Double Dutch, 20th November 2014
A difficult day yesterday and I'm still a little undecided whether I should have played that Irish race or not. Hindsight, of course, says I was wrong to get involved and it probably isn't the kind of race we should be punting in.
That said, it looked a poor race on paper, lacking in depth. I identified what I perceived to be the two strongest horses from the main contenders and they were sent off as 7/2 jt favs, suggesting that others has the same thoughts as myself.
As it was Misty Lady was third and Bank Man 6th as they both ran out of steam in the soft ground. They also saw off their main rivals, but the first two places were filled by a pair of 16/1 shots and sometimes you just can't do anything about that.
As for race 2, more familiar surroundings for me up at Hexham, one of my favourite tracks to visit (Nigel has written nice piece about the place, available here.) Brother Scott was a non-runner, leaving us with just my main pick Uno Valoroso to salvage some pride from the day and he didn't disappoint.
He overcame a 7lb rise in weights to complete back to back chase victories, beating the runner-up by just over three lengths and looking like there's more to come from this one.
Tuesday's results were as follows:
Misty Lady: 3rd at 7/2 (adv 4/1)
Bank Man: u/p at 7/2 (adv 10/3)
Uno Valoroso: won at 15/8 (adv 11/4)
Brother Scott: non-runner (adv 7/2)
Results to date:
413 winning selections from 1434 = 28.80%
132 winning bets in 373 days = 35.39%
P/L : +76.58pts (+10.27% ROI)
REMINDER: THERE IS NO DOUBLE DUTCH ON SUNDAYS
Time to break the winner & placer cycle I'm stuck in...
Harry Fry is a trainer to follow in NH handicaps and will be expecting to improve his 30%+ strike rate over the past few months with a win from the in-form Henryville here today. This horse was 2 from 2 for the season before tackling a very competitive contest at Cheltenham last time out in the Pertemps five weeks ago. He was second in a strong 17-runner race, beaten by less than three lengths despite conceding chunks of weight to the winner, Sybarite.
Third-placed Clara McCloud was a further length and a quarter behind Henryville that day, but she reappeared at Clonmel last Thursday to win by 3 lengths over this trip. The trip is no issue today and jockey Noel Fehily has a decent enough record on the horse and the only doubt about a win at 2/1 BOG here is a first run on soft ground, although he has won on good to soft, but might not want conditions to deteriorate, which would help First Fandango.
First Fandango gets the trip readily, loves the soft ground and is bang in form. He's 2 from 2 for the season and won at this grade over hurdles at Musselburgh last time out, almost a fortnight ago. He's up 5lbs in the weights for that win, but the booking of a 7lb claimer more than negates that and I'm expecting him to give the favourite a real run for his money. His jockey , Alan Johns, might be claiming 7lbs, but don't be fooled into thinking he's not very good. He rides well and has some decent enough stats behind him, he just doesn't have enough rides.
First Fandango is currently quite attractively priced at 3/1 BOG, thanks to the presence of Home Run, who I've overlooked, because his stamina is unproven at the trip and he comes off a 250-day absence here.
The penny has really dropped of late for Chetan, who has run really well in each of his last three outings and looks set for a second win over Kempton's six furlongs today. He was second over this trip at Chepstow, beaten by just a neck at 33/1 in a higher grade than today. he was a neck ahead of Khawaater that day with the latter subsequently scoring over today's C&D. Chetan then came here to win over track and trip dropped down to today's Class 6 level and he was then narrowly beaten (just a nose) here last Thursday.
He was collared on the line pretty much last week and that was after stepping up to 7f. He moves back to 6f today and at 7/4 BOG looks a likely winner again today.
There's then little between Rialto Magic and Tommy's Geal, but the former is running in a nursery for the first time and seems to been given a tricky task off a mark 4lbs higher than Chetan, despite managing just one placed finish in three maidens, which leaves me with the latter...
...the 9/2 BOG (Stan James) Tommy's Geal, who was last seen 7 weeks ago running very creditably in defeat, finishing third over course and distance, beaten by just a length behind Sparbrook, who then won again before falling in the grip of the assessor. Sparbrook also runs here, but carries too much weight for my liking. Tommy Geal's last three runs have all been here at Kempton and he has been third on each occasion and never beaten by far. He's feather light today off a mark of just 50 (14lbs lower than Rialto Magic) with the added bonus of a 7lb claim from his jockey, he's a real contender here.
4 x 0.5pt doubles as follows:
Henryville / Chetan @ 7.25/1 (2/1 & 7/4 : Bet365, Skybet & Hills)
Henryville / Tommy's Geal @ 15.50/1 (2/1 & 9/2 : Stan James)
First Fandango / Chetan @ 10/1 (3/1 & 7/4 : generally)
First Fandango / Tommy's Geal @ 21/1 (3/1 & 9/2 : Stan James)