Tag Archives: Wednesday

Wednesday Selections: 7th June 2023

5.15 Kempton: Class 5 Handicap, 7f

With Respect was a huge eyecatcher the last two times as he appears to be in superb form.

Two starts ago at Salisbury he was heavily bumped by a rival as they jumped out of the gates, as he wasn’t helped by his own awkwardness, either. He then travelled strongly against the inside rail, made good progress and would have probably won, I presume, if he would have got a clear run.

He only got out late, switched, found momentum again and finished strongly. He ran to a 70 speed rating equal to his mark on the day and he makes plenty of appeal off 2lb higher the next time on turf. However, he ran at Kempton’s polytrack instead, a fortnight ago, over 7 furlongs.

He was disadvantaged from the #10 draw right from the start, and didn’t help the matter getting away from it awkwardly. He settled well off the pace, travelled a bit keenly, especially around the bend, but made tremendous progress from 3f out.

He finished best over the final three furlongs, but had too much do to get into a position to challenge, hence he wasn’t able to quite sustain his effort.

He’s yet to win over 7 furlongs and there’s a fair question mark looming over his ability to stay the trip. However, he showed in the past that he can finish very strongly over 6 furlongs, even on deep ground, so it’s worth a chance.

I think off 67 he’s potentially well-handicapped in this class, if he gets home and can get a clear run. The better draw should be a help, and there’s not much competition in this field that gives the impression to be well-handicapped.

In this big field getting a run may be the biggest challenge, in fact. He’s allowed to run off 5lb lower than his current turf mark and to me seems as good on sand as on turf.

10pts win – With Respect @ 13/2


8.45 Ripon: Class 5 Handicap, 5f

Albegone must have a major chance as he drops down in class and has a good draw to get a position close to the the inside rail, after he ran a huge race last time out at Carlisle.

There he set a hot pace from the front and travelled strongly until getting understandably quite tired from over 1f out to finish 4th eventually as he got swamped late.

That should be good form I reckon. The way he travelled for so long was eyecatching. He’s clearly down to a very fine mark as the handicapper dropped him another 2lb.

Even though he’s best with ease in the ground, he’s competitive on fast ground too. After two placed efforts from three runs over this course and distance in the past, a victory looks a strong possibility here.

10pts win – Albegone @ 4/1

Wednesday Selections: 31st May 2023

May seems to peter out in a disappointing way. Nogo’s Dream finished last. Lokada checked out pretty early too. Disappointing as surprising. Spartan Fighter a solid 2nd but ultimately not good enough either.

Four of last eight selections placed reads better than it is. No win, and most placed horses didn’t get too close. Given, I rated those chances highly and they were short enough prices I may have been slightly too aggressive and been not critically enough evaluating their chances.

One for the post-mortem to be done for this month, another time.


2.10 Beverley: Class 6 Handicap, 5f

Imperial Khan was arguably unlucky about a fortnight ago at Catterick. A first career win was right take for the taking.

He was in the right spot, tracked the pace throughout and looked like coming with a big challenge from 2f out. However, the jockey kept waiting and waiting to go for it, only riding hands and heels. Suddenly it was too late, things became too tight in the final furlong and the horse was squeezed out.

With a clear run he would have gone seriously close. Has been dropped 1lb in the meantime. Now down to a career-lowest mark he of obvious interest, even in this slightly tougher race – tougher on paper at least.

Obviously the gelding is still a maiden after 15 runs so once can’t make too many excuses. I’m prepared to give him this chance as the low draw should suit, a good pace to track will help to settle and the fast ground likely to suit as his career-best performance came last July on fast five at Hamilton.

10pts win – Imperial Khan @ 5/1


2.20 Hamilton: Class 5 Handicap, 5f

Soul Seeker looks supremely well-handicapped today as he returns to a course and distance he likes on his preferred fast ground.

