Good morning all,
I've started to get myself into the Flat vibe by going to Windsor yesterday – something I'll be doing quite a bit throughout the summer – and there's a review on the main piece, with a couple to be watching out for in the near future.
However, it's to Exeter I go for today's selection, which is a bit bigger in price than I made him yesterday. Details of that on the main piece too!
2.20 – 5f Class 5 Handicap
Not much to be said about these – winner Marietta Robusti was plenty fit enough and answered the question about whether she would handle the ground plenty well enough. What she has beaten here remains to be seen – Mother Of Dragons appears to be very limited, Orient Princess isn’t going anywhere, Billy Booth was far too keen pre-race and was beaten 9l here, and there’s little to take out the race.
2.50 – 5f Novices Stakes
Green as grass most of these and that includes the winner Blown By Wind, who is huge and already looks like a 3-y-o. His size was an obvious advantage in the conditions and he simply powered clear late in the day. He was shouting his head off both beforehand and afterwards in the winners enclosure and can surely only improve. He might be useful.
Second home Awake In Asia was also green and looked more in need of a run than a few – he definitely wasn’t as match fit as the winner and as such, this rates a decent effort. Should be up to winning a novice on this.
Artair had been well backed throughout the day but wasn’t anything out of the ordinary on looks and once the paddock judges had seen both the winner and Artair the money was all one way, with Blown By Wind backed from 7-2 to 2-1 at the off.
Greeley didn’t have a clue and was grinding his teeth as well. Greyzee has a bit of scope but again, was simply too green, Merarani looked like a whippet and Solesmes, whilst fine pre-race, simply bolted with Charles Bishop on the way to post and had run his race by the time he got to the start.
3.20 – 1m2f Novices Stakes
The two that stood out pre-race were King’s Proctor and Sevenna Star, and whilst it was clear both of them had their minds on other things early on (especially Sevenna Star, who was also warm before he even came into the pre-parade) they both settled down well. The winner, who has a Derby entry, really does take the eye and is a proper bull. He was far, far too good for this lot and deserves a crack at something better next time.
King’s Proctor has simply come up against a tartar here but stuck on well enough. Third home Morning Skye, who on looks will have a hurdling career ahead of him if it doesn’t work out on the Flat, also ran well and will be happier back on quick ground. Both those two gave 7lb to the winner and faced an impossible task, in retrospect. Ishallak looked like he’d come on for a run.
3.50 – 1m2f Handicap
I was with Bombero at 3-1 here and felt quite smug as he was well backed and went off 2s, but he couldn’t hold the late thrust of Nordic Combined, who had been well backed and landed the first part of a double on the card for Stuart Kittow. I actually thought the winner might come on for a run so a follow-up could be on the cards.
Not much to be said for the rest, with Manchego the only other to make much appeal on paddock looks.
4.20 – 5f Handicap
The right two on both paddock and betting finished 1-2 here but sadly for me I’d gone with Glory Of Paris, who looked very well in his coat and bang fit for this. Done in the shadow of the post again! In this current frame of mind compensation surely awaits, especially whilst the ground is still riding quite testing.
If there’s one to take out of this for the near future, it might be Tawny Port, who looked very much in need of the run and was quite keen to post as well. Given that, his sixth here wasn’t the worst effort and if it’s taken some of the freshness out of him, he could be one to catch next time. One for trackers as I think he should be winning soon when he has his conditions.
4.50 – 1m Handicap
The two here were winner Icart Point, a good stamp of a horse and on looks, is better than a middling handicapper. He won this with some authority and looks set for a decent season. The other to take out of it was third home Unbridled Spirit, who also has the size and scope to do well this time around but did look as if a run would tighten him up a bit. He’ll be winning soon.
5.25 – 1m Handicap
Wasn’t a lot to say about these, but top weight Spanish History, built to carry a bit of weight, definitely looked in need of this and probably another run as well. He’s a nice sort that should continue to progress this year and this effort is best forgotten.
As an aside, I was amazed by the number of horses – both experienced and inexperienced – that were spooking badly in the parade ring throughout the afternoon. Most of them had been absolutely fine in the pre-parade but there was a certain part of the parade ring that plenty seemed to take a disliking to. I spoke to Eddie Fremantle, who knows all about these things, and he said it happens a lot – there’s a few buildings on the far side of the paddock with white, pointy roofs, sort of temple-like, and he thought that plenty found that a bit offputting. Something to bear in mind as the Windsor Monday nights go on through the summer.
At Exeter today, it's the maiden hurdle at 4.20 that's the interesting race and for my money The Cannister Man ought to be favourite. I made mention of him after his eyecatching Southwell run and he duly ran well last time, finishing second to the very useful Euxton Lane and although well beaten, there was no disgrace in that. (As an aside, I thought Euxton Lane ran a nice race Saturday, all about fences next year now.) This is obviously a bit easier and I think he might take a bit of beating here.
Today's selection – The Cannister Man, 4.20 Exeter.
Good luck with all your bets today,