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Saturday, 16 October 2021

Still in the Tradition of Tipping

Well, another week has passed.

I thought I would write a post to fill a hole in the wall. To be honest, I'm missing the Tip Comp.

More so, the fact that the Flat turf season should be part of the summing up. The Brocklesby Stakes would have been of interest. I think that is usually on a Saturday. Not that is matters. 

We are all waiting and wondering when the racing will start behind closed doors. 

I'm more interested in the welfare of the racing industry keeping going and for owners and trainers not to get itchy or desperate feet and struggle under the financial burden that all too many people are suffering at this time. 

I know most horse owners have little hope of winning prize money at the best of times. However, the hope of such a day is enough to keep the wheels of racing turning. The level of prize money in the UK has been dire for decades. I think it is actually less than it was a decade ago.

But, as we know, it is better than not.

I fear owners will be moaning at their trainers and asking for a cut-price deal over the period, trainers will feel like they are in an impossible position because they are stuck in an awful situation. I wonder if any owners have just walked away and declared there is no way they are paying for a racehorse when it isn't racing. I guess it is all about money.

I know the majority of owners would rather sell their grandmother than let their horse go and I applaud all who are doing there very best for racing. 

At the end of the day, it will be the horses who pay the price if it all goes wrong and that really doesn't bear thinking about. 

Anyway, horse racing is still continuing at a few locations on planet Earth. I see Gulfstream Park is still plugging along. That's not too far away from West Palm Beach where I have been much of the last two years. It is, in fact, near Fort Lauderdale. A stone's throw from the coast. 

I see on Saturday, there are a couple of meetings in Australia, Randwick, and Caulfield. 

There may be a few more pop up on the day as the Racing Post seems pretty poor at working out a lot of these meetings.

Roll on racing coming back to the UK. 

It is something the racing industry needs more than race fans.

Monday, 26 April 2021

Gosden & Son Look to Have Great Team for Royal Ascot 2021

Newmarket trainer John Gosden saddled six winners at Royal Ascot last year, with at least one coming on each of the five days of Britain’s premier Flat horse racing festival. 

The racecards for this year’s edition of meeting will have a subtle change in them. Next to the names of horses hailing from the yard, it will read John & Thady Gosden after the decision was taken to share the license between father and son from the start of the UK Flat turf campaign.

This partnership across generations has already got off to the perfect start with some high-profile victories with their overseas runners in the Middle East. Gosden junior has overseen those, travelling out to Saudi Arabia and then Dubai with globetrotting colt Mishriff. 

Memorable successes in very valuable international events, the Saudi Cup on dirt and Sheema Classic over a longer trip on the turf, have opened up new horizons for this horse. Fellow Dubai World Cup Night hero in Meydan’s Dubai Turf winner Lord North is favourite for a successful defence of the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes come Royal Ascot.

Gosden senior has won that Group 1 event over 10 furlongs four times before. Only the late Sir Henry Cecil saddled more successes since the Prince Of Wales was revived in 1968. 

As any good Royal Ascot tips & preview pieces should point out, the stable also has a strong hand on paper for the opening Group 1 of the meeting, the Queen Anne Stakes. This straight mile contest for older horses could include two Gosden runners in action. 

The potential improver is Lincoln Handicap winner Haqeeqy. His victory in that historic Doncaster race was the third time he has run at one of the Flat season’s major festivals after success at the St Leger meeting last autumn. 

Although the Queen Anne is a big step up from such company, Haqeeqy would be far from alone in progressing to that elite level from handicaps. Lord North took the Cambridgeshire as a three-year-old and then made rapid improvement at four.

Team Gosden also have a past Royal Ascot winner in St James’s Palace Stakes scorer Palace Pier with the Queen Anne as an obvious target. He too went down the handicap route before a length defeat of Godolphin’s great hope Pinatubo. 

The jewel in the stable crown following the retirement of wonder-mare Enable is supreme Flat stayer Stradivarius, who remains in training as a seven-year-old. Motivation, as if it were needed for this Royal Ascot great is to match the mighty Yeats as a four-time winner of the Gold Cup. 

Stradivarius, whose record over the summer is superb, has already broken records in the Goodwood Cup. While owner Bjorn Nielsen was indulged with an autumn campaign geared around the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, it is the cup races of two miles plus where this superstar is at his very best. 

No stayer on the Flat has been able to land a blow on Stradivarius at Ascot during the royal meeting. It is going to take something very special indeed to stop him at that time of year from recording a fifth consecutive win at the meeting. The Gosdens clearly have a fearsome Royal Ascot team.

