HEY, AMIGOS! IT‘S A NAPS TREBLE FOR DAQMAN: Now it’s a naps hat-trick! After Friday’s supernap (20 points win) and Saturday’s bull’s-eye bet (50 points won), Daqman yesterday dared nap a top weight in a National, The Two Amigos (WON 11-8), though he’d been raised 25lb in three starts. His naps treble:

WON 10-11 REETH (supernap)
WON 4-1 TEDHAM (nap and bull’s-eye bet)
WON 11-8 THE TWO AMIGOS (Sussex National)

HE’S NATIONAL HERO 15-7 CLEAR OF PRICEWISE: That Sussex National win at Plumpton sent him 15-7 up on Pricewise of the Racing Post. It was his third big-race-value hit in the six days of the new year after Midnight Shadow (WON 8-1) and Tedham (WON 4-1).


Football managers earn a small fortune. Their players cost big fortunes and make big fortunes: many millions. For managers, read racehorse trainers. For players, read horses.

The skills that must be honed between them are the same: fitness allied to developing a particular ability, guided by shrewd placing within the team and on the track or pitch where the future event takes place.

May I introduce a consummate winner with those skills. Consistently lean and hungry, well turned out and groomed, always with her mind on her work.

And I’m not talking about the horse but the trainer! That’s Venetia Williams (pictured).

See how they run for her! And, like their trainer, just when the Press has labelled them, they do something different. And special.

Like Mon Mome (‘hurdles failure in 12 races’) wins a Grand National. Like £400 (‘cheap filly’) Lady Rebecca wins three Cleeve Hurdles in a row at Cheltenham (10-15 all told) and a total of £155,000, big money way back when. Bargain buy or what!

I rang the supercool Venetia a year or two back and said: why do you never train a winner at tomorrow’s meeting? The answer I deserved: ‘I didn’t know I didn’t. But I’m sure I will.’

Along with the rest of the world’s Press (how come she never looks irritated by it?), I asked her way back – as they all repeated yet again at the weekend – How come you train most of your winners in the mud? (The answer they deserved: ‘Oh, perhaps they get used to it where I train’).

Where she trains is near Hereford. And how she trains! Her form is currently 11003041211, still standing (10-24 in the last fortnight for a 42% strike rate; yes 42).

That means that the first runner of her six entered at Chepstow today, Lady Chartreuse, could complete her a hat-trick.

The treble was started by Houblon des Obeaux, superbly prepared to win its long-term target, Saturday’s Veterans Chase Final at Sandown.

Within 15 minutes, Ms Williams, won another big one, Calipto trotting up at Wincanton. She had finished off December with five winners out of six and launched her 2019 campaign with a double on New Year’s Day.

I don’t think I’ve tipped one of them. I get shy, you see, where ladies are concerned. After all there’s been a long gap in my life since Sandy Denny died and Isabelle Corey lost out to the cheaper version, Brigitte Bardot, when god created woman.


1.05 Chepstow This could be fought out by front-runners Queen’s Magic (BETDAQ 4.6 taken) and local-queen Venetia Williams’ Lady Chartreuse (9.8), who has just found some form and is in receipt of a stone.

Queen’s Magic separated subsequent winners in first and third when runner-up at Uttoxeter and drops down in grade and trip from a class-2 try at Cheltenham.

2.25 Musselburgh Small fields have spoiled most of the Edinburgh programme but we should be able to find an appealing offer here.

Urban Kode, dropped 9lb since August, has been given a chance by the handicapper. Dance Of Fire’s yard had 4-8 around the turn of the year.

But Nicky Richards (currently 3-5) has noticeably improved his fire power this year, and Wot A Shot has won in this class on good ground over today’s CD. Chance it at 5.2 on BETDAQ.

3.50 Chepstow Because it was a conditionals race, Venetia Williams’ Cloudy Glen escapes a penalty for his Haydock success when stepped up to today’s trip.

Hugh Nugent, successful then, retains the ride, and I expect to see him try to make all the running.

Caswell Bay could improve on his drubbing at Sandown but this handicap is a tall order for a four-year-old maiden.

Dual handicap winner William B was favourite to beat 143-rated David’s Charm when last seen in Ireland (finished lame) and ‘could be anything.’ A pound punt at 28.0.

5.45 Wolverhampton Nothing worth the nap over Jumps so, given the choice, I’ll take a solid AW performer.

Given Choice has scored over 1m 23f and 1m 4f but, arguably, her best run was on the last day when second, stepped up in trip and massively higher in grade (class 5 to class 2) at Chelmsford.

The dangers don’t seem to threaten all that much, Tidal Watch (a maiden on the Flat likely to be prepping for hurdles) and Yasir (short of speed as an 11-year-old).


1.05 Chepstow (win 20)
BET 5.5pts win QUEEN’S MAGIC

2.25 Musselburgh (win 20)
BET 4.75pts win WOT A SHOT

3.50 Chepstow (win 10, win 20+)
BET 1pt win and place WILLIAM B

5.45 Wolverhampton (supernap)

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