Double Dutch, 18th February 2015
Tuesday was a whisker away from being a great day for us, but we're not greedy nor churlish and we'll settle for the good day we got instead!
I liked the look and background of Fox Norton and felt he was overpriced at 15/2 (and I had a few quid on the single!) and so it proved, as the market cottoned on and backed him into 5/1 at the off.
The money was right and he stayed on well to win by 2.5 lengths with our other runner and race favourite, Dell'Arca a further 8 lengths back in third place.
All of which meant we'd a tidy stake of 4.25pts going onto each of our two runners at Wolverhampton and after drifting out to 3/1, it looked for all the world that Ocean Legend had the race and a resultant 33/1 double in the bag, but Bond Fastrac (who I'd toyed with as a pick) finished like a train and joined our runner on the line.
It was too close to call and eventually the photo showed a dead heat, meaning we got half stakes (2.125pts ) at 3/1 for an overall 16/1 double. The higher payout would have been very nice indeed, but the win takes us through the 100pts barrier, which is something I've been aiming for of late.
Tuesday's results were as follows:
Fox Norton : WON at 5/1 (adv 15/2)
Dell'Arca : 3rd at 15/8 (adv 2/1)
Ocean Legend : DH 1st at 3/1 (adv 5/2)
Hamoody : 4th at 8/1 (adv 13/2)
Results to date:
493 winning selections from 1722 = 28.63%
154 winning bets in 446 days = 34.53%
P/L : +105.63pts (+11.85% ROI)
REMINDER: THERE IS NO DOUBLE DUTCH ON SUNDAYS
Now that we've passed the 100pt milestone, let's try to put some distance between us via the...
Lake Legend probably sets the benchmark on overall form here with an impressive return of 7 wins and 5 further places from his 20 runs to date. If you add in the fact that he's 6/6 in point to point racing too, then you'll know he shouldn't be found wanting for stamina and that his jumping should be sound, an assertion backed up by the fact that he was sired by Midnight Legend.
His detractors will point to the 273 days since his last run on a racecourse, when winning a similar event to this at Worcester, but I should point out that run was also his first after 398 days! I'd imagine Lake Legend to be involved late on and you can take 2/1 BOG about him winning today...
...whilst his main rival and probably the race's class act, Twirling Magnet, is also priced up at 2/1 BOG. He is, admittedly, not the most straightforward and failed to complete any of his four outings in 2014. He seems to make mistakes when under pressure racing against decent horses, but he is, in fairness, a Class 1 horse. He's not a top C1 horse and has ultimately cracked trying to compete, but he's far better than today's Class 5 grade, so shouldn't find himself struggling here.
He was a shade unlucky on his hunter chase debut at Wetherby 18 days ago, when his saddle slipped and if class is anything to go by, then a horse, whose last win earned him a mark of 143, should be pretty comfortable here today and this could be just what Twirling Magnet needs to get back to winning ways.
The fact that Feb Thirtyfirst seeks a hat-trick inside three weeks makes him the obvious starting point and it's also no surprise to see him installed as 9/4 BOG favourite to complete the task. He hadn't run on the A/W for over three years, before landing a Class 6 Handicap Seller at Lingfield over 1m 7.5f three weeks ago. He then won another C6 hcp over the same course and distance last Wednesday, so he's in great form and today's 2m trip should be well within him, after successive wins by 2.5 lengths each time.
He's turned back out under a 6lb penalty before he is reasssessed, where he's likely to be hit harder than that, so connections are hoping to stay one step ahead by coming here. He's 2/3 in today's reapplied blinkers and 2/2 with today's jockey and all things considered, Feb Thirtyfirst looks to have a really good chance here, but...
...I think he'll have to be right on top of his game to beat Thundering Home, who comes here off the back of an impressive winter hurdling campaign that saw him finish 161221. He's a decent Class 3 hurdler, last rated 119 and looks to be on an attractive mark here today. Those six runs over hurdles on mainly soft or heavy ground will ensure he's not found wanting for stamina today.
He actually stays further than this, having already won at 2m3f and provided they don't go off too quickly, Thundering Home would be the one to watch staying on late, whilst a return to the A/W shouldn't trouble him too much, as he has four previous wins away from the turf, including one win here at Kempton and if you fancy him to go in again, you can have 3/1 BOG about him today.
4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles as follows:
Lake Legend / Feb Thirtyfirst @ 8.75/1 (2/1 & 9/4 : BetVictor & Coral)
Lake Legend / Thundering Home @ 11/1 (2/1 & 3/1 : Bet365, Betfred, BetVictor & Coral)
Twirling Magnet / Feb Thirtyfirst @ 8.75/1 (2/1 & 9/4 : BetVictor & Coral)
Twirling Magnet / Thundering Home @ 11/1 (2/1 & 3/1 : Bet365, Betfred, BetVictor & Coral)