His two comeback runs after a proper winter break were solid, even though he doesn’t seem to enjoy the sand at all; I was taken by his second run at Beverley last month, though, in conditions far from ideal for him.

He moved quickly forward and crossed over to the far rail, where he led the field, although pressured all the way. He battled solidly before fading badly in the final furlong.

That’s strong form in general, and the run can be upgraded given it came on Softish ground. No doubt, he’s a different horse on better ground.

The last time he enjoyed a fast 5f furlongs was last August when he finished a strong runner-up at Haydock off 77, ran to a 78 speed rating, which was a 78 back-to-back SR performance, preceding a 77. He’s clearly a different animal on decent ground.

He didn’t get going on the All-Weather subsequently, toward the end of last year – those poor showings, coupled with the recent return on turf which the handicapper didn’t rate, he’s now down to a superb mark, 1lb lower than his most recent W.

10pts win – Soul Seeker @ 9/2

Wednesday Selections: 17th May 2023

3.35 York: Group 3 Musidora Stakes, 1m 2½f

A competitive renewal of the Musirora Stakes. Gather Ye Rosebuds looks potentially smart having run to a serious speed rating on her debut about three weeks ago.

But I’ll stick to Soul Sister, one of my Horses to Follow this year, despite a desperate seasonal reappearance, last month at Doncaster.

That run looks bad. But it can be totally ignored, in my view. The deep ground, 7 furlongs, her first run for the year. All came together and worked against her.

This daughter of Frankel should very much improve for better ground and as she moves up in trip.

Keeping that in mind, the more it looks impressive what she did on her sole run as a juvenile last year on soft ground over a mile at Doncaster.

That day she showed a superb attitude and staying qualities on her debut as she stayed on strongly to get up in the dying strides in a head-to-head battle.

She possesses a lot of stamina and will have no issues stepping to 10 furlongs, and possibly beyond. Her full-siblings have been pretty smart in their own right as well.

I am more than happy to give her ‘another’ chance, even though I had no interest to back her in the Fred Darling. I feel this is her first proper race this season and she is clearly overpriced.

10pts win – Soul Sister @ 21/1


8.10 Bath: Class 6 Handicap, 10f

Chinthurst is one of those handicappers I’m following this year as I believe he could have quite a bit in hand once he races over the right trip.

I was taken by his seasonal reappearance at Windsor last month in seriously deep ground. He travelled pretty well for a long time before he fell away badly to finish a long beaten 4th.

But this was a strong race, he may have needed it in any case, and there’s every chance he can improve from the outing and enjoy the better conditions today a bit more.

He also steps up in trip to 10 furlongs, which is most likely to suit. He’s a son of Nathanial out of a Dylan Thomas mare – you can be almost certain he’s going to improve as a 3-year-old and as he moves up in trip.

With that in mind, I felt what he did as a juvenile warrants respect and proved there is possibly more ability than his current lowly rating suggests.

After three unremarkable qualifying runs, he improved markedly on his Handicap debut and final run in 2022 at Brighton over 7 furlongs.

There he found himself multiple times outpaced but kept showing a positive attitude as he finished well up the hill and achieved a 53 speed rating.

The performance warrants an upgrade, as the form has worked out well in the meantime, and he’s rated only a pound higher today.

The wide draw and large field are a small concern. I also wouldn’t hope the ground dries out to anything beyond good. At given prices, and granted he’s been drifting, it’s worth taking the risk here.

10pts win – Chinthurst @ 7/1

Wednesday Selections: 5th April 2023

4.45 Wolverhampton: Class 5 Handicap, 5f

In an ideal world Bang On The Bell would race off his soon to be revised mark, or even a couple of pounds lower, but I feel even off 71 he’s got a fine chance to win in this race against beatable opposition, especially with the race possibly to pan out in his favour.

I don’t judge him harshly on the way he dropped away last time he was seen. That day he had to overcame the widest draw – which he did – but was then way too keen in the first half of the race over 6 furlongs that was a stretch.

