Double Dutch, 11th August 2015
The dog wasn't available yesterday, so I had to pick again! And results, although not as good as I'd like, were an improvement upon Saturday's poor show.
On paper, a winner, a runner-up and two third places looks pretty good, but that's not good enough to make any money and as bare results actually flatter me!
Race 1 was at Ballinrobe, where we had second and third, separated by just 0.75 lengths (I expected them to be close), which looks well, but they actually finished 20 lngths behind a winner who himself was two lengths down at the last before the leader fell! Bare results often hide the full story.
All of which meant the Windsor race was about salvaging pride, which it did to some extent. I liked Bishops Leap, I though 5/2 was a good price and I felt that Breden would need a run after 647 days. As it was, the market didn't like Bishops Leap, sending him off at 4/1, but he overhauled Breden late on, as the latter expectedly tired, beating him by half a length with our other runner three lengths further back.
Monday's results were as follows:
Punch Bag : 2nd at 9/4 (adv 2/1)
The Scourge : 3rd at 11/4 (adv 6/1)
Bishops Leap : WON at 4/1 (adv 4/1)
Smartie Artie : 3rd at 5/2 (adv 2/1)
Results to date:
646 winning selections from 2289 = 28.22%
203 winning bets in 593 days = 34.29%
P/L : +110.09pts (+9.29% ROI)
REMINDER: THERE IS NO DOUBLE DUTCH ON SUNDAYS
Just as Monday was better than Saturday, further improvement is required from...
Mister Rockandroll has been in good form of late and took a step up in both trip (up 2f) and class (C5 to C4) readily in his stride when winning the £11,000 Brighton Challenge Cup just 5 days ago. He's turned out quickly under a penalty before any reassessment kicks in and a slight 0.5f drop back in trip and a return to Class5 racing should make this an easier affair for him.
It's interesting to see Joe Fanning take the ride today ahead of Nicky Mackay and Joe is an expert at judging the pace of a race and I feel the slightly easier task with a better jockey on board could more than compensate for a career-mark high and I'd not be surprised to see Mister Rockandroll go in again at 7/4 BOG.
Of the rivals, Card High looks best placed to mount a serious challenge, having 3 wins and 2 runner-up finishes from his last 7 outings with all three wins coming wearing today's tongue tie. He has finished second on each of his last two runs since winning at Newcastle in May, but hasn't been beaten by far and was only half a length behind the consistent Sergeant Pink last time out.
That was over today's course and distance off the same mark as today, but as it was a Pro-Am Ladies race, today's jockey Emma Sayer was unable to use her claim, but the 5lbs should be quite useful this time around. On paper, Card High has a little to find from the main selection, but I do expect him to be there or thereabouts as he usually is and we can get 11/4 BOG for him here.
Sleepy Blue Ocean isn't as good on turf as he is on A/W, as a 16 race losing streak over 2 yrs will testify. But he has shown signs of a return to form thanks to a dropping mark of late and despite his recent poor run still has a 5/19 record on good to firm ground. He's a 3-times winner over this trip on turf, but has an overall record of 10/59 over 5f, so he clearly gets the trip.
He has won over course and distance in the past and in jockey Jim Crowley (who steered him to that C&D win), he has a rider with a good record at this venue and although Sleepy Blue Ocean isn't an obvious contender, I think he'll go well today at 7/2 BOG, but...
...I'd expect him to be paying second fiddle to the 9/4 BOG Hardy Black, who looks to have settled into some decent form having dropped down from the 7f/1m trips he tried and largely failed at in the past. Two good efforts resulting in fairly narrow defeats over 6f at the start of July were followed up by a nice win at Wetherby last time out.
That was his third sprint run in three weeks, but he's now had a similar amount of time off to recover from his exertions, where he came from last to first to just get up by half a length late on. Jockey Stephen Donohoe was riding him for the first time that and with the knowledge gained from that run, he's back in the driving seat again today and for me, Hardy Black is the one to beat, especially with fewer rivals to pass if adopting the same tactics.
4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles as follows:
Mister Rockandroll / Hardy Black @ 7.53/1 (13/8 & 9/4 : Ladbrokes)
Mister Rockandroll / Sleepy Blue Ocean @ 10.81/1 (13/8 & 7/2 : generally)
Card High / Hardy Black @ 11.19/1 (11/4 & 9/4 : Coral)
Card High / Sleepy Blue Ocean @ 15.88/1 (11/4 & 7/2 : generally)