These are the winning write ups of 2015. We also had many E/W bets landed, but we are just including the write ups of the winners, so you know exactly what to expect if you sign up.
I was really impressed with TEA FOR TWO when he made his debut over fences at Exeter at the start of the month. He was simply foot perfect at every fence and Lizzie Kelly gave him a great ride. This horse was always going to be a better chaser than a hurdler and so he proved it 3 weeks ago. TEA FOR TWO is up in distance today but 3 miles around a track like Kempton should be perfect. The ground is also in his favour and basically the more rain the better for this one. The scope this horse has is unbelievable and I believe we will see a top class performance on Boxing Day. WIN. WON 2/1
The race we have all been waiting for. The first horse is a rare 2 point win.
What a race we have in store and you could probably make a case for a few of these. Don Cossack is the warm favourite but my personal view is a track like Kempton will be totally against him. Vautour could win by a distance but I believe he would prefer a left handed track, Good Ground is preferred and this is his first time over 3 miles. To many negatives for me but I do respect the horse.
The horse I am really confident about is CUE CARD. He is one of my favourite horses in training and on his 2 starts this season I haven’t tipped him which is surprising as I have a real soft spot for him. The manner in which he won the Betfair Chase at Haydock last time out was to impressive to ignore. He basically beat Silvinaco Conti who has won this race twice and he won on the bridle. You don’t see horses win Grade 1s on the bridle these days so you simply applaud them as I don’t care who you are, not one person can knock the manner of that victory. CUE CARD has had a breathing operation which has worked like magic and he now fully stays 3 miles. Unbelievable what that operation can do to some horses. He has also matured so much and gone are the days where he pulls all the way around. The only negative is this is his 4th attempt in this race but on all occasions the horse could not breath so had his excuses. Now all his problems have gone and as long as he turns up the same horse as Haydock I am confident he will win this race. Paddy Brennan who is now his new partner absolutely loves this horse and has even suggested CUE CARD gives him a better feel than Gold Cup winner Imperial Commander. That is some statement. 2 POINT WIN. WON 4/1
The conditions are perfect here for KATKEAU and I have being following his entries since his last a month ago and he has been pulled out numerous times waiting of the right race. Has only had 1 start over fences and beat a good horse in Southfield Vic. This horse can only improve on that and looks a decent bet a 5/1 against a mediocre field. WIN. WON 6/1
You can’t split Adrien Du Pont and SCEAU ROYAL on there Chepstow form and that goes for Leoncavallo who beat SCEAU ROYAL by a nose at Wetherby on the next. I am going to side with SCEAU ROYAL as Alan King is in fine form at the moment and I believe he should be shorter than the 5/2 available. Why Adrien Du Pont is 5/4 and ours is 5/2 I will never know as SCEAU ROYAL finished in front of the favourite at Chepstow but was demoted to 2nd. Last time out our selection won easily and is progressing along nicely. In all honesty you can’t split the top 3 in the market but the prices have pointed me in the direction of the Alan King charge. WIN. WON 7/4
JOSIES ORDERS is the one for me. There is no better trainer than Edna Bolger over the Cross Country Course and no better jockey than Nina Carberry over the fences. He has gone up the handicap since beating Any Currency here in November but I believe he won with a fair bit in hand. Coming around the bend JOSIES ORDERS slipped badly but still made up the ground and won going away at the line. Even though Any Currency is much better off at the weights I still feel JOSIES ORDERS can improve further over cross country. A win here will put him straight to the head of the market for the Cheltenham Festival and JOSIES ORDERS will surely be involved. WIN. WON 11/4
I have been waiting for this horse to run for sometime and cant believe we are getting odds against. He is included in my book JPW 40 to follow and here is what I wrote. I am very very confident.
Trainer : Dan Skelton
Form Figures 1
Being a fan of horses who come out of King’s Theatre I was looking for a point to point horse who was out of that horse. BORN SURVIVOR fits perfectly as when I went a bit deeper this horse ticked all my boxes. He was a point winner in the spring who has plenty of scope who could be anything. He was purchased by Kelvin Hughes for £220k at the Brightwell Sales in April and sent to Dan Skelton. The reason I have included this horse is the fact that all the horses behind him in the point 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th have all been sold for decent amounts of money and the way BORN SURVIVOR went away from with ease, suggests he could be the real deal.
Likely Target : Looks a real stayer so the Albert Bartlett would have to be the aim but did show some gears when going away so Neptune could also be on the radar. WON at 10/11
DJAKADAM is surely in a different league to these and I can only see 1 horse who can give him any trouble in Valseur Lido. Even I don’t think that horse can improve enough to beat DJAKADAM. This is a horse who was 2nd in last years Gold Cup at Cheltenham and 2nd in the Punchestown Gold Cup. This shows the class of this horse and I can’t see why he should be beat here. Only negative would be a drop in distance but now with the ground heavy it is going to ride like a 3 mile race. I think 9/4 is actually quite decent as i make him 6/4 on his performances last year. WIN. WON 2/1
Venetia Williams had 2 winners today so her horses are in fine form and I fully expect OTAGO TRAIL to continue that run tomorrow. This is only his 2nd start over fences but I thought OTAGO TRAIL jumped very well apart from the last fence at Exeter 3 weeks ago. He was beat 1/2 length to On Tour but if he didn’t make a mistake at the last I am confident he would’ve won. On Tour has since gone on to win again, beating a good horse in Sirabad. This boosted the form and I am confident OTAGO TRAIL can defy top weight of 11st 12lb. I have no doubt he is better than his handicap mark of 133 and the softer the ground the better for this horse. Available at 9/4 I wouldn’t be surprised if he went of 6/4. I am happy with the price as I make him 7/4 favourite. WIN. WON 7/4
I cannot believe AACHEN is available at 6/1 for this and I cant see the price lasting long. He is a very decent horse and with the ground riding heavy it will play into his hands massively. AACHEN has run on Heavy 4 times and has won 3 and was 3rd in the other. This ground really brings the best out of him so when I seen this I was even more surprised at his price. Our selection run in a decent class 2 last time out at Sandown. He could only manage 4th but was sent off 4/1 co favourite against the likes of Vino Griego, Pineau De Re and Roalco De Farges. How can he go off 4/1 for that race against horses like that and then go off 6/1 for this, against horses nowhere near as good. The ground is also in our favour. I think AACHEN will run a massive race and be surprised if he is out of the frame. WIN. WON 7/1
We were on CHAMPERS ON ICE at Cheltenham and is fair to say he was beaten by a very good horse in Shantou Village who I think could be a star over hurdles. If I am being honest I don’t see many dangers in this race and it should really be a formality. He is held in very high regard by connections and if he is as good as they say he is he really ought to be winning this race. WIN. WON 2/1
We have 2 selections in this race.