He’s better judged on his penultimate run over this course and distance as he encounters it here, when once again he enjoyed a perfect and quick start from the widest draw to get to the leaders right before the field entered the turn.

He pushed a strong pace as part of trio, before getting quite tired in the home straight once again. That looks good form, and was an improvement on his comeback run prior.

In my view the last two runs warrant an upgrade. In that light, it’s clear he’ll enjoy the return to the minimum trip, this time without the disadvantage of a wide draw.

There’s only one other true pace horse in this small field, so it won’t be any hassle to get to the front. It should help that the other possible pace setter, Glorious Charmer – who doesn’t seem well handicapped now – is going to be there to help push a good pace,.

This scenario in turn may help Bang On The Bell to relax a bit better and then enjoy possibly the run of the race turning for home. He ran to a 72 speed rating back in August over this C&D, and 70 in December over 5f at Chelmsford – therefore he’s clearly capable to run to the level required to win here.

10pts win – Bang On The Bell @ 9/2


4.55 Nottingham: Class 6 Handicap, 10f

A minefield of unknowns but there is no question Dog Fox is the most intriguing one here. He’s one I flagged up in my 3-year-old handicappers to follow list and feel this represents a superb opportunity to get off the mark.

This confidence may seem misplaced given Dog Fox showed nothing in three runs as a juvenile. However, those runs came over trips that were clearly on the sharp side.

He’s bred to enjoy middle-distance trips and is expected to improve dramatically in handicap company going up in trip. The majority of his dam’s offspring performs solid once upped to 10 furlongs, as his sire Cityscape has a 10.1 stamina index to offer.

An opening mark of 63 looks stiff judged purely on juvenile form, but could underestimate him judged on potential improvement for trip and age.

The soft ground won’t be an issue I reckon. The sire and dam enjoyed cut in the ground during their respective racing careers.

10pts win – Dog Fox @ 3/1


5.00 Kempton: Class 5 Handicap, 6f

Am I really prepared to follow Sharon Macready over the cliff? I certainly am! This filly is hugely frustrating but no doubt has some talent and is well handicapped if she can finally relax a bit better. She’s ready to win, sooner rather than later.

Going up in trip does seem counterintuitive. But I do believe the trip doesn’t really matter. She stays the distance as she is a proven distance winner and ‘all’ it takes is her to relax in the early parts a bit better. Without dropping her head she won’t get home even over three furlongs.

I can make excuses for her recent run at Southwell. It was as strange race, although one that looks strong the way the form worked out. Sharon Macready had an award start, also bumped rival, was a huge price on the day and never looked like the same enthusiastic individual she did prior.

I liked those three earlier runs this year – she showed often blistering early speed but made life difficult for herself. She is now down to a 60 rating – clearly she is better than that, also given her full-sister has multiple wins at 60+ to her name,

The race could work out well from a pace scenario. The low draw will help her to get to the front. She may enjoy an easy enough lead. She may hard to peg back over this course and distance if she finds a good rhythm.

10pts win – Sharon Macready @ 5/1

All-Weather Wednesday Selections: 8th March 2023

4.00 Lingfield: Class 6 Handicap, 1m 4f

Hill Station looks potentially quite well-handicapped back over 12 furlongs on the Lingfield polytrack. He’s the only one with any notable recent course & distance form in this field. Judged on his last All-Weather runs he may have found finally an ideal opportunity to get off the mark.

I willingly ignore the most recent outing over hurdles, even though he was fancied at this track four weeks ago. It was a strange race. He’s certainly better judged on the last sand performances, in my view.

With that in mind, when last seen here at Lingfield’s polytrack over 10 furlongs in early February he ran with plenty of credit as a 22/1 longshot. He tracked a solid pace a couple of lengths clear of the chasing pack, and made nice progress turning for home, before getting tired and fading back to 6th.

