Friday, February 01, 2019

A Sandown longshot

The recent freezing weather has played havoc with the fixture list as well as my form study and this evening has left me in the throes of a particularly acute dilemma - do I to watch the opening Six Nations rugby match between France and Wales or Posh Hotels with Sally (Lindsay) and Nigel (Havers)?

Sterling work by staff at Sandown means tomorrow's card is set to go ahead. At the time of writing there are no planned inspections; the going on the chase course is described as good to soft, soft in places while the going on the hurdle course is soft, heavy in places.

Top marks too to ITV Racing who will show three live races from the first day of the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown.

Earlier in the week, with the prospects for Sandown looking rather bleak, I spent some time on the Irish Gold Cup (3.35 Leopardstown on Sunday).

That means the usual hard graft hasn't gone into tomorrow's pick so minimum stakes would be the order of the day...

The two to have caught my eye in the Heroes Handicap Hurdle (3.00 Sandown) are Dans Le Vent sporting first time blinkers near the foot of the handicap and Full Glass about whom trainer Alan King has been quite bullish in the Weekender in recent months.

With Page Fuller claiming three, the former has a featherweight in these conditions but the trip may stretch the stamina while the latter hasn't taken well to chasing in this country but appears to be held in some regard.

Dans Le Vent is a tentative each-way suggestion; Unibet offer 22/1 and pay one fifth the odds six places.

The Savills Chase last December is a key piece of form when looking at the Irish Gold Cup.

Ten lengths covered the first six home that day but Kemboy was seven and a half lengths clear which meant there were just two and a half lengths between Monalee (second), Road To Respect (third), Bellshill (fourth), Outlander (fifth) and The Storyteller (sixth).

Road To Respect appeared unlucky stumbling twice in the race while significant improvement will be expected from Kemboy's stablemate Bellshill.

Five weeks ago the ground rode good at Leopardstown and it will again on Sunday; by my reckoning at least half the field would prefer more cut underfoot.

Bellshill is my idea of the winner; Anibale Fly (third in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, fourth in the Grand National) would be of some interest each-way at around 10/1 but that price has disappeared and Tony Martin's charge is one of those who would prefer softer ground.

And Sally and Nigel are at The Berkeley tonight - looking forward to it.


Anonymous said...

Whilst noting concerns over both the word Heavy in the going description and field size my system also highlighted the potential value of Dans Le Vent [DLV] so I’ve followed you in on that one.

Ever the sucker I’ve also placed DLV in an EW double with Blazer in the Ladbrokes Hurdle at Leopardstown.

1PT EW Dans Le Vent [25/1 5 places 1/5 odds]
1PT EW Blazer [25/1 6 places 1/5 odds]
0.5PT EW Double

With a 5PTS outlay it could be an expensive day!

Good luck


Anonymous said...

Dans Le Vent now a non-runner with the going as the stated reason. I was concerned the it might be a bit testing for him at this trip so could be a blessing....


GeeDee said...

Another bullet dodged, TW! ;)

Anonymous said...

Sad news on blog favourite Special Tiara…

Another old boy might just spring a 33/1 [Ladbrokes] surprise in the Irish Gold Cup. As you have noted the ground might not be soft enough for plenty in the field and 3 miles might just be a bit too far for a couple of others.

Outlander is probably on the wane but 3 miles on good ground around Leopardstown are probably his ideal conditions so maybe he can have one more day in the sun!


GeeDee said...

Desperately sad to hear of the loss of Special Tiara; I simply loved his style of racing.

His victory in the 2017 Champion Chase will never be forgotten - I was lucky enough to be at the track that day and to have backed him. The following day I wrote:

"Watching Special Tiara win the Champion Chase at the track yesterday was a bit like being plugged into the mains for a couple of minutes..."

The horse was responsible for one of my all-time highlights on a racecourse.

Six non-runners in the Irish Gold Cup, all on account of unsuitable ground, completely changed the nature of the race. In the event, punters were treated to a thrilling finish with Bellshill (2/1) beating Road to Respect (5/6f) a short head.

Latest prices for next month's Cheltenham Gold Cup:

Presenting Percy 3/1
Native River 11/2 (Betfair)
Kemboy 10/1 (William Hill, Betfair)
Road To Respect 14/1 (William Hill)
Thistlecrack 16/1 (Betfair)
Al Boum Photo 16/1 (William Hill, Bet Victor)
Bellshill 16/1 (Betfred, Totesport)
Might Bite 20/1 (Betfair, Unibet)
Frodon 20/1 (Betfair, Unibet)
25/1 bar