Double Dutch, 17th December 2015

Double Dutch, 17th December 2015

After several days of banging on the door and coming up a little short, we landed our first double of the week, but we're not getting too excited just yet. Advised runners at 7/4 & 9/4 aren't going to mkae us rich nor do they miraculously transform what are pretty poor figures of late, but I hope it's the start of a period of recovery and a half point drift on our first winner certainly helped.

So, two winners at 9/4 gives a double at 9.56/1 and with us also bagging the runner-up in race 1, a forecast just north of 17/2 was also there to be had.

A good/satisfactory day, if not a spectacular one, hopefully more to come and soon!

Wednesday's results were as follows:

Sir Valentino : WON at 9/4 (adv 9/4)
Jayo Time : 2nd at 3/1 (adv 3/1)
The forecast paid £9.59 here to a £1 stake
Exmoor Mist : WON at 9/4 (adv 7/4)
Allow Dallow : 3rd at 3/1 (adv 5/2)

Results to date:
756 winning selections from 2710 = 27.86%
237 winning bets in 702 days = 33.67%

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Stakes: 1403.00pts
Returns: 1480.88pts
P/L : +77.88pts (+5.55% ROI)


1.10 Towcester :

I'm becoming a big fan of trainer Ben Pauling and his yard is certainly bang in form with 6 winners and 3 placers from 19 runners in the last month, whilst his chasers have 3 wins and a runner-up finish from 7 starts in the last week alone. He runs Newton Thistle here, a horse who is 2 from 3 over fences here at Towcester (2/2 at C&D), he's 2/4 under today's jockey and loves soft ground, saving his best efforts for December/January.

He travelled really well until coming down late on at Chepstow 6 weeks ago, when understandably tiring from a first run in 8 months, but provided there are no after-effects from the fall, I'd expect Newton Thistle to be on the premises today at 9/4 BOG.

In his way is likely to be Smart Exit, who seems to be getting his act together again since a switch of yard/jockey. He's had two runs since the move to Stuart Edmunds with Ciaran Gethings in the saddle, a jockey who is excellent value for his 5lb claim (3 wins and 3 other top 3 finishes from 9 rides over fences in the last month), finishing as a runner-up at Chepstow on both occasions, including a really good run on heavy ground last time out.

Smart Exit is a former course and distance winner too, has won over shorter trips, but also stays 3m 6.5f, likes the soft ground and is a decent option here at 5/2 BOG.


3.30 Southwell :

Countermand is really interesting here coming off the back of breaking his duck in a course and distance maiden just over three weeks ago, when he absolutely spreadeagled a field of seven, beating his nearest rival by 11 lengths having coasted the last 3 furlongs! The runner up, Rebel Collins, then won by 4 lengths next time out, so an opening mark of 82 for his handicap debut might not be beyond our runner here.

Andrew Balding's runners tend to go well here at Southwell and as a 3yr old, Countermand gets a very useful 5lbs weight for age allowance, which should tip things in his favour, making him, the likeliest to succeed at 9/4 BOG.

Serenity Now is the one I expect to put up the best fight in opposition, this tough versatile 7yr old has won over 2m and 2m4f in handicap hurdles, and as well as winning over 1m6f in a handicap at Redcar, has two wins over today's trip with a record of 2131 in four starts over course and distance.

He was only beaten by just over a length last time out, but that was over 1m6f here and the drop back in trip is sure to help today and with Callum Shepherd claiming 7lbs, he receives bundles of weight from most of his rivals, giving Serenity Now a decent shot at 11/4 BOG.

4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles as follows...

Newton Thistle / Countermand @ 9.56/1 (9/4 & 9/4 : Ladbrokes, BetVictor & Betway)
Newton Thistle / Serenity Now @ 11.19/1 (9/4 & 11/4 : Betway)
Smart Exit / Countermand @ 10.38/1 (5/2 & 9/4 : Stan James, Ladbrokes, BetVictor & Betway)
Smart Exit / Serenity Now @ 12.13/1 (5/2 & 11/4 : Betbright, Betway & Boylesports / Seanie Mac)

Double Dutch, 25th March 2014

Double Dutch

Double Dutch

Double Dutch, 25th March 2014

My Single Malt looked set for victory last night, but was overhauled approximately 50 yards from the line and went down to a one length defeat, denying us a very tasty 14/1 double in the process.

