Tag Archives: Flat Racing

Tuesday Selections: October, 9th 2018

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1.20 Brighton: Class 6 Handicap, 5.5f

The usual fast ground at Brighton even in October – this makes it an ideal opportunity for CD winner Archimedes, who landed a similar race this summer on similar ground.

You can draw a line through his last run, also here at Brighton, when he missed completely the break as the hood was removed too late, or so it seemed.

Archimedes is on his hast last winning mark, he 59 rating he’s won of here in early July. He ran well enough in defeat in his subsequent handful of starts and with ideal conditions remains one of the more likely win candidates in this race.

Selection: 
10pts win – Archimedes @ 12/1 PP

………..

2.25 Brighton: Class 5 Nursery, 7f

Handicap debutant Red Armour makes plenty of appeal thanks to a workable opening mark and handy 3lb claim from an apprentice in the saddle, but I feel Nayslayer is the one who clearly underestimated here.

Both in terms of value for his most recent win as well the price on offer – Nayslayer ran a handful of fine races in defeat, before getting off the mark at Chelmsford over 6f last month. That was a strong race, and even though he had an absolute featherweight to shoulder, previous forms proved he is well up to the grade.

That last day he held on strongly, running all the way to the line and beyond, giving the impression and additional furlong may not be the issue. Only a 4lb hike in the mark, this doesn’t look a stronger race and he should be home on turf much the same way.

Selection:
10pts win – Nayslayer @ 6/1 Coral

Monday Selections: October, 1st 2018

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5.45 Kempton: Class 6 Handicap, 7f

This looks like an ideal opportunity for N Over J with top man Jim Crowley on board. The bottom weight has shown to act on the All-Weather already and is here on a tasty mark. He needs a bit of in-running luck, but from a top draw I imagine an aggressive ride to settle close to the pace.

His form is clearly good enough to win this. He’s been a shade unlucky at Epsom two races back what was a stronger contest than this and a repeat of his CD runner-up effort from earlier this year should see N Over J go very close indeed, again.

Selection:
10pts win – N Over J @ 4.9/1 MB

……..

6.00 Bath: Class 6 Handicap, 1m

Silverturnstogold has been good in two starts for his new yard. That’s no surprise to see this three-year-old improve toward the end of the season, given he was a late May foal you can probably draw a line under most of his nine career runs.

He came agonizingly close on his penultimate start to finally get the head in front when edged out close to the line, his latest run was solid, though not exciting, and in saying that it is clear he needs to improve at least a little bit.

Time and age might be what brings out the improvement. Surely this is a race he can win today, regardless. His form is good enough judged on the last two runs and this is a rather uncompetitive affair. Top jockey on board is an added bonus.

Selection:
10pts win – Silverturnstogold @ 5/1 WH

Sunday Selection: September, 2nd 2018

Newmarket Rowley Mile Winning post

4.00 Brighton: Class 4 Handicap, 1m 2f

Lightening Dance and Double Reflection come into this in excellent form. Form that looks solid, also on the clock. So this is an ultra competitive fillies’ handicap, despite only a small field.

The one I feel that’s potentially underestimated is Last Enchantment. She won a shade cozily a 1m contest at Nottingham in May of a mark off 72, running to a RS rating of 75. She hasn’t been disgraced in higher grade and longer trips subsequently, so her last run in July was quite a surprising  disappointment.

She has a wind surgery since then and also dropped a couple of pounds in the mark to a sexy looking 73 – if the wind op does the trick for the Camelot filly.

Last Enchantment is bred for this trip and shouldn’t mind the ground either. Interestingly jockey Charles Bishop has generally a fine record if having only one mount on a given day, but it increased dramatically if that ride is at Brighton.

Selection:
10pts win – Last Enchantment @ 4/1 WH

Sunday Selections: August, 26th 2018

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3.15 Beverley: Class 3 Nursery, 5f

The short priced favourite is a foolish price in this rather competitive nursery in my mind. Most importantly, that leaves my selection Snazzy seemingly undervalued in the market.

This filly won – arguably a not overly strong race, granted – very impressively on debut earlier this year at Newcastle overcoming all sorts of trouble. Subsequently placed in Listed company, she was found out for class stepping up to Group 2 class at Royal Ascot.

But, despite not coming too close to win, Snazzy ran extremely well in defeat in two subsequent starts when things didn’t quite went her way in highly competitive events that have worked out well form wise in the meantime.

A drop to the minimum trip should work in her favour and with first time visor applied from a good draw I would expect her to go forward here.

Selection:
10pts win – Snazzy @ 10/3 PP

…….

4.25 Beverley: Class 4 Handicap, 8.5f 

I was keen on Ghazan on handicap debut back in May after the colt showed plenty of promise in three juvenile starts, particularly the final run in 2017 looked excellent form.

From a wide draw he had a lot to do at Leicester on what was his seasonal reappearance and always travelling wide as a consequence didn’t make it an easy task. After coming briefly off the bridle over 4f out a shake of the reign saw Ghazan travelling notably strongest of all until nearly 2f out when he then tired and wasn’t given a hard time.

That form has worked out quite well in the meantime, so the fact Ghazan was able to travell all over that sort of field is encouraging as I felt beforehand he might have been underestimated by an opening 75 mark.

He’s on 74 today, drops a bit in trip. That in combination with the rain arriving should suit him well. Hanagan is in the saddle, a bonus. Question remains why the absence since May. If he’s fit and well then Ghazan should have a big chance today.

