Category Archives: Betting Talk

Friday Racing Tips

2.30 Musselburgh: Maiden Stakes, 5f

This shapes like a two-horse-race with slightly more experienced Faithful Promise heading the betting at the moment, closely followed by Fahey’s colt Shobrom.

The filly was arguably unlucky the other day when an agonisingly close runner-up. However she goes against boys now for the first time and it won’t be any easier.

Shobrom ran well on debut in a decent Newmarket maiden that already works out okay and should have decent potential for improvement. Richard Fahey’s form with two year old maidens at Musselburgh is quite tremendous over the years, so Shobrom’s chance is enhanced in my book.

Given both, Faithful Promise and Shobrom, ran to pretty similar form the last time rating wise, you would hope that the colt has more upside given he achieved it first time out.

Selection:
10pts win – Shobrom @ 13/8 Paddy Power

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3.40 Lingfield: Class 4 Handicap, 5f

This looks like an ideal opportunity for Mark Johnston to follow on from his tremendous record as this track with fine sprinter Highly Sprung. The four year old ran with plenty of credit at Leicester when last seen and remains on his last winning mark too.

However he drops to 5f, a trip he only ran twice over in his career. With his early pace and a decent draw this could suit perfectly here at Lingfield, where Zebedee offspring has a sensational CD record.

Given Highly Sprung ran numerous times to higher RPR’s than his current handicap rating and having been rated 10lb higher only back in September 2016, there is a pretty good chance that he has a bit in hand with conditions very likely to suit.

Selection: 
10pts win – Highly Sprung @ 9/2 Bet365

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Wednesday Selections

Newmarket Rowley Mile Winning post

Three All-Weather meetings on a Wednesday – flat racing at its finest! Ah, well, not quite, I guess. But soon the proper racing on the green grass is back in all its richness. Until then we have to deal with what we got and that is low-class sand racing.

It’s still a surprisingly compelling day of racing with some interesting fields across the board at Southwell, Lingfield and Kempton. And while I try to stay away from these type of races as much as I can these days, I couldn’t help myself but find three horses to back:

2.30 Southwell

Comprise looks a fair favourite and is likely hard to beat if anywhere near full race fitness which looks assured with Spencer coming to Southwell for this single ride. But there is at least a small question mark on that front as well as whether the gelding has wintered well.

Hungarian Rhapsody will enjoy the step up in trip after running well the last too times when fancied in the betting. But newcomer Bowed Not Broken looks value at 11/2 in a race where only these three horses appear to be in with a realistic chance.

The daughter of classy sprinter Casper Netscher has the assistance of the excellent Martin Harley in the saddle, while the Burke yard goes strongly recently and did well in the past in these type of races here. It also looks significant that a hood is fitted for the first time.

Selection: 
10pts win – Bowed Not Broken @ 11/2 Sky

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3.50 Lingfield

Muthraab Aldaar has been treated leniently by the handicapper despite a massively eye-catching return after a seasonal break last month at Kempton. He broke very badly that day, was still last with two furlongs to go but made incredible headway marching through the whole field to finish what looked moments before an unlikely runner-up.

He should come on for the run and given he is down to a career lowest rating after having been put up way too high as a three year old after a maiden success he’s here a huge chance in my book.

The trip is a slight worry because he stays a good deal further and Lingfield is a speedy track, but with so many things on the plus side he looks a good thing at tasty odds.

Selection:
10 pts win – Muthraab Aldaar @ 5/1 PP

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6.55 Kempton

Those with race experience seem vulnerable so chance is taken with well bred newcomer Altyn Alqa. The filly favours well in the weights and has a fine draw to start off her career in a very winnable race.

The Cox yard didn’t have many runners lately but those send out ran extremely well. Furthermore Clieve Cox did well in these Kempton maidens and can get them ready for their debut Luke Morris in the saddle rides this track and trip quite well too.

Selection:
10pts win – Altyn Alqa @ 9/2 Bet365

Monday Fancies – Kempton Park

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3.00 Kempton: Star Of The Stage @ 6/1 Bet365 – 10pts win

I think this horse has not seen to best effect yet since moving to his new yard and was minded on the last two occasions. Now a pound below his last winning mark when romping home over a mile at Lingfield last season he’s of interest. Cheek-pieces are back on – these were off the last three times.

A field that doesn’t appear to have to much pace may suit this lad allot given he has a fine draw and is usually at his best when ridden aggressively.

With Kirby in the saddle I expect a strong front-running ride tomorrow – he might be hard to peg back once let lose in front given he has stamina for further.

…….

5.00 Kempton: Light Of Air @ 7/1 Coral – 10pts win

Open race with a bit of pace in it. Bottom weight Light of Air with first time blinkers (on the flat) is an interesting contender, slightly overpriced. He’s yet to get off the mark but has been placed on his two starts on the All-Weather lately, both times he finished with plenty of credit.

