Good morning all,
It’s Tuesday so it’s got to be tracker day. I have three eyecatchers from last weeks action which you can find inside the main piece. Plus, I have a selection from this evening’s meeting Wolverhampton.
First I will continue to look back at events at Haydock on Saturday and there's my take on the new Racing League.
I looked in detail at the Betfair Chase in the Monday column. However, there was plenty of other talking points from the meeting.
Nine for Main
The Betfair Stayers Handicap Hurdle looked a competitive race on paper. However, the race was won in decisive fashion by Main Fact. It’s nine successive wins over hurdles and on the flat now for the 7-year-old.
Not for the first time the horse came from what looked an unpromising position, four out, to win going away. He proved he stayed 3m now and deserves to take his chance in Graded company after this success. Maybe something like the Cleeve Hurdle could be on the agenda?
If you backed the favourite Relegate, you knew your fate early in the race. The mare was never really travelling. The first time cheekpieces didn’t seem to have the desired effect and she was pulled up.
The well backed Third Wind, fourth in last season’s Pertemps Series Final once again ran his race. It looked like the 6-year-old was coming with a winning run coming to the last but seemed to pull himself up on the run in.
Coming into the straight The Jam Man was in a similar position to the winner. It was a good effort to get as close as he did in 6th.
West To The Bridge travelled through the race like he remains on a winnable handicap mark, he just didn’t stay 3m. Well not on that ground anyway.
Collooney was badly hampered when Wholestone came down three out. He was making headway at the time but it was his race over and his jockey pulled up him up before the last. This run can probably be forgiven in the circumstances.
Ascot prize money
The field sizes at Ascot were below what could have been expected and it was down to some substantial cuts in prize money compared with 12 months ago.
Cuts in prize money can be expected due to Covid-19 crisis but the prize money at Haydock, whilst down on last year was respectable compared to what was on offer at Ascot. You can see why some jumps trainers think Ascot has prioritised the flat over the jumps.
Last week we had more news about the new Racing league which is set to take place next summer.
Like the “City Racing” idea. I had hoped the Racing League concept would have been quietly shelved. However, we are living in times were a seven-figure investment in the sport can’t be ignored.
It still remains another contrived attempt to appeal to people who are not interested in racing by recreating it as a “team sport”. Is there really such an audience out there for it?
That said, I suppose it’s worth a punt given the prize money that’s going to be on offer for participants. Will it be around in five years though, I suspect not.
Three for the tracker
Flagrant Delitiep – Robert Walford
The 5-year-old was 0-5 over hurdles but ran well on several occasions over the smaller obstacles. Bred for chasing, he wasn’t disgraced when 4th of 7 on his first start over fences last month at Wincanton.
He was back on that same venue on Thursday and finished a good 2nd of 11 to Native Robin. Only beaten a length at the finish he can win a handicap chase in the coming weeks at this level, especially as he handles softer ground.
Hold That Thought – Venetia Williams
Hold The Thought runner-up on his chase debut at Lingfield last month, ran just as well when finishing third to the highly progressive Demachine in the novices handicap chase at Ascot on Saturday.
The five-year-old will stay further than 3m and being a winning hurdler on the heavy can win races when there’s an emphasis on stamina.
Kings Monarch – Kerry Lee
Returned for the first time for 284-days when winning at Ffos Las (heavy) last month. The 7-year-old was sent off the 11/4 favourite to back up that win in the 3m 4f handicap that closed Haydock’s card on Saturday. He was already struggling as the field headed for the second circuit and was soon pulled up. Given the testing condition, he can be forgiven this run.
Yesterday’s selection The Domino Effect ran respectably to finish second at Kempton. On a day when it paid to be close to the pace. He found himself just a bit too far out of his ground to catch the all the way winner.
I have a couple that I like at Southwell this afternoon.
12:37 – Fiddlers Bow is having his first run since March and the first since another wind-op. Twice a winner, at Ayr, in early 2019, the latter of which came off 3lb lower. Looked set to win jumping the last, on his seasonal reappearance at Doncaster last December but idled on the run in and had victory snatched from his grasp in the final 100yds. A solid jumper of a fence he’s gone well fresh in the past and can go close here.
3:07 – I like the claims of Cyrus Keep. The 7-year-old improved with each of his two starts this season. Plenty of promise on his handicap hurdle debut at Wetherby last time. He was doing his best work at the finish that day so I am a little surprised to see him dropping a furlong in distance rather than stepping up in trip. Gets the first-time blinkers which could sharpen him. Can go close if the headgear has the desired effect.
3:07 – Cyrus Keep – 11/2 @ Bet365.
Good luck with your Tuesday bets.
John Burke is the tipster behind the long standing Victor Value service you can join him here – https://victorvalue.uk