THREE MUSKETEERS was a horse included in my 40 to follow and I still think he has a lot to offer over the bigger obstacles. He finished runner up to another of todays runners Samtegal but is 7lb better off at the weights. He is trained by the in form Dan Skelton and I know the trainer thinks the world of this horse. On his debut over fences he was super in the jumping department and the only way he can go is up. It is a good race but I believe this horse can be very good especially around a track like Newbury at odds of 5/1. WON 7/2
Tomorrow we have 1 tip from Lingfield. 3:00 Lingfield The in form Dan Skelton runs WILTON MILAN in this and I am confident of a big run. WILTON MILAN handicap mark looks very workable on 127 after going as high as 134 just 8 months ago. He has dropped 3lb from his last run and this is the least competitive race he has run in since winning at Newbury this time last year. Soft ground will be no problem and if he is going to get back to winning ways then it will be in a small field like this. WIN. WON 6/1
BIG SOCIETY is down 7lb from his last start to a rating of 116 which I think is very winnable off. We know he handles the ground as he was an easy winner over hurdles last season in similar ground. It was only 10 months ago BIG SOCIETY was rated 125 over fences so 9lb lower in less than a year probably suggests he is ready to win again. If he is on a good day he could win with ease but does have a tendency to go off the boil. Although a quirky horse he is still worth the gamble E/W at a decent 9/1. WON 9/1
November 15th2:10 Shloer Chase
I never thought I would see this day of me backing SPRINTER SACRE again but I just can’t leave him out especially with him get 10lb from Mr Mole and 4lb from the rest of the field. I am not expecting to see the same old SPRINTER SACRE but getting weight from his rivals you would expect him to win really. At 5/2 he is worth a bet just on the back of his background. Basically if he don’t win this with the advantage at the weights then I am sure he will be retired. Nicky Henderson will be throwing everything at this and I expect SPRINTER SACRE to be as fit as they come. WON 15/8
1:40 Steel Plate And Sections Novice Chase
Well I cannot describe how excited I am to see MORE OF THAT jump a fence. He was born to jump them and will go right to the top in my opinion. I really thought Jonjo O’Neil was going to keep him over hurdles so I am delighted he is now jumping a fence. The scope this horse has is unbelievable and if ever you could design a perfect horse to take over the bigger obstacles it is MORE OF THAT. This horse beat Annie Power in the 2014 World Hurdle which shows you the calibre of horse we are talking about. Ask yourself this 1 question, if Annie lined up in this race on her debut over fences would she be 2/1 like MORE OF THAT. I am pretty sure she would be 4/5 – 4/6 so this shows what a real nice bet MORE OF THAT is even at 2/1. Ok he was off last season with an injury but I don’t see much in front of him, just a couple of 140 rated hurdlers and MORE OF THAT was 30lb inferior of them over hurdles. Last season Tony McCoy was excited to see this horse jump a fence before his injury and even now retired he was asked which horse are you missing the most and he replied MORE OF THAT going chasing. I am super confident of MORE OF THAT winning and if he don’t win then I have egg on my face but I am not scared to put it out with my balls on the line. The only thing which can stop MORE OF THAT winning is a few jumping errors but even then I think he could overcome them. WIN. WON 2/1
We tipped up BIVOUAC on his last start at Chepstow where his run was to bad to be true. I have no doubt he is a better horse than that and I am willing to give him another chance. He has gone down the handicap by 5lb since that run which will be a great help. I think this step up in trip will also help and should bring out further improvement for this 4 year old. His form last season suggests he is a better horse than todays mark and a return to Soft Gorund will be a big help. 5/1 is available. WON 5/1
HIDDEN CYCLONE is my bet of the day especially getting 2lb off the front 2 in the market. Disappointed on his final 2 starts of last season at the Cheltenham Festival and Punchestown Festival but I have no doubt he is better than both showings. On his day HIDDEN CYCLONE would win this race with ease but I guess the problem with this horse is knowing which horse will turn up on the day. He does seem to go well fresh and also has 2 wins at the track. I would be surprised if he didn’t feature here against a field he should really be beating. WON 3/1
10/3 with William Hill and Coral
The anticipated return of Simonsig who has been off the track for 970 days. Is he going to get back to his oldself, not a chance in a million years especially on his first start of the season. He is still capable of winning the race don’t get me wrong but with being so fragile I am happy to take him on. The horse who is overpriced is BOBS WORTH. 12/1 about a Gold Cup and Hennessy Gold Cup winner who is actually unbeaten over hurdles is ridiculous. I know he is not as good as he once was but I am not sure he has to be, especially with question marks over 3 horses coming back from in injury in Simonsig, Royal Boy and Purple Bay. This race could fall into his lap. As previously stated BOBS WORTH is unbeaten over hurdles with his last win and start over them was when winning the Albert Bartlett at the 2011 Cheltenham Festival. You have to ask yourself is BOBS WORTH capable of beating Purple Bay with 4lb advantage and Commissioned and Royal Boy of level weights. Damn right he is which leaves Simonsig who has been off the track for 970 days. Win or lose 12/1 is huge. E/W. WON 12/1
Not the greatest race in the world, one in which PEPITE ROSE is more than capable of winning for the in form Venetia Williams whose horses are flying. Our selection has to overcome top weight but the field is not that great in terms of quality. PEPITE ROSE has come down the handicap from 154 to 148 which she is more than capable of winning off. It was only last year she destroyed a field of better quality off 145 so I am sure with only 3lb higher she can do the same here. 15/2 is a decent bet. E/W. WON 10/1
IRVING is a great bet at 5/1 for this, he was sent off 6/4 for this very race last year and bar a fall at the last would’ve won the race. He then went and won the Fighting Fifth hurdle at Newcastle and showed a good attitude in doing so. The only negative I can see is the weight he has to give away but there is no doubting the class he has. Loves some cut in the ground which he will get and at 5/1 goes down as my bet of the day. WIN. WON 5/1
5/1 with Paddy Power and Ladbrokes
VINTAGE STAR is slowly creeping down the handicap and runs off a handicap mark of 133. Thats his lowest mark since January 2013. He also likes it around Carlisle with his form reading 3215212. VINTAGE STAR always seems to run well on his first start of the season. Todays race is also the least competitive race he has run in since 2013. VINTAGE STAR has always run in higher grade races which have included the Scottish National and the Kim Muir at the Cheltenham Festival. This drop in class will be greatly appreciated and at 10/1 he is decent value. E/W. WON 7/2
PENDRA is a horse who I think is still handicapped well on a mark of 140. Had an interrupted season last year with an injury at the start of the year but did very well to finish 5th in the 3 mile handicap chase on the 1st day of the Cheltenham Festival. That was on the same mark as today and considering that was his first run since November it shows that he is potentially very well in. The pick of his chase form was at the 2014 Cheltenham Festival where he ran a great race to finish 3rd to Present View. That was off a handicap mark of 137 and bar a mistake at the last probably could of won that race. Had he won that race would his mark still be 140, I would imagine it would be a few pounds higher. At 9/1 I think he is an excellent E/W bet. WON 9/1
2:05 Down Royal
I fancy IDENTITY THIEF big time here. On his last 2 starts he has looked the winner, travelling strongly before fading. I think with a summer behind him you will see the real deal this year who will also see his races out. The step back to 2 miles should help and I see no reason why he won’t win today. WIN. WON 15/8
SHANTOU FLYER is overpriced at 10/1 in my opinion. He is only a 5 year old has had 5 starts over fences. He has 2 wins and 2 2nds to his name. On his last start he beat Shadow Catcher 3 weeks ago and that horse went out and won on Sunday to boost the form. I think SHANTOU FLYER will love it around Cheltenham especially that hill. He is a horse who keeps on well and when they meet that hill as long as he is still in contention he will be hard to beat. Win or Lose I know I am ahead of the bookies with the price before the race starts. E/W. WON 14/1
HAYADH should be shorter than 7/2 tomorrow and possibly fighting for favouritism. He basically has the best form int he race after running in a Group 2 then Class 1. He is down in class here and I see no reason why he won’t be winning this. WON 4/1
Only 4 runners but I am siding with SHADOW CATCHER on the basis that Barry Gerraghty is on board. Closely matched on form with Guitar Pete but that horse flopped last time in a race he should of really been winning. Our selection has finished 2nd on his last 3 starts but each time bumped into some smart chasers. I think he has the beating of Guitar Pete and should be fighting for favourite and closer to evens. This makes the 13/8 available look decent. WIN. WON 6/4
A really good looking novice chase which is basically between 2 horses in Hammersy Lake and KATGARY. I have gone with the latter based on the price of 15/8. I make it 5/4 a piece so turns out a good bet. KATGARY is trained by Paul Nicholls who has won this race twice in the last 3 years. Our selection has had 1 run over fences last season and although he disappointed you have to remember he was only a 4 year old. For Paul Nicholls to send him over fences so early in career tells you he must being doing really well at home. This is a horse who finished 2nd in the 2014 Fred Winter Hurdle so obviously has something about him. WON 9/4
OPEN HEARTED has the benefit of 1 run so should be a strip fitter than most of these. Switched yards from Nicky Henderson to Dan Skelton who is a master of bringing the best back out of horses. Last season OPEN HEARTED was rated 145 so off 138 here it looks winnable. Our selection was behind the likes of Mr Mole and Vukovar last season both of which are highly rated. 7/2 is available. WON 9/2
A decent looking race which I think BROUGHTON has a huge chance. I make him a 4/1 shot so the 11/2 with William Hill is decent. Our selection has been on the go over the summer so will be as fit as they come for this race. He has 2 wins to his name in this time and has not run a bad race. BROUGHTON was beaten into 4th last time out at Market Rasen but only lost by 2 1/2 lengths. That was a class 1 and he went off at 5/1. Todays race is a Class 2 which is not as competitive and odds of 11/2 are available. He clearly has a better chance of winning this race against lesser opposition and off the same handicap mark, yet his odds are bigger. WON 5/1
We tipped up YOURE ON FIRE on Tuesday but was made a non runner. They have obviously had this race in mind and York is YOURE ON FIRE favourite course. This what we wrote on Tuesday and nothing has changed my mind apart from the little bit of extra weight given away and a bigger price.
