Double Dutch, 27th July 2015

Double Dutch

Double Dutch

Double Dutch, 27th July 2015

Like the previous days before it, Saturday was another agonisingly frustrating near-miss for us. The horses are there or thereabouts, but we're not quite getting them both over line.

Sweet P was game and gutsy to win at Newcastle, having relinquished the lead with a furlong to go before rallying to get back up just before the line, but her efforts were sadly in vain, as far as the double was concerned at least.

And that's because Prince Gibraltar had earlier failed to hold on at York, being caught and passed by a couple of challengers very late in the piece, meaning nearly but not quite for us double hunters.

Saturday's results were as follows:

Prince Gibraltar : 3rd at 5/2 (adv 3/1)
Custom Cut : 4th at 7/2 (adv 3/1)
Sweet P : WON at 9/4 (adv 5/2)
Sherry : 3rd at 13/8 (adv 9/4)

Results to date:
635 winning selections from 2237 = 28.39%
201 winning bets in 580 days = 34.66%

Stakes: 1159.50pts
Returns: 1286.31pts
P/L : +126.81pts (+10.94% ROI)


New week, clean slate etc...

7.50 Galway :

The O'Brien filly Loved is an interesting entrant here, making her handicap debut and just her third start. She's obviously well regarded as she holds a couple of group race entries, and it was at Group 3 level that she was first pitched into action and ultimately well beaten (Pleascach was the winner) over 1m2f, finishing ahead of just one rival.

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She was then stepped up to 1m3.5f (just 0.5f shorter than today) for her other run at Limerick, where she won a maiden by half a length ahead of stablemate On A Pedestal to whom she was conceding 7lbs (14lbs inc jockey claims!) and who has since run and won off a mark of 83 (Killarney 12 days ago), suggesting that Loved's opening mark of 86 is workable. She is, admittedly, unproven on soft ground, hence her 4/1 BOG price tag, but that's a decent price based purely on whether she'll get the going!

Dermot Weld's Harasava looks the danger here and also arrives in good form and her runner-up finish two starts ago over 1m4.5f tells us that she'll be fine at this trip, she had a couple of subsequent winners behind her that day and she herself moved on to win next/last time out. She dropped back in trip to 1m2.5f to win by 0.75 lengths at Sligo six weeks ago and has been rested since.

A change of tactics was employed that day and today's jockey Pat Smullen decided to win the race from the front and the tactic proved decisive as they controlled the race from the head of the pack. Drawn in stall 1 today, there's every possibility, they'll try the same thing again and if allowed to dominate early on, Harasava could turn this into a procession at 9/4 BOG.


8.00 Windsor :

The 9yr old mare Choral Festival saves her best work for these spins around Windsor, with 6 of her 11 career victories coming here on this track and with 2 wins coming on the A/W, this is clearly her preferred venue! She's an 8-time winner over today's trip and stats suggest she's well suited by conditions here. I won't list all the reasons, but she's a 4-time C&D winner and field size / ground conditions / time of year / jockey / days since run etc are all favourable.

She comes here off the back of two excellent runs over course and distance, a runner-up (0.75L) on good ground five weeks ago before a win a fortnight ago. She only narrowly beat the favourite (who had beaten her in the previous race!) that day, but with the rest of the field well beaten a 3lb rise doesn't look too onerous and another good run at 5/1 BOG is expected from Choral Festival.

She will, however, have to beat Born To Be Bad if she wants that latest Windsor win. He comes here off the back of two wins and a runner-up finish in this last three outings and was a winner last time out off a mark of 70 in a 3yo handicap. This is an open age race and although he's up 3lbs for that win, he gets a very helpful 10lb weight for age allowance here.

That allowance effectively puts him 7lbs better off than winning run and has a positive jockey switch (IMO) to Richard Hughes who is in great form and has a good record on this track. Born To Be Bad gets the trip, as proven at Doncaster last time out and although the ground conditions are an unknown factor for him, I suspect he'll be the one to beat here at what looks an attractive 7/2 BOG with Coral.

4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles as follows:

Harasava / Born To Be Bad @ 13.63/1 (9/4 & 7/2 : Coral)
Harasava / Choral Festival @ 18.50/1 (9/4 & 5/1 : Coral)
Loved / Born To Be Bad @ 19.25/1 (7/2 & 7/2 : Betfair SB & Coral)
Loved / Choral Festival @ 26/1 (7/2 & 5/1 : Betfair SB & Coral)

Double Dutch, 30th April 2014

Double Dutch

Double Dutch

Double Dutch, 30th April 2014

At odds ranging from 37.5/1 up to 75.5/1, you'd be forgiven for thinking that yesterday's selection were more a flight of fancy rather than actually having a chance, but I really didn't fancy the favourites in both races at such short odds, which gave value to our selections.

