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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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Saturday 11 February 2023

Weekend of 11th/12th February

The Dublin Racing Festival last week was really something to savour, and I expect we have seen several Cheltenham winners performing there. Hopefully, readers of the blog are already on a couple of them at decent odds: El Fabiolo in the "Arkle" and Mighty Potter in the "Turners".  Let's have a quick run-through the races:
Supreme Novices Hurdle
The excuse given regarding the poor effort by Facile Vega was the searing early pace, and as it did result in a good time you cannot take anything away from the winner, Il Etait Temps. This was a very taking effort and I notice that he is now 9/2 in the betting. Mullins does have a stranglehold on the race, with only Marine Nationale in the top-5 of the betting that isn't trained by him. With Impaire Et Passe looking more likely to run in the "Ballymore" - and I think Gaelic Warrior may be going for another target, possibly the County Hurdle. One to keep an eye on is the ex-flat horse High Definition - he's possibly the type to go extremely well if the ground is riding more good than soft on the opening day. 
Advice: IL ETAIT TEMPS - £10 win @ 9/2 (NRNB)
Arkle Novice Chase
This race looks like cutting-up and we could have fewer than half a dozen runners on the day, as the market leaders Jonbon and El Fabiolo look head & shoulders better than any of the other expected runners (barring Mighty Potter). As I'm expecting Appreciate It and Banbridge to go for the "Turners" over 2m4f, and Dysart Dynamo to possibly give this race a miss (he's just not good enough), and Saint Roi to go for one of the chase handicaps; there is the possibility of finding a very long-odds punt on a horse for 3rd place. A couple look interesting: Haddex Des Obeaux @ 20/1 (NRNB) but he runs today at Warwick, so will likely miss the Arkle; and Boothill @ 40/1 (NRNB) and as you likely wont be able to get eachway 1st-3 on the day, they look worth a speculative wager as if they don't run you get your stake money back, and if they do you should have a realistic chance of 3rd place in a 6 or 7-runner race.
Advice: BOOTHILL - £5 eachway @ 40/1 (NRNB)
NH Chase over 3m6f
I the life of me, I cannot understand why Galliard Du Mesnil is the 7/4 fav for this race. The Mullins stable also have 2nd-fav Ramilies, but there's a possibility he may run in the 3-mile "Broadway" Chase on the Wednesday, and he may be better suited to that race having been caught close home LTO.  Mahler Mission ticks a lot of boxes; he's a thorough stayer (twice a 3-mile hurdle winner) and was an impressive winner LTO. He runs tomorrow at Navan, and I expect him to win there, which means his current odds of 9/1 (Corals) or 13/2 (Bet365) with NRNB are worth taking. City Chief (Henderson) is also interesting, as he looks capable of being in the mix, but Cheltenham may come a bit too soon for him. Chemical Energy was the Gordon Elliott choice, but he ran a stinker behind Ramilies LTO, and it would be no surprise to see him miss the Festival. With Gerri Colombe almost certain for the "Broadway", and Churchstonewarrior likely being beaten by Mahler Mission tomorrow at Navan, we have Mister Coffey - another who just isn't good enough. To win the NH Chase requires a performance of 155+, and if after 3+ chase runs a horse is still well short of that level then he's not going to find 15lb behind the sofa! The rest of the entries just don't look good enough at this point. 
Advice: MAHLER MISSION - £10 win @ 9/1 (Corals)
Ballymore Hurdle over 2m5f
I've read this race wrong from the start. 
I thought Hermes Allen would go for the 3-mile "Albert Bartlett", but he's now a firm 3/1 fav for this race. He ran away with the "Challow" LTO and it's tricky to put a value on his form as we have no real depth to novice hurdlers this side of the Irish Sea. Then I thought Impaire Et Passe was destined for the "Supreme" but he's 2nd-fav for this - his form lacks a stamina test though. As I wrote earlier, I think Gaelic Warrior is bound for the County Hurdle. The 7yo Good Land is only entered for this race, but I think he's more of a 3-miler and odds of 5/1 for this are plain daft; especially when you compare his form with Champ Kiely who is 8/1. Some trends are worth paying attention to, and that the majority of recent winners of this race were 6yo's suggests that those that are 7yo have missed the boat. The 6yo Inthepocket ran well LTO behind Il Etait Temps over 2-mile, but this trip would suit him better; he's interesting. Then you are in the realms of speculation: and for this race we probably need to wait another couple of weeks.
"Broadway" Chase over 3-miles
Last weekend, Gerri Colombe was a good winner at Sandown over 2m4f, with Balco Coastal in 2nd.  He looked like 3-miles would be right for him and I can see him being a Gold Cup contender next season.  However, connections have a long-term plan for this horse, and it would not surprise me if they side step this race - and Cheltenham - altogether, especially if the weather is dry for the next 6 weeks and we have "good" ground come 15th March. Regards The Real Whacker, I don't think he's good enough to win this race, and the form of his LTO win has been let-down by the runner-up. So, overall I'm happy with my current wager on Thyme Hill, who may be a bit old at 9yo, but he is a rock solid contender: not one of the best, but he may not need to be.  If I knew which entry Mullins was going to run in this race, I'd suggest a wager, but we will have to wait for him to make up his mind. 

Cheltenham Festival Antepost Wagers
Supreme Hurdle:  IL ETAIT TEMPS - £10 win @ 9/2 (NRNB)
Arkle: BOOTHILL - £5 eachway @ 40/1 (NRNB - Skybet & Paddy Power)
NH Chase: MAHLER MISSION - £10 win @ 9/1 (Corals)

Already Advised:
Arkle: El Fabiolo @ 9/4 
and Turners: Mighty Potter @ 3/1 : £10 win double
Turners Nov Ch: MIGHTY POTTER - £10 win @ 7/2 (Paddy Power)
Cheltenham Gold Cup: PROTEKTORAT - £15 win @ 9/1 (paddy Power or Skybet)
Supreme Hurdle: Impaire Et Passe - £5 win @ 10/1 (Coral or Labrokes)
Ballymore Hurdle: Marine Nationale - £5 win @ 25/1 (Skybet or, Ladbrokes & Coral)
Broadway Chase: Thyme Hill - £5 win @ 8/1 (Bet365 or Skybet)
Broadway Chase: Thyme Hill - £5 win @ 7/1 (William Hill, NRNB)
Arkle: MIGHTY POTTER - £5 win @ 25/1 (Paddy Power)
Arkle: EL FABIOLO - £5 win @ 11/2 (Bet365)
Arkle: EL FABIOLO - £5 win @ 9/2 (William Hill, NRNB)

Total Staked to Date: £100

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