Archive for the ‘ Jumps ’ Category

19 Nov
2008

Get in Character for a Bet on The Hennessy Gold Cup

With Exotic Dancer all set to take on his old adversary Kauto Star in the Betfair Chase this Saturday it means the Hennessy weights are set to rise by a minimum 16lbs, good news if you’re eyeing the antepost lists for a likely contender lurking out of the weights in the mid 130’s.

Coming into Newbury’s big race of the year off a fair mark of 138 is John Quinn’s Character Building, third in the race to Denman 12 months ago when rated 135, and trained specifically for this target by his shrewd handler.

If there’s a a worry that his 2007/08 season ended prematurely due to injury then a winning re-appearance over hurdles at Towcester last month proved his well-being, as he stayed on up the stiffest of hills to see off Shannon Springs and put him spot on for Saturday week.

He’s fit and well, we know stamina won’t be an issue since he was second in the Cheltenham Festival four miler in 2007, he goes on literally any ground, and has form at the track. An each way investment at Sportingbet at odds of 8/1 looks to be the way to go.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

18 Nov
2008

No Greater Love

You can’t get much further removed from the stellar sight of top quality chasers thundering up the Cheltenham hill than Fakenham’s Weatherbys Bank Conditional Jockeys’ H’Cap Chase, but a winner’s a winner, and that’s where we’ll head to see Charlie Longsdon’s No Greater Love bid to follow up his recent Stratford win at 1.30 this afternoon.

Up against a desperately weak field, his only serious opposition is likely to be the weather (any more rain would be a negative but the current good ground is fine), Silvergino – who won an egg and spoon contest at Southwell last time and is far more likely to resume his favoured losing streak, especially since the assessor gave him a pat on the back and a ridiculous 9lb rise in the weights, and 10-year-old Beau Torero – who loves the track and won this very race a year ago, but has shown little in between to provide encouragement.

Even back on ‘home’ territory I don’t expect Beau Torero to have enough guns to see off a young horse who has clearly benefitted from a change of yard and is in good heart. Take the 6/4 guaranteed about No Greater Love with Stan James or Paddy Power.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

15 Nov
2008

A ‘Great’ Sunday? In store at Cheltenham

Nicky Henderson’s outfit can do little wrong at present, and the good run can continue in tomorrow’s feature race, as Aigle D’Or returns from a 247 day break in the Greatwood H’Cap Hurdle.

The Seven Barrows handler did this column a big favour last week with Duc De Regniere notching a 5/2 success at Kempton, and there could be more reason to celebrate when Cheltenham’s feature race ticks ’round at 2.20pm.

Aigle D’Or was a very handy campaigner on the Flat, winning a listed race at Lyon, before joining Henderson in a move which immediately bore fruit; hurdling wins at both Lingfield and Cheltenham.

Those successes lead to the five-year-old Halling gelding being sent off 4/1 favourite for the Ballymore Properties Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, but he simply failed to run his race and fluffed his lines on the day.

Put a line through that performance and instead focus on the word from within the Henderson camp that this horse could well be a real star this season, and suddenly his current handicap mark of 140 starts to look rather generous.

It’s no surprise he’s been so well supported over the last 24 hours, but take a slice of the 3/1 (guaranteed by Stan James) and sit back and enjoy!

The Greatwood isn’t the only quality contest on offer tomorrow though, with Punchestown’s Maplewood Developments Hurdle more than making up for what it lacks in numbers with sheer quality.

Only five go to post for the big race over the Irish sea, but what a five; and emphatic recent Down Royal winner Jered can stamp his undoubted class and re-enfore his Champion Hurdle claims, 8/1 with Paddypower at this early stage.

At evens on Sunday, he makes far more appeal than chief market rival Sizing Europe, who may be more than a tad ring rusty having not been seen out since last season.

Finally, don’t miss Tatenen‘s latest outing in the opener at Cheltenham (1.10pm). He gets handy allowances as a four-year-old, and can put his rivals to the sword to get the day off to a winning start for favourite backers.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

15 Nov
2008

Ashley Brook in the Paddy

Day 2 of the Cheltenham Open Festival sees the Paddy Power Gold Cup in what looks a really tough renewal of the race. There is a full field of 20 going to post and everyone in the race could be given a chance. Paul Nicholls has the favourite in Silverburn and he has to have a very good chance in the race bit at the odds he is no value at all. The one that is interesting is Ashley Brook who looks to be back to his best when he sluiced up in the Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter the other week and he jumped with his old zest and he is the class horse in the race. At odds of around 25/1 an each way punt could pay dividends.

In the Servo Computer Services Chase at Cheltenham at 2:00 we see last years Grand National winner Comply of Die make his return to the track but there is one in here that we like is Karanja who loves the soft ground and goes very well fresh and at the odds is of interest.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

13 Nov
2008

Choose Razor to make it a Royal Occasion

Day one of Cheltenham’s Open Meeting doesn’t look too hot on paper; a Cross-country marathon, a four-runner Novices’ Chase, and a Conditonal Jockeys’ event feature among the six race card, but don’t let that put you off.

The best things come to those who wait, and the final race of the card at 4.05pm gives us another chance to see Nigel Twiston-Davies’s hugely exciting Razor Royale in action over fences, in the Steel Plate And Sections Novices’ Chase over the extended 2m 4f.

Travelling like a winner when he came down at the second last on his chasing debut here in October in a race won by Ring The Boss, he can make amends with a clear round at his local track.

Always expected to be a far better chaser than hurdler, he won on soft ground on the Sunday of the corresponding Cheltenham card 12 months ago, and provided he’s none the worse for his tumble four weeks ago, can account for likely favourite Herecomesthetruth at odds of around 9/4.

