Category Archives: Betting Talk

Love is in the Air

Newmarket Rowley Mile

“She isn’t good enough.”

Well, I didn’t have much love for Love leading up to the 1000 Guineas and made that pretty clear in my preview when highlighting her lack of a top-class speed rating as well as the many opportunities she had to produce one. Concluding with the final assessment: “she isn’t good enough”. Some things don’t age well.

One had to love her willing attitude, though. Relentless galloping from the start, never too far off the pace, albeit drawn away from it and racing on the outside of the field wasn’t the most economical thing to do.

Ryan Moore kept it simple and that paid off for a filly bound to stay further. She was going away from her rivals in the final 100 yards, winning with authority in the end.

Albeit I maintain that this wasn’t a particularly good renewal. It’s one we’ll forget nearly as quickly as it took the fillies to finish the eight furlongs of the Rowley Mile.

Love showed little love for my selections. In fact she broke the heart of Cloak Of Spirits when finally passing her half a furlong from the finish. The big filly ran on for second place, but as I backed her win only at 17’s on the Exchanges, that was of no no help from a betting perspective. Raffle Prize was beaten halfway through the race.

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Moving forward I won’t post selections on a (near-) daily cadence throughout the flat season as done over the last years here with relative success.

Time doesn’t allow for it as life is really busy and analysing the racing in the way I need to in order to continue making a profit is time consuming alone, plus the added strain of actually finding places to get a sizable stake on in the races that I tend to bet in.

I want to keep focusing more on quality content as (hopefully) seen over the last week already. In saying that here and there I’ll send out a selection if I have enough time and found one I really want to share with the wider world.

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4.25 Haydock: Class 5 Handicap, 1m 2f

Hot race. Plenty of handicap debutants who also step up in trip. The majority have a fair chance to improve quite a bit for age and distance. You never know what you get in these races, who has trained on, who’s 100% ready and who’s truly well handicapped.

Yet I firmly believe Alargedram has a tremendous chance to land a first career victory. An opening mark of 72 could easily turn out to be lenient for this son of Lope De Vega who’s out of a mare who was listed placed over 1m 2f.

He caught my eye on two occasions last year in what appeared decent races. Particularly the Wolverhampton one looks solid, given those ahead of him that day are now rated in the 80’s and followed up with decent performances.

He ran on well under a light ride that day on the wide outside. I also thought he finished with plenty of credit on his final start at Windsor, when the going was pretty deep and he didn’t seem to enjoy that too much, yet finishing well enough. In all three starts he received rather sympathetic or educational rides in my view.

Alargedram looks a big boy with plenty of scope ready to improve rapidly now upped in trip. The fact connections paid 75k for him as 2-year-old after he was only a ten grand yearling shows he has improved quite a bit from what was originally thought of him.

That matches a comment the owners made some months ago, suggesting they think he’s going to be much better than his opening mark. I think so too. Ground will be fine, trip is good – only the wide draw is a slight concern, whether he will get a clear run in a field with twelve runners.

Selection:
10pts win – Alargedram @ 6/1 VC/SP/MB

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

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.

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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