Friday’s blog and action!

Proform

It’s amazing how quickly 2014 is progressing. Feels like only yesterday the Christmas tree was coming down, now we are just 24 hours away from the first classic of the year. Point to note…. there is an awful lot of rubbish being spoken about the ground at Newmarket ahead of the weekend. Just ignore it all and you will be fine! Kingman is 7/4 on the Betfair Sports book. That is surely too big.

Just a quick note on the horses yesterday. Eddiemaurice was a non runner so will stay on the keep an eye on list for now. Of the other two Petergate shaped very nicely and will definitely be winning. He travelled very strongly through the race but in hindsight was beaten by such a well handicapped horse that he would have won with me on his back clutching a barrel of Harvey’s finest ale. NOTED.

Whilst writing this I am still cursing not having a life changer on Ronnie in the snooker. I thought about it for some time beforehand but the price was just too skinny. He is currently taking Hawkins apart similar to the way that I would dismantle a curry.

OK time for some Proform stats for trainers with runners today…..

Top win and place strike rates last 14 days (over 50%)

Warren Greatrex 78.57% (14 runners)

Nicky Henderson 64.29% (28 runners)

Gary Moore 62.50% (24 runners)

Ralph Beckett 61.54% (26 runners)

William Haggas 57.89% (19 runners)

Andrew Balding 54.84 (31 runners)

Win strike rates over 30% last ten days you can add Ben Case to that list….

Ok on to today’s action and we have one or two from the interesting list to throw into the mix.

NAP

Today’s nap comes in the form of GIANTSTEPSAHEAD (5.20 Lingfield) for Denis Quinn and Jack Mitchell. I am convinced he is a well handicapped horse on what we have seen so far. The son of Footstepsinthesand comes here on the back of a break of 237 days having last been seen at Wolverhampton over a mile and a half in September. He was very well backed that day (yes we were on) and he got soundly beaten by nine lengths into second. Now on face value that might not be so encouraging but the winner that day was ROYAL ALCOR who was absolutely trotting up off a mark of 65 and is now rated 81 so he had every right to be winning well. Giantstepsahead has had another winter to strengthen up and grow into his frame and he has shaped like this ten furlong trip might just be ideal. He rates as NAP material and if you can get some of the 5/1 or 9/2 about that is lovely.

NB

Today’s NB is the James Fanshawe trained GREEN MONKEY (4.45 Lingfield). Up a total of 18lbs for his three victories at the back-end of last season he looks the type to continue progressing this year. The initial wide draw of nine is no longer a concern as there are now three non runners so he is effectively in six. The market has been made by a gamble on Port Alfred. I can’t have any confidence about any of the horses coming out of Charlie Appleby’s at the moment. Some of them are running too bad to be true. We can get some 5/2 about Green Monkey who is also in the Timeform 50 to follow for the year…….

Noted runners

Just one or two other notes. CHOISAN (4.40 Mussle) looks like he is being lined up for a punt. His form over further than a mile and a half is a concern so I wouldn’t be totally convinced that today is the day but he is worth backing.

NORWEIGAN REWARD (2.05 Lingfield) is thrown in on his old form after a lengthy absence. Fallon has been booked so if the money comes for him that could tell its own story.

Finally I thought I should give a mention to SWAMPFIRE (3.10 Lingfield). Given the form of the yard at present (Gary Moore) and the fact that on his old form he would pick these up and carry them he could just be too big a price. His recent form has not been anywhere near good enough but this is a drop into 0-65 for the first time (was rated 99 early on). The 16’s and 14’s in places this morning could look massive value later on IF he hasn’t given up on the game altogether.

Busy day, hope you enjoy. All usual re-tweets appreciated.

All the best

MG

Proform

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Grand National Saturday!

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Morning everyone. It’s amazing how quickly this day seems to come around each year. We will do well to top last year with Neptune Collonges doing the business for us in grand style at 40/1!! Anyone remembers the hangovers from this Saturday 12 months ago?