That run was in line with the promise he showed toward the end of 2022 at Chelmsford and over 12 furlongs at Lingfield, even more so, back in November.

At Chelmsford over 10 furlongs Hill Station got caught in the closing stages after running hard from the front. But especially the run prior over course and distance at Lingfield appeared to be a significant performance.

That day he was early up with the pace, however, got caught wide for the majority of the race. He still rallied strongly in the closing stages, to finish a brilliant 3rd and ran to a strong 63 speed rating.

That’s clearly the best more recent performance on offer in this poor field today. He’s been dropped another 2lb in the meantime, therefore and any repeat of that run will see him win this, most likely.

There won’t be too much pace pressure here. So he may enjoy it easy on the front as well and no danger of getting caught wise this time.

His sire has a poor record on the All-Weather, which is a concern. On the other hand, this is possibly a fact to negate, given Hill Station has proven he performs on the All-Weather.

10pts win – Hill Station @ 7/2

All-Weather Wednesday: 1st March 2023

It’s not often that this small and completely irrelevant blog gets much attention. And why would it? However, the piece about my self-experiment with the ProCush whip seems to have hit a nerve within the racing bubble.

This site received in the last two days as much traffic as it normally would get in two-three full months! The original tweet was seen over 225k times, and messages came flying from all over the globe.

It was an even bigger surprise when doing the cooking on Monday night when I usually listen to the Betfair podcast to heat Kevin Blake highlighting the piece (58:36).

It’s been a crazy 24h, that’s for sure. I am only a racing fan who writes about the sport. Nothing special. It shows there is appetite for real info on the whip, though. Something to address by the governing bodies. For all they lack the will, obviously.

On the betting front Galileo Glass finished a super 2nd today, but didn’t get the gap when needed. He surely would have won otherwise. Big Impact ran too free, unfortunately.

Ends February on minus 10pts. After a super start to the month, I now haven’t backed a winner in nearly three weeks, 16 selections and counting, and also 45pts down on the year. It will be all updated here by tomorrow, as always.


2.30 Lingfield: Class 5 Handicap, 6f

Muy Muy Guapo was a huge eyecatcher when last seen at Kempton. He was a bit awkward away from the gate, settled in last, then travelled strongly into the home straight.

He was easily able to answer every acceleration from the front group, but didn’t get a clear passage, while not really asked for full effort at all.

That was his Handicap debut and first run for the Simon Dow yard off a 100 day break. He is very much expected to improve for the run.

There is clearly a lot of talent, certainly compared to the opposition here. He’s still a colt and cost £115k as a yearling. Horses in this grade don’t often travel that well and can answer every pace acceleration that easily as Muy Muy Guapo did last time out.

He was even rewarded with a pound off his mark for that pretty spectacular effort. He looks tremendously well-handicapped.

10pts win – Muy Muy Guapo @ 5/1


3.00 Lingfield: Class 6 Handicap, 6f

Big Bard ran better than the bare suggests the last two times. He came on my radar thanks a brave front-running performance on the last day of the old year. That form looks quite strong on paper.

He ran with credit next time out over 7 furlongs too, after things got rough in the early parts of the race, which meant he was set alight and pulling hard. He still travelled really well for a very long time.

The drop in trip to 6 furlongs is sure to suit here. He also has been dropped another 2lb, now rated 58. He looks handicapped to go close.

He ran to speed ratings 59 and 60 since September, although on turf, but his career best speed rating on All-Weather is 59, which he achieved twice, albeit at Chelmsford.

The race could be set up for him from the #2 draw with not much pace to compete with, if Hector Crouch wants to move forward.

10pts win – Big Bard @ 9/1


8.30 Kempton: Classified Stakes, 6f

Good things come in threes, once again? I certainly hope so. I have given up on Paddy K after his recent gallant, but ultimately unfortunate runner-up performance at Southwell. He remains a maiden.

