NHL Delight

Evening all. Apologies for the lack of posting recently. Life has been hectic as I’m working hard to build up my freelance duties. I just wanted to write a quick note to thank everyone for the kind messages about the NHL bets. With the Washington Capitals putting up a terrific road performance in Tampa in game 7 last night we have managed to secure both teams in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Vegas at 33/1 (1pt) and Washington 16/1 (2pts) means we are guaranteed a lovely payday. It should be a terrific series and all the more enjoyable having backed both at Christmas. This is another example of the US sports markets that are largely left untouched by the books until past the mid season point (with the exception of the NFL). With the earlier divisional bets already winners we have a guaranteed 41pts profit from the ante-post bets.

There will be some racing blogs on the horizon. The systems analysis went through a brutal period due to the weather in the first quarter of the year. Now the flat is back it has all returned to normal and I will touch on those a bit more over the coming weeks.

Enjoy the rest of the hockey, and alas…. the NFL is only just over 3 months away!!

All the best

 

MG

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A look at the Stanley Cup (NHL) mid season markets……

Seasons greetings and all. I trust you have had a wonderful festive period and you are looking forward to the new gym membership in the new year! With racing at its quietest point of the year for me personally I have taken the last day or so to go through the markets in the other sports that I have a long-term interest in. The turn of the year is always a decent time to look at the NHL as we are pretty much at the mid-season point and there are always a few ricks from the books as they are fairly lazy about the prices as they really don’t see much long-term money for them. I have managed to find a few that are of definite interest and hopefully you can get a few shillings on before they cut them.

I will apologise in advance for the first one as I’m not sure how much you will really be able to get on but the biggest mistake in the outright market is for the VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS who are currently 33/1 with 188Bet. They are also the wrong price to win their division but I’ll get to that in a moment.

A brand new franchise this year, they recruited very well. Shot data is excellent and they have been imperious at home. The Golden Knights currently have the 2nd best record in the league, lead the Western Conference and therefore should not be anywhere near 33/1. They are generally around a 16/1 chance which is more in line with their actual price (although I think that is still on the high side). As I said, I don’t what you will get on but the 33/1 should be taken before it disappears. Please have some on for me too whilst you’re at it!!

The Vegas lads should also be backed to win their division with Coral/Ladbrokes at 7/2. I struggle to see both Anaheim and San Jose making up the ground on LA and Vegas. I have it as a two runner affair, therefore the 7/2 looks a good bet as in reality they should be around 2/1.

Second error on the outright market are the vastly improved NEW JERSEY DEVILS. Second in the Eastern Conference and with a 22-9-5 record, the Devils are starting to roll. Most firms have wised to it but 888 sport and Unibet are both 30/1. That is too big for a team of their quality.

HOT TEAMS

Teams improving at a rate of knots are always dangerous when it comes to the back-end of the season and there are two to keep an eye on. The Washington Capitals are post season regulars and have looked much better over the last month or so. They are 16/1 with Boylesports in the outright market and that is another price to be interested in. They are 7/2 to win the Metropolitan Division and I’d be looking to get heavily involved in that price if it wasn’t for the Devils being in there too (5/1). Split stakes on the two would not be your worst bet of 2017.

The other one, and this is not biased in any way is the Boston Bruins. The B’s are hot going 8-1-1 in their last ten and seem to have finally shaken the TD Garden voodoo with a much better home record this year. Boston’s youngsters have added some real depth and whilst they cannot catch Tampa for the division, William Hill’s view that they are a 33/1 shot to go all the way is wrong.

Finally I’ll finish with my main bet, and that is the NASHVILLE PREDATORS to win the Central Division at 2/1 with Bet365. I won’t go in-depth other than to say I think they are the best team in that division and having played fewer games than the chasing pack, I think they are going to be very hard to knock off the top. They are about a 5/4 shot so the 2/1 is a nice price.

Outright:

Vegas Golden Knights (*what you can at 33/1)

New Jersey Devils – 1pt @ 30/1

Washington Capitals – 2pts @ 16/1

Boston Bruins – 1 pt @33/1

Whilst this is 3/1 Eastern Conference heavy, you could add Nashville if you wanted to be evenly split.

