Double Dutch, 18th December 2015
Wednesday's win aside, my current stint in the DD hotseat has proved to be a frustrating one. I seem to find a winner a day, but it always seem to be paired with a placer meaning the selections were decent, but not quite good enough and that was the case yesterday, I'm afraid.
Newton Thistle became the latest Ben Pauling winner finishing 14 lengths clear of his nearest rival in a field he spread out well with our other runner Smart Exit in third, 25 lengths off the pace.
This took us with hope to Southwell, where Countermand was really backed and went off as low as 13/8, but could only manage to finish third in what was a pretty lacklustre display with Serenity Now even more disappointing in fifth place.
Thursday's results were as follows:
Newton Thistle : WON at 5/2 (adv 9/4)
Smart Exit : 3rd at 5/2 (adv 5/2)
Countermand : 3rd at 13/8 (adv 9/4)
Serenity Now : 5th at 5/2 (adv 11/4)
Results to date:
757 winning selections from 2714 = 27.89%
237 winning bets in 703 days = 33.71%
P/L : +75.88pts (+5.40% ROI)
REMINDER: THERE IS NO DOUBLE DUTCH ON SUNDAYS
Certainly not a race for the purist, as this looks a woefully mediocre contest, but one that should play into the hands (hooves?) of my two selected runners. So if I get this right, it will, of course, have been a great race! 😀
Georgieshore was unlucky to go down by a head at Leicester a fortnight ago in very similar conditions to today. The heavy ground didn't inconvenience him too much and but for bumping into the in-form Arquebusier, would surely have opened his account that day. So, same race trip and ground conditions at play here, and he's now had the benefit of a run after an 8 months absence.
So, assuming the cobwebs are gone and the booking of the more race-savvy Paddy Brennan comes into play, then I'd expect Georgieshore to go one better and finally break his duck at 2/1 BOG.
The one to fear should be Barista, a useful performer on the Flat who won three times on soft/heavy ground, so should handle conditions and be nippy enough between hurdles today. Having run on the Flat in the summer, his effort over hurdles at Taunton three weeks ago was the first time he'd tackled a hurdle in 7 months and although beaten into 4th place of 14 by 11 lengths, he wasn't totally disgraced.
He'll have needed the run and 2m3f was probably a bit too far for a first run back, so today's drop in trip is sure to help, but more importantly, he has a tendency to jump to the left and this cost him quite a bit of ground on the right handed Taunton track, but going left handed today should enable Barista to keep a tighter line, making him of interest at 3/1 BOG.
Hamis Al Bin and Frank The Barber are the two with the best recent form here and in a fairly average looking looking contest are the two I'm most interested in.
Hamis Al Bin (100/30 BOG) was a winner at Lingfield just two days ago, where he stayed on well to win by three parts of a length from a pound out of the handicap, beating several horses rated in the mid-60's in the process. There's nothing of that quality here and running off a mark effectively just a pound higher, there's every chance he'll go in again.
He's also aided by the stat that his trainer and jockey have combined for 5 wins from 15 (33.3% SR) and 29.75pts profits (+185.9% ROI) in handicap races on the Tapeta here this year and the only possible negative here is that Hamis Al Bin has yet to win at this minimum trip, unlike...
...Frank The Barber, who does all his racing at this trip and was a course and distance winner just three starts ago. He was a decent third last time out, despite possibly being tired from a fifth run inside six weeks. He has now had seven weeks rest and must be in with a shout today also at 100/30 BOG, if he can avoid being sucked in to the early battle for a lead.
4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles as follows...
Georgieshore / Hamis Al Bin @ 12/1 (2/1 & 10/3 : BetVictor)
Georgieshore / Frank The Barber @ 12/1 (2/1 & 10/3 : Bet365)
Barista / Hamis Al Bin @ 16.33/1 (3/1 & 10/3 : Betfred, BetVictor & Totesport)
Barista / Frank The Barber @ 16.33/1 (3/1 & 10/3 : Betfred, Bet365 & Totesport)