Instead, I go back to my trusted source of despair, that is May Remain. The 8-year-old ran a massive race last time out, when he moved rapidly forward from the widest draw and set the world alight from the front.

No surprise to see him finish a very tired horse. Still, he managed to finish 3rd, and that form doesn’t look bad in the context of this field.

He has the benefit of a #2 draw here, which is absolutely ideal. This course and distance favours front-runners and low draws. He won’t have his own way up front and there is danger that he does too much early on.

But the latest form, as well as a number of previous runs this winter, gave the impression that he is simply excellent form, and possibly better than the vast majority in this field.

10pts win – May Remain @ 5/1

Wednesday Selections: 22nd February 2023

5.05 Newcastle: Classified Stakes, 7f

The drop in trip looks possibly ideal for How Bizarre, who ran a massive race last time out at Newcastle over a mile. But ultimately his profile, as an 8-year-old, on the All-Weather, is totally exposed. Hence I readjust my interest toward He’s So Brazen, who looks also suited by the drop to 7 furlongs.

He caught my attention in early December at Wolverhampton for the first time. That day He’s So Brazen was was seriously keen throughout the race, but especially between 5 to 4 furlongs out. It was impressive, all the more when he loomed large seemingly ready for a big challenge as he entered the home straight. He fell away eventually, showed a high head-carriage, looked awkward, was wandering, and ran into trouble over one furlong out.

He also caught the eye on his next and most recent run, then at Southwell, over a mile. He led the field in first time blinkers, again showing signs of keenness, as he set a solid tempo, especially early on. I was impressed that he was able to kick on again three furlongs out, before falling away, proving awkward once again.

He has clearly issues and is a tricky customer. But he clearly got enough ability to win a race of this desperately low level, and remains somewhat lightly raced, certainly in the context of this race.

He doesn’t stay a mile and the jury is out whether he even gets home over 7 furlongs. A demanding, stiff 7 furlongs at Newcastle could be right at his limit, I reckon. But what gives hope is the stamina on the dam side through the dam sire and the fact his sire’s record over this C&D is surprisingly positive.

In any case the drop to 7 furlongs is a major bonus, given that he should settle better, at the very least. Second time blinkers fitted should help him to be sharp out of the gate and he may be a bit better used to them now.

It’s only his second try over the trip – the first one came on turf as a 66/1 chance. Therefore he’s open to improvement. If he does settle and gets home over this trip he has a huge chance to outrun his big price tag.

10pts win – He’s So Brazen @ 13/1

Wednesday Selections: 28th December 2022

4.55 Newcastle: Class 5 Handicap, 7f

Bin Hayyan was a massive eye-catcher when last seen back in November, one few may have missed. It’s a question whether you have the trust that today is the day connections are serious about winning or not.

The early prices are probably more driven by this recent impressive run than anything else. Market moves during the day will tell us what to expect in this rather open and intriguing contest, in any case.

As for Bin Hayyan, he probably showed more to the handicapper than perhaps he should have, in an ideal world, when finishing incredibly strongly last time out. But it’s the reason I am clearly prepared to back at the prices on offer, in the hope he will run on merit.

Back then over the same course and distance he was restrained in rear, which was a disadvantage as the field crawled for the first half of the race. He made eye-catching progress from three furlongs out, travelled seriously strongly, but couldn’t get a clear run until approaching the final furlong. As he found daylight he finished by far the strongest.

He was a big price on the day (SP 25/1), and unusual race tactics were deployed. He was seen to best effect when more prominently ridden in the past.

He is almost certainly better than his current Official Rating of 69. He ran to a 71 speed rating on turf this summer, and has clearly proven his suitability to an All-Weather surface when last seen.

I also would argue his comeback run prior, off a small break, at Kempton, over a mile on his first attempt racing on sand, can be upgraded given the way he was ridden that day, over a trip possibly that stretches his stamina.