Photo: Trainer John Gosden and jockey Frankie Detttori CC BY-NC-SA2.0 by Charles Fred

Monday, 1 March 2021

5:20 Wolverhampton Racing Tips (1st March)

Just the one race of interest today. 

A 6f (6f20y) Betway Novices Stakes on standard going. 

This looks a two-horse race. There's been good money for Archie Watson's Dragon Symbol. This son of Cable Bay out of a winning mare races in the familiar silks of Yoshira Kubota and a 67,000 guinea yearling. 

Watson is renowned for debut winners, and you can be confident this grey colt will be leading, even with a relatively wide draw in stall eight. 

This race has featured flip-flopping favourites with Clive Coxes' Fernando Rah being well backed and then drift out with money for Watson's. 

Fernando Rah is owned by Peter Ridgers who is a loyal patron to Cox with quality horses such as Harry Angel and Bobby Wheeler. 

This three-year-old bay colt, a son of Lethal Force out of a quality-winning mare, Lacing, who was racing in the Cheveley Park Stud silks. She won just once in fourteen starts but it was a big pot taking the £100,000 Tattersalls' Millions Fillies' Median Auction Stakes and taking £56,055.61 in the process. A smart victory, winning by a length and three quarters.    

Both Dragon Symbol and Fernando Rah have strong claims. To be fair neither look to hold great value and most likely price to chance. 

Other contenders include the twice raced Balearic for Paul Cole, in the silks of Mrs Fitri Hay. Not seen for 149 days, this 140,000 euro yearling purchase has been relatively fancied on his two previous starts. This son of Gleneagles was well backed on his second start but tired after showing speed. Physically a nice-looking horse, he ran well at Newmarket, but may have been unsuited by the heavy ground. Clearly connections think this drop back in distance may be the answer. Not the easiest horse to assess and a wide draw isn't ideal on this turning course. 

Pinball Wizard looks to be second string to Fernando Rah.

George Scott's Melly's Flyer has run twice and fancied to win second time out when behind Pinball Wizard. 

Conclusion: The debutantes look to hold the most interest here. In general, I would fancy Watson's horse to make a bold show and could well hold the edge. Turning courses are never easy for debutantes and wide draws are potentially difficult especially if forced to run wide. I'll take a watching brief. If Fernando Rah drifted to 11/4, there may be a little bit of value. We will have to wait until nearer the off to appreciate the opportunities. 

Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Wednesday's Racing Thoughts (17th February)

Just a quick look at today's three-year-old races. 

For starters, I can't see too much of interest. However, most of my opinions, today, will be made by the betting markets. 

2:15 Wolverhampton - 

This looks a very open-ended affair. 

Sea The Shells has claims. 

Rain Guage ran well enough on debut and could go well here although James Tate's horses on their second start don't, in general, have the best strike rate. 

I'm not sure what to think of Tom Clover's The Guvnor, in the ownership of The Rogues Gallery. This son of Frankel wasn't the most expensive and I'm sure connections expected more on debut. However, he was struggling after a slow start and just couldn't get to the pack and never involved. I would suspect better will be seen today although an even greater trip would be a positive. Could well run a big race and not a bad price but one of those horses you just can't quite get to grips with. May prove a mistake not betting but I don't like taking too much of a gamble and after looking very inexperienced on debut there is a chance he will need this second start. In addition, it is a slight negative that Jack Mitchell is riding stablemate Rogue Force who heads to Kempton (4:45). 

A couple of outsiders may hold some claims but they are dependent on market moves. 

Act Naturally, for Simon & Ed Crisford may have a chance but would need to be backed. She ran well for a long way on debut but tired rapidly after being slightly hampered. This drop down in distance will help and fitness should be better today. I wouldn't bet on this horse unless fancied in the market. Difficult to know what to think in ways. Time will tell. 

It's a similar story with Hugo Palmer's Contessa, who went to the sales and wasn't sold for $360,000. A hefty sum of money which indicates a horse better than seen on debut. She definitely needed the run and looked quite limited that day. Horses can be transformed from first to second start so you just never know what to expect. Another horse that could go well but would need to be supported in the market. 

Rumi, trained by Roger Charlton, could be a better this time out. There was money for this three-year-old last time out but it was a lacklustre effort. May run well today but you need a leap of faith because it wasn't the most sparkling performance. 

