Tag Archives: Catterick

Saturday Selections: June, 9th 2018

Newmarket Rowley Mile Winning post

3.30 Catterick: Class 3 Handicap, 7f

His best is behind him, however the handicapper has given 8-year-old Rene Mathis a massive chance of a mark off 87. The gelding hasn’t been firing lately but proved still competitive last season off a good deal higher ratings.

Rene Mathis won a strong Conditions Stakes at Thirsk on fast ground in April 2017, edging out subsequent Group 3 scorer Custom Cut. He also ran out a highly respectable 5th place finish in a hot class 2 Handicap at Leicester subsequently off a 10lb higher mark than his current one.

A good 5lb claimer is on board, plus the advantage of a low draw should ensure Rene Mathis has a cracking chance to win his first race in over a year.

Selection:
10pts win – Rene Mathis @ 12/1 VC

Exciting Eagle Creek one for the Future

Nice to see confidence justified – at last! I said it last night, the opening maiden of today’s Lingfield card unleash a potentially smart colt in the making. And so it was.

Favourite Eagle Creek (SP 9/4) didn’t make any mistake on his seasonal reappearance. He grabbed the lead soon after the start and never gave it away. He won with ease by six lengths, never touched.

Jockey Andrea Atzeni, who made the journey to Lingfield Park for this sole ride, was delighted afterwards:

“He enjoyed himself in front and picked up really well. He was always going to be a better horse as a three-year-old.”

The future looks bright for Eagle Creek now. How bright remains to be seen. But he looked physically improved, gave the impression of a strong and scopey colt. It clearly helps that he hails from a good family by Raven’s Pass out of listed placed Blue Angel and a half-brother to listed race- and multiple Meydan winner Viren’s Army.

What’s next? I’d say they step him up in class rapidly to find out how good he really is. He does not look like a handicapper but more like an individual with a future in some nice pattern races. Certainly one for the tracker, one way or the other.

Race Video – 2.00 Lingfield

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4.30 Catterick: Class 6 Handicap, 6f

It’s always difficult to make a decision if you fancy two horses in the same race, so do I here with Coquine, who seemingly finds her first real opportunity on turf after a fruitful winter. She could potentially remain well handicapped with blinkers fitted.

But tentatively I side with Lackaday who won this very race off 8lb higher last year. He was no chance given by the handicapper subsequently but has finally dropped down to a very handy mark again.

He changed yards in the meantime and ran extremely well on his reappearance over sharp 5f at Newcastle last month. He finished an excellent 3rd that day – a performance that suggests he finds back to his best form.

Selection:
10pts win – Lackaday @ 6/1 Betfair SB

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2.20 Nottingham: Class 4 Handicap, 5f

It’s only the second start for the filly Blitz since moving to the UK from Ireland where she showed plenty of promise as a juvenile. She finished a close second on her seasonal reappearance at Wolverhampton in February which was also her UK debut.

That day she tried to make all and set a good pace from the front but just got a bit tired in the end it seemed while also still showing signs of greenness at the start and turning around the final bend.

This form looks rock solid and a return to turf on a straight track with fast ground could see her putting her best foot forward. In similar conditions she went only half a lengths down in a Curragh maiden behind a subsequent Group 3 scorer last year.

Selection:
10pts win – Blitz @ 9/2 Bet365

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5.20 Nottingham: Class 5 Handicap, 10f

Outcrop, the son of Rock Of Gibraltar makes plenty of appeal on his Handicap debut over a trip more suitable than what he raced over in three maidens as a juvenile.

His opening mark looks potentially lenient given he already ran to a similar RPR on his final start last season over a trip likely to short. He looks one who’s sure to improve with age and experience too.

Lightly raced sons of ROG tend to improve dramatically over the 1m 2f trip and if that isn’t enough then trainer Hughie Morrison has a fine record at this course over the last number of years.

Selection:
10pts win – Outcrop @ 7/1 Betfair SB

British Champions Day or the end of the flat

Ascot Grand Stand, by Florian Christoph

British Champions Day is synonymous with the end of the flat season – hard to believe but the end of 2016 renewal is nearly upon us! It certainly passed me in the blink of an eye – or so it felt!

Honestly, I never really got into it. I missed out on many big days. Was just too busy with other stuff. I went to the Curragh just twice. Which is a crying shame.

Take simply: I never got emotionally involved in this season at all.

It didn’t help – I guess – my betting was brutal the first half of the season, slightly improved in the second half, though without ever coming close to making something like a profit.

Gotta to get going in the All-Weather season again, which usually works quite well if I put in the time and the effort. It’s something I enjoy. But for one last time, let’s have a look at those races of British flat season that do stand out.

Thoughts and selections are below – follow them may lead to bankruptcy. So do it on your own responsibility:

2.00 Ascot: Don’t Touch E/W @ 66/1 Coral (1/5, 5places)

Wide open race and Don’t Touch is surely not a prime chance in this competitive race, given he has yet to prove his class beyond listed level. Nonetheless he’s a speedy sort with an impressive record over six furlongs and if the first time blinkers can edge out a bit of improvement then he is in with a shout to content for the placing at least.

2.35 Ascot: Zhukova @ 5/1 Bet365

Potentially a minefield this race, but Dermot Weld’s filly has the right profile to win it.
Still not too many miles on the clock, lightly raced this year while unbeaten in 2016, she usually is not too far off the pace which I feel could be crucial today.