Selection:
10pts win – Ghazan @ 11/2 PP

……

5.20 Goodwood: Class 5 Handicap, 5f

A pretty consistent runner. albeit on the go for a long time, Roundabout Magic is one who more often than not gives you a good run for your money. He is also one who finds trouble on a regular basis.

So happened a week ago at Windsor. He travelled strongly and seemed to come with a big run when badly hampered 2f out.

He’s already won this year and was multiple times placed plus ran a career high time speed rating of 67. This small field should suit, if the pace is on.

Selection:
10pts win – Roundabout Magic @ 6/1 VC

Friday Selections: August, 24th 2018

Wet Dundalk Polytrack

5.45 Chelmsford: Class 6 Nursery, 5f

Bottom weight Sister’s Act sparks my interest here. This Equiano filly has shown early speed in her few starts before, totally unfancied though, it wasn’t a surprise so her finish flat.

She now makes her handicap debut off a low mark in a not overly competitive contest switching to the All-Weather which should suit her better on pedigree. Her mother is a winner on the sand as daddy Equiano has a sublime record on the All-Weather with his 2yo offspring over sprint trips, particular on left handed tracks.

Interestingly, trainer Peter Hedger’s record with juveniles on the All-Weather is also quite excellent (small sample size, but fits in well with his general performance in AW Handicaps).

With that in mind there is every chance Siser’s Act gets her act together today.

Selection:
10pts win – Sister’s Act @ 16/1 VC

Thursday Selections: August, 23rd 2018

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4.50 York: Class 2 Handicap, 7f

Ultra competitive and in-running luck will play its part here, though it can be argued Move Swiftly has a cracking chance if all goes smoothly given her progressive and at the same time impressive profile.

Further down the packing order seems Richard Fahey’s Clubbable who’s not expected to run well if the market is any useful guide. I feel this filly has a bit more to offer than credit is given to, though.

She’s won two races this year already, was visually incredibly impressive when landing a good Chelmsford class 2 Handicap in June when things didn’t go to plan but she found a superb turn of foot once in the clear.

She backed this up with another big performance in the Listed Eternal Stakes at Carlisle when a close runner-up behind 100 rated Dance Diva. A subsequent Newmarket run stepping up to a mile was disappointing, however once shouldn’t judge her too harshly on a subsequent 16th place finish at Ascot most recently.

She received a heavy bump right after the start by the horse to her left and found herself subsequently behind a wall of horses and on the disadvantaged far side.

She’s down to a mark off 92 which looks high enough but also offers room for a bit of improvement with the right conditions. She will need luck in-running given her often sluggish start, but if Clubbable gets the right breaks she’ll have a better chance than her current odds suggest.

Selection:
10pts win – Clubbable @ 29/1 MB

Preview: Juddmonte International 2018

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This is not a vintage renewal of the Juddmonte International… as so many other major flat races this year. It feels a bit like a flat flat season, so to speak. I seem not to be the only one who feels this way. On the other hand, the question could be asked: are we undervaluing the achievements of Poet’s Voice?

Possibly. Possibly not. Possibly because he’s a five-year old, around for a long time, and this sudden improvement which has seen the Stoute inmate landing two major Group 1 races on the bounce – the Prince of Wales and King George – hasn’t caused the same excitement as they would have if a sexy Ballydoyle three-year old would have done the same.

Possibly not, though, because the key rivals he’s beaten at Royal Ascot were clearly out of form and not quite up to the standard you’d usually see in a King George either.

I’m sitting on the fence here. I don’t rate the Royal Ascot success all that highly, although felt Poet’s Voice King George success was a stunning performance, if only visually. Coming from off the pace, to peg back a fine Ledger runner-up, who got first run – that was quite something.

That says, I do not think Poet’s Voice has suddenly found all this dramatic improvement over the last winter, that has resulted in him shooting up the ratings from a 119 rated individual to a world-class high 130.

In fact, I do firmly believe – while acknowledging he seems to improve with age – he is not dramatically better than his runner-up performance in the Irish Champion Stakes last year. A view that may not be shared by many.

What does this mean in the context of this race today? It means that the gap between Poet’s Voice and the leading three-year old’s going to post isn’t as high as the official ratings says. And if that is the assumption then both Roaring Lion and Saxon Warrior in particular must have cracking chances to overturn the favourite as they receive 7lb through weight for age.

While Benbatl and Irish Derby winner Latrobe can’t be underestimated, my view is that the Eclipse first and second are the main dangers to short priced favourite Poet’s Voice.

Personally I am more a fan of Roaring Lion but from a betting perspective I have to concede the price for Saxon Warrior is foolish. Let’s not forget there was only a neck between the pair at Sandown.

One could make cases for the Ballydoyle horses had the run of the race, or that Roaring Lion drifted to his right pushing Saxon Warrior toward the rails in the closing stages which may have cost him momentum.

Either way, there is clearly not a lot between these two. However the betting would suggest Roaring Lion is a couple of lengths better than the reigning 2000 Guineas winner. Not in my book.

The trip may be in favour of Roaring Lion, and also Poet’s Voice. Or is it? Saxon Warrior stays the trip as good as these two I believe. Given he had a good break now and comes here relatively fresh is a positive.

After all there is very little between three three market principles in my view.  Hence the 6/1 on offer for last years Racingpost Trophy winner is over the top.

Selection: 
10pts win – Saxon Warrior @ 6/1 PP