Double Dutch, 31st December 2014
Yesterday was a prime example in defining how tight the margins between success and failure are in horse racing. In the opening race on Lingfield's card, our runner Anastazia was beaten by just a length, yet still only managed to finish 4th of 7 runners, not quite managing to close the gap on the leaders (something I expressed concern about in my write-up!).
Our second runner, Mo Henry faded badly late on and was fifth, a further 2 lengths back despite attracting plenty of support. This all meant that our bets were down before the day had really begun and that the last race on the card was just a pride salvaging operation.
Sabre Rock duly justified his market support (6/4 from an advised 3/1 and an overnight 4/1) and pretty much romped home, easing right down to still win by almost three lengths to notch up another success for the ladies, Feilden & Birkett.
Rock Charm ran a decent enough race to finish third, beaten by 3.5 lengths overall in a spreadeagled field, where the 11 runners were scattered over 53 lengths!
Tuesday's results were as follows:
Anastazia: u/p at 11/4 (adv 9/4)
Mo Henry: u/p at 9/4 (adv 10/3)
Sabre Rock: won at 6/4 (adv 3/1)
Rock Charm: 3rd at 9/4 (adv 3/1)
Results to date:
448 winning selections from 1558 = 28.75%
141 winning bets in 404 days = 34.90%
P/L : +89.92pts (+11.14% ROI)
REMINDER: THERE IS NO DOUBLE DUTCH ON SUNDAYS
Another difficult day with little action to choose from, thanks to the weather claiming Uttoxeter & Warwick leaving Lingfield as the sole UK meeting, but I still hope to end the year on a high with these...
Where my MO is to side with the form horses, Federici and Heavenly Brook.
Federici (2/1 BOG) has been in excellent form this winter finishing 3212 on his four starts over fences gradually getting better and better, culminating in a half length defeat in a grade 2 contest last Saturday. This represents a major drop in class for him today and that, allied to his trainer's record here at Punchestown (21.2% SR over fences) makes him a leading player here.
My main doubt about Federici is the drop in trip and if he finds 2 miles too sharp today, then it could be time for Heavenly Brook to shed the bridesmaid tag. A switch of stables over the summer has brought about an upturn in form and he has finished 2nd in all four starts this winter, getting closer and closer each time. He was only beaten by a length by the hat-trick completing Black Zero on Boxing Day, getting caught late on whilst attempting to make all.
The drop back in trip might help him hang on today, if the same tactics are applied, especially as his mark is unaltered. With doubts about the favourite's ability to cope with the shorter distance, I wouldn't be surprised to see Heavenly Brook try to run him out of it early on. If nothing else, this horse looks a good E/W bet at 7/1 BOG.
I'm not really one for following the market blindly, but the bookies suggest that this weak looking maiden is a two-horse race with two 7/4 BOG joint favourites and I'm inclined to agree.
Plaisir was 3rd on debut in a Class 4 contest and was the runner-up dropping down a grade a fortnight ago. She takes another drop in class and but for the presence of Free One here, you'd have had her down as a fairly comfortable winner today, albeit at very short odds. Her jockey, Adam Kirby has a good record here at Lingfield and trainer Marco Botti is no mug at getting winter wins out of his 2yr olds.
Free One represents the course specialists Jeremy Noseda and George Baker and although he didn't shine at Kempton last time out, he was a decent runner-up on debut here over course and distance prior to that run. He's still only had the two runs and on debut was 2 lengths clear of third-placed Chicago Bere who is 3121 since that day, including a Class 2 victory here over course and distance last Sunday.
4 x 0.5pt doubles as follows:
Federici / Plaisir @ 6.56/1 (7/4 & 7/4 : Betfred & Stan James)
Federici / Free One @ 7.25/1 (2/1 & 7/4 : Coral)
Heavenly Brook / Plaisir @ 21/1 (7/1 & 7/4 : Stan James)
Heavenly Brook / Free One @ 21/1 (7/1 & 7/4 : Bet365)