As it happens, our double didn't quite come off, but Entihaa's half-length defeat was the sole margin between success and failure for us, as he just couldn't quite close the gap on the 5/4 jolly.

The favourite was duly dispatched into third place in race 2, as Hakuna Matata scored by two lengths and it could easily have been more. Overall, a slight profit for singles backers, a slight profit for E/W doubles, but as for the main selection: it was a case of close, but no cigar for the 37.5/1 double.

Tuesday's results were as follows:

Entihaa: 2nd at 5/1 (adv 6/1)
Kingscombe: u/p at 10/1 (adv 15/2)
Hakuna Matata: won at 11/4 (adv 9/2)
The Osteopath: u/p at 15/2 (adv 8/1)

Results to date:
223 winning selections from 776 = 28.74%
73 winning bets in 204 days = 35.78%

Stakes: 404.00pts
Returns: 467.94pts

P/L : +63.94pts (+15.83% ROI)


Quite a contrast between the two races I've selected today, starting with the...

3.45 Ascot:

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A Group 3 contest over 2 miles on soft ground, which might find a few out today. Harris Tweed is currently the 9/4 BOG favourite here with SkyBet and its easy to see why. He acts well on soft ground, as figures of 1123142 will testify and the last of which (and his last run) was a narrow defeat over course and distance here on Champions Day in a similar Group 3 race. He was collared on the line, going down by just a nose in only his second attempt at this long trip. He has been around the block a few times, but is proven at this level: 4 wins and 8 places from 20 starts at Listed Class or better and looks set for another big run today.

But I prefer Tac De Boitron, who at first glance comes here with a career form line of 3121, but he's not as inexperienced as that might look. He's actually raced 31 times to date, all around the world and he has a healthy strike rate from winning 7 of those races. He was third at Goodwood and then a winner at Chester last summer: both Listed races, before running a couple of Group 1 races at Longchamp in France, finishing 2nd to Altano and then winning the Prix Royal-Oak by a good 5 lengths over 1m7f on very soft ground.

He also has Group 2 success to his name, he has won three times and placed once from seven runs on soft ground (3 win and 5 places from 11 starts on very soft/heavy). He gets the trip easily enough with 3 wins and 4 places from 9 attempts and stayed 2.5 miles on his penultimate start. That was on soft ground, so stamina really shouldn't be an issue here and he's my pick at 4/1 BOG (Stan James)

And from this quality of race, we head for a Class 6 handicap, aka the...

6.25 Brighton

Where Choral Festival is an interesting entry. This 8yr old mare seems to win at least once per season and this might her easiest option this term, even though it's still only April! She does most of her running at a higher level than this, having rattled up 6 wins and 15 places from 44 efforts at Class 5, as well as a win and several places at Class 4. She drops down to Class 6 here today for the first time in almost three years and comes here on the back of a decent run at Windsor last time out.

She was beaten by three lengths in that last race (today's trip on soft ground) and has been eased a pound in the weights and she now runs off 63, some 7lbs lower than her last victory. She's one of only two horses in the race with a distance win to her name (4 wins at this trip) and when you consider she was running off 76 last summer/autumn, she could well be thrown in here at best odds of 9/4 BOG.

Now, if Dozy Joe can bring some of his A/W form to the turf, he will also stand a very good chance of taking what looks a pretty weak race. The favourite is no great shakes, but still looks the best of this bunch, which tells you it shouldn't take much winning.

Dozy Joe has won 2 of his last 3 outings, all at Wolverhampton and all over 1m 1.5f, so he's not being asked to go much further here. He last won off a mark of 63 and his current A/W rating is 66, but he gets to run off 61 here today, making him theoretically 5lbs well in if he can bring that A/W form to the turf. Such is the current state of the Wolverhampton track, I'm not sure exactly how it rides anymore!

In his favour is the one win and one place from three runs on good to soft ground, whilst he has won three times (including his last two) and made the frame twice from eight starts in this grade. The switch of surface is, of course, the doubt with him today, but that is reflected in his current 4/1 BOG (BetVictor) price.

4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles, as follows:
Harris Tweed / Choral Festival @ 9.56/1 (9/4 & 9/4 : SkyBet)
Harris Tweed / Dozy Joe @ 14/1 (2/1 & 4/1 : BetVictor)
Tac De Boitron / Choral Festival @ 14/1 (4/1 & 2/1 : Stan James)
Tac De Boitron / Dozy Joe @ 21.50/1 (4/1 & 7/2 : Stan James)