Five out of six yesterday and, naturally enough, fourth in the other race (three places). It's dire stuff in the main again today, and I'm avoiding Newbury as it doesn't look like it will pay much (cue huge dividend!). So, Uttoxeter it is...
6.10 - Leg 1: I was down at Bill Turner's - former trainer of It's Only Business - the other day, and he told me that he wasn't certain the horse would stay a hurdling trip. He's nicely bred for the job and was in great form when last seen back in February. But stamina worries combined with fitness worries make this a 'not a banker' race.
I'll take McCoy's mount, right enough, but I'll shore up with another too. In truth, I've spent about twenty-five minutes trying to project which of these will improve from flat to jumps, and the best I've found are the trio of Jawinski, Moorway, and Mr Blue Nose. They're all massive prices, and I want to save some ballast for later, but I'm going to include Jawinski on B. I'm lobbing Sleepy Haven on B too.
On A, I'll add Akdam, who has a likeable attitude, despite the weight turnaround with second placed Lindenhurst the last day.
A - 1 (Akdam), 2 (It's Only Business)
B - 3 (Jawinski), 10 (Sleepy Haven)
6.40 - Leg 2: Beckhani is about evens and has been supported, but his form in the book doesn't really justify a price like that. We need to take a chance somewhere on the ticket and, though I'm uncomfortable with it, this is the most likely place. If we had a decent result in the first, I'll be looking to lay Beckhani for a place to recoup half my placepot stakes.
A - 3 (Beckhani)
7.10 - Leg 3: A very competitive seller. Not Til Monday is rated 120 and has been making hay in these races recently, but was only third over this track/trip last time. He's up against fit and talented (in the context of the grade) nags in the shape of Super Collider and Descaro (1-2 at Worcester last week). And none of the other three can be completely ruled out. Only two places to aim at here too.
I'm going with the market on A, with Super Collider and Not Til Monday. On B, I'll take a bit more of a lunge and swipe at Glenconkeyne and Mount Hope. This race could make the 'pot tonight.
A - 1 (Not Til Monday), 2 (Super Collider)
B - 6 (Glenconkeyne), 7 (Mount Hope)
7.40 - Leg 4: A competitive handicap chase, and at least we have some form to go on. The pick might be Brody Bleu, who has been progressive since switched to fences, and looks worth a try at this longer trip. He seems sure to run an honest race, and I'll add some more substance to the A ticket with Cardigan Island. In truth, it's a race where most have a chance, and I'm adding Three Chords, because he's been well backed, has back class, and is the sort that most people won't include (form of P2FP) in their perms; and Don't Tell Sailor to B.
A - 3 (Brody Bleu), 8 (Cardigan Island)
B - 6 (Don't Tell Sailor), 9 (Three Chords)
8.10 - Leg 5: Planetoid should lag up. I'll take a couple on C - a rarity, and only valid if all A's place to this point - in case of something quirky happening with this crooked story horse. Tom Wade looked to get the run of the race last time, and wouldn't be for me here. Acht is more interesting, first time in a handicap, and back on decent ground. So too are Fred Willets and Call Me April
A - 6 (Planetoid)
C - 4 (Fred Willets), 7 (Acht), 8 (Call Me April)
8.40 - Leg 6: Five non-runners at time of writing still leaves fifteen, and I'll take five against the field, most of them big prices. The shortest is Old Pals Act, with McCoy bidding to go one better than an inexperienced jockey did last time: trip and ground will suit. Kayfrou needs decent ground and a trip. I'm not sure this is far enough, but the competition may at least be slow enough to give him some sort of a chance.
King's Chorister is the most consistent of these and might again run into the frame despite looking poorly handicapped. Am I Blue and Starlight Air could both run better than their big odds imply.
A - 6 (Old Pal's Act), 8 (King's Chorister), 13 (Kayfrou)
B - 2 (Am I Blue), 9 (Starlight Air)
Just A's - 2 x 1 x 2 x 2 x 1 x 3 = 24 bets
All picks - 4 x 1 x 4 x 4 x 1 x 5 = 320 bets (excluding the C's in Planetoid's race)
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