Friday, March 29, 2013

At Easter - to play or not to play?

Just a brief post this evening as I don't intend to play tomorrow.

Winners are difficult to find at the best of times. If you're considering a wager at Dubai or even Doncaster, you may wish to note Alistair Whitehouse-Jones' comments in the Weekender:

'By all means enjoy this weekend's Dubai World Cup, but you'd be crackers to have a bet in it. Since moving from Nad Al Sheba to Meydan in 2010 it has become harder to predict than the Lincoln, with not one single-priced figure horse finishing in the first three.'

Quickly looking at the Haydock card, the opening Tim Moloney Chase is interesting but it's difficult to gauge the extent to which recent snowfalls have affected trainers' schedules, particularly those based in the North. In a short piece on the Sporting Life website, Sue Smith gave a glimpse into some of the problems encountered.

The biggest temptation to the resolve is likely to come in the shape of Newton Abbot's SIS Handicap Chase at 3.55. Worth over £15,000 to the winner, there are just five declared for a trappy-looking handicap.

Ulck Du Lin, trained by Paul Nicholls, is priced up favourite; the youngest horse in the race has the assistance of Ruby Walsh in the plate but is tasked with carrying top weight on heavy ground. Just fifteen days ago Nicholls' charge was pulled up in the Grand Annual at the Festival and looks vulnerable.

The outsider in the field Falcon Island has form this season behind both Ulck Du Lin and Eastlake. He was beaten thirteen and a half lengths by the former at Ascot when conceding seven pounds and then went down eigtheen lengths to the latter at Sandown giving away ten pounds. On the revised terms he is entitled to be competitive and Brendan Powell Jr can claim a further three. Priced at 12/1 with Paddy Power this evening, that resolve not to play is being tested somewhat...

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