This week we look at the retirement of both Fredy Head and Mark Johnston, ask, should we bother racing during the fortnight of the flu jabs and, is racing on it’s death bad?
I certainly hope not as I reckon I might have found the winner of the 2024 Brown Advisory Chase at that Cheltenham Festival!
Please find below my side of the Podcast conversation for our hard of hearing members/readers.
Currently five going to post but it’ll be four maximum as ACTIVE DUTY runs in the 2-30 at Ludlow this afternoon and is a very strong OMM.
Check out my Post Racing 20 To Follow and you’ll see the name BO ZENITH in that list.
I have been waiting….and waiting….for this horse to appear as he’s reckoned to be the best of Gary Moore’s juveniles and as good as PORTICELLO
There is a race run over in France for unraced over obstacles called the Prix Grandak, FRODON won it in 2015, and PORTICELLO won it in 2021….BO ZENITH won it in 2022.
The third and fifth placed horses in last years renewal went on to win and James Reveley reckons that race was very strong.
He’s 8/13 to win tomorrow….will be shorter after they withdraw ACTIVE DUTY, and as the last four favourites have win this race, I’d take him to make it five on the bounce.
RON – BO ZENITH
SEAN – BO ZENITH
I was going to put up KNOWSLEY ROAD but they’ve pulled him out!
Paul Nicholls has a brilliant record in this race, three winners and four placed from nine entries and he still has DE WANTER WARRIOR and IMPREVU DU LARGE running for him, the last named racing second time following a wind-op.
Bryony Frost rides DE WANTED WARRIOR but he was 69 lengths behind KNOWSLEY ROAD at Chepstow and if either of that pair wins here, I’ll lose money.
The winner now has to be TOP TARGET. He arrives with experience and only one of the last five winners of this had fewer than four runs before turning out here.
The last four winners arrived having finished runner up, or winning and on all stats/market position etc, Kim Bailey’s wins this dancing!
RON – TOP TARGET
SEAN – PEVERLEY WOOD E.W.
Only five in here again and as the winner has sat front two on the tissue in nine of the last 10 running’s, it makes sense to concentrate on LOVE ENVOI, the current odds on favourite, or MARTELLO SKY, the 7/4 second favourite….it’s 7/1 bar that pair.
Both are previous CD winners, but I have to go with LOVE ENVOI, who is rated 4lb the better horse on official figures, and gets a 1lb off MARTELLO SKY.
MARTELLO SKY won this race last year and Harry Fry won it the year before with WHITEHOTCILLIFILI and I’m hoping Harry gets his hands on the prize again. Everything suggests he’s most likely to do so.
RON – LOVE ENVOI
SEAN – LOVE ENVOI
The Tolworth, the race won by CONSITUTION HILL last year @ 2/5….no odds on shots this time though and since it opened, the market has been very interesting.
AUTHORISED SPEED and TAHMURAS have fluctuated at the head of the market, as had the Irish trained ARCTIC BRESIL, who is currently third best at 10/3, that other pair now joint favourite on 2/1.
L’ASTROBOY, trained by Evan Williams opened 25/1 but he has shortened as others have pulled out.
I’ve been mighty impressed with Gary Moore’s AUTHORISED SPEED. When you watch the Cheltenham Festival Bumper you know that the following season, the first 10 might all make more than decent hurdlers and the winner of that race this year, FACILE VEGA, looks a superstar….but AUTHORISED SPEED was only 11 lengths off him at Cheltenham and has won his two runs over hurdles by 11 lengths each time.
Paul Nicholls trains TAHMURAS and he has won three of his four runs to date. However, he was beaten in his Bumper by L’ASTROBOY and in his second Bumper run beat BLOW YOUR WAD just under two lengths.
BLOW YOUR WAD is in here too, having landed a touch last time out (he was an OMM!), and he’s around 33/1, compared to the 2/1 TAHMURAS.
Paul Nicholls has sent six for this race in the last 10 years and only had two place….it’s that stat that points me in the direction of AUTHORISED SPEED, and he’s my pick tomorrow….but I’d definitely not put anyone off having a 20/80 BLOW YOUR WAD @ 33/1.
The market generally calls it right. Six of the last eight favourites have obliged with another of that octet finishing second so, I’m hoping to see support for Gary Moore’s horse and him having the faps tag as the tapes go up.
