Getaround ran well for a long way on Tuesday, but was never able to open up a lead. He finally succumbed to faster finishers and the burden of top weight, going down by five lengths. On now to Wednesday, where the feature of the day is the Trainer Stats report, whilst our free cards are for...
- 2.36 Exeter
- 3.20 Dundalk
- 3.25 Ayr
- 5.35 Kempton
- 6.05 Kempton
As we should all be, I'm a bit choosy about which races I look at / get involved in ans as those five contests are a novice chase, an A/W maiden, a bumper and two divisions of an A/W novice contest, I'll stay well away and revert back to the Trainer Stats report and the course 5 year handicap option, which throws up the following of interest...
...three runners in the same 7-horse contest, the 3.33 Bangor : a Class 2, handicap hurdle for 3yo+ over 2m 3.5f on soft ground for a prize of £9,384. So let's follow my normal process of seeing whether any of our three runners are likely to feature in the final shake-up starting, of course with the racecard...
I've arranged the card into Geegeez ratings order with Chti Balko in third position and Bialco in fifth with a standardised rating of 93.5 and 80 respectively with the top three fairly closely bunched. Our third runner Tawseef has no rating having not seen a hurdle for almost 19 months!
Form-wise, Chti Balko is clearly the best of our three, but both Mint Condition and Chirico Vallis come here in better nick (and head the ratings). Bialco steps up one class from his last run 40 days ago, whilst the three class rise for Tawseef is a little misleading. He is up three classes from his last outing, but that was a Flat contest, he's only actually up one grade from his last hurdles effort back in April 2019 and he runs off a mark 5lbs lower than that run.
Both of our trainers (Lucinda Russell & Donald McCain) have the C5 icon denoting a good sustained record at this track, but Lucinda is just 1 from 29 in the last fortnight hence the 14 and sadly her jockey here, Derek Fox has the 14 and 30 by his name, as he is 0 from 22 over the past 30 days. Will Kennedy on board Chti Balko also has the 14 and 30 but does also carry the C5 tag, as he is 0 from 16 over the last fortnight, but has an excellent 18 from 81 (22.2%) record here at Bangor over hurdles since 2016.
Our next pieces of information are provided by the Instant Expert tab on the card...
...which again proves to be disappointing for our trio from a win perspective with not much green around. From a place perspective Chti Balko has made the frame in 3 of 5 efforts at this trip and in 5 of 9 in small fields, whilst Bialco has a 3 in 6 placed record over this trip. Tawseef does at least have a win from just three Class 2 contests.
This type of contest suits those who race prominently, especially those willing to set the pace, as shown by the pace stats for this race...
...which finally gives us a little optimism as Chti Balko and Tawseef both like to be towards the head of affairs, but our prediction of a contested lead probably won't do any of the front three any favours and if they burn each other out, that opens the door for a finisher.
So far, I've got to be honest and say that there's not much here to suggest we've got a winner in our trio of highlighted runners, but let's have a closer look at them...
Bialco : Won a soft ground Class 3 contest over 2m7f at Kelso just after Christmas last year but has disappointed since. Finished 5th of 8, beaten by 24 lengths last time out coming off the back of a 31 week absence, so he probably needed the run. Unfortunately, he's now up in class and his record of 3 wins from 16 over hurdles doesn't really suggest a win here when you consider that they include 0 from 6 under jockey Derek Fox, 1 from 5 on soft, 0 from 5 at Class 2, 0 from 2 at 2m3.5f/2m4f and 0 from 1 here at Bangor. Best left alone.
Chti Balko : a winner over class, course and distance three starts ago, when pretty much making all on heavy ground to score by ten lengths and was a good second next time out at Haydock. Off the track for 10 months, though, and may very well need the run.
Has won 4 of 20 over hurdles, including 3 from 8 on heavy ground which could be useful should conditions deteriorate.
Tawseef : hasn't raced for over 15 months, hasn't won for nearly 17 months and it's almost 19 months since he last saw a hurdle, never mind a win in this sphere (that was some 35 months back!). Hard to imagine that at 12 yrs old, he's going step back up in class to land this, but has won his fair share in the past.
A veteran of 84 races across A/W, Flat and hurdles, winning 12 (14.3%) of them in a decent career, but better on the Flat it has to be said. 3 from 15 on soft ground and 3 from 14 on heavy suggest he's like the mud but those become 0 from 7 and 1 from 10 over hurdles, so may be not. He's 6 from 20 for this yard and 2 from 8 under this jockey, but I don't fancy his chances at all.
Of our three from the report, Chti Balko has the best chance, as I wouldn't be surprised if Bialco & Tawseef are the last two home here. But, that's where the optimism ends to be honest. There's a possibility Chti Balko goes well and makes the frame, but he has been off the track a ljg time and I think he'll do well to finish in the top three, as I expect Mint Condition and Chirico Vallis to be the ones to beat here.