Tag Archives: Turf

Friday Selections: September, 13th 2019

Telescope

5.35 Sandown: Class 4 Handicap, 1m 2f

There is little in this race that is anywhere near well handicapped, with the exception of Zzoro who looks to have found a tremendous opportunity to get his head in front, and the market has reacted accordingly since favourite Skyman is out.

The six-year-old is a consistent sort, has ran pretty well in a number of races this season already, in line with his handicap mark and not too far off his best, in fact. His last four starts are all excellent pieces of form, particularly in the context of this race.

Drying ground is an issue. All his victories came with cut in the ground. But it may not be so much of an issue, on the hand, given Zzoro’s career best topspeed came over this course and distance on good, good to firm in places!

Zzoro has ran three times to TS 77 and higher. He ran to 75 already this season. What makes him incredibly well handicapped is the vital assistance of highly capably 7lb apprentice Marco Ghiani.

Selection:
10pts win – Zzoro @ 4/1 MB

Advertisements

Thursday Selections: September, 12th 2019

Balty Boys

2.15 Epsom: Class 5 Handicap, 1m½f

Bombastic has not really honoured his name since last summer. Particularly his last four starts in the old season as well as this year have been poor. However, as a consequence he really dropped to a sexy mark now, one that makes him dangerous to oppose if on song.

Trip and ground will be fine today, Epsom of course always a slight question mark. But fact of the mater is that Bombastic ran four times to a higher topspeed rating than his current – career lowest – handicap mark.

With hot jockey Pat Cosgrave on board I can see him running a big race today, also with a bit of money already coming.

Selection:
10pts win – Bombastic @ 22/1 MB

……….

5.05 Epsom: Class 5 Handicap, 6f

This type of course really suits Swanton Blue, who is already a course and distance winner, doing so off 3lb higher than his current handicap mark twelve months ago.

The six-year-old has consistently clocked topspeed ratings that show he can is weighted to go close today, having achieved TS ratings of 64 and over on four occasions. He also ran to 62 only in July, suggesting he is as good as ever, and with the right conditions, i.e. his preferred downhill track, he’ll be contender today of a 63 handicap mark.

Swanton Blue gets the assistance of capable 5lb claimer Toby Eley, for whom this is the only ride today. I see this as another positive in a wide open race.

Selection:
10pts win – Swanton Blue @ 11/1 MB

Monday Selections: September, 9th 2019

DSC_1062

3. 50 Brighton: Class 5 Handicap, 1m 2f

Escape The City continues to disappoint when expected to run much better. As evens favourite she was beaten in a small field wen last seen – however, she takes another drop in the mark and also moved down to class 5.

Fast ground and 10 furlongs look like an ideal scenario for her. Now down to a rating of 70 the filly is a full 10lb lower than when she started the season. Largely in hotter races this year she wasn’t beaten all that far, actually, suggesting she has retained some ability.

Last season Escape The City ran four times to topspeed ratings of 70 plus, which means any return to form – although maybe running to that sort of level she ran to in higher grade of higher marks earlier this year may also be good enough – will see her go really close in this race.

Freckles looks the main danger in my book. Having won last time out and having ran to a higher tospeed rating than turned out here under a penalty earlier this year, she remains a lively chance.

But I stick with Escape The City, who appears to have a prime chance to get her head in front today. The jockey booking is the cherry on the cake so to speak, given how strongly Hollie Doyle is riding at the moment.

Selection: 
10pts win – Escape The City @ 6/1 MB

Saturday Selections: September, 7th 2019

10688350_649432425170918_6663673941854678786_o

5.00 Kempton: Class 4 Handicap, 1m 3f

Very few of these have shown any form to shout about, but the one that seems undervalued in the market is the filly Inclyne – likely undervalued given her slightly more exposed profile.

However she is rather unexposed on the All-Weather, after only one start to date, one she won easily last time out here at Kempton over 12 furlongs.

Granted, that was not an overly strong contest, and the pace was slow as well, but the way she quickened and put matters to bed in the final two furlongs as easy as you like was impressive.

It was a performance that I liked particularly in the context of her Nottingham 3rd place, 3/4 of lengths beaten only in a very hot contest that worked out incredibly strongly in the meantime; proving that was probably true form for her to run to such a level.

Interestingly, despite the fact it was not an overly strong race, Inclyne achieved an 82 topspeed rating last months here at Kempton. That’s pretty decent for this grade as well and no other horse in the field has achieved it yet. Inclyne can run of a 78 handicap mark today, so she may have a bit in hand, actually.

I don’t think the drop in trip is an issue. I can see a well run 11 furlongs to suit. The draw is wider than ideal. But that’s the risk worth to take.

Selection:
10pts win –Inclyne @ 5/1 MB

……….

5.05 Ascot: Class 3 Handicap, 5f

His price continues to drop, and that is not only because of the N/R, I feel: Koditime appears to be incredibly well handicapped having his preferred conditions today, dropping further in the weights as well as in grade.