Divisions:

Vegas (Pacific) – 2pts @ 7/2

Washington/NJ (Metropolitan) 2 pts Wash @ 7/2 (Lads/Coral) 1 pt NJ @ 5/1 general.

Nashville (Central) 5 pts win @ 2/1.

15 pts outlay.

Hopefully these will give you plenty of fun across the remainder of the season, and more importantly some decent profit.

All the best

MG

 

Thunder sends shivers through the King…….

Proform

A thrilling 2000 Guineas was the highlight of the action on Saturday with 40/1 shot Night Of Thunder taking first prize despite drifting across half the track. The runners split into two groups which have led some reports to believe the race has thrown up an odd result, I personally don’t really buy into this. Kingman ran a blinder to finish 2nd. Probably in front early enough on the far side. Australia is now a short price favourite on the back of his 3rd for the Derby, which is good news as I will be keen to take him on at Epsom.

Today is the turn of the ladies in the 1000. As per usual my ante-post position on My Titania has gone with the wind! 17 fillies are set to go to post at 3.50 and I am really keen now on the chances of MISS FRANCE. Andre Fabre’s filly was most impressive when winning the Oh So Sharp back in September when winning with quite a bit in hand. She can be forgiven being beaten on her re-appearance as the race was a mess from the start. It will at the very least have put her cherry ripe for this afternoon.

A quick look back at some of the results yesterday. Absolutely So won really well as did Fort Bastian. Waseem Farris ran a blinder at a huge price and was actually maybe unfortunate not to win. Fingers crossed plenty of you backed them all.

Time for some Proform stats for trainers that have runners this afternoon:

Trainers win and place strike rate with more than 10 runners in the last 14 days:

A P O’Brien 68.18% (22 runners)

Ralph Beckett 61.54% (26 runners)

Saeed Bin Suroor 60% (10 runners)

John Bridger 53.85% (13 runners)

Michael Dods 52.38% (21 runners)

Clive Cox 52.38% (21 runners)

Andrew Balding 51.52% (33 Runners)

I should also note from these figures that Karl Burke currently has a 35.71% winning strike rate as 10 of his last 28 runners have won. He sends out Odeliz and Yeeoow today.

On to today’s eye catchers. First up we have ECONOMIC CRISIS (1.55 Ham) who has been in the book since an interesting run back in October.  He is now a well handicapped horse as he is 5lbs below his last winning mark. His two runs this year will have made him cherry ripe for this afternoon and he absolutely loves it here (all three career wins at Hamilton). He is as big as 8/1 in places in a race that looks very winnable indeed.

YEEOOW (3.10 Newmarket) looks to be coming to the boil really nicely and he is on a winning mark. The yard is absolutely bouncing as we have already mentioned sending out 10 winners from their last 28 runners. This is really competitive but it should be run to suit and if you shop around then you can get some 14/1 with the first five places being paid by some of the big firms if you like the each way angle. I would almost insist on a saver or maybe split stakes on NINJAGO in the same race. He was potentially unlucky not to have won a couple of big prizes last year and from a handicapping point of view is surely capable off 101. He goes very well fresh and Hughesy is up which is a positive. Play the two against the field at 14/1 and 11/1 respectively.

Longshot

Without doubt the horse on the day that is probably most over-priced is the Linda Perratt trained ROYAL STRAIGHT (4.10 Hamilton). The negatives are that he can take a run or two to get race ready some times and that he may well be better now over 10 furlongs but both of these negatives are out weighed by the price. He is a general 28/1 chance but there is much bigger available on Betfair. His last two wins were off marks of 64 and 67. Today Royal Straight will race off 63. He is very capable and if he is race fit he could just run a massive race at a big price. If today is not the day, keep an eye on him for next time.