3.10 Ascot: Hit It A Bomb @ 25/1 Ladbrokes

Hasn’t hit the heights of last season in  two starts since his return, but may improve from those two runs and the light season could be an advantage today if he is still as good as he promised to be as a juvenile. Conditions should suit him. Of course he has a bit to find on form and the ratings with the likes of Minding and Galileo Gold.

However one shouldn’t forget they have had a hard and long season that started quite early as well, so they may well run not to their true form today. A bit improvement from HIAB and a bit regression from the key contenders, and the 25/1 looks a huge price.

3.45 Ascot: Jack Hobbs @ 14/1 Ladbrokes

It’s probably a stupid bet trusting a horse that has been pulled up when last seen over half a year ago, running after a long lay-off in a race as deep as this is. But regardless, I feel the price is too big. In theory Jack Hobbs should be getting better the older he gets.

Now more mature after a summer off, John Gosden can get his horses ready first time out and Jack Hobbs won FTO in the past – I like the fact that he should be in the right spot when they turning for home, given he is usually right up with the pace, so does not need in-running luck, which will inevitably play a role today for some of the more fancied runners.

4.05 Catterick: Machine Learning @ 5/1 Bet365

Fine winner on penultimate start, probably should have won under penalty the next time. Still on a fair mark and now heading to Catterick for the first time. Michael Bell has an excellent record here, even better with those he brings here for their first run at this odd track. Fine Apprentice is booked, trainer and jockey enjoy some success together – from bottom weight Machine Learning must have a big chance.

Wednesday’s Racing Talk

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This morning we mourn the passing of Tom O’Ryan – the ‘voice of the north’ – he sadly lost the battle with lung cancer. His warm yet knowledgeable voice will be dearly missed by anyone in love with the sport of horse racing……..

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Wednesday Selections:

A winner again yesterday! Aflame proved to be one or two classes above her rivals at Yarmouth. She did it easily and given her pedigree there might still be more to come. Three runners today: does the positive trend continue?

1.50 Catterick: Kyllang Rock @ 5/2 WH
4.20 Catterick: Julia Dream @ 4/1 Coral (Edit: N/R)
6.40 Kempton: North Creek @ 9/2 Sky

Photo: Racing UK

Friday Selections

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So, the much anticipated return of Hit It A Bomb ended in third place. Not really surprising; it unfolded very much like I thought it would. He was clearly not fully wound up, with bigger fruits to chase in the next couple of weeks.

The general perception of many of those I follow at the highly credible social media platform Twitter was a slightly underwhelming one. He didn’t train on, not only a few voices argued.

That could well be possible. But this run doesn’t tell us whether he did or did not. In fact this run doesn’t tell us an awful lot. That says I feel less negative about it, actually rather upbeat. In my eyes this was a very respectable reappearance.

Hit It A Bomb travelled like the winner for a very long time, he even showed a nice bit of pace coming around the home turn where he made his move – which was not the winning move because he got tired in the closing stages – but after a long lay-off that’s fair enough.

In the end he got beaten by two lengths, which is not that much. Let’s not forget it was a Group 3 against some half decent opposition, and the winner, an improving Jim Bolger horse, was already placed in Group  company as a juvenile with a profile to do better this year.

It’s also noteworthy that the winner and runner-up both were held up for much longer than Hit It A Bomb, even appearing to not being able cope with the pace Hit It A Bomb and Custom Cut set when these two poured it on from 3f out. But they simply stayed on stronger in the end.

So all in all, it’s been a fine return in my murky eyes. Hit It A Bomb should improve having a run under his belt and then when stepped up in class the next time we will see what he really is about, now as a three year old.

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Friday Selections:

3.35 Newcastle: Awesome Quality @ 2/1 Skybet
6.10 Catterick: Forster Square @ 5/2 WH
7.10 Newmarket: Blue Gernaium @15/8 Coral

Tuesday Selections: Catterick

Newmarket Rowley Mile tight finish

1.10 Catterick: Class 4 Handicap, 1m 4f

You can discount half of the field on ground concerns pretty easily, and given the nature of the track, usually favouring handy sorts, it brings the list of contenders down to a handful.

I like to go with a type likely to act in the soft conditions, has form on this strange course and is sure to be up with the pace. Multellie jumps out in this field at 9/1, given he has excellent form to offer, if we forgive him his latest run at Chester from a wide draw in better class.

Down here in class 4, he has a handy draw, won really well at Ripon three back, and confirmed his well-being subsequently with another bold bid here at Cattrick over 12f in a very hot race. He’s on a high mark but with conditions sure to suit he’s overpriced in this field.

Multellie @ 9/1 William Hill – 5pts Win

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2.15 Catterick: Class 4 Handicap, 7f

Plenty in with a chance here but I’m very much drawn to Woody Bay who drops back to his preferred 7f trip as well as in class and looks still on a pretty good mark. He won here over CD last month in excellent style, beating two well handicapped rivals in second and third. He followed up with a strong performance in a hot Class 2 Handicap subsequently, but was found out for the 9f trip when last seen.

With his course and distance form and the soft ground sure to suit, as well as recent forms all franked, he is a likely sort to go close and certainly overpriced. Only concern is the wide draw obviously. He will need to overcome it somehow. If he can get a good break and is right up with the pace early on he will have a great chance.

That’s the obvious question mark as the race may be already lost after the start. I’m prepared to take the risk as even that factored into the price doesn’t justify 8’s in my mind.

Woody Bay @ 8/1 William Hill – 5pts Win