YOURE FIRED tends to run 1 good race and then 1 bad race. With his bad race behind him when down the field in a hot handicap at York last time, I am predicting he will bounce back today. When on song his form has been great this season with a decent 2nd to Alfred Hutchinson in May and then a decent 3rd to Birdman at the same track in July. A repeat of either would be good enough to win this in my opinion. The smaller field will also help his course. YOURE FIRED will have to carry top weight but their is only 2lb between the whole field so I can’t see that holding him back. The rain forecast will be no problem as he pretty much goes on any type of ground. E/W. WON 8/1
SWEET P has had 72 days off the track so comes here nice and fresh. A lot of these have been on the go all season so the break should play to his advantage. SWEET P was very game on his last start when he kept finding more to win by a neck. It is that sort of attitude I love in a horse and what makes him my bet of the day. That race was over 1m41/2f which probably stretched his stamina but he still found something else to get his head in front. The drop back by 1/2f will help today and I fail to see why SWEET P won’t be involved. Going for the hat trick, I think Marcus Tregoning has placed this horse very well. I have SWEET P down as 4/1 so we are gaining a point at the 5/1 available. WON 4/1
I don’t normally tip at 7/4 but i fail to see how BALLYDOYLE will beat here and why not get Arc day off with a confidence booster. This is a horse held in high regard by Aiden O’Brien and should go on from this race to the head of the 1000 guineas market next year. 2nd in a Group 1 last time out in which she should of been winning but the better ground here today should bring out further improvement. 7/4. WIN. WON 5/4
COVERT LOVE is simply to good a horse not to be involved here. Really should of been winning her last race in the Yorkshire Oaks but in my opinion was given a bad ride by Pat Smullen. I think he will have strict instructions for todays race which should see her in better light. This horse has won 4 times this year and although this is her most difficult race to date COVERT LOVE will play a big part. WIN. WON 4/1
The big one the ARC.
Look Treve is going to very hard to beat she is an incredible horse but I am happy to find the value elsewhere.
I think GOLDEN HORN has a great chance with the only negative the draw. They could of run him in this race and entered all season but in they end they had to supplement GOLDEN HORN for a huge £120k. All that tells me is they are very very happy with this horse at home and really believe he has the beating of Treve. There is no doubting this horse is a serious horse after winning the Derby but since that run GOLDEN HORN has not been seen over the same distance as today. I have always thought GOLDEN HORN was better over 1m 4f and I think we will see a top performance today. 6/1 is available. WIN. WON 9/2
Richard Hannon entering LOG OUT ISLAND here is a big giveaway. Surely this horse wins this race. This is a proper Group horse yet he is being chucked in a race like this. He is a bit of a quirky horse but on his last 2 runs he has finished 1/2 3rd in a Group 2 and then runner up to the impressive Ribchester in yet another Group 2. This horse should really be about 7/4 in my opinion and fail to see much which would bother him if LOG OUT ISLAND is on his game. 4/1 is available. WIN. WON 10/3
An interesting race and one in which I think WORKBENCH will come out on top. This horse won this race last year off a handicap mark of 125 and is only 3lb higher today on a mark of 128. Dan Skelton would’ve had this race lined up for a while. Since winning this last year WORKBENCH has not won since but he had to defy a massive rise at 138. Its only now he is down to this workable mark. I think 9/2 is a cracking price. WIN. WON 3/1
EDGAR BALTHAZAR is probably about right in price at 11/4 but I have been through the whole card and I fail every time to get him beat. I liked the way he finished his race last time at Catterick and i think there is plenty more to come over todays trip. The drying ground will also be an advantage and I happy enough to make this my only bet of the day. WIN. WON 2/1
An interesting Cheveley Park Stakes with some decent fillies lining up. I am going to side with LUMIERE who I think can improve past all of these. LUMIERE looked some horse when winning on her debut and was chucked in the deep end in a group 2 at York on her last run. She finished behind another of todays runners Besharah that day but I think LUMIERE can ge t the better of her today. The drier ground will help and I am happy with the 7/2 available. WON 7/2
2:50 Market Rasen
A decent looking chase and OSCAR ROCK can show them he is the best horse in the race. In my opinion would of beat Top Gamble if he did not fall and you would be looking at a higher handicap mark here today. OSCAR ROCK is a classy type who travels smoothly between races. A tough race but I think OSCAR ROCK may of filled out a bit will be hard to beat. WIN. WON 3/1
Cheveley Park have 2 entered in this and I think the John Gosden trained SOLAR MAGIC is the one to be on. Frankie Dettori is on board and he has been in tremendous form this season and ride a lot of winners for John Gosden. SOLAR MAGIC was unlucky not to win last time out at Ascot just getting beat on the line. I think this could potentially be a weaker race and I am happy to take the 11/2 available. WON 13/2
MIDLANDER started the season like a horse who was improving fast and quickly rattled up 4 wins on the bounce. This put him in a situation where he was one of Mark Johnson best chance of a winner in a handicap at Glorious Goodwood. MIDLANDER didn’t turn up that day and has been quite poor since. His handicap mark has come down to a very workable 90 and this is a drop in class after running in 3 consecutive Class 2 races. We have William Buick on today which will only enhance his chances and I think the 8/1 available could turn out to be real value in company he should really holding his own. E/W. WON 5/1
COOL MACAVITY looks a great bet on a mark of 127. I thought he made a nice return 2 weeks ago at Stratford. He travelled well for a long way before fading at the end of the race. That race would of brought him along lovely and the drop in the handicap of 4lb will also do nicely. This is a horse who was good enough to win a handicap hurdle at Punchestown last year and has probably been in the handicappers grips until today. I am happy with the 7/2 available. WON 3/1
I really fancy STAR STORM tomorrow and personally think should be fighting for favourtism, if not the favourite ahead of Sealife. His win last time out showed he had more improvement left and at this grade, against a mediocre field should be bang there. STARM STORM pretty much handles any ground and has a 6lb pull over Sealife. Our selection has finished behind some pretty decent horses which include Medrano, Koora, and Proposed. All which have gone on to better things. I am happy with the 5/2 available. WIN. WON 13/8
I am going to give SOLE POWER a big chance here even giving away 3lb. This is possibly the easiest 5f race he has run in over a number of years now. He obviously likes fast ground but showed last time out that a bit of cut was no problem with a great 4th behind Mecca’s Angel in the Nunthorpe. The key to SOLE POWER is 5 furlongs in my opinion and with 5 Group 1 wins under his belt surely he still has a race like this in him. 7/1 is a great bet. E/W. WON 5/1
STEPS was a runner here a couple of days so this is interesting that he runs again. STEPS is a very frustrating horse but when he gets going is a Group horse all day long. Today this is a Class 2 and I believe he has a big run in him if they are risking running again. We have jockey Louis Steward claiming 3lb and the rain forecast should help him out as looking at his form the best of it is on Good To Soft. 14/1 is available. WON 14/1
STEPS 14/1 with most firms
GRETCHEN is a horse we have been following all season and she finally got her head in front at Newmarket last time out. John Gosden obviously thinks a lot of her as he has run her in a Group 1 and Group 2 and she has only had 4 starts. I think the penny finally dropped last time out and we see it time and again when horses get there head in front they get a feel for racing. The step up in trip will only enhance GRETCHEN chance in my opinion as she look a real stayer. I am happy enough with the 5/1 available. WIN. WON 5/1
It was only last year at this meeting that COTAI GLORY was going to win a Group 2 before unseating rider right on the line. Today it is only a Class 1 and should win this quite comfortably in my opinion. Forget the last run at York that was the first time she had run on ground slower than good. COTAI GLORY put in 2 massive efforts at Goodwood and York on the previous runs and she is a proper Group horse in my opinion. I have her down as low as 9/4 so I am well happy with the 7/2 available. WON 10/3
WONDER LAISH has been a non runner on his last 3 entries and reading between the lines I believe William Haggas knows he has a good one here so has been biding his time. It has been a case of wait for him to run and strike with this horse for me. His form got franked today by Richard Of Yorke winning and the only way is up with WONDER LAISH. This will be only his 4th start so I am 99% sure he will improve on his massive 15 length win in May. You could question that he has had a long time off the track but with the entries he has had and taken out of, it is obvious the trainer was in no rush with him and he must be spot on. I really fancy this horse carrying a very lightweight 8st 6lb. Rated 87 I am confident WONDER LAISH is between 5lb – 10lb ahead of the handicapper. 5/1 is available. WIN. WON 4/1.
RICHARD OF YORKE is down as 9/4 favourite for me so I am happy to take the 3/1 available. Carrying just 8st 10lb he will be very hard to beat. He has the best form in the race beating a good horse in Wonder Laish on his debut and then followed up with a better effort when 1/2 4th to Dartmouth giving that horse 6lb. Dartmouth has since gone on and won again. Our selection didn’t show up when 4th at Newmarket but I am also happy to give horses a 2nd chance. RICHARD OF YORKE ticks every box. WIN. WON 2/1.