The dilemma of what to do when three of your horses to follow all end up in the same race. Hamiton’s 4.45 has thrown up SIRVINO, O Ma Lad and Pixie Cut. Of the three (who I think will all win soon) I do favour Sirvino. He ran an absolute blinder at Musselburgh last time on a track that was suiting front-runners. He missed the break and had to come from a long way back. The 2lb rise will not stop him from winning. O Ma Lad was given a very interesting ride back on his re-appearance and I would expect him to go close too. I am also convinced that Pixie Cut is a well handicapped horse but she might struggle against the top two. I would strongly suggest backing Sirvino and O Ma Lad for a profit and have a saver on Pixie Cut.

I hope the above digs out the odd winner. Another day of cricket for me this afternoon. Should just leave on the note of how enjoyable beating Spurs three times in a season was. Epic. they spent 108 million pounds on new players. We bought a crocked number 9 who has played about 8 games……. funny old game eh? COYI

What a comeback too by the Boston Bruins last night in the 3rd period. Their skating speed and fore-check late in the game has really set the tone for the rest of the series.

Enjoy today,

All the best

MG

Sir Henry Cecil, more winners and a pace bias?

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Woke up with a right old spring in the step this morning on the back of yesterday’s results. It seems all the work I am putting in at the moment is really paying off as we had two more lovely winners. Not an awful lot went right for Ghanaian but she still won really well and pretty comfortably. She looks well ahead of her mark and the time was the best of the day on the card too. I think you have to give extra credit to Press Room at Lingfield last night too as he managed to wear down another seriously well handicapped beast in Big Thunder. They pulled well clear of the others and both have multiple entries over the coming days. Big Thunder definitely needs to go back on turf on a galloping track mind as he never really looked at ease at Lingers. The 4/1 about Press Room in the morning was a gift considering his SP of 6/4, I just hope I convinced enough of you to join in. He is entered at Sandown on Friday, but I doubt he will get in.

The sad news about Sir Henry Cecil yesterday was a bitter blow to the racing industry. A truly remarkable man and above all a fantastic horseman. No less than 75 Royal Ascot winners spanning 43 years. He excelled with fillies and picked up six 1000 Guineas victories as well as eight Oaks. Four Derby winners and no less than ten trainers championships. Towards the end of his career he will largely be remembered by the younger brigade as the man who so tenderly handled probably the greatest racehorse we will ever see in FRANKEL. Many believe Frankel wouldn’t have gone unbeaten in the hands of another trainer and that just speaks volumes. Sir Henry, a true gentlemen, an unbelievable horseman and an absolute legend of our sport. RIP.

If you were paying particular attention to the meeting at Yarmouth last week you will have noticed that 6/7 races were won from the front. Very similar conditions at the Norfolk track today could see a similar outcome. I haven’t had a chance to go through the Yarmouth card in too much detail though as I am travelling up there today for presenting duties so have a good look through the card for pace angles. At a very brief look that might make Claude Greenwood interesting in the 3.10 although strictly he has a few pounds to find.

Now onto the runners today from the notebook. First up and many of you will remember this one from last year is ISOLA VERDE (5.10 Yarmouth). I’ve had to be pretty patient in waiting to get the reddies back on this one as her last run was back in November. She ran in first time blinkers that night and not for the first occasion she got badly hampered and had a troubled passage. She is undoubtedly better than her current mark and if she is fit and well she could go close. Today could also just as likely be a prep for another day as she will come on for this. I’ve had to play though as the price of 7/1 this morning was just too tempting especially with Buick up.

Another one from the list is GRAN MAESTRO (2.20 Haydock) but he is in a race where I actually like two or three of the runners so is no bet. He is much too short now anyhow. I also really like the look of SUPER SAY in that race too but it looks open.

Another one that is jumping out at me is MEGLIO ANCORA (9.20 Ham). The omen of leaving it till the last race on the card hopefully coming good again. He caught the eye when being beaten by Spirit of Gondree (the day we were on) at Wolverhampton in January and is ridiculously well handicapped on some of his old form (rated mid 80’s). He had a spin over hurdles last month to blow away some cobwebs and should be just about right. Graham Lee rides for the first time to add some extra spice. Today may not be the day but the 14/1+ available is much too tempting to leave him alone.