In conclusion: This looks a difficult race to assess. The favourites are most likely to run well. The Guvnor, Act Naturally, Countessa and Rumi could spring a surprise at odds. A few of these horses have negative jockey booking or slight queries. I would like to see money for some of these to bring them into the reckoning. Unless you want to take a punt you will need to see money. I would have to wait until near the off to have a better idea. 

Other races: 

4:45 Kempton - 

Rogue Force looks a live chance and could be a fair each-way bet if prices allow. It is encouraging to see Jack Mitchell take this ride in favour of The Guvnor. 

Friday, 12 February 2021

1:25 Lingfield Horse Racing Tips (13th February)

A 6f fillies' novice stakes on standard going. 

Eight runners for those who love their each-way bet. 

I'm writing this post as I think aloud. Looks a half-interesting contest with a mix of trainers, three-year-olds with race experience and debutantes. 

Mummy Bear has raced twice for Richard Hannon. This daughter of Kodi Bear has run over 6f on both starts to date showing improved form on her second effort when beaten by a comfortable winner. Ryan Moore takes the ride and sets a fair standard. Whether you would want to take short odds is a matter of opinion. I would let the betting settle because this horse may drift in the market. 

Archie Watson is a talented trainer who often strikes with his debutantes. *Rosie Power is a well bred horse sired by Siyouni out of a two-time-winning mare who proved successful on her first two starts, then raced up to Group 2, placed five times at Listed class. This March foal races in the familiar silks of Andrew Rosen and Partner and cost 190,000 euros. The betting is the best guide to this fillies' chance. If fancied in the betting should go well, especially if starting favourite. *NR

Mahale has been kept busy with six races under her belt. She has limitations but a horse up to winning a race or two. She cost 42,000 at the yearling sales and half-sister to Opal Tiara who was a decent horse for the Channon yard. Mahale was held in some regard at two and raced at Group class, although beaten. She ran well when making a return to racing over 5f at Lingfield when leading for most and lost in a blanket finish, when half a length behind another Archie Watson horse. It didn't look the most competitive of races although she did overcome a wide draw. She has a low draw and plenty of pace to lead. It wouldn't be a surprise to see those tactics employed. There may be concerns about getting the distance as she didn't look to be doing anything but stopping over 5f. This factor would be a stumbling block for most punters. 

Rae Guest does well with his fillies and Rita The Cheetah run on well to win on debut at Wolverhampton over 5f by a neck. Considering she finished the race lame it showed a gritty, determined horse. This daughter of Prince Of Lir was a bargain basement buy at just 800g, as a yearling. Part owned by Rae Guest, Julie Cecil and Family, she doesn't owe anyone anything. To be fair, that was a pretty ordinary race. She heads here with a win penalty but will appreciate this step up to 6f. It is never a good idea to limit a winner although she will need to show more today. The apprentice takes off a valuable 3lb and a low draw is a positive. 

It's worth keeping an eye on the market for Passionova, trained by George Baker. The stable have a poor win rate on debut but often go well on their second start. This daughter of Bated Breath cost 75,000g at the 2yo Breeze-up sales, which is a significant buy for this stable. This February foal was nibbled in the market and was in need of the race, over an insufficient distance of 5f. She has a form line with Mahale and could well improve markedly for that initial start. Not without a chance and holds each-way claims. Would be very interesting if backed. 

Just Amber and Laetoli make their debuts, both from high-profile yards. 

Just Amber, trained by Clive Cox, is a daughter of Lethal Force out of a five-times-winning mare, who was Listed placed. Similarly owner-bred by Ken Lock for Clive Cox. The mare was a decent type who was a sprinter. The stable debutantes can win at double-figure odds and one to consider if well backed. I would let the betting tell the story with this filly.

Mick Channon unveils Laetoli. This home bred is a daughter of Footstepsinthesand. The stable can win on debut at big odds although I would have doubts about this three-year-old if priced over 10/1. There is a chance this horse will be second string to Mahale and may benefit from the run. The betting will help appreciate strength and weakness.  

Bayamon Belle would need to improve and best watched.

Conclusion: An intriguing race with a little bit of everything. I would be tempted to let the betting settle unless you fancy getting stuck into Passionova as a live hope. George Baker's horse may well be backed although I wouldn't be so interested in this horse if is started at double-figure odds. Rosie Power is interesting and has very good claims, especially if strongly fancied in the betting. Mummy Bear has claims but pretty short odds. Difficult to know what to think about Rita The Cheetah. Mahale may struggle to get home and different tactics may be employed. I would have slight concerns about both. If pressed, I would be looking at Rosie Power and Passionova but both are very dependent on their starting price. Watching brief. 