MISS TENACIOUS is nothing but consistent and I fancy her to get her head in front today. In all honesty she has been unlucky not to win recently with 4 2nds and 2 3rds in her last 6 starts. With Harry Cobden taking 7lb off the back and the fact he has been on board the last 5 times, I think today is the day it will all come together. 9/2 MISS TENACIOUS is a decent bet. WIN. WON 6/1.
Brooch has to give BOCCA BACIATA a huge 12lb and I think this is to much weight to give away. Again this horse has been running in awl the top races and even has the beating of Group 1 winner Pleascach on his CV. This is very much a 2 horse race in my opinion but I am confident the 12lb pull will be to much for Brooch to giveaway. 11/4 is available. WIN. WON 11/4.
FADHAYYIL looks a great bet off bottom weight and also gets an allowance for being a filly. She finished an excellent 2nd to Dutch Connection at Royal Ascot and looked like going on to better things. She then flopped at Goodwood but a number things went against her. FADHAYYIL has also run in 4 consecutive Group races so this is a step down in class. This combined with carrying bottom weight she must have a massive chance. 11/1 is available. E/W. WON 5/1.
PLEASCACH went off evens at Royal Ascot over todays trip in the Ribbelsdale Stakes and finished 2nd to another of todays runners Curvy. Watching the race back she probably could of win if given a better ride. She then ran in the Pretty Polly Stakes at Curragh and was only 3 lengths off the winner Diamondsandrubies in tightly packed field. Now back up in trip we should see further improvement. PLEASCACH also has winning form in Ireland on Soft Ground. 7/1 is decent value. E/W. WON 8/1.
CASPIAN PRINCE is coming down the handicap and is now on an attractive handicap mark of 102. He has run in 3 group races since winning at Meydan in February so I am not worried about his form figures reading 800050. The 2 handicaps he has also run in were off handicap marks of 108 carrying top weight so I can understand why he was not involved. On his penultimate start I thought CASPIAN PRINCE ran a very sound race finishing 5th of 21 again off top weight over at the Curragh. He is now a further 3lb from that mark and does not have the burden of carrying top weight this time around. In the race in Ireland he had one of todays runners Desert Law in front of him in 3rd place and was 2 lengths behind him. Desert Law is 10/1 in the betting yet CASPIAN PRINCE is 33/1 and out selection is a huge 11lb better off today. If CASPIAN PRINCE can bring his form from Meydan which was only 6 months ago then I am sure he will be involved. One thing for sure is at 33/1 he is a great bet. E/W. WON 20/1.
CHAMPAGNE CITY is overpriced here at 4/1 as I make him 5/2 even if he is carrying top weight. Has looked a good horse with 2 wins this season and trainer must think something about the horse as he sent him to Newmarket for a Group 2. He wasn’t involved that day but this is a big step down in class to a class 3 and CHAMPAGNE CITY has to be involved.WON 2/1.
MUBTAGHAA went in to my notebook 2 weeks ago as a potential horse for York Ebor week as the horse won at the meeting last year. The fact that William Haggas has chosen this race instead of next week tells me all I need to know. MUBTAGHAA was an impressive winner last season and earned himself a rating of 102 following that run. He was down to 99 on his last start at Goodwood and remains on that mark today. He finished 7th of 27 at Goodwood in what I would describe as a much better handicap than todays. MUBTAGHAA should continue to improve and William Haggas will have him spot on for today. 12/1 is a great bet as I actually make him around the 8/1 mark. E/W.WON 10/1.
ADAAY is stepped up trip today and I think it could bring out further improvement. It is definitely worth taking a chance over 7 furlongs. ADAAY didn’t turn up at Royal Ascot but was sent off 8/1 for the Group 1 Commonwealth Cup yet is available at 11/1 for a Group 2 here. 11/1 is too big as ADAAY wasn’t totally disgraced at Ascot finishing 7th of 18. Her best performance came at Haydock when she beat the classy Limato. There was a bit of cut in the ground that day which suggests todays Soft ground will be no problem and with the weather forecast should dry a little which will be perfect. ADAAY gets weight from most of the field and carries 9st 2lb. I am very happy with the 11/1 available. E/W.WON 15/2.
HOLIDAY BETWEEN 7th August – 15th August
MALABAR has run in 5 consecutive Group 1s so this drop down to a group 3 will be appreciated. Her runs this season have included the Espom and Irish 1000 guineas where she was not disgraced just found a couple of horses to good. The last time MALABAR run in a Group 3 was at this track last August and she could not of been more impressive. Another horse who is massively overpriced at 10/1. E/W.WON 6/1.
At the start of the season my horse to follow was MUTHMIR who has run well a few times this season. His last 2 runs have been in Group 1s so this step back to Group 2 will be appreciated. Forget his last run over 6f as MUTHMIR is a 5f horse all day long. He does have to carry top weight but he is by far the best horse in the race and I am happy to back at 6/1. WIN. WON 3/1.
MOUNT LOGAN has a race like this in him and one of these days is going to win with ease. He ran a good race at Epsom to finish 3th to Mahsoob and was then 3rd at York in another competitive handicap. He is only 2lb higher in the handicap and has to be involved. Luca Cumani holds this horse in high regard and although he has question marks on good to soft ground, the fact he is out of New Approach tells me the ground should be no problem with New Approach winning a few races with cut in the ground. 9/1 is available. E/W.WON 8/1.
I have gone through the field and I really think CHAMPION COURT has to much class for these. He has to defy top weight but the field is pretty weak and I am not sure I rate the horses anywhere near his ability. He is a big horse capable of carrying weight and I am happy to take the 9/2 available. WON 9/4.
A John Gosden filly always appeals to me and I think FRENCH DRESSING has a great chance here. I thought she was very good on her only start at Ascot back in May. FRENCH DRESSING won with ease and looked to have plenty left in the tank. I think the fact john Gosden has not run her since is also very shrewd. He has obviously been letting her mature and feels the latter part of the season was the time to bring her out. After her win at Ascot, William Buick stated that she would improve a lot for the run which suggested he thought a lot of her. She could literally be anything and I am happy to take the 9/2 as we pretty much no the form of the field where as FRENCH DRESSING is something of the unknown THIS could put the rest of the field in danger.WIN.WON 4/1
Sanus Per Aquam is way to short which leaves the race open for a decent bet on DEAUVILLE trained by Aiden O’Brien at 4/1. It is not often you can get a price of 4/1 about an O’brien horse who has previously won on there debut. DEAUVILLE won easily enough at Listowel in May and will surely improve on that effort. He is out of Galileo so you would think the return to a bit better ground will also benefit. WIN.WON 9/2.
3:25 Newton Abbot
I find DUBAI PRINCE interesting here making his debut over fences. This is the class horse of the race and as long as he jumps a fence then I have no doubt he will win. If DUBAI PRINCE had 1 run over fences before this he would be 1/3 as the opposition should give him no problems. He absolutely bolted up on his last start at this track 1 month ago over hurdles and if he brings that form to fences he could win by half the track. The reports are that he is a natural at jumping fences in training so I am happy to take the 6/4 against a very weak field.WON 10/11.
Why the hell WEDDING VOW is available at 14/1 is beyond me. She is massively overpriced. Her last start was at Royal Ascot in a group 2 which was won by Curvy. Her run was actually better than it looks on paper. WEDDING VOW was coming with a run down the outside and was taken out wide by another horse. That ruined her chance and she plugged on afterwards. I am not saying she would of won the race but she would of finished a lot closer which would of reflected on todays price. I think the bookies have not taking the factor of being interfered with and priced up on finishing position. I personally have WEDDING VOW around the 7/1 mark so to get double that price at 14/1 is massive value. E/W. WON 6/1.
MAYBELATER is well overpriced at 7/1. She won off a handicap mark of 81 at Salisbury 2 starts ago. She looked a decent horse that day and looked like a horse who would improve further. On her last she wasn’t quite the same horse finishing 3rd to the highly regarded Suffused. I thought MAYBELATER was travelling like the winner before Suffused class told in the last furlong. She pulled clear of 4th and I thought the run was better to the eye than on paper. One thing for sure 7/1 is a lovely bet. WON 6/1.
The form of TIGERS TALE and MAN OF HARLECH was boosted on the weekend when Lightning Spear finished runner up behind Arod in a Group 2. TIGERS TALE was only 2 lengths off Lighning Spear and MAN OF HARLECH was having his first run of the season so is likely to improve for the run. For me this form is the best on offer and with both horse 9/2 and 11/2 it is worth betting them both to make a profit.TIGERS TALE WON 3/1.
This should be formality for AROD who for me is head and shoulders above this field. Since coming back to 1 mile he has been a different horse and showed his class when 3rd to Night Of Thunder at Newbury and then winning a Group 3 at Epsom on his last start. I really don’t see any dangers and I confident of the win here. 9/4 is available.WON 6/4.
