Friday, April 16, 2010

Ayr plans disrupted

Air travel has been disrupted today by a volcano in Iceland while tomorrow's Ayr National has been disrupted by the appearance of a four foot hole on the hurdles course. As a result, the thirty runners set to contest the Coral Scottish Grand National at 3.20 will have twenty four obstacles to negotiate rather than twenty seven. Howard Johnson's Killyglen heads the weights while nine of the contenders race from out of the handicap. I had no luck in last week's Grand National and I suspect it will be a similar story tomorrow. I've been on the lookout for a horse that comes to this relatively fresh and will handle the ground - one I considered was Andrew Parker's Merigo. That one won the Eider last year - Timmy Murphy rides again for the father-in-law so I expect he'll be trying his best - but the horse prefers cut underfoot. That being the case, I'll take a small each-way interest in the Sir Robert Ogden owned That's Rhythm who has won on decent ground and is expected to appreciate the trip. The horse fell in this race last year - I'm hoping the fitting of first time cheekpieces will help his concentration; Coral offer the value this evening at 20/1.

Emma Lavelle's Kangaroo Court is of interest in a trappy-looking Future Novices' Champion Chase. He has won over the distance but has something to find with both French Opera and Tchico Polos on official ratings. The concern is he was withdrawn at Cheltenham on Wednesday (rather than declared a non-runner) and I don't know why. He'll appreciate the ground here - at the prices on offer Kangaroo Court gets the vote (9/2 Tchico Polos looks big too) in a race where only two favourites have obliged in the last ten years - in contrast the second favourite has won on five occasions.

If the hole in the hurdles track affects the chase course, how it affects the Scottish Champion Hurdle (2.45) is anybody's guess. Following a long layoff Michael Scudamore's Gloucester ran a fine race the last time at odds of 50/1 to take sixth in the Vincent O'Brien County Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival. He won't be that price tomorrow but may be worth an each-way intertest at around 10/1 - he's sure to appreciate the good ground.

1 comment:

GeeDee said...

It's a bit of a game, this horse racing lark. I looked closely at the winner Merigo (18/1) beforehand but, as the balance of his best form was on soft ground, I opted for That's Rhythm (22/1)instead. My concern with the winner was that they'd go too quick up front, he'd get detached and wouldn't be competitive. In the event Timmy Murphy had the horse handy enough throughout - the spoils were in the bag from three out. I then had to listen to the owner say he was worried they'd they'd go too fast up front etc, etc... The selection go no further than the fourth.

As if that wasn't bad enough, Kangaroo Court (9/4) got no further than the first! French Opera (7/4f) beat Tchico Polos six lengths.

Gloucester (6/1) was the only selection to stay on his feet - he finished second behind Overturn who made all under that man Timmy Murphy to take the Scottish Champion Hurdle by four and a half lengths.