Sergeant Tibbs beaten on the line. He ran a huge race but got just caught. Could have done with this one. Eponina ran no race at all. She was in trouble from 4f out. Something looked amiss.
That’s 11 losing bets on the bounce. Struggling a bit lately. Memories of the good start to the month have faded. Most selections have ran poorly as well.
Although, bare one, I liked all those selections. Can’t be too critical there. It’s just one of those times again, I guess.
3.30 Longchamp: G1 Poule d’Essai des Pouliches, 1m
Blue Rose Cen brings top-class form to the party and looked brilliant when she quickened nicely from near the front in the Prix de la Grotte, but I think the visual impression didn’t quite match the merit of the performance, given it was on deep ground and a slowly run race.
Aiden O’Brien saddles Never Ending Story and ever since she won the 1000 Guineas trial at Leopardstown I felt she is a high-class filly, a Group 1 winner in the making.
That day she was gutsy, stayed on strongly and proved that she has progressed after a somewhat underwhelming juvenile campaign.
She looked stronger, and ran a good 90 speed rating, as the form has ben given a significant boost in the meantime by the second and third.
I imagine she’s even better on decent ground. On the other hand, she clearly goes well on heavy ground, which will be key at Longchamp. She should enjoy stepping up to a mile once again, too.
She seems somewhat underappreciated in the betting. I see her a whole lot closer the favourite than current prices have it.
Never Ending Story @ 7/2
5.45 Hamilton: Class 3 Handicap, 5f
This handicap brings a wide range of horses together will all sorts of abilities. It is a class 3 in name only, though. The higher rated individuals may have the upper hand on paper, but neither looks well-handicapped.
No question, though, having been left untouched by the handicapper, Huddle Up must even as he moves up in class, and doing so significantly.
He ran a huge race on his comeback run after 11 months off the track at Thirsk about three weeks ago off a mark of 74, achieving a respectable 72 speed rating, with the performance also warranting an upgrade.
Huddle Up crossed over to the stands’ side soon after the start from his low draw. He tracked a good pace, made a strong move from over 2f out, and found himself in a head-to-head battle with the leader from 2f out all the way to the line. Eventually he was only beaten in the final 50 yards by a horse from off the pace.
It was his first opportunity to race in the UK with significant cut in the ground since he moved over last spring. That seems key to his chances. He ran to a 77 speed rating as a juvenile in heavy ground, and this most recent run suggests he may not be far off his very best.
The drop to 5f won’t be an issue, he has won over the minimum trip, and the stiff finish on softish ground will suit. There seems enough rain in the forecast to expect the ground not to dry out much beyond the current good to soft.
10pts win – Huddle Up @ 6/1