THA’IR finished 3rd in this race last year and I think will go one better this year. We do not have the likes of Windhoek running this year and the race is easier. THA’IR always runs a sound race and his form in Meydan over the Winter will be good enough to win this. I also find it interesting that this is his first start in a race he run in last year. 4/1 is available. Win. WON 11/4.
Although MOVE IN TIME is having his 1st start of the season here and will probably not be 100%, I still have him way ahead of the field. He carries top weight but I think he may get away with it. The race is a class 3 today and MOVE IN TIME won a Group 1 at Longchamp on his last start back in October. He also seems to go well fresh with a win on his first start in 2013 and a decent 3rd on his first start in 2014. Although we will not see him at his best he has to go close. 5/2 is available with Coral.WON 4/9.
How AGE OF EMPIRE is available at 7/4 this evening is beyond me as surely this horse should be around the 4/6 mark. I imagine the price will disappear this evening and tomorrow morning and AGE OF EMPIRE will go off around evens. Our selection run in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot just under 2 weeks ago and finished a creditable 6th behind Burantino. He also finished in front of some decent horses which included Round Two and you have to ask yourself what price would that horse be if lining up here. I can tell you now he would go off around 1/3 which makes the 7/4 available about AGE OF EMPIRE look very tasty. The Coventry Stakes is also a Group 2 so he is right down in class with this being a class 2 contest. I was also impressed with the way AGE OF EMPIRE run on his penultimate start when blowing the field away on the bridle, at the end of May at York. Surely this horse wins this race as after watching the replays of dangers Gold Medallion and Dodgy Bob, I am pretty sure they are not in the same league as our selection. 7/4. WIN. WON 13/8.
MARKAZ is a horse who I have had in my notebook all season and strikes me as a horse who will keep on improving. I thought he was very good in a tough field last time out at Haydock. He finished just 2 lengths of Adaay and was just 1 length of Limato who finished runner up at Royal Ascot last week in a Group 1. I have MARKAZ around the 9/2 mark so I was surprised to see him as big as 7/1. E/W. WON 6/1.
I fancy GORDON LORD BYRON to take this just a week after Royal Ascot. I thought he run a sound race last week staying on all the way to the line. He faces nothing like the opposition he did at Ascot and I would go as far to say this is the easiest race he has contested in a number of years. Where the rest of the field are up in class GORDON LORD BYRON is right down in class. He does have a to give weight all around but I think he is by far the superior horse and will be bang there. 7/2 is available with Paddy Power. WIN. WON 100/30.
QUEST FOR MORE is drawn low in 3 which again is a big advantage. I think todays trip will be right up his street as he has looked a proper stayer on his starts this season. He put in a decent effort when runner up at Newmarket on his first start of the season and then improved further when stepped up in trip at Goodwood. Roger Charlton will have him spot on for this and I am happy with the 9/1 available. E/W.WON 15/2.
7:30 Newton Abbot
DUBAI PRINCE is only available at 9/4 but I have him down as a 6/4 favourite so equals a value bet for me. He is head and shoulders above this field and will take some beating. Had his first start for nearly a year 3 weeks ago at Stratford. He was 3rd beaten just 2 lengths and is sure to improve on that performance. WON 5/2.
2:30 Royal Ascot
DUTCH CONNECTION is a very smooth traveller who will appreciate the step back to 7f. I thought he ran a cracker in his only start this season in the 200 guineas and was travelling as well as anything 2 furlongs out. He just didn’t quite get home in my opinion. Before the race I looked at how DUTCH CONNECTION had matured from 2 to 3 and if I am being honest he looked a picture in the paddock. He had grown a lot through the winter and matured a lot physically. DUTCH CONNECTION was a Group 3 winner last season and was 2 lengths behind Gleneagles as a 2 year old in a Group 1. I find it interesting that trainer Charles Hills hs kept him away since the 2000 guineas and has obviously had this race targeted since that day. Our selection is huge at 18/1 which is available through Paddy Power. E/W.WON 14/1.
3:05 Royal Ascot
Round Two has been talked as the cert of Ascot but I am happy to take him on with BURATINO who visually has impressed me more than any other horse this season. The manor in which he won at Epsom 2 weeks ago was of a horse who oozed class. Everything seemed to come together and I think he now knows his job. BURATINO is stepped up in class but I have no doubt he is a group horse. He has so much speed and gears and the burst of speed he showed at Epsom is what you need to win a race like the Coventry Stakes. BURATINO is also out of Exceed And Excel who horses seem to do well at Ascot. This horse has a very bright future and I really find it hard to have him out of the frame. I think 9/1 is huge and has to be one of the best E/W bets of the week. E/W. WON 6/1.
5:00 Royal Ascot
So the best trainer in National Hunt, Willie Mulins teams up with the best jockey on the flat Ryan Moore with CLONDAW WARRIOR. They both teamed up to win this race in 2012 with Simenon so you have to take notice with the arrangement. CLONDAW WARRIOR is handicapped well on jumps form and Ryan Moore carries just 9st. On his last flat start he won a very competitive handicap finishing in front of some decent horses. He will be spot on for this and Willie Mullins is a master at getting horses ready for these flat races. 8/1 is available. E/W. WON 5/1.
Any horse who finishes 1/2 length behind Night Of Thunder and Toormore has to have a touch of class and that was exactly what AROD done on his last start at Newbury. He has improved from 3 to 4 and I think with 2 runs under his belt this season, will continue to go on the upward curve. Although AROD is short at 9/4 you have got to ask yourself what price would Night Of Thunder or Toormore be in this race? I would go 1/4 and 1/2 which tells me AROD at 9/4 is actually not that bad a price. WON 7/4.
Why ANTHEM ALEXANDER is not evens favourite for this is beyond me. She is available at a lovely 7/4 which in my book turns out to be a value bet. She won the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot last year beating Tiggy Wiggy and then finished 3rd and 2nd to the same horse on her next 2 starts. I believe she will improve further this season and Ed Lynam is a master with sprinters. He would of done plenty of work for her and the only way is up for ANTHEM ALEXANDER. Her last 3 races were Group 1 and 2s so she is actually down in class with this being a Group 3 today. 7/4 is available.WON 5/2.
12:55 – MUTHMIR – Chantilly
My horse to follow this season as simple as that. WON 6/4.
John Gosden has 2 high class horses entered in this so is going all out to win the race. They are WESTERN HYMN who is 2 from 2 around Sandown and looked very good on his last start. The other horse is EAGLE TOP and it looks like Frankie Dettori has chosen to ride this horse. He was high class last year winning at Royal Ascot and finishing behind the classy Tagrhooda. Both should improve from 3 to 4 and I am going to back them both looking to make a profit.
WESTERN HYMN 5/1 WON 11/4
EAGLE TOP 4/1
TULLAMORE DEW has had a number of entries over the last few weeks but has been pulled out each time. He is obviously ready and has been for a while but the trainer must bw waiting for the right race. He is obviously a bit long in the tooth but TULLAMORE DEW was a class act in the day running to a handicap mark of 142. He is now only rated 118 and today we have Joe Colliver claiming 3lb. I think he is more than capable of winning off this tiny mark and I am happy with the 7/1 available. WON 6/1
I am going to go double handed again with the Qatar Racing Club owned HOT STREAK and PEARL SECRET. They were 1st and 2nd in this race last year and conditions are similar. Both should be spot on after there run at Longchamp 2 weeks ago. PEARL SECRET is actually better at the weights this year and surprised he is the forgotten horse at 11/1.
HOT STREAK available at 5/1 Win.
PEARL SECRET available at 11/1 E/W. WON 10/1
Hamdan Al Maktoum is double handed here with MUTARAKEZ and MUTASAYYID. Paul Hanagan has chosen MUTARAKEZ but I am not making the mistake I made last week where he chose Waady and Adaay won the race. In hindsight I should of covered myself last week so I am making sure I do this week in case he has chosen the wrong horse again. Both should run solid races and both were winners on there last start. They are open to improvement and I am sure the winner will come from these 2.
MUTARAKEZ is available at 4/1 Win. WON 2/1
MUTASAYYID is available at 8/1 E/W.
STORM OF STARS has improved since finishing behind Great Glen and now holds the best form in the race with his runner up to Hans Holbein in the Chester Vase 2 weeks ago. A repeat of that performance will surely win this race. This horse is highly thought of and is out of Sea The Stars. 7/2 is available. WON 3/1.