4.15 Aintree – John Smith´s Grand National Chase (Handicap) (Grade 3) (CLASS 1) (7yo+)

Another top quality maximum field assembled for the feature jumps race of the year. Let’s hope for a clean start this time around. I’ve narrowed the field down to five and will play them all.

JOIN TOGETHER – For a long time he has looked like a marathon trip will suit him down to the ground. You can safely put a line through his last run and the most eye-catching piece of form is he fast finishing 2nd in the Beecher Chase in December. He got a little out-paced as they upped the pace that day before staying on strongly. There will be no quickening today and all his main attributes will come to the fore especially when they turn for home. If he can steer a clear passage and jump safely he will be a massive player late in the day and is much too big a price.25/1.

ON HIS OWN – Travelling like a travelly thing when coming down at Beecher’s on the second circuit last year. He has been lightly raced since and has been prepared for this with absolute perfection. Ruby rides who knows the course so well and if he jumps round has to be a big player. 10/1.

IMPERIAL COMMANDER – All the stats are against him. He’s missed so much of the last 18 months through injuries that it seems very unlikely that you put the top weight up in the national. On the plus side he jumps like a stag, loves going right-handed, will relish the ground and is so well handicapped on his old form that he actually could make a mockery of this mark. Time and time again the class horses come to the top in this race and even if top weight stops him winning, he will go very very close if he’s fit and well. 16/1.

ROBERTO GOLDBACK – Bought completely with this is mind at the start of the season and duly bolted up on his first start for Nicky Henderson at Ascot. He won so well that day that he looked like a really well handicapped horse. He has run in bottomless ground since then and hasn’t looked the same. There is every chance that he has been completely laid out for this and is actually only 4lbs higher than when winning at Ascot. 25/1.

SEABASS – The last one to creep onto the short list! Ran a blinder in this last year when up with the pace throughout and given a lovely ride by Katie Walsh. He’s up 5lbs this year which makes life tougher but he looks to have been given a perfect prep and I really couldn’t leave him out.

Of the others I thought that Balthazar’s King was likely to go well and it will be fascinating to see how Chicago Grey goes under the patient Carberry. If you were to ask me to name one at a massive price that will give you a run for your money you could do a lot worse than SWING BILL at 100/1 (170’s on BF). He will relish this in amongst horses and will travel way for a long way, he could realistically be in the shake up and I might play him in a few of the special markets.

All in all it should be a classic. Let’s hope they all come back safe and sound and we are cheering home the winner!

Away from the main event I will also be having a decent go on CANTLOW (3.25). Most of you will know how long he has been on my radar and I was hoping to have a thick bet on him at Cheltenham but he bled down at the start and didn’t take part. He has been absolutely crying out for three miles plus and finally gets ot here today. He’s on a really good mark and this type of race should really suit him. This is also a race that JP likes to target and I think he has a massive chance and I’ll be having a decent bet. 3 pts win @ 7/1 generally.

I am a little bit baffled by the entry for VAN DER NEER in the listed race at Lingfield. He is in my top three horses to follow on the flat this year and looks a real exciting prospect. His run in the Racing Post Trophy was so eye-catching on ground that he didn’t seem to appreciate. On a good surface this summer he could prove to be very smart indeed and maybe this is just a prep to put him bang on for the guineas? He’s 1/2 and no sort of bet today but I’ll be watching with real interest as I think he is very high-class.

I have to give one more chance to KINDIA (5.20 Lingfield) who has caught the eye a couple of times since coming over from france. This drop back to seven might suit her a little better today and with the visor swapped for cheek pieces she is starting to look nicely handicapped. She is 25/1 on Betfair but she is likely to pop up at some point. Last chance for me today. 1 pt win @ 25/1 on Betfair.

I will be throwing a few darts at KEEP IT DARK (5.35 Newcastle) too. Mussleburgh clearly didn’t suit last time and has a decent pull in the weights with the winner today too. Completely unexposed and should go well. 1.5 pts win @ 7/1.

The booking of Kieren Fallon on ALBAQAA (9.20 Wolverhampton) looks interesting as he is seriously well handicapped and should be included in your multiples today.