This smaller field of eight horses, with a modest pace expected, could suit Bin Hayyan really well, if he can settle closer to the pace. He is drawn close to the most likely pace setter, so should get a lead into the finish, And he has shown to be able to quicken nicely.

10pts win – Bin Hayyan @ 7/2

Wednesday Selections: 26th October 2022

6.30 Kempton: Class 5 Handicap, 1m

The pace in this race shapes as nothing more than modest and this will greatly play into the hands of those racing in a prominent position.

From the #1 draw, one who likes to be tracking the pace, who can sit behind the leader or make it all, if needed, is Asdaa. He got too far behind the last time at Wolverhampton as he tends to be not an overly sharp starter, but I would hope for things to play out differently today.

There isn’t as much competition for a prominent position this time and from his low draw he should get to a good early position without much hassle.

This is a seriously weak race, too. Asdaa, while far from a consistent horse, and neither in flying form, won at Pontefract in the summer over a mile three starts back and ran to a 70 speed rating that day – that’s rock solid form in my book, and the best on offer, only matched by Bin Hayyan in this field, who is an intriguing runner after gelding operation, if he can stretch out over the mile, but is drifting in the market, suggesting he’s not really expected today.

He wasn’t in the same form since, but a return to the All-Weather will surely suit over the mile trip. He’s only a pound higher than at Pontefract, but is arguably a better horse on the sand.

He ran 8 times to speed ratings 69+ (i.e. matching or higher than current OR), six of those on the All-Weather., including three times at Kempton, and the top three efforts over a mile as well.

Not many hoses in this field can offer the same level of consistent speed ratings on this level, and as a consequence few, if any, appear well-handicapped.

Asdaa, though, off a 69 mark is handicapped one win off a correct Official Rating (in my assessment), hence he should have an excellent chance to score with circumstances firmly in his favour.

Kingscote/Johnston enjoy a fruitful partnership on the All-Weather: 6/20 this season, with more than half of the runners placed.

Taking everything into consideration you’d really hope for a big run tonight. Of course, you can’t put too much trust into an inconsistent class 5 handicapper. Yet, Asdaa appears quite a bit overpriced in this field.

10pts win – Asdaa @ 5/1

Wednesday Selections: 19th October 2022

8.00 Kempton: Class 4 Handicap, 6f

I feel this is a pretty uncompetitive race for its class and field size. The one that stands out as certainly overpriced in my book is the 3-year-old Michael Bell trained gelding Spring Is Sprung.

He is one who usually goes forward to track the pace and will sit handy, or even can lead, as seen at Royal Ascot. The #1 draw won’t pose an issue for him, given his gate speed, to get that early advantageous prominent position. As we know, Kempton, over this trip, clearly favours those up with the pace.

Spring Is Sprung drops back to 6 furlongs, after an unsuccessful attempt over 7 furlongs at Lingfield when last seen in August. It was s still a credible performance, as he received an early bump out of the gates, and was keen early on, denying himself of the best opportunity to stay the trip. He still ran to topspeed 78 which gives this performance solid merit.

He’s also down to a good mark again, down from a seasonal high of 87, that saw him finish 3rd at Southwell over 6 furlongs in a Class 3 Handicap.

Weeks earlier he won on his seasonal reappearance over the same CD in taking style, off a mark of 81, beating subsequent Listed place Fearless Angel. He looked poised for better that day, but was possibly found out for class against better opposition the next few runs, in truth.

He attempted to make all at Royal Ascot when dropped to the minimum trip. He ran well enough finishing 13th of 27 starters; a subsequent 3rd place finish of three, only a lengths beaten, though, at Newmarket, and then his first really disappointing effort this year, when the application of a visor backfired.

A return to the All-Weather, 6 furlongs and down to 82 OR after a small break looks a perfect scenario. He’s still unexposed on the sand, only 1lb higher than his impressive Southwell win, achieved solid speed ratings before, and could be hard to beat if he can run to that sort of level this evening.

10pts win – Spring Is Sprung @ 7/1