Friday, January 04, 2008

Sandown and Wincanton

The Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown tomorrow looks an intriguing race. In the last ten years the winner has come from the first two in the betting on eight occasions. On both official handicap and Racing Post ratings Alsadaa is the top rated horse but the trainer has stated publicly she won't run him on testing ground. Deep Purple is unbeaten over hurdles but all the form is on good or faster ground. Breedsbreeze and Calgary Bay have something to find but will handle the ground, while Sir Harry Ormesher was beaten three and a half lengths into fourth by Deep Purple last time and could get closer here with conditions to suit. It's a close call but I'm going to take a chance on Deep Purple handling soft ground; connections clearly think he's something special.

The following handicap hurdle at 3.10 is very tricky but I'm considering an each way wager on Astarador at around 14/1, the horse having finished third in last year's Tolworth. He hasn't seen a racecourse for just under a year and has enough weight in this, but he will handle the ground and the stable are in good form.

Over at Wincanton course and distance winner Miss Mitch is clearly top-rated in the novice chase at 1.45. Henrietta Knight likes Olmeto Collonges but the stable are out of form; Miss Mitch gets the vote.

1 comment:

GeeDee said...

A praiseworthy effort from Deep Purple, finishing one and three quarter lengths second behind 6/4 favourite Breedsbreeze. DP and Alsadaa ensured a fast pace throughout. Alsadaa faded coming to two out; DP stayed on well but that early pace served Breedsbreeze well and he went on to win in fine fashion. The money really came for Breedsbreeze who was known to like the ground while Deep Purple didn't have many supporters in the market, being sent off a 5/1 shot. The money certainly talked here. After the race DP's trainer Evan Williams was quoted as saying that it was not his charge's ground - he'll be given an entry in the Champion Hurdle but the Supreme Novices' Hurdle looks the race. The horse won't run again before Cheltenham.
I didn't back Astarador. On course his price contracted from 12/1 to 8/1. The horse ran well enough after a long layoff and (as I learned) an operation but he weakened coming to two out; he should come on for the run.
At Wincanton 8/11 favourite Miss Mitch unseated Andrew Thornton at the eleventh fence. The mare had just been headed at that point; she wouldn't have won. 4/1 shot Starzaan won this after a break of 639 days - he heads to the RFoyal & Sun Alliance Chase provided connections can keep him sound.
The horse that really caught the eye at Wincanton was Tom George's Nacarat, winning his first race in this country in effortless fashion.