Blimey, dear reader, and sheesh and crikey to boot! What a week it's been! Horse Racing Experts has completely sold out in less than 24 hours, and the forums are already buzzing with some very interesting systems in the proofing area.
If you missed out this time, don't fret too much. There will be another opportunity down the track, although there will be a small increase in price. It's still going to be a great bargain, and I'm really delighted with the amount of community contribution that we've seen so far. 🙂
OK, so what's been happening while I've been getting HRE off the ground? Well, not a lot actually.
But all that is set to change this weekend, with the first big race of the National Hunt season, the totesport Silver Trophy at Chepstow on Saturday (1.55).
It's a Listed handicap hurdle and is shaping up to be a very hot contest. There are some warm trends for the race, as follows:
- Only one 4yo has won in the last decade, despite many trying (and that was ten years ago)
- 5-7 year olds have won 8 from 10
- only one winner carried more than 11-03 to success (all were in the handicap proper)
- no winner bigger than 16/1 (four favourites have won, and six winners started at 9/2 or shorter)
- only one Irish trained winner
- 7/10 were having seasonal debut. Of the remaining three, two won last time out
Although we need to wait on the participation of the top two (Lough Derg and Elusive Dream), if either of those run then every other horse from Backbenscher down will be out of the handicap.
In that case, there would only be two horses of interest on these trends: Golan Way and Over Sixty. I really like Over Sixty and if she runs, she should give them a race.
We'll know more about this tomorrow afternoon, when the declarations are out, but Over Sixty will be a mare to follow this season whatever.
One of my eyecatchers is also set to race this weekend, over at Wexford. The horse in question is an eleven race maiden (!), so manage your expectations accordingly, but I've rarely seen a horse given a more 'kid gloves' ride than this one.
Jowango is the beast's name, and he was switched off in last place with just three furlongs to run (in a 25 runner field!). He made easy progress to mid-division, and then the jockey got busier about a furlong out. He was beaten eight lengths into 5th at the finishing line.
Now he is clearly a bit of a monkey, and needs delivering late, but these waiting tactics were so exaggerated that he couldn't possibly win. I'm expecting him to be closer on Sunday (Wexford, 1.10), again with the obvious proviso that he takes his chance.
Finally, I'm going to have a little tickle on one of Julia Feilden's runners this afternoon. Ocean Countess (5.10 Brighton) is on a hat-trick and she clearly loves it at the quirky south coast track. Three runs there have yielded a second and her two recent wins. Moreover, today's pilot, Catherine Gannon, is unbeaten on the Countess, having taken over two starts ago.
She would have won by more last time if Cathy had begun her run earlier (she will argue she timed it to perfection!), and I like her chance of getting the triple up this afternoon.
Finally, it's Thursday, so let's have some Thursday Fun. I've got a classic Two Ronnies sketch for you today...!
And it's goodbye from him.