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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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Friday 5 April 2019

Aintree Grand National Meeting - Day 2

The rain at Aintree was an unwelcome guest yesterday, and it's immediate effect was a change in my plans for the Grand National. IT wsa combined with the news that there were 2 withdrawals from Saturdays race: first came PAIROFBROWNEYES and then in mid-afternoon came the news that MALL DINI was also a non-runner.  This was a particularly bitter blow for me, as I thought the horse looked exceptionally well-in on the formbook even though he is yet to win a chase race. I was going to make MALL DINI my main Grand National selection, and now I'm having to reconsider my strategy to take into account the rain-softened ground.

Yesterday, the racing was good, but not exceptional. In the Manifesto Novices' Chase over 2m4f, the fav La Bague Au Roi was below her best and KALASHNIKOV didn't have to find much win and, on a line through 3rd-placed Mengli Khan, neither Defi Du Seuil or Lostintranslation have anything to fear from this bunch. 

In the Juvenile hurdle, how PENTLAND HILLS was allowed to go off at 11/4 is anyone's guess.  What value! In my blog yesterday, I rated the horse a 7/4 chance and never expected the odds to lengthen so much, but maybe the rain-soaked ground put the majority of punters off him. I'm hoping readers of the blog noted the drift in the odds and saw the opportunity - that's why I write the narrative and not just give names of horses.

KEMBOY ran away with the Betway Bowl Chase over 3m1f and my initial reaction was it was a good performance. However, the proximity of Balko Des Flo in 3rd (splitting Clan Des Obeaux and Bristol De Mai) suggests this winning performance was well below the Gold Cup winning performance of stablemate Al Boum Photo last month.

Finally, Buveur D'Air ran right up to his form shown this season but couldn't beat SUPASUNDAE.  I've rated Buveur D'Air at 156-157 for each of his races this season, and he ran to 156 on my rating in this. The Champion Hurdle winner ESPIOR D'ALLEN looks so far ahead of the hurdling division that the 5/1 currently on offer for next years Champion Hurdle should be taken - I'm surprised bookies haven't priced him at 2/1.

On to today's racing at Aintree, and the result of the Novices' Hurdle at 2:20pm is likely to be affected by the soft ground. ITCHY FEET came 3rd (beaten 5-lengths) at Cheltenham on similar rain-softened ground, and given his previous run before that was in November, there must by some improvement in him today for race-fitness.  Odds of 4/1 look fair in this 7-runner race. 

In the Mildmay Novices' Chase over 3m1f at 2:50pm we have a very interesting clash between Topofthegame and Lostintranslation. Both are exceptional novice chasers, and it is tricky splitting the pair. One who could upset the party is Top Ville Ben who fell early-on in the RSA Chase won by Topofthegame LTO, but who has won since then, and at 18/1 he is worth a speculative "place-only" wager on finishing 2nd should one of the leading pair not be on their "A" game today.

The feature race today is the JLT Chase over 2m4f and we have a select band of 6 runners, including last year's winner Politologue and runner-up Min.  We also have a rare appearance from Waiting Patiently - but they will all have to step-up their game to match the performance of TOP NOTCH when he won at this trip in January at Kempton beating good yardstick Black Corton. Odds of 10/1 are generally available and I think he has a terrific chance on this soft ground - remember he was beaten less than 6-lengths over 3-mile by Paisley Park in December on similar ground. 

That's it for me, and I will see how the ground looks today before posting my Grand National blog at about 5pm tonight.

Just the one wager: 
Aintree 3:25pm, TOP NOTCH, £5 win & £5 eachway @ 10/1 (quarter-odds a place 1st or 2nd)

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