Sunday, January 30, 2011

The day after the Trials

Two stand-out performances at yesterday's Trials Day were Grand Crus' victory in the Cleeve and Wishfull Thinking's display in the Murphy Group Chase. Grand Crus is now 3/1 second favourite for the World Hurdle while Philip Hobbs indicated connections will wait for the ground before deciding whether to go for the Jewson or the RSA with Wishfull Thinking. Generally I don't tend to play ante-post but the RSA market looks rather lop-sided at the moment - Time For Rupert 5/2, 14/1 bar. I always think a trouble-free preparation is important for Cheltenham and the RSA favourite missed his appointment here on account of a low-grade infection. Wishfull Thinking is 16/1 for the RSA, 10/1 for the Jewson but those prices led me to consider Robinson Collonges who has now missed his intended race on two consecutive Saturdays as a result of abandonments. Back at the beginning of November Paul Nicholls' charge looked to be running all over Wishfull Thinking in a novice chase at Wincanton but crumpled on landing three from home; current quotes about Robinson Collonges include 33/1 for the RSA, 20/1 for the Jewson and 14/1 for the Centenary Novices Chase (which is to be run on the opening day).

Along with many I suspect, I wasn't impressed with Punchestown's jumping in the Argento but after the race Nicky Henderson indicated Barry Geraghty "...was very pleased with his jumping." The handler is keen to get another run into a horse that takes "...a massive amount of work to get ready."

Talking of trials, a couple of weeks back I was offered a free one by Dave Rensham at Racing Trends and I decided to take up the offer. Dave's email cribsheet has landed in the inbox on a daily basis and contains a wealth of statistical information on the following day's racing. Now I know stats are stats and they're not necessarily for everybody but I think they're useful in exploring different angles - of particular interest to me were the positive / negative sire stats together with pace stats - suitable 'in running' trading opportunities were highlighted. Further details are available on the website - a monthly subscription costs £29.99 which works out at just under £1 a day.

The 'all new' Morning Line hit our screens for the first time on Saturday but looked remarkably similar to the old version with a few gimmicks and cosmetic changes thrown in (including a cyan settee that presenter Nick Luck seemed particularly proud of for some reason.) The Mac and Tania's Betting Guide item, in which a guy called Hamish, sporting a tweed jacket, asked about the different types of bets he could strike, didn't really work, neither did the technology in the attempted Skype-type link up with trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies, ironically based ten miles or so down the road... Kim Bailey's impressive performance in the Guest Test just about saved the day.

Taken from Saturday's Times Magazine - What I've learnt by A.P. McCoy:
"Racing has never been a rich man's sport."
I'm with you there, Tony.
Mind you, I'm sure several owners would tell us that even if you come into this game rich, you won't be leaving it rich...

Finally, with Cheltenham just over six weeks away, it seems a bit early to be talking about Grand Nationals but apparently the good people of Harrogate are set to play host to the UK's first 'rabbit grand national'. Quick - pass me tablets - I can feel a headache coming on.

1 comment:

GeeDee said...

The racing game, it's all about opinions...

Alan Lee, writing in Tuesday's Times:
"Faster, slicker, definitely more modern and probably of wider interest, the newly revamped The Morning Line made an encouraging start on Saturday for what is plainly a work in progress."