This was because my first choice and 4/1 pick Star In The Sky booted clear in the final furlong to score by almost three lengths, with Beylerbey a good way back in last place!

So, back amongst the winners, but only one from two and that pays nothing!

Yesterday's results were as follows:

Star Up In The Sky: won at 3/1 (adv 4/1)
Beylerbey: last of 7 at 5/1 (adv 4/1)
My Single Malt: 2nd at 2/1 (adv 2/1)
One Scoop or Two: 4th at 4/1 (adv 4/1)

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Results to date:
189 winning selections from 664 = 28.46%
63 winning bets in 174 days = 36.21%

Stakes: 346.00pts
Returns: 395.03pts

P/L : +49.03pts (+14.17% ROI)

49pts and 14% profit is still good going, especially for those of you with us from the start, when we couldn't buy a winner for the first few weeks! However profits of over 50pts and 15% are more aesthetically and psychologically pleasing, so let's try to get back there with these...

3.35 Chepstow:

I have to agree with Matt's selection for The Shortlist for the winner of this race. Not only does Our Phylli Vera look the likeliest to succeed in a fairly poor-looking race, I'd also suggest she was overpriced and offers good value at 2/1 BOG. She comes here on the back of successive wins at Plumpton (2m & 2m2f, both on soft ground). She defied a 13lb penalty to win last time out and is only up a further 4lbs for today's run where the drop back to the bare minimum should help.

Our interactive racecard will also tell you at a glance that she's best suited for this one, as she has won 4 of her 8 starts on soft ground and she's 3 from 5 in these small fields races, which can often develop into tactical affairs. If she's allowed to dictate the race, then I expect her to make light work of any rise in weight. There doesn't seem to be much pace in the race, so I'm not worried about her being run out of it early on.

My backup plan would be to go with one of the unexposed pair Lady Charisma or Madame de Guise who have just 5 runs over hurdles between them. of the two, Lady Charisma has shown most promise so far, winning on her second effort back  at the end of November. That was over today's trip and at this class, before she turned out at a class higher at Wincanton almost eight weeks ago. She was in the process of running a decent race there, sitting in second place 2 lengths off the leader when she fell 2 from home.

If Lady Charisma continues to progress, then she might well take advantage of the drop back in trip to score again here at a best price of 5/2 BOG.


3.45 Fontwell:

Just five are set to go to post for this one and of the five, the most consistent/reliable of late has been Smart Exit. He was hardly prolific over hurdles, making the frame (a win at Fakenham on New Years' Day 2013) just once in nine attempts, but a switch to the larger obstacles a year ago has seen him perform much better. Finishes of 323214 in his six efforts over fences suggest he'll be there or thereabouts again today.

He was, admittedly, disappointing when 4th at Towcester last time out whilst attempting back to back wins at that course, but he had been dropped 3 furlongs to compete there and he really needs 3 miles and beyond, which he reverts back to today. It looks like his team have hunted out a weak contest for him to get back to winning ways and at 11/4 BOG, there could well be a bit of value around too.

Clear and obvious danger looms, however, in the shape of Tarraco, who boasts a similar run of form of late (4214 in his last four runs). He was also disappointing last time out and comes here with a point to prove. He's no mug over fences though, having also won twice in France before switching to the UK. I should also add that prior to that latest defeat, he had won by 28 lengths, easing down to a virtual walk at Plumpton, so it might be prudent to ignore the last run. As I mentioned earlier, this is a weak looking race and if Smart Exit isn't up to it, then Tarraco could well take this at 7/2 BOG (Stan James)

4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles, as follows:
Our Phylli Vera / Smart Exit @ 11/1 (2/1 & 3/1 : Stan James)
Our Phylli Vera / Tarraco @ 12.50/1 (2/1 & 7/2 : Stan James & BetVictor)
Lady Charisma / Smart Exit @ 13/1 (5/2 & 3/1 : Stan James)
Lady Charisma / Tarraco @ 14.75/1 (5/2 & 7/2 : Stan James & BetVictor)

Double Dutch, 19th January 2014

Double Dutch

Double Dutch

Double Dutch, 19th January 2014

The plan on Saturday was to combine two horses that I couldn't see getting beaten and then having a couple of trusty backups, just in case things went awry.