Only once the 4-year-old raced below class 2 level (apart from maiden company of course) and that was fantastic victory at York over the minimum trip on fast ground last year. Koditime ran to topspeed 93 that day and followed up with another strong runner-up performance at Windsor subsequently, achieving a 95 TS rating.

He was found out in higher grade and has gone backward ever since, despite the use of various headgear. He started this season of a mark of 94 and ran pretty damn well when only two lengths beaten on his seasonal reappearance at York. But he hasn’t kicked on from there which has resulted in his dramatic fall in the handicap mark down to 84 now!

Maybe he lost the appetite for racing, but if there is anything left in him, given he hinted to have retained some ability earlier this season, then he has a massive chance to win today.

Selection:
10pts win – Koditime @ 11.5/1 MB

…….

5.25 Thirsk: Class 3 Handicap, 1m 4f

Connections seem to have found a prime opportunity for Aiya to score finally on turf today. This race isn’t all that strong, albeit it is a class 3 Handicap and the gelding remains a turf maiden, so confidence has to be seen in that context.

But the 4-year-old was a little bit unlucky not get his head in front on grass yet, because he got close at Redcar when beaten by a neck. He hasn’t quite followed up, however, as a result has fallen to a sexy handicap mark of 76.

He ran to topspeed 80 in that mentioned Redcar race and clocked 77 on the All-Weather in the past – so with conditions likely to suit it is easy to why money is coming for this lad.

The trip is the question mark. Yes he has won over 1m 4f already, but it certainly stretches him, particularly if he is keen in the early stages of a race which he has shown more than once in the past. So stepping up from 10 furlongs to 12 furlongs that will be the delicate job David Allen in the saddle to figure out how to manage, as he also has to deal with a less than ideal draw.

Regardless, overall at given prices Aiya is an intriguing runner here.

Selection:
10pts win – Aiya @ 10/1 MB

Friday Selections: September, 6th 2019

Online Alexander & Jamie Spencer

2.55 Haydock: Class 2 Handicap, 6f

Muddling affair. Hardly anythings stands out. Does anyone can back the 8-year-old favourite with any sort of confidence? I doubt it. There is value in the market and it lies – in my mind – quite clearly with Youkan.

The 4-year-old is on a fair handicap mark, having proven himself to be competitive of this rating in this type of contest in the past. He’s a Haydock winner, albeit over the minimum trip and has a clear preference for cut in the ground.

I don’t really mind the absence of a 6f victory to date. Youkan is still pretty lightly raced, certainly compared to most in this race and there is a fair chance that with preferred conditions he can pull out a little bit more, if not at least running to his mark, which in turn can well be enough to be in for the win.

Youkan has ran twice already to a 83 topspeed rating, most recently in June at Goodwood over 6 furlongs.

Selection: 
10pts win – Youkan @ 22/1 MB

……..

4.55 Newcastle: Class 6 Handicap, 7f

This race looks like a lottery and I’m drawn to bet #10 will go in here. Gunmaker that is, the five-year-old gelding has a poor strike rate but runs well on many occasions, particularly on the All-Weather and over this trip.

He’s fallen to a really low handicap mark now, on the back of a poor effort at Leicester, however here at Newcastle over 7f he ran pretty well in a similar type contest off 3lb higher than today.

In spring this year Gunmaker was placed on three subsequent occasions over 6- and 7 furlongs on the All-Weather of official ratings of 67 and 68, while running to topspeed ratings of 61 and 66. In fact, he has ran on six occasions on the sand to topspeed ratings of 54+.

A young 7lb claimer is in the saddle, pretty inexperienced. We’ll see how that goes. But it is undeniable with an ultra light weight today Gunmaker has a tremendous chance to run big today.

Selection:
10pts win – Gunmaker @ 11/1 MB

Saturday Selections: August, 24th 2019

DSC_1084

5.50 Windsor: Class 4 Handicap, 6f

If you feel the favourite can be beaten here you’re suddenly not with much left. That is an ideal scenario for Iconic Knight, who may look in the grip of the handicapper on first glance, although a second look will reveal an excellent chance.

The 4-year-old gelding finished an excellent runner-up in a big field at York recently. A run to to that sort of form will see him go close. More interested I am in his Goodwood 3rd in June, though. That form worked out tremendously well which gives merit to Iconic Knight’s 80 topspeed finish that day.

He is already a Windsor winner, albeit over 5 furlongs. That piece of form from last year looks strong too. Conditions are fine today. Trip, track, ground – no bother. Given he looks in excellent nick and ran a career best not to far back in a really hot contest provides enough reasons to back Iconic Knight in this race here.

Selection:
10pts win – Iconic Knight @ 13/2 MB

……..