He looked to win at Kempton when he came with a big run but lacked a bit of focus in the closing stages, whereas he looked again a bit awkward at Lingfield lto in the closing stages.

A mark of 70, blinkers and hopefully a decent pace should help massively and he has a prime chance in my book.

AiR Force Blue Redemption Day

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Not often you see a horse cruising hard on the bridle entering the final furlong in a Grade 1 on the dirt, particularly if they flew around the track right from the start – yet Frosted did!

He posted one of the most impressive performances of the season, following on from an equally ultra impressive victory in Metropolitan Handicap back in June.

If you didn’t see the race, staged last night at beautiful Saratoga, here’s a chance to catch up:


Hayley Turner you beauty! The multiple Group 1 winning formerly leading female rider in the UK looked healthy and happy at yesterday’s Shergar Cup – which in itself was great to see; no doubt her ride in the Shergar Cup Mile was THE highlight of the day.

Super cool, with (virtual) balls of steel, did she rode Early Morning to victory – and given she hasn’t ridden much since her retirement, she looked still quite strong in the saddle. Well done!

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4.05 Phoenix Stakes: Air Force Blue @ 11/8 Skybet

Yes, you got to be a brave man to put any amount of faith in fallen Ballydoyle star Air Force Blue. BUT he wins this – hands down!

Why? Well, it’s obvious that everything he showed as a three year old is so far below anything he showed as a juvenile – therefore it might be fair to assume he simply didn’t train on. On the other hand to my eyes it seemed more like he had some issues bugging him him early on the year plus it becomes clear he doesn’t last the mile trip.

On the positive side of things: when dropped to 6 furlongs in the July Cup you could see a glimpse of last seasons class. “What???” Some will say now. Air Force Blue beaten by feckin’ seven lengths that day!

That’s right, though look closely, as he travelled like a dream for a very long time albeit didn’t get the breaks he needed when it really mattered….. I know I’m making excuses plenty will think… but….

…..Air Force Blue drops down to Group 3 level today right in to a field he simply HAS to dominate, particularly with good ground sure to suit. He’s by far the highest rated individual in this race. Combined with his weight for age allowance he is virtually unbeatable.

So, no excuses today. None! If he fades badly today then we get an answer the question whether there is an underlying problem… potentially breathing (*think loud*). Until then I give him the benefit of the doubt and say 11/8 is monster value!

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The Best from the Rest:

2.20 Chelmsford: Migan Lily @ 3/1 Skybet
2.30 Leicester: Zeinhom @ 10/3 Skybet
4.50 Chelmsford: Stamford Raffles @ 15/2 WH
5.20 Chelmsford: Not Your Call @ 2/1 VC

Saratoga Preview: Test Stakes

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Speed-ball Kareena is hot favourite for this intriguing Grade 1 for three year old fillies, but you wonder whether she stays the 7f trip in what shapes like a race sure to be run at a red hot pace.

Mother Goose winner Off The Tracks appears to be a more dependable candidate over the distance. She clearly stays all the way and doesn’t lack speed – yet the drop to this shorter distance is something that puts me off.

Lewis Bay ran out a fine runner-up behind Off The Tracks at Belmont after bottling it at the start. Given he won over further, I also slightly wonder about the drop in trip.

At the prices Lightstream makes most appeal. A three times winner over 7f on dirt and turf, she lost her unbeaten record in the Mother Goose but was far from disgraced. She encountered a bad trip on the far outside around the home turn and just didn’t have enough left to challenge in the end.

The drop back to 7f will certainly suit, and this filly is tremendously talented in my mind. She often leaves it late, which could make things very nervy here, given Off The Tracks and Lewis Bay will go hard to the line. Still, at 15/2, she is the value in this contest.

 Saratiga – Test Stakes: Lightstream @ 15/2 Coral

Shergar Cup Day

Ascot Grand Stand, by Florian Christoph

“How can people moan about it? It’s a fun day, it attracts a non-racing audience, it’s good prize money, they’re good-quality horses… But people are always going to grumbl… Racing’s like that.” Says Hayley Turner in a recent interview with The Gurdian.

You can think of the Shergar Cup what you want – personalty have no stark opinion on – I don’t mind it, but wouldn’t be an enthusiastic fan either. Though I like the fact that the event usually brings together a variety of jockeys from all over the world competing against each other. So I’m quite excited to see top class South African rider Gavin Lerena in action at Ascot today, actually.

Now, it’s a huge day for racing, not only because of the Shergar Cup. Plenty is going on, and that needs time to properly assess. I’ll update this post throughout the day with thoughts on later races, just so I keep up with the time schedule of Ascot starting quite early.

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2.05 Newmarket: Wuheida @ 2/1 Ladbrokes

Extremely well bred debutant from a yard with brilliant strike with their two year olds this year, especially at Newmarket. This son of Dubawi is very much thought to be good enough to win one or two races. This race looks good, but he should be simply too talented.

