7-1 AND 11-2 SATURDAY WINNERS FOR DAQMAN: Arthurian Legend (WON 7-1) in the Silver Cup at Chepstow and Kirthill (WON 11-2) for Kieren Fallon at Newbury were key to yet another winning day for Daqman yesterday.
151 POINTS PROFIT: That makes it 10 winning days out of 13, though one of the successful days was only by pennies. Daqman’s profit since last Monday week is 151 points. He is 105.75 up on his lays (13 out of 15).
Lacks understanding of the subject; could do better. The one thing we asked of racing’s promoters of the new deal was that we should herald the beginning of term and have a fanfare ending.
To say that the Flat peters out into limbo is true of this country – again – but hardly the current topic. In fact, the world scene continues but without Frankie Dettori: banned from riding in the Breeders Cup.
At the same time the jumps season has its first full day on its own account today, with Ruby Walsh threatening not to come over from Ireland so often, and Christophe Soumillon no doubt thinking something similar about any trips from France after the farce that followed the Champion Stakes.
Any future racing historian could be forgiven for thinking up a conspiracy theory, or a digging up a suicide pact, within British horseracing.
It’s not as if Dettori deliberately clipped the heels of a horse in front – he would be crazy to try it – and it’s not as though Walsh and Soumillon deliberately hurt their winning horse or connived and calculated to breach the rules.
We are all criminals in a society which is run by people who can only count on their fingers, and fervently follow their little shopping lists of rules, having poor understanding of the subject or the damage they cause.
Flat racing on turf now has a close season in which to try to put things right. Meanwhile, our big winners will simply fade away into the mists of November.
Why not a season’s ending to remember, where television can see presentations to the best in our sport, the season’s great races rerun on a giant mid-track screen, celebrity owners and trainers invited to tell their stories on a day of celebration?
Instead, we are left with the bitter taste of bureaucratic divisiveness and conflict and, on the world scene, the racing nations are laughing at the story of Soumillon and asking: where’s Frankie this year? We never saw him as a bad boy of racing; why has he suddenly turned villain?
CAMELOT Madness pervades the betting scene, too. The punter also fails to learn the lessons of the past. He’s just had a pair of top two-year-old trials in which, on all known form, Horse A has registered a rating of around 118, beating the winner of the Coventry Stakes and the National Stakes.
Horse B beat horses rated only 109 and 105, the runner-up from the same stable as Horse A and regarded as inferior to him at home, and the third an incomplete animal whose trainer says he will be ‘better next year.’
However, Horse B did it extremely well, literally – on pounds per length – performing to around 113 or so, and potentially to, well, maybe even 118.
So how do you bet Horse A v Horse B, if both are around 118 now, and both could improve massively, or deteriorate greatly, before they meet, if ever they do, in the Guineas at Newmarket next Spring at the Derby at Epsom?
You certainly wouldn’t bet 4-1 or 5-1 Horse B and 16-1 Horse A but that’s how Camelot and Parish Hall appear in the Guineas and Derby markets after the Dewhurst and the Racing Post Trophy.
Their success follows another huge hype, this time of a horse that could be as good as his near relative, the fabulous Sea The Stars. He would surely have to keep close company with Camelot and Parish Hall in your market, wouldn’t he?
Yet Born To Sea is now twice the price of Camelot in one Classic and FOUR times his odds in the other. How convenient for bookmakers that punters forget in a few days and follow hype blindly like a ball in a bowling alley caught in the gulley.
2.50 Wincanton (Desert Orchid Silver Cup) We’ve had six months to forget the jumps scene, but the same brilliant prepping and placing of horses by Philip Hobbs prevailed on Saturday when Arthurian Legend won the Silver Trophy at Chepstow.
But check out a race earlier, the Persian War Novices’ Hurdle, won by a Hobbs’ youngster, Fingal Bay, in a contest which his Arkle winner, Captain Chris, ran in last year.
I’ll be listing my jumps horses to follow, and appraising the two-year-olds for next year’s Classics in two feature articles later in the week, called Horses For 2012.
Wincanton is a nursery for future stars and the Desert Orchid Silver Cup (2.50) has seen horses of the calibre of Celibate (2001) and Edredon Bleu, the 2003 scorer.
Last year’s winner, Gullible Gordon, has to ‘do an Edredon Bleu’ if he is to carry 11st 12lb to victory and Paul Nicholls is claiming off him.
‘Gordon’ lost the plot after Wincanton last October. His record fresh is 0140 – mixed messages – but two of his three wins have come on a sound surface.
Another local trainer Colin Tizzard, from just across the Dorset border at Milbourne Port, had back-to-back wins in the summer from Intac (also claimed off) but at a lower level.
Ballycarney has to bounce straight back after a long lay-off and his two previous lengthy absences have produced ‘figures’ of 0P. But last time he ran, around a year ago, he beat Templer, with Gullible Gordon fourth.
Another youngster who likes today’s ground is Ballyvesey, who hasn’t been out of the frame in 13 consecutive races and showed that a race like today’s was within his compass when runner-up in a 3m 4f Listed at Uttoxeter in June.
Ethiopia is also consistent – 11 consecutive in the frame when finishing the course – has won on firm ground over a trip similar to today’s (beat Templer at Chepstow though not at Newton Abbot).
There’ll be some fast fencing at Wincanton today and I shall rely on the ultra-safe conveyance Ballyvesey, whose best form is on similar, turning tracks and he was only five when runner-up to Gullible Gordon in the race last year.
3.10 Aintree The Reveleys had a quiet spell in the Noughties but are back in the big time, not the least due to James Reveley’s riding skills, and the son of a Derby winner Benny Be Good has made his mark over fences this summer.
Whether he can now cope with hurdles, 16lb higher than for his last win, or – come to that – can the favourite Galaxy Rock, also back to the lesser obstacles six months after making all over fences at Cheltenham and 12lb higher than for his final hurdles success?
It’s the same story yet again with Fredo: returns from chasing; 10lb higher than for his last hurdles win, right back in February 2010.
In fact, this seems to be a race of chasers warming up for the bigger obstacles, so maybe we need something still intent on hurdling, with a light weight and stamina to burn. Lamboro Lad at 18.5 on Betdaq could be that horse.
4.20 Aintree The Tizzards hope they have another Cue Card, odds-on winner of this race last year. Theatre Guide (same ownership) suffered last season in bumpers where there was no pace on. He should fare better at a place like Aintree.
The favourite, Barbatos, was beaten twice in the Spring when a hot fancy and looks exposed. As well as Theatre Guide, I have McCoy riding for me; Donald McCain with an Oscar gelding; and several others unexposed. I’ll risk a lay and make it a Double Whammy race.
BET 4.7pts win BALLYVESEY and 0.8pts win (stakes saver) GULLIBLE GORDON (2.50 Wincanton)
BET 1.1pts win and place LAMBORO LAD (3.10 Aintree)
BET 3.1pts win MISTER STICKLER (3.45 Aintree)
BET 3.5pts win ORION EXPRESS and 1.9pts win (stakes saver) MY BROTHER SYLVEST (4.00 Wincantcon)
LAY to win 10pts BARBATOS and BET 5.4pts win THEATRE GUIDE (4.20 Aintree)
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