4:50 Newcastle – FREE CODE is on a very attractive handicap mark of 84 after finishing 5 lengths 10th to Eastern Impact in the competitive Havana Handicap at Newmarket. That was a decent effort and he finished in front of some decent horses over an inadequate 6f. The drop in class and a return to 7f will be appreciated here. 4/1 is available. WON 9/2.
3:10 Newbury – K Abdullah has 2 entered in this and I think the race is between the both of them. TIME TEST is the chosen horse by Ryan Moore and represents the in form Roger Charlton. This is his 1st start of the season and although ran some good races last season he did look very young and was sure to improve as a 3 year old. WON 7/2.
3:10 Leopardstown – I am going to take on the favourite Stormfly with KISSED BY ANGELS who has only had 1 career start finishing 2nd at Limerick 2 weeks ago. KISSED BY ANGELS can only improve on that where I do wonder how much Stormfly has with 5 runs under him. Our selection is out of Galileo who produces very good horses. She has plenty of Group 1 entries this season including an Oaks entry at Epsom so they must think a lot of her. If she is going to go to the oaks she will need to win races like this and I think the 9/2 is great value. WON 13/2.
2:10 Chester – NEWSTEAD ABBEY Is a consistent horse who has run well in defeat at this track on 2 occasions. He was 4th here last May in a competitive handicap and then runner up in another decent race in September. He probably needed the run on his first start this season at Thirsk and NEWSTEAD ABBEY will come on a lot for that run. He is drawn in 5 which is ideal being a horse who is always not far off the pace. WON 11/2
TOMBELAINE – WON 11/2
4:25 Punchestown – PETITE PARISIENNE is the best horse in the race and even gets 5lb of her rivals for being a mare. The 4/1 looks very good to me as I think she should be clear favourite. Again trained by Willie Mullins she is hard to ignore. PETITE PARISIENNE has been running well in defeat in ground I would describe as unsuitable. I think the sounder surface will bring out further improvement and she is my Nap of the day. WON 11/4.
4:20 Punchestown – Anything trained by Willie Mullins seems to be winning and I like the look of BLOOD COTIL at a lovely 14/1. This horse was well fancied in the Grand Annual at the Cheltenham Festival where a big gamble took place and he was backed down to 4/1 fav. He was never going to win the race after a bad blunder at only the 3rd fence so we will never know where he would of finished with a clean round of jumping. On his penultimate start he looked very good when destroying a field by 11 lengths.BLOOD COTIL jumping was excellent that day and a repeat of that will put him right in the picture. I also find it interesting that Willie Mullins has stepped him up to 2m 5f here when he could of run in the weaker 2 mile race yesterday. He does have form over todays distance and I think he could improve for the trip. He is only a 6 year old so you would expect his better days to be ahead of him and improve into a decent sort. 14/1 is too big. WON 11/1.
5:30 Punchestown – A 2 horse race between Hurricane Fly and JEZKI. I have gone for the latter based on the price. Not much between them but JEZKI is 100/30. Our selection run 2 weeks ago at Aintree over 2m 4f and he did not look to be stopping at the line which suggests 3 miles will be no problem. JEZKI is also half brother to Jetson who won this race last year. That is another clue that 3 miles will be ideal. JEZKI beat Hurricane Fly here last year and I think age is on our side for a repeat performance. WON 5/2.
3:20 Perth – TANERKO EMERY was back to his oldself when winning at Ffos Las 2 weeks ago. Although he didn’t beat much it was a massive confidence booster for him. TANERKO EMERY is now rated 137 by the handicapper which is 10lb lower than where he was 18 months ago. This is actually a step down in class for our selection as he normally contests Class 1s and 2s. At 6/1 he is a great bet. WON 11/4.
1:45 Newbury – ARAB SPRING done nothing but improve last season too the point he went off evens favourite for Princess Of Wales Stakes at Newmarket. He disappointed that day but obviously something was wrong as he was not seen again all season. Previously he won 4 races on the bounce all in impressive fashion. I think he could improve further again this season and he goes well fresh. I am happy with the 3/1 available. WON 11/4.
4:25 Aintree – How can you not have AQALIM on the shortlist after finishing 5th in this year Pertemps Hurdle at the festival. He even remains on the same handicap mark so has got to be thereabouts. AQALIM is only a 5 year old so has plenty of improvement in him. The fact he is out of an ex flat horse tells me he will love the spring good ground here. 9/2 is available. WON 100/30
GRAND NATIONAL 2015 – 4:15 Aintree – MANY CLOUDS may be carrying plenty of weight but he is 5lb well in after running in the Cheltenham Gold Cup and now on a new handicap mark. MANY CLOUDS is a horse who has plenty of class which I think is needed to win a National these days. He won the Hennessy Gold Cup, won the Grade 1 Argento Chase in February and ran with credit to finish 6th in this years Cheltenham Gold Cup. MANY CLOUDS is a horse who will stay all day, jumps for fun and is owned by Trevor Hemmings who loves to win this race. The owner has won this with BallaBriggs and Hedgehunter in the last 10 years. I am actually surprised the bookies have MANY CLOUDS at a huge 33/1 as for me he is the forgotten horse. He has done nothing wrong all season. A race like this could bring out the very best in him. WON 25/1.
2:50 Aintree – SAPHIR DE RHEU is now back over fences where you would have to feel he belongs. He has had 3 starts over fences winning once and falling on the other 2 starts. I wouldn’t say his jumping is bad just made 2 mistakes which cost him. He has been more unlucky than anything else as any other race he would of got away with those jumping errors. When he did have a full round of jumping he absolutely bolted up at Exeter and that is the horse i think we will see here today. SAPHIR DE RHEU was good enough to finish 2nd in the world hurdle at Cheltenham which shows how much class he has. Paul Nicholls and Sam Twiston Davies do not stop bigging this horse up so he has to special and apparently when in training he is the best jumper of a fence in the yard. That is a big statement considering he has the like of Silviniaco Conti in training with him. When I priced the market up I had him down as evens favourite so although still short 6/4 seems fair. Had he stood up and won the races he fell in he would be 1/3 on. WON 13/8.
4:05 Aintree – Before looking at the prices I was expecting ON THE FRINGE to be around the 9/4 after winning so impressively in the Foxhunters at Cheltenham. When I saw he 4/1 I was very happy. This horse is all class and I think he will take to these testing fences like a duck to water. For a 10 year old he is very lightly raced and because he won so convincingly at Cheltenham I don’t think a mark would of been left. He won by a huge 17 lengths on the bridle at Cheltenham and if the same horse turns up here he will be very hard to beat. WON 5/2.
3:55 Fairyhouse – I am going to side with TWINLIGHT for this at the prices ahead of Mallowney who is as short as 1/2. It is 1-1 between these 2 this season and I think TWINLIGHT could be overpriced at 3/1. I certainly have it closer than the betting suggests and make TWINLIGHT 7/4 with Mallowney 4/5. When TWINLIGHT puts his best foot forward he is unstoppable which he showed at Leopardstown over Christmas. He won the Grade 1 Paddy Power Chase the day after Boxing Day and beat some very good horses including the favourite for this race. If he can produce that form he will be very hard to beat and as I previously stated 3/1 is a decent price for a good horse with only 2 other rivals to beat. WON 3/1.
2:35 Haydock – SOUTHFIELD VIC is 3 from 5 this season and is a fast improving horse. He just keeps finding and he don’t have any chinks in his armour. He was well fancied in a decent handicap at Cheltenham in January but his jumping let him down. On his next 2 starts at Wincanton he won both races in good fashion and I expect things to continue. He does have to carry top weight which is the only negative but we do have the classy amateur Sean Bowen claiming 5lb which will be worth the weight in gold as he is a very classy jockey who will go right to the top. 8/1 is about right. WON 5/1.
3:10 Haydock – VIRAK has to be involved here even carrying top weight. Again Sean Bowen claims 5lb which basically brings his handicap mark down from 144 to 139. He won his first 3 starts this season and looked a very good horse on every start. One of those wins came at Haydock so he obviously likes it around here and he won that race on a mark of 147. His last 2 starts have been in the Feltham Chase at Kempton which was won by Gold Cup winner Coneygree on Boxing Day. He was beaten out of sight in 3rd that day but now that horse has gone onto to win a Gold Cup that is understandable. On his last start in a Grade 2 at Ascot he didn’t look himself so I am willing to put a line through that form and give him another chance. He was obviously respected in that race as he went off 1/2. I am sure he will bounce back and Paul Nicholls has a habit of winning the big races on a Saturday this season. 4/1 is not the biggest price but I have tried to get him beat and everything keeps pointing back to VIRAK so I can’t leave him out. WON 5/2.