3.15 Newmarket: Easy Victory @ 5/2 Bet365

The name is programme? Very possible. Easy Victory scored readily on debut for Saeed Bin Suroor over course and distance in similar conditions and she looks open to a significant amount of improvement for that experience as well as the step up in trip today.

1.15 Ascot: Out Do @ 6/1 Ladbrokes

Fine on this ground and clearly in good nick; ran with plenty of credit in King’s Stand Stakes and is one pound higher than his last Handicap win. Interestingly horses that finished 2nd in their most recent start have a very positive record in this particular race.

1.45 Ascot: Notarised @ 11/2 Coral

Tough assignment to over come given his weight however he loves fast ground and gets the trip. He’s also in good nick and has regular rider Joe Fanning on board who rides Ascot over two miles extremely well.

Ascot: 2.55: George Cinq @ 7/2 Ladbrokes

In outstanding form the last weeks and months and with Martin Harley a good Ascot jockey on board. George Cinq is a course and distance winner as well, who enjoys fast ground and who looks more likely to feature strongly in the finish here than most others.

Ascot 3.30: Lord Yeats @ 10/1 Ladbrokes

Clear negative to have Ikezoke on board but nonetheless this son of Yeats done pretty well with this season, where broke his maiden tag and followed up with an agonisingly close runner-up effort lto. 12f at Ascot should suit perfectly, as lon as he acts on quick ground.

Haydock 3.10: Muffri’ha @ 25/1 Ladbrokes

Totally speculative and solely based on excellent jockey and trainer stats. The filly hasn’t shown anything in any of her recent starts to suggest she has form to go close, albeit, when she was in form, once upon the time, she looked talented.

William Haggas though knows what it takes to win Stakes races at Haydock, given a 32% strike rate here at this course in these type of contests. Even better, with jockey Ben Curtis on his horses in stakes races Haggas enjoys a 35.7% strike rate. So to bring the horse here with this jockey in the saddle looks significant.

8.10 Ayr: Forcefull @ 3/1 Betfred

Irish trainer Adrian Keatley is back at his happy hunting ground in Ayr, where he won 11 races with his last 27 starters. He brings winless filly Forecull over, however she ran with credit the last two times and off her new mark this looks a perfect opportunity to open her account.

 

Friday Selections

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A third and a fourth last night, nothing to exciting…. but both horses ran with plenty of promise. Dream Team was a bit of a gamble and went off single figures odds. He confirmed he’s one who can win a race, probably one to keep an eye on once he steps into handicap company.

On home soil, the Group 3 Ballyroan Stakes took place at Leopardstown. I got to admit I was surprised to see Bondi Beach readily available at 15/8 during the day, though I should have been smarter, knowing how Ballydoyle operates. This was clearly a prep run, a slightly more intense workout, given the ride Bondi Beach received.

Clearly promising though, and he’s obviously better over further – another crack at the Melbourne Cup is on the menu next next? Winner Stellar Mass goes from strengths to strengths. Always talented, but finding it difficult to get his head in front – he was 3rd in the Irish Derby – he followed on from a recent success in Listed company and could be St. Leger bound.

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2.50 Wolverhampton: Tulip Dress @ 6/1 VC

Big chance for the only three year old in this race to add to his sole course and distance success. Trainer Anthony Carson does well in these type of race at the Wolverhampton Tapeta particularly this season and he has found another excellent opportunity to score.

3.10 Brighton: Onehelluvatouch @ 9/1 Ladbrokes

Lightly raced three year old who caught the eye on his handicap debut at Lingfield. Overcame wide draw and made the pace, was halfway through taken on for the lead but hit the front again turning for home just to run out of steam toward the end.

Better ground is likely to help here and the handicapper gives her a chance. A useful 3lb claimer is booked too. Trainer Philip Hide is very successful at Brighton, particularly with three years old’s in Handicaps, so bringing this intriguing filly here looks significant.

4.40 Brighton: Port Lairge @12/1 Ladbrokes

Trainer John Gallagher does really well in Brighton Handicaps over the year and has Michael Murphy booked for the ride on four times course winner Port Lairge. Jockey and trainer have enjoyed a fruitful partnership in the last years during Murphy’s time as an apprentice but there is no sign that this success will dry up any time soon.

Port Lairge usually runs very well at Brighton, having been placed in half of all his runs over today’s trip. Down to a workable mark, he is expected to run well.

6.40 Newmarket: Jupiter Light @ 5/2 Ladbrokes

Hot maiden but Gosden’s colt stands out with Dettori booked. Well bred for this trip and expected to be ready for the job on hand right now.

By Lonhro who was an excellent juvenile, out of Fantasia who was a pattern winner over 7f in her debut season – trainer Gosden often introduced successfully those types over the years.