Friday, October 11, 2019

A quick check-up at Chepstow

Chepstow's two day meeting is seen by many as the start of the core National Hunt season.

Earlier this afternoon Thyme Hill ran out a determined winner of the Persian War Novices' Hurdle (2.10) outpacing Fiddlerontheroof after the final flight on ground described as good to soft.

That going description changed to soft before the 'Professor Caroline Tisdall Supports Heroic Jumpers Veterans' Handicap Chase (Leg 7 of Vets' Series)' at 3.55 in which the aforementioned professor Caroline Tisdall held a share in two of the runners, Dell'Arca and Vieux Lion Rouge.

The former was tipped up on Radio 4 this morning, the logic being, presumably, that if an owner decides to sponsor a race, they are likely to be reasonably well motivated to try and win some of their own money; unfortunately for the Radio 4 tipster, the latter obliged at odds of 9/2.

Looking at tomorrow's card, Relentless Dreamer (3.20) did me a big favour at odds of 16/1 at Cheltenham around this time last year but he hasn't been seen out since; on balance I think Rebecca Curtis' charge would prefer slightly better conditions underfoot. To my mind Lil Rockerfeller's jumping of the larger obstacles is not consistent enough.

Only three contest the novice chase at 3.55 but all eyes will be on the widely touted Reserve Tank.

Connections have decided to allow Ballyandy to take his chance in the Silver Trophy (4.30) and Nigel Twiston-Davies' charge has to concede a minimum of 14 pounds to all 17 rivals; that looks particularly difficult on soft ground.

Paul Kealy tips up Coolanly in the Weekender.

I thought this one had a chance in the Challow last December but on the day he drifted like a barge in the betting and was one of the first beaten; once or twice afterwards I thought he just looked bossed out of it when the chips were down.

The Evan Williams trained Bold Plan is likely to be popular while Remastered looks unexposed on his first run in a handicap.

The trouble with a wager at this time of year is you often have to take fitness on trust. Of the 18 declared just three have run within the last three months - Didtheyleavuoutto, Man Of Plenty and last year's winner Garo De Juilley.

The last-named is rated three pounds higher this time but looks to have had this as his target following a pipe-opener over fences. He finished well beaten behind Champagne Court and Coolanly in the Martin Pipe but prior to that was thirteen lengths adrift of Paisley Park in Ascot's Long Walk Hurdle (run on soft ground) and just over ten lengths behind Capitaine in the Greene King Handicap Hurdle at Taunton.

That form reads well and Sophie Leech's charge appears to handle underfoot conditions; last year's winning rider Paddy Brennan is aboard Coolanly but the booking of Adrian Heskin catches the eye.

Ordinarily I would be distinctly reticent this early in the season but, hell, several layers (including Betfair, Paddy Power, Sky Bet and Bet Victor) are offering 33/1 and paying one fifth the odds five places.

To use the vernacular, I'm not convinced I have my eye in but at the prices Garo De Juilley is the each-way suggestion.


GeeDee said...

A rumbustious renewal of the Silver Trophy with the leading pack including The Knot Is Tied, Chic Name and Remastered setting off at a furious pace. Full credit to eventual third Imperial Aura (5/1f), the only one of the leaders to maintain a position throughout.

Unsurprisingly, winner Flash The Steel (16/1) came from behind, taking up the running between the final two flights; Champagne Court (7/1) chased valiantly but was unable to make up his ground. Alrightjack (20/1), fifth in the early stages, stayed on well to claim fourth. The first four home carried 10-5, 9-10, 10-8 and 9-13.

Several fancied sorts failed to land a blow along with a number of unfancied sorts including my selection Garo De Juilley (25/1) who was reported to be 'toiling' from the seventh flight; he came home ninth, beaten some 20 lengths.

'That's racing!' as they say...

TO said...

Good luck for the season, Graham.

GeeDee said...

Thanks Jason.

I always consider this time to be the best part of the season - before the losing of money in earnest has really commenced. The downward trend starts Thursday with the annual trip to the Ludlow races...


Anonymous said...

Martin Keithley’s Back On The Lash rates well on my system in the 3:10 handicap hurdle on Friday though doubts about the ground (and amount of rainfall) will reduce the stakes.

BOTL has won 3 times in 7 outings and put in some decent efforts in defeat so it was nice to see him make a winning return at Exeter in a first-time hood under new stable conditional Patrick Cowley who takes the ride today and claims a useful 5lb.

The stats look positive as well; 5 & 6yo’s have won 90% over the last 10 years [gets rid of 8 of the field] and 70% of the winners have had a recent run [gets rid of another 9 runners]; this only leaves BOTL and The Big Galloper who looks short in the market at 6/1.

20/1 about BOTL looks more than fair and I’ll take an EW interest at ¼ odds 4 places.

Looking forward to your 2019-2020 musings and best of luck for the coming season.


GeeDee said...

A decidedly inauspicious start at Ludlow yesterday, TW. Good luck for the season ahead.