It's a bumper weekend of racing action, on both sides of the Irish Sea, and I'll preview the UK races of most interest here, including a fascinating Temple Stakes that sees the 'Budapest Bullet' make his UK debut.
But first, there's plenty going on today in the racing world, so let's try and pick out a couple that might run well, all emboldened for ease of reference!
Let's start off with the 'get out stakes', and 8.40 at Towcester. TimVaughan currently has a 43% win and 57% place strike rate in the last 14 days, and his sole runner today is in the bumper here. True Blue is the name, and this dual point-to-point winner may be value against an unraced Nicky Henderson horse.
True Blue hacked up on his second point start, and that was just two and half weeks ago, so he'll be fit and ready for this. 7/4 might not be everyone's cup of tea, but he'll likely go off shorter ths evening.
In the 3.40 Bath, Flowing Cape has been running well, and the race in which he was second last time behind Seasider has thrown up three subsequent winners and a placed horse from four just six runners. Flowing Cape is spotting the favourite, Collect Art, a stone and a bit but the pick has won off a seven pound higher mark than the 83 he races off today, whereas the jolly is trying to defy a career high rating.
Flowing Cape travels very well in his races and, whilst being called some names for not always going by the leader, he was six lengths clear of third placed Galatian last time, and that horse won a competitive Newmarket handicap in front of the Geegeez Racing Club mob last weekend.
Another who could run well at a bigger price is Miss Blink in the 4.50 at Yarmouth. She won last time out in a race that has produced a winner and a couple of tidy placed horses from five runners, and the 4/1 looks good each way value.
Most of the top drawer action is tomorrow of course, and the Temple Stakes from Haydock is the UK feature. It has even more spice than usual this term, as the ghoulash-gobbling galloper, Overdose, the Budapest Bullet bids for his 16th win from 17 lifetime starts.
In truth, he's yet to face competition as deep as this, except when he 'won' the Prix de l'Abbaye at Longchamp the year it was nullified and rerun later in the day. As a 6yo, he's also older than eight of the last ten winners, with just David Barker's pair of 7yo's spoiling the record of the 3-5yo brigade.
On balance, whilst I'd quite like to see him win, 15/8 is plenty short enough, and not for me in one of these sprint contests. Ignoring the old guard knocks out quite a fewÂ more of the fancied runners, including second favourite and fellow six-year-old, Kingsgate Native, who won this last year.
It was also his seasonal debut last year when he bagged this, so lack of a run wouldn't be a concern.
Markab, Tangerine Trees and Borderlescott are all in the older horse bracket and, whilst obviously that doesn't preclude them winning, I'm looking for a younger type to offer a bit of value. Step forward, last year's shock Nunthorpe Stakes winner, Sole Power. He was 100/1 that day, and won on merit alright under similar conditions to tomorrow's.
He's 'only' a 12/1 chance this time, and I think he represents a degree of each way value in a wide open contest.
I couldn't take a look at this race, without mentioning the gallant veteran, Borderlescott in more detail. He's been third and second twice in this race in the last three years. It would be a staggering achievement at the age of nine were he to prevail. I'd love to see it but I wouldn't bet it! Good luck to the old boy, nevertheless.
One other race worthy of mention tomorrow is the Julia Feilden trained Sancho Panza, who runs in the amateur race at York (5.25). A certain Ross Birkett, son of Julia and regular Geegeez guest writer, will take the mount and he's bidding to maintain a record for the horse of finishing in the first two in each of his last five starts.
Track, trip and ground will all be fine for him, and I'll be betting each way and cheering Ross-co home!
[Julia also has two in at Goodwood. Not fancied and only running because the owner is in attendance.]
Now then, on a completely different note, and in case you were wondering why I've been so quiet this week...
It's because I opened the door to new applicants for my Platinum Programme business training yesterday. The feedback has been unanimously positive, and the available twenty spaces are filling up nicely.
For most of you, if you'd wanted to get involved, you'd have been on my special business training list already. But if for some reason you did miss that invite, or perhaps you just want to have a snoop around what's going on ;), then you check the Platinum Programme out here.
Have a great weekend, whatever you've got planned, and I'll be back in the swing of things next week.