As it happens both first picks won, but I think every man and his dog was backing them and the end result was a 4.94/1 double, which was still almost 14% better than the 4.34/1 paid out at SP.

Nevertheless, it's another winning double and although we only made 0.97pts profit on the day, that's still 48.5% of our stakes invested. I could live with that every day!

Yesterday's results were as follows:

Benvolio : won at 11/8 (adv 11/8)
Trustan Times : 3rd at 13/8 (adv 3/1)
Sire De Grugy  : won at 5/4 (adv 6/4)
Somersby : UR at 11/4 (adv 9/4)

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Results to date:
122 winning selections from 424 = 28.77%
39 winning doubles in 114 days = 34.21%

Stakes: 226.00pts
Returns: 237.41pts

P/L : +11.41pts (+5.05% ROI)

Action from both sides of "the water" today:

1.20 Fairyhouse:

Gitane du Berlais progressed nicely in her four runs at Auteuil in the spring/summer of 2013 (6413 in increasingly more difficult races on soft/heavy ground) before coming to Ireland and the Mullins yard. She didn't perform as expected when 3rd on her Irish debut at Down Royal in November, but she was hugely impressive when subsequently making all to land a 2m1f Listed hurdle at Aintree six weeks ago.

Her detractors will say that the form of that run hasn't quite panned out yet, but she won easily and just the manner of that success makes her a very attractive proposition at 2/1 BOG with Betfred. She's also aided by receiving chunks of weight all around at the bottom of the weights today.

There's also likely to be support for the other Mullins runner: Vicky de l'Oasis, a likeable sort with Ruby Walsh on board, but I prefer the top-weighted Theatre Bird as my Plan B here. She has a win and a place from three previous efforts on soft ground and comes here looking to complete a 44-day hat-trick. She was last seen winning a grade 3 hurdle on soft ground at Leopardstown three weeks ago, when she made all and stayed on strongly to defeat Caoimhes Delight who was then third in a grade 2 event just three days ago.

Theatre Bird may well try to take this race from the off and if she's allowed an easy lead, could well be difficult to catch and/or pass, which could well make a mockery of the 9/2 BOG widely on offer here.


1.40 Towcester:

Kilvergan Boy is no mug when it comes to these long distance tests of stamina, but Mansonien Las gave him 22lbs (including KB's jockey claim) here on Boxing Day over course and distance and still beat him by 27 lengths on similarly heavy ground to today's fixture. Royaume Bleu was third that day and he went on to score at Plumpton by 16 lengths five days ago, suggesting that our selection's run that day was as good as it seemed at the time.

Masnonien Las is, of course, much higher in the weights today, but I'm not convinced that 13lbs will be enough to stop him going in again. He's a course and distance winner, he loves soft and heavy ground and he stays all day. We're not getting rich off him, but 2/1 BOG (Betfred) seems plenty fair to me.

If, however, the career high mark of 95 proves too much for him, then I expect Smart Exit to be waiting in the wings. Although he hasn't won since New Year's Day 2013, he always seems to be there or thereabouts, being placed in his last four races, the latest of which was a 1.25 length defeat by Gorgehous Lliege over this course and distance a month ago. He'll relish the test of stamina here and gets to run off the same mark as that recent narrow defeat, which is the same mark as his last win making him a real danger at a generally available 4/1 BOG.

4 x 0.5pt BOG doubles with Betfred as follows:
Gitane du Berlais / Mansonien Las @ 8/1 (2/1 & 2/1)
Gitane du Berlais / Smart Exit @ 14/1 (2/1& 4/1)
Theatre Bird / Mansonien Las @ 15.50/1 
(9/2 & 2/1)
Theatre Bird / Smart Exit @ 26.50/1 (9/2 & 4/1)