6.50 Windsor: Group 3 Winter Hill Stakes, 1m 2f

A 104 rated 3-year-old taking on older horses – there is an obvious reason why Queen Power is favoured to land the odds here, given also her Newbury victory is a highly respected piece of form.

However, I have to oppose her here. She’ll be meeting some tough nuts to crack. and Windsor can be a funny track. Also: Queen Power, even though dropping back in trip and class to better ground after a disappointing Ribblesdale Stakes will suit, but what#s really bugging me is the fact she is yet to run particularly fast. She may well have the ability but she hasn’t shown it yet. She will have to against opposition that largely has been running fast in the past.

For that reason the obvious selection can only be Matterhorn. He’ll have his preferred turf conditions today: a course that can favour those who set the pace, fast ground and the 10 furlong trip.

He was disappointing the last two starts in higher grade. Dropping down to Group 3 will help big time. He has proven to be a horse that belongs to this level. He also has ran fast on both All-Weather and turf, judged by topspeed figures.

Selection:
10pts win – Matterhorn @ 4.2/1 MB

Saturday Selections: July, 20th 2019

Newbury racecourse

3.00 Newbury: Group 3 Hackwood Stakes, 6f

Fantastic renewal – you can make a case for more than half in the field, predominantly I have high on my shortlist the well backed Donjuan Triumphant, who will enjoy conditions, as well as the two 3-year-old s Khadeem and Oxted. Plus, probably a fair favourite, The Tin Man.

He’s a short price and you can see why. With cut in the ground, he takes a significant drop in class and has a high strike rate. Is he still the force of old, though? Maybe. But this is a super deep race and I can easily oppose him.

On prices, the one I like most now is last years runner-up Projection. He hasn’t shown the same level of form in two runs this year, but I like the fact he comes here with low mileage this season and he ran better than the bare results suggest in the Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot.

He also drops in grade and will love the underfoot conditions today. There is a slight question mark whether all is well with him, given he dropped out tamely the last two races. A tongue tie is applied now. That is concerning, at the same time intriguing.

If the tongue tie does have any positive impact, it is easy to see Projection making a 16/1 price tag look foolish in the closing stages. So, there is risk attached here, but at given odds I’m prepared to take it.

Selection:
10pts win – Projection @ 16/1 MB

…….

5.00 Newmarket: Class 4 Handicap, 1m 2f

I really like the look of both Durrell and Ironclad. Both met at Chelmsford recently and fought out first and second. Durrell had the upper hand that day and he is a fine prospect, though I wonder whether he will turn out to be a much better horse on the All-Weather.

Ironclad in contrast, who ran to a topspeed rating of 83 at Chemsford, has already proven his effectifness on turf, as he landed a minor race at Beverly in the meantime. That’s not form to shout about, and Ironclad still appeared plenty green enough, but it was probably a good learning experience.

This April foal is obviously well bred and through his pedigree offers plenty of upside, having every chance to be a better horse than an 81 rated handicapper. This imposing lad could be well handicapped of this opening mark I feel.

Selection:
10pts win – Ironclad @ 4/1 MB

……

5.15 Ripon: Class 5 Handicap, 6f

Two I’m keen on here from the lower end of the betting market: Alqaab stepping up to 6 furlongs for the first time is one of these. He’s a 4-year-old, so has to give weight away. But he’s a compelling horse over the new trip after a pretty decent effort over the minimum distance at Doncaster lately.

That was a super hot contest, and the fact he finished close enough, also posting a 61 topspeed rating, but has fallen to a 60 handicap mark now, is intriguing. He ran well in a couple of Novice races also, but now on a potentially good handicap mark, he can go well in this open contest.

The other one is the filly Sophia Maria in first time blinkers. She drops in trip, which should suit. She has some fine performances already in the book actually, finishing in the money on three occasions over 5- and 6 furlongs.

She also drops to a potentially tasty mark of 62 now, given she matched a 62 TS rating on her final start as juvenile already. There might be a bit more to come from her over this distance in handicap company I feel. Interesting jockey booking with Andrew Elliott, who has a superb record when having only one ride at Ripon in the Summer season!

Selections:
5pts win – Sophia Maria @ 21/1 MB
5pts win – Alqaab @ 17/1 WH

……

7.00 Haydock: Class 4 Handicap, 1m 2f

Quick turnaround for Indomeneo, who ran well here at Haydock only 24 hours ago. He looked a little bit awkward in a race where he tracked a hot pace over a mile.

Upped to 10 furlongs, which looks fine on drying ground, a trip, even though he has a poor strike rate, he posted a career best topspeed rating in the past, won’t be an issue I reckon.

Indomeneo as fallen down to a sexy mark, having ran well of around ten pounds higher last season and is now 9lb lower than his last winning mark.

An excellent 3lb claimer is in the saddle – significantly it is Connor Murtagh’s only ride today.

Selection:
10pts win – Indomeneo @ 11/2 MB