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A nice little win on the ticket builder yesterday at Yarmouth, and we'll go for more tonight at Beverley, where non-runners and draw biases may play their parts.
6.30 - Leg 1: We start with a selling race, where one horse is rated a stone higher than his nearest rival, and yet is still an 8/1 shot! Four Winds was rated 101 in 2009 when trained by Michael Bell, and he's obviously had serious issues since, as he didn't race for nigh on four years (!) prior to his return a fortnight ago. What ability remains is a huge question, and although I do like top rated in selling and claiming races, there's too much to take on trust with this fellow.
If you exclude him, Jessie's Spirit is seven pounds clear of the next horse, and she's a three-time winner (from just seven starts). Given the possible bias towards low draws, and I can see Jessie slipstreaming Tony Hollis and/or Blue Noodles, and pouncing late on to win. In point of fact, the well-backed course specialist, Eeny Mac, has also tended to make all when winning, and is well enough drawn to try that again.
But, with three of them probably going to get on with it, I reckon that Jessie's Spirit is a decent bet given that she's a stone or so-plus 'well in' with her nearest rivals, and that the race sets up for her, and that the trip and ground look spot on.
If I'm wrong on that, it'll be off to the pub early, but I'm backing her and I'm banking on her here.
A - 6 (Jessie's Spirit)
7.00 - Leg 2: Three left in here, so it's win only. There's not a lot between them and there's no sense in trying to pick between them either. All three on A.
A - 1 (Split Rock), 3 (Peter Mac), 4 (Blockade)
7.30 - Leg 3: Altharoos could be better than these, and earns sole A status. But we'll take some B's in case of accidents, and also because there are two other places to go at anyway.
Rex Romanorum is well drawn in two to try to make all, and makes the B ticket. And Muftarres, Shadowtime and Copperwood all make at least some appeal.
A - 5 (Altharoos)
B - 1 (Shadowtime), 2 (Copperwood), 7 (Muftarres), 12 (Rex Romanorum)
8.00 - Leg 4: There's very little pace in this race, on a pace favouring track, and that could well reward a brave/enterprising jockey who bids to make all. Guessing who that might be is foolish, to it's time to polish the old scattergun and fire at will!
Rocket Ronnie and Lexington Blue both have a bit in their favour, despite the latter's apparent bad draw. My thinking is that if there's no pace, he'll be able to tack across and get a position. We'll see.
Reggie Bond is expected to improve for the step up in trip on a track where he's performed well already, and Multilicious is a willing lass with lots of upside. I'll lob in the well backed Birdy Boy and possible pace angle, El Molino Blanco for a sextet of prospects.
A - 2 (Lexington Blue), 3 (Rocket Ronnie)
B - 5 (El Molino Blanco), 6 (Multilicious), 7 (Birdy Boy), 8 (Reggie Bond)
8.30 - Leg 5: By contrast to the last race, this big field sprint has loads of pace, including from Bondi Beach Boy (B3), the pretty short favourite. But B3 is solid. He's won three in big fields, has bossed this grade, has won his only race here, and has won for tonight's jockey. He must be on A. I'll double him up on there with Pull The Pin, a pace chaser that is well drawn to sit and wait for the gap. If it comes, he might win.
On B, I like the well supported Ace Master (well it is Wimbledon week!), and the late, late, late closers, Little Jimmy Odsox and Headstight, in case there's a monster speed burn up at the front: an entirely credible scenario.
A - 8 (Bondi Beach Boy), 16 (Pull The Pin)
B - 4 (Little Jimmy Odsox), 10 (Ace Master), 13 (Headstight)
9.00 - Leg 6: A tough closer, and we've used most of our available ammo, and the problem is I really like a rag... Dean Iarracht has been a brilliant performer here, and is readily excused his most recent clunker on the track because the ground was soft. On good or quicker round here, his form is 111522. He's now down to a dangerously playable handicap mark of just 51 and he's a horse that comes to himself in mid- to late-season. For this perm, I'm playing him on B, in case I've got it wrong, and I'm playing a shorter priced horse on A. It's a bit of a 'bottle' job, and if you've more folding you might play both on A (like I will be).
The shorter priced A is Chankillo, a nag that has beaten three of these in recent days, has form at the trip, and beat favourite Blue Top off levels last time. He's giving that one a pound here which ought to make them about the same price. Blue Top is more consistent, but Chankillo proved he's more capable on his day. Let's hope today's his day.
Actually, I'm going to hurl Blue Top on B too, just in case!
A - 6 (Chankillo)
B - 9 (Blue Top), 10 (Dean Iarracht)
Just A's - 1 x 3 x 1 x 2 x 2 x 1 = 12 bets
All picks - 1 x 3 x 5 x 6 x 5 x 3 = 1350 bets (!)
Ticket builder optimized perm - see below.
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