Looking forward to game one of the Stanley Cup Finals tonight. I will have to watch it on record as I’m off to Yarmouth however. If your around at the track tomorrow do come and say hello. I’ll be the plonker with the mic.

Be lucky,

MG

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Derby weekend preview!

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Well a very good evening campers. What an enjoyable day today was (apart from England’s performance at Lords). Absolutely delighted for Ralph Beckett for his one-two in the Oaks this afternoon. I had the pleasure of interviewing Ralph on the phone on Timeform Radio yesterday and he was a pleasure to speak to and  very pleased with both of his filly’s going into today. If you were listening it was a classic radio moment as myself and Rory (Delargy) were discussing Talent at the time that our producer put the call live. I think Rory is now off Ralph’s Christmas card list but on a brighter note, I doubt he cares tonight.

I have to say that I do feel for a lot of my colleagues who were all on Secret Gesture at massive prices months ago. For what it’s worth I think she still might actually be a better filly that talent, things just didn’t quite go her way today. It would have been a very interesting finish had she got first run and a clearer passage. Still there is no doubt that they were quite clearly the two best horses in the race.

A terrific result from my horses to follow list today too as JUST PAUL won at Catterick. Most of you will know that he’s been on the radar for some time. I’ve had to be pretty patient as he went on the list last year. The SP of 14/1 was beautiful.The only other selection today was HELL HATH NO FURY. A nightmare passage down on the inside having slightly missed the break and midge had to sit and suffer to a degree. She looks on a nice mark and I’m sure it won’t be long before the losses are recouped.

I have a full weekend of cricket to take care of so I will not be around so I’ve spent the evening going through tomorrow’s cards and I have managed to come up with a couple of selections. One is fairly obvious.

I will start things off in the Woodcote Stakes (2.05 Epsom). Kodiac’s two-year olds have made a magical start to 2013 with 11 wins from 36 runs and he has two in here that are both of major interest to me. The likely short priced favourite will be Richard Hannon’s Thunder Strike but I think there is reason to take him on as from all the runners he has beaten in his two starts only one of them has even managed to place since. He may be smart but he is much too short. I really like the look of HAIKBIDIAC who’s available to back at 9/2 on Betfair this evening and I think he might be a bit shorter come post time. He won well on debut before looking like 5f was a bit too sharp on his second start. This step up to six should really suit and he has the added assistance of Ryan Moore and a good draw in stall 4. I expect Ryan may track Richard Hughes early and pounce late. I will be having a saver on MONEY TEAM for Bill Turner. He was really well backed last week ahead of his smooth victory and I think he might be up to this step up in class. He’s available to back tonight on Betfair at about 17.5 and that will do nicely.

I will take great pleasure in watching St Nicholas Abbey winning the Coronation Cup again as he is one of my favourite horses in training.

I managed to narrow the dash down to about 3 or 4 but couldn’t find any value anywhere as the ones I like are towards the head of the market. If you had to put a gun to my head I would probably side with Captain Dunne but it is wide open. If you fancy LONG AWAITED you are probably going to have no finger nails by the end of the race as Hughesy is going to have to pull out one of his master classes! Good luck!

The Investec Derby 4.00 Epsom

A race that revolves around the stamina of DAWN APPROACH. Jim Bolger’s unbeaten colt comes here on the back of being very strong at the finish in the 2000 Guineas, as he has been in most of his races. His sire New Approach’s progeny are proving to be stout stayers but it is on the Dam side that the doubts are being bantered about. His dam (Hymn Of The Dawn) raced five times over 6-8f and finished with a rating of 73 (not deserved). She is by the US bred PHONE TRICK who was a classy sprinter and who’s own progeny have never won a race over 9 furlongs.

I for one think he will stay. He has a classy way of travelling through his races and the downhill section of the course at Epsom will come at a time when a lot of these will be pressing the button. As a result I think that Kevin will be able to sit on the bridle for much longer than he would normally want too and then he can use the unbeaten colt’s class to get him home.