Good luck with all your bets. It is a cracker jack days racing. Fingers crossed for the National winner once again!

All the best,

MG

pro5

Monday 25th March

pro5

Morning campers. Well today feels a bit weird. I was hoping to be celebrating Tiger Woods winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational this morning but a tropical Florida storm meant that he only completed two holes of his final round. Play will continue at around 2.30pm our time. He did manage to extend his lead to three shots with an excellent birdie at the second hole mind. Rickie Fowler looks the only conceivable danger, although having said that the course is likely to play a lot slower today.

Just the one selection yesterday and he was a very easy winner indeed. He got absolutely hammered in the market and was backed from 3/1 into 11/8 before winning very easily. I hope many of you put him in your bets!

Only the one meeting today but I’ve been sifting through Proform all morning and come up with some interesting insights.

The Proform stats for the last 14 days have thrown up two trainers with high win and place strike rates:

Richard Hannon 66.67% (Mysterial 4.10) and Gay Kellaway 60% (Conducting 5.10)

PRINCE OF BURMA has been on my horses to follow list for a while. If he doesn’t win the first today, he will firmly be dropped off it!

By far the most interesting horse on the card for me today is KINDIA (5.10) trained by Michael Attwater. She started her career in France before racing here for the first time in November and she has shown steady pieces of form since whilst not really having the pace to win over a mile. Today she steps up in trip for the first time and she looks sure to improve for it. Her 2nd at Kempton on 28th January has worked out well and today she drops into 0-70 company for the first time. This does look a good race for the grade but the 16/1 about her this morning is far to tempting to leave alone and is a very good each way price. The favourite MUBTADI is very solid however and the form of his last win has worked out incredibly well and he may be up to progressing again.

You will know I have been following POLARITY (4.40) for a while. She is a massive price again today (50’s on betfair) but I have that nagging feeling that she will pop up soon at a massive price off a tumbling mark. Thomas Brown takes off another 5lbs today which will help further and whilst she is likely to finish last, she is certainly going to pop up at some point so I will back her small and throw some darts at the place market too.

By process of elimination with regards handicap marks and trip, ELUSIVE HAWK (3.10) should be very difficult to beat under a penalty. He won incredibly easily at Kempton the other night and is expected to do so again today. The bottom weight Sannibel may be the danger.

So a couple of big priced arrows to fire on a quiet day. Miako is entered on Wednesday and it looks a good race. I’m off to get the kettle on to watch the Tiger bring home the bacon!

Good luck today, be lucky

MG

Wednesday 5th December

Proform

Morning campers. Woke up to a Twitter feed full of people talking about snow? Nothing here, but I practically live on the beach and it tends to stay away! Well how frustrating a day was yesterday? Knowe Head was basically given no chance at all of winning by his inexperienced jockey. they went absolutely no pace whatsoever and the front two remained in that position throughout. He remains off interest though as does Fortunate Bid. What a frustrating run! He was cantering all over them two furlongs out and looked all over the winner. Tony Hamilton just didn’t know which way to go off the bend and his indecisiveness cost him not only the race but the place money. He is a horse that has to do as much of the work on the bridle as possible and I have no doubt with a clearer run he would have won. He has been heavily backed the last twice now though so all hands have very much been shown. Upto Something must have traded very short in the run too. He was going much the best turning for home but seemed to idle in front then got out stayed up the hill. Keep an eye on that Coneygree form, it looks strong.

I fancy a few speculative ones today. I have to follow in on OFFICER IN COMMAND (1.30 Ling) as he travelled so well last time. Have a feeling that Lingfield might just suit him a little better and he’s a definite each way player at double figure odds.

The old problem of two list horses in the same race comes up at 2pm. I really like the chances of EXCEEEDEXPECTATIONS but he has been drawn widest of all which is the only negative. That is however factored into his price and the 8 & 9/1 available in places is much too big. In the same race I have also had an each saver on FISHFORCOMPLIMENTS. I’ve backed him the last twice and he is so consistent. Today is last chance saloon in the hope that he can get that head in front.