RON – AUTHORISED SPEED
SEAN – ARCTIC BRESIL
Only three previous running’s of this race and I have absolutely no clue as to what will happen. We had a 6/5 winner last year, a 25/1 winner the year before and the first time they ran this race, a 5/1 shot pulled it off.
The market will guide me here….if I want it to guide me! I imagine there will be money for DESNWORTH, trained by Ben Pauling, because his yard is on fire right now, CARRIGHILLY is interesting because his trainer, Tim Easterby, won the very first running of this race with MOUNTAIN HAWK, the only hurdle race that horse has won in 10.
Crawford sends one over from Ireland that has been beaten 25 lengths, 27 lengths and 23 lengths so they’ve probably given it a wind-op, they don’t have to declare, and it’ll win by 20 lengths.
I wish all those that bet this race the very best of luck!
RON – CARRIGHILLY – 20/80
SEAN – NEVER WRONG FOR LONG – E.W.
Only two previous running’s of this one so stats are no use at all.
An odds on shot won in 2020, an 8/1 shot in 2022….we have an odds on shot here in the shape of Ben Pauling’s HENRY’S FRIEND, who hosed up at Aintree last season….and ran well when finishing second to Paul Nicholl’s HENRI THE SECOND, in a Grade 2 at Sandown. He beat the third placed horse easily enough, and that one had previously gone in by nearly 10 lengths at Bangor.
Nowt to go on so it’s HENRY’S FRIEND for me, if only because of the trainer form!
RON – HENRY’S FRIEND
SEAN – HENRY’S FRIEND
I’ll start by saying Gary Moore could have a brilliant afternoon. His IN THE AIR has been punted 16/1 > 13/2 since this market opened.
Age groupings….I want a five of six year old on board, they have taken six of the nine running’s, and four of the last five:
- HARDY DU SEUIL
- DR T J ECKLEBURG
- IN THE AIR
From a weight carrying perspective, I’d rule out horses carrying more than 11st 2lb as only one of the last nine winners managed it. Three of the last four winners carried 10st 9lb or less.
- HARDY DU SEUIL
- DR T J ECKLEBURG
- IN THE AIR
Down to four.
Market position of the winner next and whilst two of the last three winners went in at 14/1 & 25/1 I am looking front six on the tissue as five of the last eight winners were.
All four qualify.
Six favourites have finished first three but only a pair have won so I’m dropping DJELO, who looked great first time, not so great at Haydock when he was beaten at 1/3. It might have been they went racing again to soon, only 10 days after his easy win at Exeter, and he has had a longer break this time. I’d be happy dutching the other three but for Podcast purposes
The ground might be an issue for HARDY DU SEUIL, who is 0-4 on what they currently describe it as so for a 20/80 I’ll say Gary Moore’s IN THE AIR to land the punt. The trainer is running a superb 59% RTF%age figure right now and in a race you could bet five and still not draw, he’ll do.
RON – IN THE AIR
SEAN – HARDY DU SEUIL – E.W.
No secret to success here….just write FAP on your betting slip, then wait at the pay window.
Eight of the last nine winners went off favourite, the odd man out was a 33/1 winner for Willie Mullins, who beat his own odds on shot by just under a length….both were Gigginstown horses….I’m saying nothing.
Mullins saddles the current 11/8 favourite, GRANGECLARE WEST, and this Cheveley Park Stud gelding is already trading very short for both the Ballymore (7/1), and Albert Bartlett (11/2).
I think he’ll make a smashing ‘chaser next year and if you could get a price for the Brown Advisory 2024, I’d take it.
Hopefully he remains unbeaten on Sunday.
RON – GRANGECLARE WEST
SEAN – GRANGECLARE WEST
- TWIRLING – 5/1 > 13/8 – WON 3/1
- DONNA’S DOUBLE – 6/1 > 11/4 – WON
- NOT SURE 8/1 > 5/1 – WON 7/1 HENSCHKE – 12/1 > 8/1 – 2ND 8/1 – 70/1 EXACTA
Something for the weekend
RON – E.W. TREBLE – TOP TARGET, LOVE ENVOI, AUTHORISED SPEED
SEAN – DOUBLE – BO ZENITH, GRANGECLARE WEST