Double Dutch, 1st January 2015
There was no winning end to 2014, I'm afraid, as we had the runner-up in both races with both races being won by an unfancied outsider.
Heavenly Brook went down by half a length to 14/1 shot Golden Ticket, with Federici a further 5.75 lengths back in fourth place at Punchestown, whilst we had 2nd and 3rd at Lingfield, with Plasir and Free One separated by just a head behind the shock 66/1 winner Evo Campo (400/1 on betfair!) who swooped late to win by three parts of a length.
That's how it goes sometimes, I'm afraid, we were very close to a 21/1 double, but actually ended up with no winners! I suppose that I did, at least have the consolation of a place return from my E/W bet on Heavenly Brook.
I also took a look back at this blog from last New Year's Day to see how we had progressed and quite strangely, I noticed we'd backed Federici that day too, as he won at Tramore to be our first winner of 2014.
In 2014, we found 343 winners from 1206 selections (28.44% SR), we had 108 winning days from 309 (34.95% SR) and our yearly profits of 72.47pts gave us an ROI of 11.7% overall.
Wednesday's results were as follows:
Heavenly Brook: u/p at 11/2 (adv 7/1)
Federici: u/p at 5/6 (adv 2/1)
Plasir: 2nd at 5/4 (adv 7/4)
Free One: 3rd at 7/4 (adv 7/4)
Results to date:
448 winning selections from 1562 = 28.68%
141 winning bets in 405 days = 34.81%
P/L : +87.92pts (+10.86% ROI)
REMINDER: THERE IS NO DOUBLE DUTCH ON SUNDAYS
Our first selections of the New Year are as follows...
Where my usual practice in these types of races is to pick one with racecourse experience and one without. El Beau comes here with a 2/2 record to date over hurdles and he'll be ridden by the very capable and in-form (3 wins & 3 places from 8 last week) James Reveley.
El Beau was a course and distance winner on his hurdling debut in November and backed it up with a good win at Sedgefield five weeks ago. He was decent on the Flat, so ground speed shouldn't be an issue in his bid to land his hat-trick at 9/4 BOG.
John Ferguson's Galizzi looks a massive threat though here at 5/2 BOG. John is brilliant at getting ex-Flat horses to win over hurdles first time out and his runners are 9/28 (7/22 over hurdles) here at Musselburgh.
Galizzi stayed 1m 6f on the flat and was rated at 90 (El Beau only reached 76) in the autumn. He's exactly the typr this trainer does well with and with his jockey claiming 7lbs here, he's effectively carrying 17lbs less than his main rival.
Dr Newland's horses seem to be running into some form of late and Aficionado was a winner last time out on his debut for the yard and was more comfortable in victory than the official margin of 2.25 lengths would suggest. He's up 7lb and one class from that run, but he looked to have plenty in reserve last time, possibly hitting the front a little too soon, having idled once the race was won.
The good doctor could and should get a bit more out of this one and Aficionado looks to have a decent chance to follow up here at 9/4 BOG.
My second selection here is the 4/1 BOG Minstrels Gallery who, after three starts over hurdles, is still unexposed in this sphere. He has shown plenty of promise already, making the frame in each of his last two starts for Lucy Wadham, who looks like her horses are on the rise again with a 58% place strike rate in the last month.
She also possesses a near-22% strike rate at this track, whilst jockey Leighton Aspell also rides well here, as well as being 20/108 (18.5% SR) for 25.9pts (+24% ROI) on all Lucy's hurdlers over the last three years.
4 x 0.5pt doubles as follows:
El Beau / Aficionado @ 9.56/1 (9/4 & 9/4 : Bet365, Betfair SB & Paddy Power)
El Beau / Minstrels Gallery @ 15.25/1 (9/4 & 4/1 : BetFred, Betfair SB & Totesport)
Galizzi / Aficionado @ 10.38/1 (5/2 & 9/4 : Bet365, Betfair SB & Paddy Power)
Galizzi / Minstrels Gallery @ 16.50/1 (5/2 & 4/1 : Betfair SB, BetFred, BetVictor & Totesport)