Plumpton/Fontwell Reviews

Good morning all,

The final part of my reviews from the weekend's racing. Have to say it's been good to get back out on the tracks, even if the racing isn't the greatest at some of the venues at present.

There are a couple for trackers, plus a few to keep an eye on at Chelmsford tonight, where I've done the card for the Life. Continue Reading

Sandown Review (Pt 2)

Good morning all,

I see from the news this morning that Finian's Oscar is making the switch back from fences to hurdles, classed as a “surprise” according to the RP, but readers of the Punt won't see it that way – I have said from the start of the season he doesn't really have the scope to make a chaser and this looks a smart move. Anyone who took the bigger prices on him for the Stayers Hurdle NRNB are in a decent position now – can't say I did, but good luck to you if you're on.

Second part of Sandown today, which includes an interesting Tolworth Hurdle, plus a selection from Kempton that's on the watching list from last season. Continue Reading

Sandown Review (Pt 1)

Good morning all,

The first of a 2-part Sandown review on the Punt this morning, as it's quite a long piece I've split it and the second part will come tomorrow. I hope you all find it of some use.

Plus one from Doncaster that's on my Five To Follow list this year – I'll be very disappointed if this can't go close today. Continue Reading

Go with the Price at Hereford…

Morning all,

By the time you read this week’s article, there will be just 63 days until the tape raises for the first race of the 2018 Cheltenham Festival the Sky Bet Supreme Novices Hurdle. Putting that into some perspective it’s 63 days since November 5th. I know one shouldn’t be wishing away the next two months of racing but all roads now really do lead to Cheltenham!

The two most significant meetings to come are the Cheltenham Trials meeting at the end of this month and the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown on the first weekend of February which is often the last chance for trainers to prep their Cheltenham contenders.

On Sunday, the Willie Mullins trained Next Destination enhanced his credentials for March with a solid enough win in the Grade 1 novice hurdle at Naas. He’s been likened by some pundits to former stable star Hurricane Fly and you can see why. Yesterday he showed a nice blend of speed and stamina in taking the 2m 4f race.

A mouth-watering clash with Samcro in the Ballymore Novices Hurdle over 2m 5f looks the ideal race for the 6-year-old but the way he travelled into the lead shows a strongly run 2m Supreme Novices Hurdle would also suit the gelding and in a weak looking year you wouldn’t be totally surprised to see him at the start for the first race of the Festival.

The rescheduled Coral Welsh Grand National was won by the 13-year-old Raz De Maree. He had finished 2nd in last years renewal and had clearly been laid out by trainer Gavin Cromwell for another tilt at the race. Only seven runners finished this year's race which can be attributed by the very heavy ground. The bigger the test of stamina the better for him and once again it showed here. Others were going better four out, including the eventual third Final Nudge, but once he took the lead two out, you knew no horse would be finishing stronger.

Raz De Maree's win was also a triumph for his young jockey James Bowen who at 16 is only three years older than the horse. He is tremendous value for his claim and serious injuries aside he will surely go on to be Champion Jockey one day. I have to say it’s pretty amazing that we have two brothers who are riding at the top of their game in James and Sean Bowen. The latter has slipped under the radar recently but it’s worth noting he has had 10 winners from 38 rides 26% +12.24 A/E 1.4 19 placed 50% in the last 30 days and his talents were showcased on Saturday with his ride on the Nigel Hawke trained Speredek at Sandown.

One For The Tracker:

From next week I will be giving you an eyecatcher from Meydan Winter Carnival which gets underway on Thursday but this week’s horse for the notebook ran on the all-weather at Kempton on Friday evening.

Eljaddaaf – Dean Ivory – Won the race last year and was racing off an 8lb higher mark this time around. He probably came up against an improving horse and did well to get within ½ length when finishing 2nd. He came from further back than the eventual winner and would probably have preferred an even stronger pace to chase.

The 7-year-old is 3 wins from 5 runs 4 placed over 6f at Kempton and 2 wins from 3 runs over 6f at Wolverhampton. All six of his career wins have come when racing within 30 days since his last run, including 5 wins from 8 runs +16.38 when racing on the all-weather 16 to 30 days since his last run. Despite his career-high mark, he looks capable of winning again when he gets his optimum conditions.

Monday Racing & Selection

After a tough December betting wise, we bounced back with five winners over the weekend all at decent prices. Some nice profits – £200 to £10 level stakes – for those of you who took up the £1 subscription offer to the Victor Value service last week.

We have jumps racing from Fontwell and Hereford, although the latter does have to pass a precautionary inspection at 8 am. There is also all-weather action at Wolverhampton which has no handicap better than Class 5!


2:30 – Clondaw Rigger showed that heavy ground holds no terrors for him when staying on to finish second at Uttoxeter 8 days ago. That run came over 3m and he looks like he will be suited by the extra furlong of today’s race. The 6-year-old has only had two starts over fences so he looks capable of better with more experience. I think connections will be disappointed if he wasn’t capable of winning a race off his present mark of 78. On a day when solid betting opportunities at a decent price are hard to find, he should give his backers a good run for their money.

Clondaw Rigger – 6/1 @ William Hill and BetVictor

All that’s left now is to wish you a profitable week’s betting.

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