Three days down, dear reader, and two to go.Â For me personally, this is proving to be a particularly bloody battle thus far, and I'm showing major troop losses (my troops are obviously folding units of currency!).
Nevertheless, I know there is more to this war than has been played out to date, and it is with a differing game plan that I approach the final two days...
Stats to follow, plus... how do you fancy helping me out? Details further down this post.
I have no desire to dwell on yesterday, except to say that is started very badly, when I got stuck into the US horse (who was beaten after a furlong), and it got worse thereafter. I went out and drank last night, the impromptu session brought on by the ferocity of yesterday's losses. Enough...
2.30 Albany Stakes: All of the seven previous winners had run once or twice. Nine haven't, thirteen left.
Matt's fancy: Aegean - she beat easy winner Jealous Again last time out over 5f, running on strongly to lead inside the distance. That suggests the extra furlong will be to her liking and, if the preliminaries don't do for her what they did for Yogaroo yesterday, she's the one to beat.
3.05 King Edward VII Stakes: 11/12 had won at 1m1f+ that season. Five go, seven stay.
Matt's fancy: South Easter - mproving type, who swerved the Derby and may benefit from that decision. Shrewd enough connections.
3.45 Coronation Stakes:A brilliant race with the winners of the French, English and Irish Guineas taking each other on. Various vanquished horses from those races also compete, so this is one to savour. With such established and credible form, it's no surprise that the last nine winners all returned less than 8/1. Expect that again today, and eliminate all bar three (possibly four if there's money for either Again or Baliyana).
Matt's fancy: Jean-Claude Rouget is hot hot hot at the moment, and he'll be looking for compensation after Never On Sunday's flying but futile third place earlier in the week. Elusive Wave looks to have more progression than most of these, and she'll be hard to pass, if adopting her usual front-running tactics.
4.20 Wolfreton Handicap: All of the last 12 winners lost last time out. Whilst that only scratches five of the sixteen, they're mostly fancied horses, and it's a difficult stat to overlook.
Matt's fancy: Perfect Stride. Sir Michael Stoute's record of a winner and three placed horses from seven runners is impressive enough. Then add in the horse's Listed form at a mile and the feeling that the extra two furlongs will improve the beast, and I reckon he's a decent wager.
4.55 Queen's Vase: Mark Johnston has won this race four times in the last decade. He runs two: Holberg and Sabotage.
Matt's fancy: Sabotage is one of many unexposed horses in the race, and with his trainer's record, I'll take a chance that this one knows what's expected of him today. It will irritate me greatly if my ante-post Derby punt, Stately Home, wins...
5.30 Buckingham Palace Stakes: A race for outsiders and not one to take a serious view on. The last three winners were 25/1 or bigger, and I'll look for a couple each way at fat juicy odds (I might need one of these by now to get me out of a hole the size of a bomb crater!)
Matt's fancies: Wigram's Turn has shown little this season, but this is his first turf run of the year, after a couple of promising staying on runs on the grass last season. Decent stable knows how to win a big handicap and 55 on betfair is calling me. Richard Fahey's form at the moment is incredible, and he has a chance of following up yesterday's 66/1 winner with Harrison George here. He's been staying on over 6f all season and is crying out for the seventh furlong he'll race over today. Each way prospects both.
Finally today, I have to concede that in the last couple of weeks, my workload has become heavier and heavier, and I am finding less and less time to do the things that add value (like blog posts, systems development, etc) to you guys.
For instance in the last five days, I've had over 300 emails, to each one of which I reply personally.
So it is that I've - at last! - recognised that I need some help.
What I'm looking for is someone who is reliable to help manage the administration side of things and to free me up a little to make Geegeez a constantly improving site.
It will likely only be for an hour or so a day, for four days a week, to begin with. But if the right person demonstrates an aptitude and desire to take on more, then we can certainly discuss this.
Ideally, I'm looking for someone who has been following Geegeez (and perhaps Nag3) for some time, and knows a little about the way the blog works. Also, if you're familiar with FRP and Laying System, that would be a bonus.
Duties will be to help reply to emails and update FAQ pages at first, and we'll move forwards from there.
If you might be interested, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org to be considered. PLEASE PUT 'JOB VACANCY' IN THE EMAIL TITLE.
I'm also looking for someone with excellent web development skills to help me on a more ad hoc basis. Again, to register your interest, drop me an email at the above address.
Sorry for wandering slightly off-topic, but I'm really keen to maintain and improve the level of service I give to all of you, and I've bit a bit frustrated this past fortnight that it's getting a little too much for me on my lonesome.
Good luck at Ascot today - I'll be back later with a preview of tomorrow's action.