A quiet day today.
That was a superb three days. +20 points on the tips from 6 races takes us to around the +91 point mark since the start of the Festival, and in under one month. Madness. I won’t be keeping that up but the coffers are full for the next cold spell. In general my stats shortlisting approach has worked wonders and long may it continue. For my own pride/vanity I would like to find the National winner one of these years! Such a shame One For Arthur hadn’t had a prep run in the last 61 days!! That was some stats buster,and a few like that have been broken in recent years. A case could be made not to bother. Maybe next year I will try and look at the race a few days before with my normal ‘3m+ handicap chase’ eyes on, and then do the stats shortlist as usual. The more you look at him, the more obvious One For Arthur was. Arguably the best recent staying chase form on show, proven over the fences and looked a dour stayer where ground would be no problem. Rather straight forward really. I did think though that he may get too far back and the race may get away from him, as I did with Cause of Causes! So, I got that wrong. Maybe they just went really hard up front on that ground. Blacklion ran a stormer and I thought I may have picked the winner there for most of the final 3rd. Not sure if Noel had a choice but to go on, but he didn’t push him hard early,just sat, and I think maybe that is the best he is/possibly didn’t stay. I would aim him at the Becher Chase for sure- jumped well, travelled into it so well just off the pace. And the stats ‘shortlist’ did find the 2nd, 4th and 5th at 80/1, so some validity there. Thunder And Roses- well that was frustrating as he was into a great rhythm in 3rd/4th, before a loose horse knocked the jockey out the side door. Stamina wouldn’t have been a problem and IF he had jumped the rest like he had up to that point, I am confident he would have been top 5. But, that’s the National for you.
Still, I would have bitten your hand off for two nice winners from six races and +20 points on the week. And if you said to me you will do that every festival, that you will never find the National winner but that all horses and jokeys would come back safe and sound every year, I would take that right now.
Plenty to look ahead to in the coming weeks, the fun never stops in this game.
Tom George Handicap Chase
2.45 Ffos Las – Baraza
Pam Sly (any odds)
3.00 MR – Bonnets Vino
That is all for today.