A really nice performance by Sound Investment at Aintree yesterday afternoon brought the week down – finally a positive one, betting wise. Sound Investment jumped well, travelled well and out battled his rivals in the closing stages, powering home in the final furlong. Some sight, for me in particular, given that my selections haven’t done that all too often in recent weeks.
1.50 Leicester: Class 2 Handicap, 1m
An open looking affair here at Leicester in the mud today, with most of these having no issue with this type of ground whatsoever. Least the favourite who looks well handicapped on old form and will be difficult to peg back should he enjoy an easy lead up on front. So Robert The Painter is certainly the one to beat, but a rather shortish price in this strong field…
Top of the weights Educate has been disappointing since finishing second in a Listed event back in May. He drops to a handy mark though. Question mark is whether he has the form to take advantage of it. Marcret in contrast certainly has been in good form lately and another good run is on the cards, he isn’t all that well handicapped, on the other side.
Veteran Pintura finds the mile trip his limit stamina wise usually, but he’ll enjoy the conditions today. He showed plenty when close runner-up at the Galway festival in an ultra competitive affair back in August and was a shade unlucky not to win at Ayr one month earlier. He’ll be competitive if the sparkle is back.
Not harshly treated by the handicapper has been Jack’s Revenge after a good runner-up effort at Chester recently. His poor strike is a concern, however. Athletic may find this trip a tick too far in soft ground conditions, but has place claims, at least.
Polar Forest is only 2lb above his last winning mark, although has found life difficult whenever he stepped up in class. He loves these conditions, so can’t be ruled out, still. And the same goes for Spirit Of Law, how might prefer it a bit further generally, but will enjoy the slow conditions. Hard to know what to get from Storm Rock today, but he is still lightly raced, so may have more to offer.
Summary: You can’t rule out any of the nine runners, although some have better credentials than others. I really like Robert The Painter but not his price tag. I take a chance on Pintura instead. He hasn’t been in good form lately, but if he finds back some sparkle he can be dangerous. He’ll be competitive off his current mark, given he finished a head beaten second at the Galway Festival. He’s the overpriced runner in this field in my mind.
Pintura @ 25/1 Paddy Power – 5pts Win
3.55 Ayr: Novice Handicap Chase (Clas 3), 2m 4f 110y
I feel the favourite Jack Steel is quite a skinny price. I can see why, to an extend: lightly raced and potential for big improvement. But does he look like a chaser? I’m not sure. He is a full-brother to two horses who have achieved zero – I’m prepared to take him on.
I really like the look of the grey Un Noble instead. He is a big, scopey chaser in the making, equally lightly raced. He won a Handicap Hurdle earlier this year in nice style over this sort of trip and any cut in the ground won’t inconvenience him. Un Noble is the type of horse sure to improve for the switch to fences and therefore represents better value than the favourite.
Have to call out Dr Moloney as well, who is likely to benefit from the drop in rip . However I have reservations about the ground and he might be one to keep an eye on for the future.
Un Noble @ 9/2 Paddy Power – 5pts Win