When Will It Start?

When will Coronavirus end? 

When will the horse racing begin?

In many ways, these are impossible questions to answer. The government is doing its best to keep us safe and sound. The exit route beyond self-isolation is still up in the air. What can they say? 

Just like reading the form for a horse, you can only make an assessment based on data. Without data, we are literally left in the dark. So why on earth people keep asking when, when, when, is almost a pointless exercise. 

I'm waiting for the two-year-old horse racing to start. The BHA has stated that we will have to wait and see. The welfare of the population should be enough for all to heed the lessons of safety first. 

It could well be June before the horse racing starts. It may be a lot longer because we don't know.

Who knows. 

A few horse trainers have been quite vocal in asking for a date to be given so they can get ready for the off. it is understandable. But is it logical? 

John Berry is always a voice of reason, and he makes a great argument about why people need to just wait and see.

From a two-year-old horse racing point of view, it will seem strange for the juveniles to be starting halfway through the season. Will the meeting be confined to a handful of racecourses. How many race meetings will there be a week and will the season be kept going longer to make up for lost time?

Time will tell. 

I guess it is all about looking at the bigger picture and seeing the wood for the trees. 

Until the time comes we just have to wait, keep safe, and see. 

Tuesday, 27 October 2020

Welcome to Bloody Good Winner

It's been a long time between drinks.

So, I have been thinking about the best way to go ahead with the tipster competition to make it fun to play - and you can even win a prize for free.

The winner takes all competition has been knocked on the head but we have something that you may well enjoy. 

Entry to the competition is via invitation only - all previous players get the golden ticket.

The rules are the same as before but its a cash-free zone and the monthly winner wins a gambling publication. 

Our selection of books includes all the big names: Dave Nevison, Harry Findlay, Dave 'Devilfish' Ulliott, Barney Curley, Patrick Veitch et al. 

(We will be adding new books every month).  

If you love horse racing, betting and reading you're in luck.

I will be contacting previous players to see who is interested. 

Sadly, we won't be having the big prize money anymore but you can play for free and never have to lose your shirt. 

If worse comes to worst, you will have to read a book! 

I very much doubt the competition will start this new month, but we could have a competition on December all being well. 

Thanks for your support. 

All players must live in the United Kingdom - I'm not sending books to the four corners of the world!

Saturday, 29 August 2020

Saturday Tipping Competition 29th August

Just a random selection of horse running today with a chance:

12:20 Newmarket - Et Tu Brtue 3rd 

12:35 Windsor - Whenthedeadlinesdone 3rd

1:15 Goodwood - Lullaby Moon 1st

1:30 Newmarket - Legal Attack 1st

1:50 Goodwood - Happy Romance NR

2:55 Redcar - Italian Breeze 1st

3:30 Redcar - Showalong 1st

5:10 Redcar - Candescence NR

Good luck to all  

Friday, 5 June 2020

Saturday Tipping Competition - Still Sidelined (6th June)

Hi Everyone, 

All players should have received this 

I trust you are keeping safe and well. 

It seems a long time between drinks but thankfully the racing has resumed. 

However, we will not be having a tipster competition this month so please do not send any money or tips for Saturday 6th June. 

I've had problems with Paypal who seemed to create a storm in a teacup about me using their platform regarding ''gambling, lottery, etc'' or whatever they imagine, and for a time my account was limited which isn't very good as I use it for business. 

Anyway, I will use this month to figure out what is best regarding the Saturday Tipster Competition but to be fair it looks unlikely it will be continued in the future which is a shame. 

I will get back to you all at the end of this month with an update. 

Please note, anyone in credit will be refunded on 4th July or before if they wish.

Thanks for your support, 

Friday, 3 April 2020

The Positives of a Virtual Grand National 2020

This time last year... 

Who would have believed that the Grand National - the most famous National Hunt race in the world would be virtual?

I think I could have got odds of 1000/1. 

The National was postponed on Saturday 5th April 1997 after the IRA bomb threat forced the course to be evacuated. However, it took part on Monday (7th April) giving the winner, Lord Gyllene, a nice weekend break. Jockey Tobby Dobin and trainer Steve Brookshaw must have wondered what all the fuss was about when the 14/1 won by 25 lengths. 

This year, Coronavirus has reared its ugly head as the invisible enemy to humanity and in the process knocked sport for six with the outfielder some 200 miles north of South Africa (but he's getting in position for the best catch of his life).

