Despite have the website registered for a few weeks, I’ve only just got round to writing my first piece on here, and the website is still not finished as you will see from the racecourse pages at the top. Hopefully I’ll find time to get these wrote this weekend, and then I can concentrate on penning something for the upcoming meetings in Yorkshire, as well as anything else that takes my fancy.
Onto Wetherby on Tuesday then….
The opening race looks to be the toughest on the card to solve, and many look to have chances. I’d personally give seven of the nine runners a chance of winning the race, showing just how competitive it is. The two that stick out the most though are Princess Mononoke as a win bet, and Strike West as a small each way outsider.
Princess Mononoke first, who at the time of writing this was priced up at 5/2 with many bookmakers. She finally came good last time out at Sedgefield and it is my opinion that she will continue to thrive, and build on that victory. After winning at Hexham last season, she went and ran a great race to finish 3rd at Carlisle the time after, and that shows me she is a amre who runs better with confidence. She is only rated 100 now, so still on a mark where she can compete, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see her run well on the back of that win, and double up here.
If you are looking for an outsider to back then there are many worse bets on the card than Strike West. He has ran his two best races at this course when comign 5th on hurdles debut, and 4th last time out. There looks to be a small race in him, and having been dropped 3lb by the handicapper he can compete at this slightly lower level. With a young rider taking another 10lb off his back, this could be the time to catch Strike West, and although the race looks competitive, he has to be chanced at the big price of 18/1.
This race revolves around one horse and that is Flemerina. She has ran well on her two chase starts, which is more than can be said for the rest of the field. She ran as though she needed stepping up in trip last time out, something that she has today, and all in all this looks to be an exceptional bit of placing by Sue Smith to find this opportunity for her. She will not get a better chance over fences than this one, and it will be very disappointing if she cannot take advantage. Her price of 11/10 tells you that though, and while it is a big skinny to be taking, she looks to be the standout on this card.
Rosmuc Relay is sure to get a lot of attention in this race and he really could be anything. However, after just one run over hurdles, and being priced up at odds on, he is one I am happy to let slide. I’ve taken a look at the opposition at bigger prices outside of the obvious threat Teescomponents Lad and only one piece of form stands out. That is the hurdling debut of Well Smitten, a race in which he unseated his rider at the penultimate flight. He may not have won that day, but aside from the favourite, that is the best peice of form in the book. To back him, you have to excuse a poor run last time out, but being a young inexperienced horse, I am happy to do so. It’s not a race I want to heavily involve myself in, but based on his debut run, Well Smitten could give the favourite something to think about, and at 6/1 he will appeal to some I am sure.
Pistol Park looks to be a horse waiting to win and is one that I have been interested in on each of his runs this season. He has finished second over course and distance this season, and while he was a little disappointing last time out, he looks capable of bouncing back here. At 5/2, in a race of this nature it is certainly something I am happy to find out.
He is currently rated 132 by the handicapper, a mark that looks well within his reach based on last season’s runs. Last February he won off 131 in a race at Newcastle on heavy ground by eight lengths, and if he gets anywhere near that then this race is certainly within his grasp. He has been off the track due to a wind operation, and should he come back an improved horse for that surgery, then he would be a horse to remain on the right side of going forward.
Along Came Theo is probably in a few notebooks after his last two runs, both times he has been ridden by an amateur jockey. He is clearly not the easiest horse to train or handle, but for this race he gets the assistance of Brian Hughes in the saddle. That could be the difference maker with him, and is a big reason why he is of interest today. 9/4 is perhaps a little shorter than I would have like, afterall he has gone up a total of 9lb for his last two runs, despite winning neither. However, if he is to win a race this season, it looks as though this is the one with Brian Hughes on board.
He only lost by a short head last time out, which came at this course, and previous to that he was beaten less than two lengths at Hexham. He is clearly in the right kind of area to pick up a win, and let’s hope that Brian Hughes is the difference maker today for him.
Many punters will remember Milly Baloo running at Catterick last time out. She was well fancied that day, and in control at the last fence before running out and losing the race. That was an unfortunate incident, but today looks to be the day she will make amends for that mistake. Prior to that Catterick run she ran nicely over course and distance on her only other start this season, both pieces of form put her bang there and in with a great chance.
Brian Hughes is in the saddle today and he will no doubt have studied the Catterick run and worked out a plan to combat her quirkiness. She has gone up 3lb for the Catterick run despite running out, but that shouldn’t be enough to stop her, she was likely going to win by a nice margin that day had it not being for the accident. At 3/1 she is priced about right in a race that doesn’t look to be much tougher than either of her assignments so far this season.
I’m not really going to dwell on the bumper too much, as everything revolves around one horse, It’s O Kay. I remember being at Doncaster when she made her debut and she was all the rage before the race. She ran nicely to stay on into 4th, and looked the type that would certainly improve for the run. Someone clearly thinks a lot of her, and she is short enough her to let run without having a bet. Elsewhere there is very little interest for me, her main rivals have both already won races so we know their level, and the outsiders look nothing to shout about. Bumpers can often be informative, whether you have a bet or not, but this one looks to be an exception to that rule.
2:00 – Princess Mononoke (win, 5/2)
2:00 – Strike West (each way, 18/1)
2:30 – Flemerina (win, 11/10) (NAP)
3:35 – Pistol Park (win, 5/2)
4:05 – Along Came Theo (win, 9/4)
4:40 – Milly Baloo (win, 3/1)