One third of 2023 is over. It went fast. Thankfully, after a rough start, with losing months in January and February, March and April got me back on track.
April finished with another winner last Thursday – I watched Pillar Of Hope on my small mobile screen while boarding for a plane to Germany to stay on strongly to win his Beverly race. He got home in the nick of time, literally.
He made it winner #7 for April. 235 points profit, from 23 selections in April. Only last November was a more profitable month in the last three years.
Annual P/L makes it 300pts up for the year now from 101 selections.
A more extensive overview of all selections can be found as always here (Betting Stats & P/L tab in menu).
1.30 Ayr: Class 6 Handicap, 1m
Far From A Ruby has been nicely progressing with each run since her return in early February where she entered the list of eyecatchers.
That day over 6 furlongs, a trip too sharp, she showed good early speed and enthusiasm, which was exactly what I hoped to see. She followed up with another solid run subsequently, although still seemingly short of full fitness.
She’s approaching peak soon as evident three weeks ago at Southwell when she tracked the pace and was right there until fading back to 4th place, 2 lengths beaten.
She now appears to be seriously well-handicapped in this type of low-level apprentice handicap as she goes up in trip. Turf and fast ground won’t be an issue.
Though, down to a mark of 54 offers a huge opportunity. She ran to a 58 speed rating at Ayr over 7 furlongs back in September. She ran to a 50 speed rating when last seen, when not fully tuned up.
I have full faith that she’s still as good as last autumn, and won’t have an issue making up the pounds needed to reach the same level of performance. She stays a mile, has a 3-1-2 record over this course and distance and hasn’t much to fear in this poor field.
10pts win – Far From A Ruby @ 3/1
5.00 Lingfield: Class 5 Handicap, 1m
Plenty of unexposed horses and you never quite know what you get. However, I’m quite hopeful Totnes can be better than her current 71 rating now that she moves up in trip.
Last time out, given she was an odds-on shot, she was probably disappointing the way she finished in 5th, especially as she travelled very strongly in rear of the field, made good progress from 3f out and loomed large entering the home straight.
Her challenge petered out from over 1f out as she hang badly to her left, which is a concern, as well as that she can be keen in the early stages.
I’m prepared to excuse the run because she was ultra-impressive weeks earlier over the same C&D, winning in the manner of a talented filly on only her second career run. Something must have bothered her a few weeks ago – whatever it was, I hope it’s fixed now.
Her pedigree points to stamina and a good chance that there’s more improvement to come as she moved beyond 7 furlongs. Ideally i would love to see her at a stiffer track, but the fact she travelles well and could have a class edge against this opposition makes me cautiously confident.
I don’t think many of her rivals have a lot of scope, while she offers plenty of upside. Totnes looks like a filly capable to progress beyond marks in the 70s.
10pts win – Totnes @ 5/2
8.15 Chelmsford: Class 6 Handicap, 1m
Compere looks to have found a nice chance to score. Even though 13 go to post, not many seem to be here to win. Hence I’m not worried about the #6 draw at all, which is good enough to get easily to the front in a race with not much pace to compete against.
The gelding is still pretty lightly raced but took his form to the next level when last seen over this course and distance at Chelmsford over a mile.
He endured an awkward start, heavily bumped a rival before then finding himself in front, overcoming the issues out of the gate, eventually settled in third.
He kicked on nicely against inside rail approaching the home straight; hit the front 1f out, and kept going strongly. But he had no chance with winner from off the pace, eventually.
This is strong form. The winner was back-to-back winner; the third won last time out and finished third subsequently. The 4th won next time out.
Compere was a 50/1 shot, so clearly outran his price tag there. He now drops in class, down to 0-55, and the fact that solid but ultimately exposed Thomas Equinas heads the betting says all about the strengths in depth of this field.
The handicapper was kind to Compere, as he left him on the same 56 rating. Even though. I imagine the gelding will eventually prove better over 10 furlongs, he’s shown enough speed for the mile and should find this easier, in order to run out a strong maiden victory.
10pts win – Compere @ 6/1