I think the best bet of the day comes a little later in the day though in the form of BAAN (3.30 Ling). On some of his old form he would actually pick this lot up and carry them and of late he has dropped a couple of hints that he is ready to strike. He is a better horse on the all-weather than he is on turf and races today off a career low mark of 55. Last time out he actually ran much better than the bare form suggests on really bad ground behind the very well handicapped Beyeh from the Mick Appleby stable. In my opinion that makes him of massive interest in a race of this nature. The only problem really lies in how much assistance he is likely to get from the saddle. Stevie Saunders has only had one ride in public and it was on Baan two starts back. It might not be pretty but I am prepared to give him and chance and the 9/1 available is much much too big!

I have also thrown a few arrows at LOYAL ROYAL (5.50 KEMP). It is just such a weak race that his consistency might well just pay off!

Not too much more to report on for today,

Hope you back plenty of winners!

MG

Thursday 1st November – Kauto The Legend

There is no other way to start todays blog other than to talk about the legend that is Kauto Star. Clive Smith’s star chaser has been by far and away the horse that has given me the most pleasure from national hunt racing in my lifetime. It was seven years ago today that Kauto Star finished 2nd in the Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter behind Monkerhostin. Little did we know from that point onwards what he would go onto achieve. The first horse to regain the Cheltenham Gold Cup crown after losing it to his stablemate Denman the year before. He had a total of 31 chase starts on our shores with 19 victories, amassing a total of 2.23million in total prize money.

There are so many memories but the two that stand out for me are the regaining of the gold cup in 2009 and last years 5th King George victory. That was an emotional day for personal reasons and his victory was a real boost as I’d backed him big and played the forecast with long run on the exchanges. Betfair had a RFC market up that day and it was simply a two runner race. I think it was around 3.8-3.9 for the RFC. It was a late but very welcome Xmas present. His stride, swagger and almost brilliant exuberance at his fences were what made him so amazing.

My biggest regret was not being at one of his gold cups or any of his King Georges. A racehorse of a lifetime. A legend. Kauto Star, take a bow son.

Onto today and wiping away the tears we kick off with a new month today and lots of interest.

Todays bet of the day comes in the form of SURPRISE MOMENT (3.20 Ling). The unbeaten daughter of Authorized has improved steadily with each run and looks ready for this slight step up in class this afternoon. She is potentially well treated today as she has an official rating of 95 which I think slightly underestimates her ability and she gets the three-year old allowances in this contest this afternoon. The step up in trip to 13f may well bring about a bit of improvement too. She looks a class stayer in the making and I fully expect her to remain unbeaten and the 2/1 on offer this morning should be taken.

KINGSCROFT (4.20 Ling) must be backed again today on the back of catching a tartar at Catterick the other day. We go in with all the same reasons as we did that day, well drawn in 3 today from bottom weight.

We have the interesting situation of two list horses running in the same race a Kempton in the 6.10. JUST FIVE won twice earlier in the year off marks of 55 and 60. He had a run of average performances on the back of those wins but the thing that makes him of huge interest today is his record when going fresh. He has had a break of 80 days which should have freshened him up nicely and he looks a huge price this morning at 14/1. In the same race we must also be backing VITZNAU. He is a horse that we followed last winter as he is incredibly well handicapped. He was messed about over a variety of trips and given some more than interesting rides. I nearly fell off my seat when I saw that he had been switched to John Butler’s yard. Butler is a master at improving horses from other yards and has a high strike rate with first time out recruits from other yards. The 9/1 with Bet365 is very interesting indeed and should be played 1 pt to win as a saver.

FORTUNATE BID 8.10 Kempton is another one that we backed last week that we have to follow in again for all the same reasons. The drop back in trip should really suit tonight and we fancy him strongly. Take the 6/1 with Totesport and Betfred.

A busy day on the racing and we also have some NFL action tonight as the banged up Kansas City Chiefs travel to San Diego to take on the Chargers. It’s an interesting contest and both defences tend to struggle so I thought the points line was interesting.

Over 42.5 pts at evens with BetVictor

Have an awesome day and be lucky

MG