ALL ABOARD THE TIZZARD EXPRESS: There’s a horse they call Tempest running for the king of the jumps aces, trainer Colin Tizzard, at Taunton today. But what’s the secret of his gravy train, as revealed in the stats? Where best to catch that ‘train’?

CHAMPION CHANCE AT BETDAQ 10.0: In the same race at Taunton, champion-jockey Richard Johnson is booked for a ‘hidden horse’ at 10.0 on BETDAQ. The Daqman nap is at Hereford, an animal bred for the trip and from a local heavy-ground stable.


You can’t ignore Colin Tizzard; he’s winning everywhere. Well, yes sometimes you can, actually; and no he isn’t, really. Take next Tuesday at Exeter, for instance, just a 61-mile trip for him down the A303.

The yard of Thistlecrack, Cue Card, Native River and Finian’s Oscar – to name but a few, as they say – has its worst results at Exeter: a modest strike rate of 11% and a colossal loss to punters to one-point level stakes of 132 points, if you’d backed his 226 losers there for only 29 returns.

The stable’s second worst track of all is one of today’s venues, Taunton (just 46 minutes away across the Somerset Levels), where Waterloo Warrior (1.05) and Tempestatefloresco (2.10) represent Team Tizzard from six left in at the five-day stage.

Taunton’s Tizzard returns also work out at only 11% winners to runners. Though it’s not quite as expensive as Exeter, it has seen 191 Tizzard losers in five seasons.

Percentage-wise, his worst venues are Stratford (though non-handicap hurdles are good), Worcester, Ffos Las and Sandown. So where, then, does the farmer turned horse whisperer bring home the bacon? Well, try these tracks this month:

Wetherby (Saturday): Only 12 Tizzard runners have been sent the 284 miles North, but four have won for a 33% strike rate and 12 points profit to a one-point level stake. Solid returns but shortish prices; not a patch on Newcastle and Uttoxeter.

Newcastle (January 23): It’s a 673-mile round trip as the crow flies but worth the effort: stable results 39% (that’s 5-13) with a 27-point profit.

Huntingdon (January 27): A 29% strike rate from 17 runners (five winners) for an eight-point profit.

Uttoxeter (January 28): More than three hours drive (374 miles there and back), and between five and seven hours on the train. Stable results: 22% strike rate with 49 points profit from 13 winners.

It seems that you can rely on the Tizzard stable when it travels (it also does well at Haydock and Folkestone, and one or two others, though the good percentages are from small samples).

And you don’t have to make a 14-hour return rail journey (if you can get a a train at all!) to Uttoxeter. BETDAQ can cover all your investments from the moment you wake up to the smell of breakfast right through to the ‘off’.. literally from pillow to post!


2.10 Taunton There’s a high wind blowing across Somerset, drying out the track for the Tizzard good-to-firm-ground winner Tempestatefloresco, called Tempest in the yard and by the sire, Storming Home.

Red Devil Lads needs some rain to blow in, and could well have Troika Steppes and Tindaro for company up front. With Calett Mad and Qualando also liking to be in the van, this looks set up for a stamina finish.

On all known form, Tindaro won’t last out, and Troika Steppes seems to need hilly country (wins only at Cheltenham and Leicester).

The step up in trip for Qualando is not advised by his pedigree, and he’s easy to back this morning at 4.6 in the BETDAQ orange, so Calett Mad looks ‘the one most likely to’ of these two youngsters.

Roc d’Apsis (Rocky in the yard) is back to the mark which brought him class-2 success at Kempton a year or so ago, and he was a running-on third in a Grade 3 there next time out. He’s a hidden horse here, after two indifferent runs in the autumn. Richard Johnson now booked.

I managed a winner, and 8.4 (BETDAQ) runner-up – a Ladbrokes forecast – with The Nipper and Phoeniciana at Lingfield yesterday, so I shall try again with Calett Mad the win and Roc d’Apsis (10.0 offers) the win-and-place outsider.

2.40 Taunton Midnight Tour was thumped by the handicapper for winning at Hereford in November, and Space Oddity has a 7lb penalty for an Exeter success on the soft.

Volpone Jelois, a 2m winner on the course (good ground) on New Year’s Day, needed strong driving to score, but he would, wouldn’t he. He is bred for today’s trip.

Stepping up Sleep Easy is more experimental but Resolution Bay, a Presenting, related to 3m 1f and 3m 3f winners, should enjoy the extra furlongs.

Five horses were separated by only five points in the BETDAQ orange this morning but the overround was only 108%, so I bet short odds that I coud get the winner in two: Resolution Bay (4.7) or Volpone Jelois (5.0).

3.50 Hereford Calling in a claimer suggests that Harry Fry is clearly worried about the turn-around in weights between his Exeter winner, Lamanver Odyssey, and the third mare home that day, Lady Karina.

That was over 18f and the step up to 22f in the mud here will well suit Lady Karina, a Kayf Tara from the heavy-ground stable of Venetia Williams, who trains just down the road.

DAQMAN BETS (staked 1 to 9 for strength)
BACK 8pts win CALETT MAD, and 2pts win and place ROC d’APSIS (2.10 Taunton)
BACK 5pts win on each RESOLUTION BAY and VOLPONE JELOIS (2.40 Taunton)
BACK 9pts win (nap) LADY KARINA (3.50 Hereford)

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