50 UP THANKS TO 7-2 WINNER OF THE ARC: Daqman landed his 50th winner of the season against Pricewise of the Racing Post and now leads 50-38 after his bets were winner, third and fourth in the Arc de Triomphe yesterday and a trio of his Fortune Cookies had the first and second. Alpinista (WON 7-2), taken at huge value at 11-2 on BETDAQ, followed his French Gold Cup winner on the first day.
Saturday: French Gold Cup
WON 7-10 KYPRIOS (FORTUNE COOKIE, 1.94 taken on BETDAQ)
Sunday: Arc De Triomphe
WON 7-2 ALPINISTA (FORTUNE COOKIE, 6.4 taken on BETDAQ)
KEEPING THE ARC IN THE FAMILY
It was a family occasion. The racing nation’s applause for yesterday’s Arc de Triomphe winner, Alpinista, was shared out equally with the trainer punters love.
Sir Mark Prescott’s ability to tend his horses and his clever placing of them to win, win and win again in unbeaten sequence – sometimes six or seven times – from class-5 novice to quality handicapper has been famous since way back when.
Way back, in fact, before he trained the grey mare Albanova, then her daughter Alwilda (also grey) and finally her granddaughter, the ultimate great grey, Alpinista, after Alwilda had a little tryst with a certain stallion, Frankel.
Right down the line to yesterday’s courageous victory, Alpinista maintained the family tradition and won her eighth race in a row.
They’re saying it wasn’t the greatest Arc; they always do when the three-year-olds ‘get beat’; but the French Derby star, Vadeni, winner of the Eclipse, and last year’s Arc winner, Torquator Tasso, were unable to catch the first five-year-old mare to win since 1937.
Prescott, the quality trainer, is a quiet man whose actions speak louder than words; the Heath House stable, his happy family of people and horses, reflecting Sir Mark’s courteous and kind approach, often with a twinkle in his eye and an unexpected riposte which can catch out the unwary scribbler or the man with a microphone.
You have to be on the ball and you fear to tread in his private moments, unless allowed in. You’re among family but you must respect: you can always ask a question but you must be prepared for the answer.
Yesterday at Longchamp, before retreating from the backslappers, he simply said: ‘I’ve been lucky.’ He was fighting back the tears, remembering the years, as we all do.
But what else do you say when a career of wit, warmth and multiple winners says it all for you..
MIDNIGHT LOOKS EARLY WINNER
⭕ 1.25 Pontefract Less than 24 hours since her Group 1 success in the Prix de l’Abbaye at Longchamp, Hollie Doyle has hot-footed it to Pontefract today and can keep the winning run going with Midnight Lion in the opener for Charlie and Mark Johnston.
He was a beaten favourite at Goodwood last time out but in a much better contest and was only beaten a length by Galactic Jack with the form looking solid enough. Midnight Lion was staying on well in the closing stages and should be suited by the challenge of the Pontefract circuit which is even tougher than Goodwood, especially with the ground on the testing side.
Forceful Speed is burdened with a penalty for a narrow Wolverhampton win which makes him vulnerable.
The Johnstons also saddle the debutant filly Red Bird and perhaps the best clues on this one’s chances will come from the Betdaq Betting Exchange – but having said that there were no positive or negative signs earlier this morning – watch this space!
MAGIC FOR TRICKY CONTEST
⭕ 5.25 Pontefract Magical Effect could bookend the card for Hollie Doyle. The Ruth Carr trained ten-year-old is a better horse with give in the ground and is twice a course and distance winner here.
He finished a close up fifth at Redcar last time out and the handicapper has dropped him a pound for that run. Hollie Doyle also partners him for the first time which has to be considered a positive.
Run This Way is another that should be suited by the slower ground and whilst her recent course and distance placings of 8th and 7th don’t leap off the page she hasn’t been beaten that far and is another one to have dropped down the weights (2lb).
SECRET’S OUT – IT’S MANHATTAN
⭕ 7.30 Wolverhampton Secret Moment makes the market here but the Godolphin owned runner was beaten in the same grade at Kempton last time out over this same seven furlong trip.
He looks opposable and we should get a good run for our money with Ed Dunlop’s Manhattanville who might not need to do too much more than repeat his course and distance third last time out. The visor seemed to bring about an improvement then and it’s fitted again tonight.
1.25 Pontefract (win 10, nap)
BET 15.4pts win MIDNIGHT LION
5.25 Pontefract (win 10)
BET 2.9pts win MAGICAL EFFECT
7.30 Wolverhampton (win 10)
BET 2.0pts win MANHATTANVILLE
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