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Saturday, 16 February 2013

CUE CARD to show who's boss

There has not been a blog with selections this week as I have been concentrating on producing my Cheltenham Festival Bulletin, and pdf copies of it were sent out by email this morning to all those who had donated at least £8 to the blog since 1st November 2012. If you want a copy then press the donate button on this page and donate at least £8 (you can give more if you like, the advice I provide in this blog is well worth it) and I will send out the bulletin.

It is a busy morning this morning as I am going to Ascot for what looks like a tremendous days racing there. I was generously provided with a couple of tickets by an avid reader and supporter of the blog. So, I am leaving to drive to Ascot at about 10:30am – let’s get on!

At Ascot , just about the entire field for the 2:05 are on my alert list. On form ROCKY CREEK is the best horse in the race on known form based on his win LTO. However, it was a facile victory whereas if you compare that race to the one HOUBLON DES OBEAUX ran in there may not be much between them today. HOUBLON DES OBEAUX will love this 3-mile on soft ground and, at 4/1, he’s carrying my money for a ½pt wager.

Next up at 2:40, there is a tricky handicap chase. I think Vino Griego was flattered LTO to win so easily and he’ll find it tougher today. Cappa Bleu couldn’t win this last year off OR147 and is just 2lb lighter today, his target is the Grand National. The two I like are BRACKLOON HIGH and The Rainbow Hunter. The latter is finally starting to show his novice chase promise, but he’ll need to improve today to win this. However, the 8yo BRACKLOON HIGH met a well handicapped one LTO on ground that was too heavy for him. It’s only soft ground today (not heavy) and he’s been dropped a 1lb by the handicapper. Odds of 9/1 look fair value for an eachway wager.

Finally at Ascot, it has to be CUE CARD in the 3:50. I love the bones of this horse and he’s done me well over the past couple of seasons as a chaser. The ground and trip are no problem and today he will show that he is a 170+ horse. Captain Chris was flattered in the King George in my opinion as the pace in the race collapsed half a mile from home. I don’t rate Finian’s Rainbow and this is a new trip for him, and Somersby has a lot of ground to make up based on his LTO run. At 11/4, I reckon it is the bet of the day and it’s 2pts win for me.

At Haydock, I will not abandon MONBEG DUDE who has won twice for me now as a blog selection. His jumping was appalling LTO yet he still won coming from well off the pace. If his jumping has improved then he will defy his new mark of OR138, so I’m on for ½pt win at 7/1. This race will be a helluva stamina test and it is likely only those “in the van” will be there are the end, one of which I reckon will be VIKING BLOND @ 20/1. The horse has done nothing wrong this season, and ran a brave race LTO, beaten only by a well-handicapped and improving horse. I’m in for a small eachway wager.

That’s it for today, have to get to the races – best of luck!
Ascot 2:05, HOUBLON DES OBEAUX, ½ptwin @ 4/1 (available generally)
Ascot 2:40, BRACKLOON HIGH, ½pt eachway @ 9/1 (Bet365 - ¼ odds 1,2,3 BOG)
Ascot 3:50, CUE CARD, 2pts win @ 11/4 (Paddy Power & Hills both BOG)
Haydock 2:55, MONBEG DUDE, ½pt win @ 7/1 (Stan James, BOG)
Haydock 2:55, VIKING BLOND, ¼pt each way @ 20/1 (Stan James, ¼ odds 1,2,3 BOG)
Total = 4.50pts staked

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