9/4), Diereadh Re (won @ 13/8) and Shaking Hands (3rd@ 9/2). Perhaps I should have included Binocular (won @ 5/4) and of the others mentioned on the blog, Helpston ran a good 2nd (was 20/1 in the morning) but was beaten by the 7lb over-weight he was carrying, and Bless The Wings (15/2) also ran a good 2nd at Kempton.
I was very disappointed with Sarando in the Rowland Meyrick at Wetherby, and perhaps he is not as good as I once thought. As for my other selection, Pantxoa, he was given an awful ride being held far too far off the pace and altho’ he made ground in the latter stages he had no chance of being involved. He does have ability, but how that will convert into a win is beyond me.
Onto today, and we have the Welsh National at Chepstow which is always a great pointer to the top staying chases in the new year. The heavy going there will suit only a couple of runners and watching today’s race may prove hard going for those who are not accustomed to long-distance staying chases. Le Beau Bai was my early days selection and was 14/1 on 23rd December, but now we know the state of the going he’s just 9/1 at best. The others that will relish today’s conditions are Giles Cross, Carruthers, Blazing Bailey, Galaxy Rock and the 5yo, As De Fer. It takes an exceptional horse to carry more than 11st to win these long-distance chases, and so (based on previous trends) Giles Cross and Le Beau Bai are the obvious candidates to win this. They will be there at the finish but neither have any gears, but Galaxy Rock and As De Fer do as does BLAZING BAILEY who won a tough class 2 handicap chase at Cheltenham last New Years Day with 11st. He won over 3m4f NTO, was outclassed at the Festival when the early pace of his race was too quick, and the going was again too fast for him in the Scottish National and he pulled-up. He’s had just the one run this season when not far behind Carruthers in the Hennessey. This will be his 10th chase and he’s won 3 and been placed 3 times in the other 9 chase races; he’s also won 2 from 3 on heavy. His weight of 11st 5lb will be tough for him, but I can see only a handful completing this extreme test, and he’s likely to be one of them so at 28/1 (Bet365, Corals, Stan James) he is worth a “fun” eachway wager and he’ll be carrying my money.
I’m not making any official selections today and tomorrow I’m off to see relatives for a couple of days so, hopefully, I’ll be back with the blog on New Years Day.
It’s been a great year and I hope that my regular readers will continue to visit and support the blog. For new readers, horseracing is a great spectacle and full of emotion and exhilaration, and (if you take it seriously) you can win a bit as well.
All the best and (borrowing a term from Sir Bruce) “Keep Racing!”
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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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Tuesday, 27 December 2011
Kauto Star the Magnificent
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Hope you and your family have had a great Christmas and wishing you a happy and profitable new year.
One thing I wanted to check with youwas how long have you been on the OLBG for and what was your 'handle' ? Use to be ont here all the time back in 2007 - 2009 ?
Best Wishes from the playing it safe blog !