2:30 Meydan – I am going to take a chance on SOLE POWER for this even though he often runs below par at Meydan. I watched his last race and he was given an easy time by Richard Hughes and everything pointed towards this race. He is top class on his day as he showed last season winning group 1 after group 1. He is an 8 year old now so I believe the shrewd Ed Lynham will have him absolutely spot on with one last shot at the huge prize of £364k. 8/1 is on offer. WON 11/2.
5:00 Meydan – I am going to take him on with PRINCE BISHOP who is owned by Meydan racecourse owner Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum who would love nothing more than to win the worlds richest race. I not saying it is rigged but the sheikh’s seem to do really well in this race. PRINCE BISHOP was fancied in this last year ahead of the winner African Story. He finished down the field but has beat that same horse a few times. He finished 2nd here 3 weeks ago in a warm up race and showed he handled the surface. All his training would of been on this dirt and he will handle it more than most. For me with the background he is way overpriced at 16/1. WON 14/1.
3:25 Wincanton – JIMMY THE JETPLANE has been running in better company than this and I can’t believe the bookies are pricing him up at 12/1. He won a similar race to this at this very track and on. The same ground back in April. He obviously likes the track as he won quite easily. He has only been seen once since that start and that was at Cheltenham in October where he was quietly fancied going off 11/1 in a hot handicap. Ok he didn’t turn up and was pretty poor but I find it strange than we can get a bigger price here in a race which is no where near the quality of his run at Cheltenham. With course form and identical conditions 12/1 is way to big. WON 8/1.
3:10 Newbury – My racing brain is telling me to give CARRUTHERS a go in this as I think he has one more run in him. Following Coneygrees Gold Cup win last week I am sure CARRUTHERS will run a big race. Racing is a funny game and often produce great stories like this. This aside there is no doubting how well handicapped he is after running to 150 just 1 year ago and is now 17lb lower on 133. He also won a Hennessy Gold Cup around this track so the course is to his advantage. 8/1 is available. WON 8/1.
2:10 Newbury – Champagne Express will be really hard to beat but is worth taking on at the 11/10 as it leaves us with a bit of value with the rest of the field. ROCK THE KASBAH is highly thought of by Philip Hobbs and was mentioned as one of his novice stars early in the National Hunt season. He has not lived up to expectations but all his runs have been in Soft ground and I think this better ground will bring out improvement in him. He is sired by Shirocco who had plenty of winning form on todays ground and ROCK THE KASBAH has a knee action which will be suited to Good To Soft ground. The ground will only dry out further which I believe will only enhance his chances. At 9/2 he is certainly overpriced and a forgotten horse by the bookmakers. WON 8/1.
3:45 Newbury – THE SKYFARMER has not been the same horse over fences as he was over hurdles and once again I believe it is down to the ground. You see it over and over again horses improving in better ground and I think THE SKYFARMER will be one of those horses. If you compare his hurdle handicap mark of 140 against his Chasing handicap mark of 127 he is well in with the handicapper. He needs to improve his jumping but I think he will be a lot more springy in this ground. In all fairness he has been running in some really good races against some decent horses so this is a step down in class. He is out of Presenting and all horses sired by him generally do better on a sounder surface. 9/2 I think he is a cracking bet. WON 7/2.
3:15 Haydock – NEXILUS should get involved here. Won 3 on the bounce before travelling really well in a hot handicap at Aintree in December. He was going better than anything until the last that day and faded in the run in. That race was won by Dawalan who has gone on to be a mid 140 horse which shows the level he ran up to. Again we will need to forget his last run as he didn’t turn up that day. He is more than upto taking in this and with these 2 horses I am quite confident to take favourite on. 8/1 is too big. WON 8/1.
2:40 Cheltenham – I think MARTELLO TOWER is the forgotten horse here and is certainly overpriced a great odds of 10/1. I believe his style of running will be suited to Cheltenham and all he does is stay all day long. I am surprised he is as big as 10/1 as you can’t really knock his form. He beat Outlander over 3 miles and then was runner up to the same horse over 2mile 5f which is a trip too short for him. He also managed to beat todays 2nd favourite that day and even if that horse was having an off day it is form in the bag for me. MARTELLO TOWER will stay longer than the mother in law, Jumps, will love the undulations and is battle hardened. What more could you want for an Albert Bartlett horse.WON 14/1.
3:20 Cheltenham – CONEYGREE has done nothing wrong all season and has shown a real warrior attitude for a novice. He will go from the front and basically put the lot of these to the test. He is a brilliant jumper and by his style of running half of this field are going to get caught out big time and basically hate how the race is going to be run. So too start I have got half the field beat. His trainer made a brave choice by taking him out of the RSA but looking back it was the right decision with how impressive Don Poli was. His win at Newbury in the Denman Chase was a great effort and I like the way whatever question Nico asks of him he answers. Although people question him around Cheltenham he has won 2 races at the track so I don’t think that will be the problem. With his style of running he is going to get tired but I am of the opinion he may of done enough before they get back to him. 10/1 is available. WON 7/1.
4:00 Cheltenham – ON THE FRINGE has run in this race twice and placed on both occasions. He is a proper hunter chaser trained by Edna Bolger. ON THE FRINGE has never finished out of the frame bar a fall in this division. I was impressed with his final start at Leopardstown when just 1/4 length of Prince De Beauchene. That is top form as if that horse was in this field he would be a lot shorter than 8/1 available for our selection. WON 6/1.
2:40 Cheltenham – UXIZANDRE has been below par on his last 2 starts but would of hated the Soft ground so you can put a line through that. On good ground I think his jumping will put a lot of these to the test. He seems to come alive at Cheltenham with a 2nd in the JLT last year and a win here in November. Lets not forget he beat todays Champion Chase winner Dodging Bullets in November so obviously has a touch of class about him. Another horse who win or lose must surely be value at 20/1. WON 16/1.
1:30 Cheltenham -WINDSOR PARK is a horse I like a lot in this race. He needs to brush up his jumping but the way he has stayed on at the end of races has shown me that he will love Cheltenham. He finished behind Nichols Canyon last time but I am sure he will run that horse a lot closer over further and basically make it a race between those two horses. 11/2 is available. WON 9/2.
2:05 Cheltenham – I am not going to go into too much detail apart from DON POLI is my nap of the week. I love this horse and with Coneygree now out I can’t look past him. For me DON POLI has it all. He loves the ground, Cheltenham, The hill and stays forever. Personally I think he is the next Gold Cup winner. 2/1 is available but I can’t see past him. Also available at 33/1 this race and Gold Cup next year which I have taken this afternoon. WON 13/8.
5:15 Cheltenham – I have been waiting for this race for what seems years and MOON RACER. He was impressively good on his last outing at Cheltenham and has been wrapped in cotton wool ever since. From a very good source I have been told this is PIPES tip of the week and he will not be out of the frame. That is good enough for me and I am loving the 9/1 available. WON 9/2
3:20 Cheltenham – I absolutely love FAUGHEEN and cannot get it beat anyway I turn. I really think this is the next istabraq and will turn out to be one of the greats. He has everything you would want from a horse and although it has been mentioned about his jumping I think he was really fast over them at Kempton. Willie Mullins has only needed to run him once this season which tell you all you need to know as he don’t think he needs to do anymore learning. I think we are going to see a performance of pure brilliance and he will get a huge round of applause. 11/10 is available. WON 4/5.
2:00 Sandown – I really like the look of AS DE MEE for this. I think he could be well handicapped on 130. He ran a nice race at Leicester last time out and the return to better ground should improve him further. He has been working with Dodging Bullets at home over a mile and rumours are he has been beating him. That is only over a mile so can’t read much into it but still an amazing yardstick to be working with. I think 8/1 is a good E/W bet.WON 8/1.
3:00 Newbury – Not the best looking Class 3 but I do think VILLAGE VIC can win this comfortably. We tipped him up on his last start when maybe the ground was a bit Soft. He is a horse who goes much better on a sounder surface so the Good To Soft will bring plenty of improvement. VILLAGE VIC is on a lovely handicap mark of 120 a mark that I think he is a lot better than. He was rated as high as 134 over hurdles so by comparison you can how see well in he is. The other horses in the field are average at best so if I am being honest as long as his jumping improves I see no real dangers. 3/1 is available. WON 5/4.
3:45 Kempton – ROCKY CREEK is a classy horse who will take some beating here in my opinion. I can forgive his last run in huge Hennessy Gold Cup where something as obviously a miss as he was pulled up. The time before he finished runner up in the grade 1 JNwine Chase which is a top effort considering he finished in front of horses like Boston Bob, First Lieutenant and Ma Filleuule. The question you have to ask is what price would those horses be if lining up in this and it would certainly be a lot shorter than the 8/1 we have on offer. Conditions are perfect and I believe a track like Kempton will be suited to our selection. WON 8/1.