So this Saturday 4th April the Grand National takes place with 40 runners. A host of familiar names including Tiger Roll, ridden by Davy Russell. Please remember, these are computer-generated horses and jockeys. 

The ''race'' will be televised on ITV 4th April from 5pm. The coverage will be led by Nick Luck and Alice Plunkett (yes, they are their real names, and real people). The commentary will be undertaken by Stewart (The Machine) Machin. He is a real person, too, and not as some had considered for years to be an android beamed down from one of Neptune's moons (Triton).

The race won't be live as it has been pre-recorded. Hardly surprising, hey. 

So what are the advantages of the virtual Grand National? I can see most horse racing fans reading those words in horror. 

  • Unaffected by Coronavirus
  • Still betting taking place
  • All profits from bookmakers DONATED to NHS Charities
  • No injuries to horse or rider
  • It boosts morale in these difficult times

Form: Unknown to me, the virtual Grand National has taken place before. Last year, it was won by Rathvinden, with Tiger Roll finishing second place. 

Analysis: Will Tiger Roll win the Virtual Grand National? I can see him going very well. And I think he will be the selection and winner! Although, there is some reason to question whether he will win. Shock horror. Because, if he does prevail, it is very unlikely the bookies will show a profit that will be donated to the NHS. So, could we be in for a shock result? Perhaps a rank outsider so all the dosh goes to the noblest of causes? It wouldn't be a bad result in the fight against Coronavirus. So that's the dilemma. Will he (Tiger Roll) win or not? The choice, if you decide to bet, is yours! Good luck.   

Here is a list of runners and riders and betting odds: 

1. Tiger Roll, Davy Russell (5/1f)(Gazmachine)4th

2. Bristol De Mai, Daryl Jacob (20/1)(Mickishi)
3. Aso, Charlie Deutsch 66/1)
4. Elegant Escape, Jonjo O'Neill jnr (20/1)
5. Anibale Fly, Barry Geraghty (20/1)(Me Old Mum)
6. Top Ville Ben, Tom Dowson (45/1)
7. Beware The Bear, Jerry McGrath (33/1)
8. Peregrine Run, Kevin Sexton (66/1)
9. Jett, Sam Waley-Cohen (50/1) (Bobby Talk)
10. Alpha Des Obeaux, Richard Johnson (25/1)
11. Total Recall, Paul Townend  (25/1)(Longbow)
12. The Storyteller, Keith Donoghue (40/1)
13. Magic Of Light, Robbie Power (18/1) (Damian Kay) 
14. Talkischeap, Tom Cannon (25/1)
15. Yala Enki, Bryony Frost (28/1) (Mark J)
16. Ballyoptic, Sam Twiston-Davies (25/1)(Winter, Bird, Yvonnew, Jodonovan)
17. Burrows Saint, Rachael Blackmore (12/1)(Lindybops, Afistfullofdollars)5th
18. Definitly Red, Brian Hughes (14/1)(Tom Corderoy, Jerry Banks, Mickwalkersnr, Baby Jane) 
19. Sub Lieutenant, JJ Slevin (33/1)
20. Ok Corral, Derek O’Connor (25/1)
21. Tout Est Permis, Sean Flanagan (80/1)
22. Vintage Clouds, Danny Cook (33/1)
23. Crievehill, Tom Bellamy (66/1)
24. Lake View Lad, Henry Brooke (50/1)
25. Jury Duty, Mark Enright (40/1)
26. Pleasant Company, David Mullins (28/1)(Glueythepig) 
27. Acapella Bourgeois, Danny Mullins (33/1)(OneEyeEnos)
28. Shattered Love, Lisa O'Neill (66/1)
29. Any Second Now, Mark Walsh (10/1)(Eric Winner, Dan The Man)3rd
30. Potters Corner, Jack Tudor (18/1)(Mixerman, Hoofhearted)1st
31. Dounikos, Luke Dempsey (50/1)
32. Kildisart, Nico de Boinville (50/1)
33. Death Duty, Gavin Brouder (50/1)
34. Ramses De Teillee, Tom Scudamore (66/1)
35. Valtor, James Bowen (66/1)(Shukman)
36. Saint Xavier, David Maxwell (66/1)
37. Warriors Tale, Harry Cobden 80/1)
38. Double Shuffle, Jonathan Burke (100/1)
39. Kimberlite Candy, Richie McLernon (16/1)(HCE, Norfolkenchants)
40. Walk In The Mill, James Best (16/1) (Derek T, Betmanmike)2nd

Well done Mixerman & Hoofhearted for winning the Virtual Grand National and £25 each.