Thursday, December 24, 2020

Boxing Day dilemmas

Tis the afternoon of the night before Christmas and the form books lie still...

No traditional Christmas Day post this year; here's an insight into the cogitations likely to be to the forefront of my mind while pulling the Christmas crackers.

An intriguing renewal of the King George at Kempton on Boxing Day, a race that doesn't make an awful lot of appeal from a punting perspective. 

After inflicting defeat on Altior for the first time, Cyrname turned up a short priced favourite for last year's running but flopped badly, stablemate Clan Des Obeaux taking full advantage; Cyrname has been campaigned differently this term and on official ratings is the one to beat. 

The Henderson camp has stumped up the £5,000 fee required to supplement Santini; connections have done their sums and calculated that a profit will be realised if their charge finishes in the first five. 

Lostintranslation didn't shine in the race last year and underwent wind surgery immediately afterwards. A fine third in the Gold Cup in March, he disappointed in the Betfair Chase at Haydock; Robbie Power thinks his ride is better on better ground.

The Rowland Meyrick (Wetherby 2.05) has piqued interest, primarily because only three of the nine declared have shown noteworthy form over three miles or further: Snow Leopardess (the grey mare raised nine pounds after catching Commodore on the line at Haydock five weeks ago); Wandrin Star (raised four pounds after finishing a neck behind Quarenta at Ascot); and The Dutchman (raised five pounds after being caught on the line at Haydock last time). 

To date Canelo has been well beaten on two previous attempts at the trip but trainer Alan King thinks this step back up will suit. 

Windsor Avenue appears to have prompted a difference of opinion with Paddy Power offering 7/1 while William Hill go 10/1; the gelding is not lightly dismissed. Brian Ellison's charge underwent wind surgery in January and has been given plenty of time to recover. His chance in the Caspian Caviar at Cheltenham last time disappeared at the start and that effort is forgiven. Quoting Ellison in a 'Straight from the Stable' feature in the Weekender 30.09.20 - 04.10.20:

'If you could see his work at home it screams out class and the work last week was very impressive. He should get three miles...'

Stablemate Definitly Red won the 2016 running off 141.

This time last year, following Not So Sleepy's nine length victory in the Betfair Exchange Trophy, I highlighted the chance of Hughie Morrison's three runners at Wincanton. Two of the three obliged, with Supamouse winning the concluding bumper 14 lengths. Talk immediately afterwards was of the Champion Bumper at Cheltenham but tragedy struck the following day when it was discovered the gelding had suffered a perforated intestine and couldn't be saved. 

Twelve months on and Not So Sleepy has won the 2020 renewal of the Betfair Exchange Trophy at odds of 20/1 - for the record, carrying none of my money. 

Updated figures for the stable's jumps runners read:

Season to date: 1 win from 11 runs (9%); +10 points profit

Last five years: 23 wins from 114 runs (20%); +47.25 points profit

The yard has declared the unraced Scanning in this year's Wincanton bumper (3.50). The following rhetorical question is asked in stentorian, overemphasised, John McCririck-like tones:

Has renowned Flat trainer Hughie Morrison been hatching a plot? 

With very best wishes to all readers this Christmas time.


Anonymous said...

Vaccine being rolled out, a Brexit deal struck (full T&C’s on request), Christmas Day beckons and then a week of top class racing starting with the Boxing Day fixtures. Perhaps we’ve turned a corner?

Ladbrokes King George VI Chase

167,BLACK OP(IRE),0.4
184,REAL STEEL(FR),0.4

The race does make some appeal to me from a punting perspective. Santini tops the system output. He is certainly quirky and ideally would want more rain than now looks likely but his Cotswold Chase & Gold Cup efforts put him firmly in the mix here and at 6/1 plus I think he is worthy of an interest.

Season’s Greetings and best of luck with any festive wagers.


GeeDee said...

Thanks for providing your ratings, TW; let's hope we've turned a corner.

Santini looks very well rated on your figures and, as you say, worthy of an interest at odds of 6/1.

10/1 Windsor Avenue is a temptation I'll need to consider over Christmas lunch; for the cautious, I note William Hill are paying four places.

Good luck with the festive selections - hope to post a preview of the Welsh National.