I suppose we could start today’s mutterings by mentioning a few things about yesterday? Bruce Millington still isn’t reading the blog though……..the phone hasn’t rung yet! Come on Brucey!
First and foremost I was very impressed with Dynaste. The way Tom Scu spoke about him afterwards I have a feeling they think he will be a better long-term prospect than Grand Crus. Fingal Bay ran well and jumped fine but his lack of pace over that trip got exposed and I expect him to be a much better horse over three miles plus. The yard also remain a little bit quiet, which is a worry. I thought extra credit should be given to Dodging Bullets who had to make his own pace and still won. He can be marked up for this performance. I doubt however that Paul Maloney will enjoy watching the replay too many times. On that evidence Court Minstrel is a rapidly improving horse and (probably) should have won.
Away from Cheltenham the racing was a joy! Aldermoor the bet of the day won really well at Lingfield, as did Anjaz later on in the evening at Wolverhampton. Then the punting gods really looked down on me. Having backed TARO TYWOD at 4’s in the morning he shortened significantly with the non runners (and the weight of Grantham followers money piling on) into 6/4. So with BetAngel running (Betfair trading software) the few minutes up to the race were awesome as money came for the others he drifted back out to 3/1 and bigger………the xmas money was dripping in lovely. Lays at 1.5, 1.3 and 1.11 were matched a long way out and the big green book was secure. I don’t normally lay off like that it was just an insurance policy because of the way he travels and that I’d kept pressing on whilst he was drifting.
So we move on to today and a real fascinating days racing. In the feature I think, like most that Grand Crus is going to be very tough to beat off 157. As I write this the 9/4 has disappeared and only Bet365 are standing it. He could go off at 6/4 at this rate. I hope he wins, it would be a good result for racing, but I also hope Hunt Ball runs a blinder.
I am really looking forward to the chasing debut of OUR FATHER (1.20 Chelt). He has always been regarded as a chaser in the making so whatever he achieved over hurdles was always going to be a bonus. The way he won at Ascot last year was breathtaking before he was disappointing on his final two starts. Moves over the larger obstacles today and he has enormous potential in this field. Sire Collonges jumped well on debut and will be a tough nut to crack but we are sure he could be something a little bit special and the feeling that the yard have had this in mind for some time. Glad I took the 9/2 last night as he is being smashed up this morning! Also at Cheltenham I have backed THEMILANHORSE (3.05) He looks a nice type and I think the step up in trip will suit big time. Getting 10lbs off Lovecen here could be crucial.
Over at Lingfield I like the look of both ELSIE BAY & EVERGREEN FOREST (12.30 Ling) so will back them both. Elsie Bay’s form behind Boonga Roogeta could not be stronger for the grade and surely goes close today. I think TINSHU is overpriced in the Listed race.
The two best bets of the day however have been saved for good old Wolverhampton. CHARMING (5.50) looks to me a horse that has largely gone under the radar. A real interesting runner for Olivia Maylam.The daughter of Invincible Spirit has only had 7 career starts to date and has some interesting form lines that make us feel that 67 under estimates her ability. She has run in some ok races for the grade recently and was an eyecatcher last time when not quite seeing out the 6f here. She gets the drop to 5 today which makes her of strong interest at an each way price of around 16/1 with StanJames. Lovely!
For the mince-pie collection though I have to say that ARAGOURN ROUGE (8.50 WOLV) still looks incredibly well handicapped on his old form and looks an absolute cracking bet tonight at 9/4. It will be a 9 hour punting marathon but he should be worth waiting for! All aboard!
I will probably spend the early part of the afternoon flicking between the racing and the friendly at the Emirates. For the record I hope Arsenal stuff them! West Ham don’t play till Monday night so a football pain free weekend. Three points against Stoke could put us into the top 4. How crazy is that? Champions league la la la…………..(as if)
Be lucky today, enjoy a great spectacle!