His trainer tops the winners table for this meeting since 1990, and those stats could be about to improve once again.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

13 Nov
2008

All Aboard the QEII

Well almost! This column has struck gold with some nice bumper winners in recent times, and the good run can continue with Sue Smith’s Quwetwo well fancied to be in the shake up in Newcastle’s maiden bumper at 3.45pm on Friday.

Likely to be a rewarding each way price (8/1 on Betfair at the time of writing), the five-year-old made a pleasing debut at Southwell back in April when fourth in a well contested affair, and the word from the Sue Smith camp is that this son of Karinga Bay is a winner waiting to happen.

Certain to be suited by a stiffer test of stamina, and with the stable banging in the winners, the advice is an each way investment on Quwetwo.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

07 Nov
2008

Jump To It For A Profitable Weekend

While I’ll be enjoying the end of season party atmosphere on Town Moor – some 200 miles south west a key fixture in the National Hunt calendar will be cranking up at Wincanton.

I love a good day out at the Somerset venue, a proper old-fashioned galloping track with big stiff fences and a clued-up crowd who know their racing. That and the sight of numerous pairs of red and custard cords being proudly sported by the local fashionistas.

Just five go to post for a valuable pot at 2.50pm for the Totetentofollow Elite Hurdle, and I’m keen to take on the Champion Hurdler Katchit, who has a stiff task trying to concede a stone and more to some useful rivals.

Perhaps the ground was a little quicker than he’d have preferred when beaten by Snap Tie at Kempton last time, and he’s sure to improve for his first outing of the new season, but he’ll have to be right at the top of his game to get the better of some of these, including Paul Nicholls’ promising French recruit Takeroc, who finished second to Border Castle in Ayr’s Scottish Champion Hurdle when last seen back in April.

Takeroc may be seen to even better effect when allowed to concentrate solely on his chasing career, and I’m going to by-pass him in favour of having a couple of quid one of my favourite horses in training, popular dual-purpose campaigner Blythe Knight.

Nicely weighted, fit from the Flat, he has no problems regarding ground or trip, and trainer John Quinn and jockey Dougie Costello teamed up to win this in 2006 with 9/2 shot Crow Wood. I won’t be going all out, as despite the small field it’s a race to savour, but at around 7/1 with the bookmaker Paddy Power he can spring a minor surprise here, and add to a career tally which already includes big race hurdling success at Aintree, plus on the level a win and a second in the Lincoln, a key listed race at Chester, plus successive victories in Epsom’s Diomed Stakes.

The next race on the card is the Badger Ales Trophy Handicap Chase at 3.25pm, a race in which there are question marks about plenty of the main protagonists.

Once again I’m keen to take on the favourite, which looks likely to be Paul Nicholls’ Leading Attraction; this is only the seven-year-olds fifth racecourse appearance, and he’s going to need all Ruby Walsh’s experience to guide him around these challenging fences if his jumping at Taunton back in April is anything to go by.

With that in mind, I’m happy to look to the bottom of the weights and a young horse with a big future; Tom George’s Island Flyer.

At likely odds of 11/2 with Ladbrokes he’s a progressive type, unbeaten over fences, and a danger to all off his light weight. A former Irish point-to-point winner, he can continue to improve after his summer break, and with Paddy Brennan continuing the partnership he can maintain his winning sequence.

Finally, there’s also a decent card at Sandown, and word reaches me that Alan King’s new boy Bensalem is considered way above average, and can take a hand in the concluding bumper at 4.05pm.

Tom’s Wincanton & Sandown Tips

  • 2:50 Wincanton (Saturday) Blythe Knight to win @ best morning price
  • 3:25 Wincanton (Saturday) Island Flyer to win @ best morning price
  • 4:05 Sandown (Saturday) Bensalem to win @ best morning price

Compare bookmakers offers for these horse racing tips

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

06 Nov
2008

It Looks Rosy For Alflora

I’m a big fan of the offspring of Alflora and it’ll be no surprise if Alflora Dora can renew my membership in the fan club by winning the Mares’ Bumper at Haydock later today (4.10pm).

Good things are expected of the four-year-old by the Alan King team, and she showed more than enough when fourth in a field of 20 on her debut to suggest she can snag a bumper before progressing to a fruitful hurdling career.

The 5/2 generally available, including Ladbrokes, is a fair price.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

06 Nov
2008

Rival Bidder to continue Upward Curve at Haydock

Sue Smith’s Rival Bidder can step up from his recent Soutwell romp to net the 1.10 Taylormade Betting Conditional Jockeys’ H’cap Hurdle at Haydock Park this afternoon.

A course & distance winner in his novice days the 11-year-old can make up for lost time (he endured 18 months on the sidelines due to injury) by obliging at odds of 7/2 (with Bet365) on fast-ish ground he loves.

Improving pilot Gary Rutherford’s 8lb claim leaves Rival Bidder to shoulder a meagre 10st 1lb & he can take full advantage.

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago

05 Nov
2008

Kauto Star Odds Shorten in Haydock and Cheltenham Antepost Markets

The odds on kauto Star to win the Betfair Chase on the 22nd November are as short as 1/2 with Bluesq follwing his impressive win at Down Royal last weekend. The Paul Nicholls trained eight year old has won the first leg of the Betfair Million for the past two years and he is rightly warm order to make it a hat trick of wins in the race.

The manner in which he won last time out would suggest that he is somewhere close to the type of form he showed when winning the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 2007. He currently sits second, behind stablemate and current Gold Cup winner, Denman, in the betting for the 2009 renewal at best odds of 3/1 with Stan James, who have also shortened his odds about a third successive King George victory at Kempton on Boxing Day (5/6 from 10/11).

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Posted 8 years, 10 months ago