3:45 Taunton – FOX NORTON is overpriced at 7/1. He is a decent horse who I believe may be a a couple of pounds better than his handicap mark of 140. He was favourite for last years triumph hurdle after some top runs when 2nd to Royal Irish Hussar which was followed by a top performance beating a decent yardstick in Broughton at Doncaster. He then got a slight injury which kept him out of Cheltenham. He was next seen at Punchestown where he finished 3rd in Grade 1 behind Abyssial. A repeat of that performance will see him go close today. He has had 1 run this year and I must admit he was disappointing but I can always forgive one bad run as I know he is a lot better than that and it was against a very good field. In all honestly I can only see 1 or 2 dangers so I am very happy with 7/1.WON 5/1.
1:30 Ascot – Basically a 2 horse race between Tea For Two and ARPEGE D’ ALENE. I am inclined to go with the latter especially with 11/4 on offer. He won on his debut for Paul Nicholls over course and distance in November and was very impressive that day winning as he liked. He then ran a decent race in a grade 1 at Newbury. He could only manage a 5th that day but it was a hot looking race and considering it was only his 2nd run over hurdles he done well and ran with promise. I have no doubt he has plenty more to offer and I am very happy with the price. This is a horse to keep an eye on win or lose here especially when he jumps a fence. WON 5/2
3:25 Haydock – I am going to take a chance on last weekends most impressive winner BYGONES SOVEREIGN. I believe David Pipe knows he is in the form of his life to run him just 1 week after demolishing a decent field by a massive 28 lengths. He has gone up 13lb for that win but why else would Pipe run him if he didn’t think he was capable of winning here. Last weekend he blew me away and sometimes you got to take what you see at face value. 10/1 is available. WON 7/1.
2:40 Leicester – Being a man who follows the handicapper trying to spot mistakes I think DESERT JOE will reverse the form with 2 horses in this race. He has finished 2nd on his last 2 starts behind Azure Fly and Royal Palladium. Today he is 1 stone better off with Azure Fly and 10lb better off with Royal Palladium. On both occasions DESERT JOE pulled clear of 3rd by over 5 lengths so was running well in defeat. With the big weight difference today I think he is a cracking bet at 5/1. WON 11/4.
2:15 Leopardstown – NICHOLS CANYON is 2 from 3 this season and 1 of those losses was when he unseated the rider here over Christmas. On his previous 2 starts he could not of been more impressive and showed what a good horse he is. This a top class horse who was purchased off the flat by Graham Wylie out of John Gosden’s yard. His rating on the flat was as high as 104 and he often contested group races rarely running a bad race. Willie Mullins has 4 entered in this but it is NICHOLS CANYON who holds the value at 11/2. WON 9/2.
2:25 Exeter – REGAL ENCORE hasn’t quite reached the heights he was expected to after his 2nd in the 2013 Champion Bumper. I have to admit he has been a real disappointment but today he is stepped up in trip which I believe is just what he needs. He also runs off a tiny handicap mark of 129 and I have to say I know for a fact he is a better horse than that mark. Will Kennedy is on board and rides off a welterweight 10st 2lb. His hood has been removed which should help as will the good to soft ground. I expect a big run from REGAL ENCORE at a lovely 8/1. WON 8/1
2:45 Leopardstown – APACHE STRONGHOLD is a smooth travelling horse who put in a top effort last time out when running Don Poli all the way to the line. He jumped super that day and showed what a good horse he is. On his previous start he was beaten by todays favourite Valseur Lido into 2nd. He had his excuses that day as he was very novicey at his fences and must of hit about 6 fences. To still get 2nd after all those mistakes was actually a top effort. It will be hard to beat the favourite today but with a better round of jumping like he showed against Don Poli I think he could run Valseur Lido close and I know at the prices I would want to be on APACHE STRONGHOLD at 9/2.WON 9/2.
2:25 Newbury – As back up I wouldn’t want to be against CONEYGREE who although is a novice has done nothing wrong over fences winning twice. His debut was at this track where he won easily enough after 600 days off the track. On his next start he blew away the field by 40 lengths at Kempton and couldn’t of been more impressive. What was interesting was the times of his run against the time of the King George. CONEYGREE was only 4 seconds slower than Silvinaco Conti winning time which means he would of placed in the King George had he run in that race. Now this is thinking beyond the form lines but had he run with the time he put in what price would he be today for placing? Certainly skinnier than 7/2. This is a big ask as a novice but CONEYGREE has an excellent jockey in Richard Johnson on board and I see no reason why he ant improve further. He also gets weight from the field. WON 15/8.
2:05 Ffos Las -SILSOL is topweight here but the talented Jack Sherwood claims a handy 7lb which basically brings his riding weight down to 11st 3lb. Paul Nicholls rates this horse and rates him highly enough to run him in a top race at Cheltenham last time out against Rock On Ruby and Vaniteux. He could only manage a 5th that day but did travel well for a long way before fading just after the last hurdle. On his penultimate start he was impressive to win a top handicap at Newbury which was on todays ground. SILSOL has gone in the right direction this season and I can see him improving further. I am happy with the 8/1 available. WON 8/1.
3:00 Leicester – ALGERNON PAZHAM makes his debut over fences but he has always struck me as a chaser. His form over hurdles is the best in the field with form behind Urban Hymn, Royal Player, Dubai Prince and even beat Silsol who is trained by Paul Nicholls and has gone on to win some valuable races this season. With that form in the bag he has to be involved today. The only negative is the fact this is his debut but the plan has always been to go chasing with him. 4/1 is also available. WON 3/1.
3:35 Cheltenham – The field has cut up and we now only have 6 runners for the Cleeve Hurdle. I have been trying to get SAPHIR DE RHEU beat but sometimes you got to face up to what looks a sure fire winner to me. He has been disappointing over fences but this horse is the apple in Paul Nicholls eye and he has often compared him to Denman which is a big statement. He has fallen twice over fences so Paul Nicholls has switched back to hurdles for this. I remember Nicholls done the same thing with Big Bucks who was also owned by Andy Stewart. Look at what Big Bucks and I imagine they are confident of achieving the same with SAPHIR DE RHEU in this race. Not the biggest price at 2/1 but a horse I am very confident about.WON 3/1
22nd January 2015
3:15 Gowran Park – DJAKADAM went off favourite for the Hennessy Gold Cup and the words beforehand were of how high well handicapped he was from the Willie Mullins camp. After that race the whole camp were really disappointed and from there reaction I know they feel he was a lot better than that performance. He is now rated 3lb higher and does carry top weight but this field is poor compared to what he previously faced. Going back to last season DJAKADAM was travelling very well in the JLT Novices Chase before falling 4 out. We will never know if he would of won but he would of been involved I believe, just judging by the jockey Paul Townsend body language when he came down. If he is going to go to Cheltenham Festival with a lively chance he has to be involved today. 4/1 is available. WON 9/2
17th January 2015
1:50 Ascot – I like the attitude of BITOFAPUZZLE and his style of running. He is a straight forward horse who just keeps finding. He will relish todays conditions which will be a real stamina test. This is his first start at 3 miles and it is at this trip that I think he will come into his own. He has had 2 starts over hurdles winning on his debut at Wincanton and then beaten only a neck at Haydock by The Pirates Queen. He jumped brilliantly at Haydock and their was no shame in defeat on only his 2nd start over hurdles. The winner The Pirates Queen is a decent horse who has had 7 starts over hurdles so no shame in defeat. BITOFAPUZZLE can only improve and as stated the trip will bring out further improvement. Carole’s Spirit is the obvious danger but our selection has 5lb in hand which will come in handy in the closing stages. With everything in mind I am happy with the 4/1 available. WON 5/2
11th January 2015
2:30 Fairyhouse – MALLOWNEY is also overpriced at 8/1. We can forgive his last run as that was in a hot Grade 1 at Leopardstown which he was never going to win. His start before he finished 2nd to Felix Yonger as stated above and his handicap mark remained unaltered. MALLOWNEY is a very good jumper and has some good form in the bag behind the likes of Ballycasey, Road To Riches and Art Of Logistics. He won’t be bumping into any horses of that calibre today so I think the 8/1 is huge value. WON 8/1
10th January 2015
3:35 Warwick – HAWKES POINT is another horse who disappointed in the Welsh National after finishing 2nd in the same race a year earlier. Again I know he is better than that and has now been dropped 6lb which will be a big advantage. He is a horse who’s form reads 12122P on Soft ground or Heavy so will love todays conditions. Sam Twiston Davies on board is a big plus and with the form Paul Nicholls is in this season HAWKES POINT is handicapped to run a big race. 10/1 is available. WON 15/2