On a line through Sugar Boy the disparity in the market between Battle of Marengo and GALILEO ROCK is stupid. GR has been crying out for at least a mile and a half and as such I think he represents a degree of interest in the Betfair place market. He might well be a St Leger horse later in the year and the 8.6 about him to place with a small win saver has to go in the book aswell.

I think Dawn Approach will win mind and he goes down as a maximum as he continues to drift.

Disappointed with England today at Lords. I can’t see why Jade Dernbach still gets in the side. Yes he has a good slower ball but most frontline bowlers do. He’s a good T20 addition but he is not a one day frontline bowler. It brought back some great memories watching the game today having played at Lords in the National Village Cup final two years ago. The road back there continues this Sunday in the Regional Semi Final.

The conference finals in the NHL get underway tomorrow too and the Bruins travel to Pittsburgh for games one and two so a couple of late nights are in order! Let’s go BRUINS!

I trust you’ll all have a an excellent weekend. Be lucky, back plenty of winners.

MG

pro5

BING BONG, stewards enquiry, stewards enquiry!

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There are certain things in our sport that drive us mad. Small number cloths, awful rides, non triers, pathetic each way terms, being stuck in the 1960’s…..and so on. Then there are the things that tip you over the edge. Yet again the winning margin has lured the stewards into amending a result when the simple fact of the matter is the better horse won on the day. At the end of a grueling three miles and half a furlong both Rebel Swing and Bishophill Jack under Samantha Drake and Nick Scholfield respectively are out on their feet climbing the Towcester mountain. Both jump the last markedly right-handed before both horses then drifted back towards the rail in a tight finish. Samantha Drake tried her best to change her whip hand but just didn’t have the time, or ability in which to do so. Rebel swing held on in a tight finish and other than a small bump 40 yards from the line there was minimal contact. Now the stewards have come to the conclusion that had there been no interference, Bishophill Jack would have won. Pardon? If they had both run in a straight line over the last, Rebel Swing would have won. Fact.

The inconsistencies within the stewards is baffling and this has finally drawn me to the conclusion that we need to move on and have full-time professional stewards. To rub salt into the wound Samantha was handed a two-day ban………..she has my full sympathy.

 Most of you will know that most of my video study is concentrated on handicaps but I have stuck a few in the notebook from maidens over the last week. DISKO caught my eye at Bath last week and is one to note. As is WIKI TIKI who ran at Windsor on Monday night. Twice now Wiki Tiki has run over 5f and been readily outpaced despite travelling ok. On pedigree she is likely to need at least a mile, probably further and I would expect to see her over 5 or 6 again soonish to get a mark and she might then be held back for a nursery later in the year off a very workable mark. A slightly more obvious one was COSSETED who ran at Nottingham this week in the colours of Cheveley Park. Stayed on really nicely into 2nd with the jockey taking things very easily.

From the last seven days my handicapper to follow is GLOSSY POSSE from the Richard Hannon stable. She endured a really troubled passage at Doncaster last week and Richard Hughes gave up a long way out when he was still travelling very well as she was never going to get close. This was over seven furlongs and she is likely to appreciate a step up in trip too (by Dubawi out of a Fantastic Light mare) and looks like a well handicapped filly off 66!

Today’s cards are tough and I don’t have any eye catchers running. One horse that I do think is interesting to a degree though is RIDGEWAY HAWK (5.20 Southwell). I’m not really an each way punter but he looks a bit of a first three certainty. He can find trouble but he goes well here and is likely to reverse the form with Thorpe Bay from a couple of runs back and maybe we could play it with one point to win and two points to place on the old Betfair machine!

Working on Coral TV today with Martin Kelly. So I will be doing my best to try to make him laugh or mess things up through the day.

Great news that West Ham have made big moves already signing Rat from Shaktar looks a very good piece of business and we have agreed a deal with Liverpool for Andy Carroll. Fingers crossed the personal terms can be agreed. The Bruins won game three last night too and now lead 3-0. A place in the conference finals is within touching distance!

If anyone has a cure for Psoriasis please let me know. Mine has gone bonkers.

Be lucky today,

MG

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