Wreningham ran a cracker to come second at 16/1. He was tipped up by the esteemed Hugh Taylor, who had clearly read this blog :), which forced his price into 10/1,before drifting again to 16s. I know some of you backed him each way where as I went the brave/stupid man’s route! I cant complain with the result and we bumped into a well handicapped ‘veteran’ who came back into form at a venue he had done well at before – albeit 3 years ago. I got the pace spot on and the horse clearly retains some ability at this level. I am sure his trainer will find him a race or two in the coming months at Southwell and I plan to be on if conditions/pace suit.
Having just checked the ‘Pace’ record so far we have had 18 selections, 9 of which have won or placed. This includes 2 16/1 shots coming second. If I can keep up a 50% win and place strike rate I will be more than happy. Anyway, another loser which takes this mini losing run to 7. Given the odds I like to play at we will hit losing runs, and sometimes they may be uncomfortable. This is a timely reminder that this ‘pace’ blog is new and is an experiment for myself as much as anything. I try and provide enough reasoning for you to make your own minds up and so far so good. How you back them, and with how much, is up to you!
So, onto tomorrow..
I have a shortlist, and a very strong shortlist at that, of 4 horses. I will go into some detail on the 3 I have left alone but for now to the selection..
Brownville 1 point win (only B365/William Hill have shows, hopefully all can get 4/1. 7/2 at worst)
I have a horrible feeling I am going to end up picking the wrong horse from the shortlist but this is the one I have most confidence in, hence why he is the selection. He is also the one who has the best odds compared to his chance in my opinion. This is the 3rd hurdle run, and the first in a handicap, for this young 5yo who must have any amount of improvement in him. I think team Twister have found a decent opening in which to get his first hurdle win.
What I like is this – he is the only out and out front runner in the field. He demolished a field in a point2point and has won a bumper at Ludlow. Everything he has done on paper so far suggests that in time 3 miles will be no problem. Now I have never been to Leicester races but I believe from what I have seen on television and what I have read, that it is a steep, tough climb up a hill to the finish line. If Sam can get an easy lead, which i think he will, and build up the gallop turning in, he could run his rivals into the ground. He is the best jockey in this line up (subjective opinion) and has a solid record when teaming up with his Dad at the course. They have a solid 20% win strike rate in handicaps at Leicester and a 48% win and place strike rate. In handicap hurdles they are 1 from 4, with 2 others placing.
So, his unexposed nature, the easy lead, the fact he could be well handicapped and that he will keep on galloping all the way up the hill make him a selection, along with the fact 4/1 underestimates his chance. The form of his connections both in the last few weeks (NTD is ticking over, a winner at Uttox today) and at the course also catch the eye.
Orangeday ran very poorly last time on seasonal reappearance and I want to see more this season before backing. The trainer is 1/17 at the course. Dawn Twister returns after more than 300 days off the track which is enough for me to overlook.Conditions are fine however and if fit is entitled to go close. Valid Reason isnt in any kind of form and again needs to show more before I get involved. The trainer isnt known for his NH runners and is only 1/25 at the course. Not for me today.
That leaved 3 horses who could all be given some chance or another. Regulation is flat bred and open to improvement. However being Flat bred he needs to prove prove he stays this distance over jumps which will be a new experience for him. Maybe he will, but I am always happy to take these types on. The selection has better NH form, is NH bred and I know he will stay up this hill. I would be guessing with Regulation. I dont like guessing at 6/1.
Cafe Au Lait showed nothing before winning last time in what I can only consider was a weak race. It was also a close finish between 3 horses. He is only 4 and open to improvement but again i would like to think the selection is better than him. In his favour is the fact that win was at Towcester, so the stiff finish will not be a problem.
To the fav. Based on her last win Theregoesthetruth deserves to be favourite but one I dont mind taking on. Yes she won impressively by 9 lengths over course and distance. However on paper that looks to be a weak mares only race and she finds herself taking on the boys here. She is also up 7lbs and although I dont pay much attention to such things, she will need to improve again. I remember watching this race (Dewala is in tracker as she front ran for a long way but faded late returning from a long break) and she was held up, benefiting from lesser/unfit rivals folding up in front. Given we know we have a front runner who will stay, being held up and hoping to catch the horses in front could be a dangerous game. It was only 6 days ago as well and that effort may have taken something out of her. Now, she may well go on to win but at the prices I am happy to take her on with our selection who is twice the price.
Dr Red Eye was poor – i thought he would go off a bit quicker but just wasnt good enough. Struggling to read Pace on All-Weather, esp Lingfield – and probably need to find some stats about front runner there before diving in again.
2.00 Ling – Dr Red Eye I have backed this horse for 1 point at 3/1. He is the only out and out front runner in the race and this is all about pace. He is also in a fair form, battling well last time before fading late at Kempton. If David Probert gets his fractions right he could lead these a merry dance. There are excuses for his 4 previous visits to the track and he was ahead of the favourite last time out – i must have missed something but I cant work out why that Appleby runner is shorter in the market. I dont get it. Anyway, i think this is a decent opportunity for him and it was close whether he was the selection. However I just fancied the Twister horse.
2.40 Leic Vertuex – I dont think he stayed last time, and anway he is 0/3 chasing and has never jumped that well. He should lead and will like the better ground on the chase course but it is his jumping that concerns me. However, if he is bigger than 5/1, i may have a nibble in what looks a weak race.
In this short space of time we have learnt to LAY what I think is a short price certainty!! I would make same bet again, thought 7/4 was big on paper, beating winner by more than 30 lengths last time, that was his seasonal reappearance but trainer hadnt had a winner in 9 months (knew he was on cold run, but didnt realise that long , now had 2 today)
Will stick to my bigger priced horses and finding winners of the Hennessy and Becher chase which are much easier! But as I said, i thought 7/4 was value but he just got weighed down and couldnt get away, maybe last 2 wins taking their toll, with actual weight rise on back. Maybe last win took more out of him than it appeared.
2.20 Hexam – Uno Valoroso 6/5 – Now i know I have been bullish about horses before – Alright Benny in the past, and Grand Vision today (he was poor, bloody Novice races, not for me!) but i am very bullish about this ones chance. I think he will make this look a massive price. (neck on line again). I say this because he beat 3 of these rivals when winning last time out over course and distance. There is no reason, no reason whatsoever, why they should finish ahead of him this time. 2 of those rivals didn’t get withing 30 lengths. He will front run and I expect him to win. The one doubt is maybe the actual weight on his back. I think he should be able to carry 11-9 but will watch a video just to check he isnt a small horse who could struggle. That is the only attention I pay to weight really. Whether the horse can physically carry it. Note, ‘weight’ is different from ‘rating’. The other two rivals are trained by Lucinda Russell who is 1/30 in the last 14 days, 3/52 in last 30 days – her string are out of form and i am happy to take them on. I think anything above evens is value, and will be having 1 or 2 points on from my own bank. Que a tailed of horse like Alright Benny, which i didnt see coming!
Running Total: 4/18 = +13 points