Easter Monday

Below I have taken a look at a few races with all kinds of different approaches. Trends and Stats have been used for the Irish Grand National , there is a micro-angle selection from another ’90 Day Trainer’, two ‘Profile’ horses that I have been tracking for a few weeks that are running in ‘their conditions’, a PACE selection and just a couple of good old fashioned ‘form/profile’ picks in the fiendishly tricky handicap chase at Chepstow. 

These ramblings are mainly there for entertainment – hopefully I have provided enough information for you to make up your own mind, as well as being able to tell how confident I am! 🙂 

An Alan King Flat winner made me escape Saturday’s punting without too much damage done and hopefully one or two of those below can brighten up my Monday. 

Good Luck with your Easter Monday Punting. 



Irish Grand National 

No Secrets 28/1 – 1/2 point EW 5 places 

Usuel Smurfer 33/1 – 1/4 point EW 5 places 

Trends/Stats (since 1997)

  • Carried 11-4 or under (11-5+ 0/33, 4 places)
  • Rated 136 or below (1/105, 11 places 137+)
  • Ran 1-90 days ago (91 days+ 0/22, 2 places)
  • 0-29 Career runs (30+ 0/70, 12 places)
  • 15/18 had 2-4 Chase Wins (15/266, 48 places, AE 1.01)
    • 0-1 chase wins – 3/123, 16 places, AE 0.42
    • 5+ chase wins – 0/44, 6 places
  • Fell/PU/UR LTO – 0/53, 9 places
  • Wearing Blinkers – 0/37, 3 places (restricted vision in a field of 30 clearly isnt that helpful) 


By my reckoning that would leave us: Usuel Smurfer, Empire of Dirt, No Secrets and Daring Article. 

Clearly I could have just dismissed the winner who doenst fit this profile but that is the chance I take in races such as this. Clearly a more unexposed chaser may win this and you could ignore the chase wins stat to leave yourself a longer shortlist. 

Daring Article pulled up in this race last year and his trainer is 2/89 at the track since 2009. I am happy to overlook him. His best form has been over 20/21f. Empire of Dirt is interesting and I was nearly tempted to back him. Maybe I will regret that decision but I have my doubts about his stamina. At Down Royal and Navan a couple of starts back he looked to struggle to stay 20f on soft ground. He also needed the line on his last run. Maybe this dramatic step up in trip is what he needs but I have my doubts, and at 14s he is half the price of my main fancy. We shall see how he goes tomorrow. He has a decent profile based on the above stats and is still open to improvement. 

You could make a case for most of these and there was no way I was going to find the winner based on form alone. Given how horses are plotted for this and the dramatic effects the trip can have, studying form acquired at much shorter distances is a bit pointless in my opinion.

No Secrets has a decent profile based on the stats above. He is a young 11 yo and still has some improvement in him for his new trainer. He is a prominent racer who is fine in the mud. Like with most of these it is simply a case of whether they stay but he is out of Kings Theatre who has impressive stats with 29f+ runners – ,mainly helped by record of Balthazar King. We should get a decent run for our money and if his stamina lasts I would hope he is in the top 5 at worst. The test may be just what he needs. He is a front runner/prominent racer as well, in  a field where there are not too many front runners. He should be able to stay out of trouble on/near the front end. 28s is a decent price in which to take a chance. He is 3/10 in chases and has won or placed in 50% of his chase starts. His jumping is better than it used to be and hopefully he can keep on galloping. 

It is hard to make a form case for Usuel Smurfer and he is the owner’s second string. Given he was on my shortlist and I didnt fancy the others that were left, I felt I had to have something on at 33s. He stays 24f well over hurdles and while he may be too high in the handicap, and may prefer better ground, these extreme distances can work wonders for a horse! (or make you look like you have never backed a winner in your life) He clearly isnt a confident pick, but then he is 33s so is worth a punt. He has some ok chasing form and has looked like more of a stayer. The break would suggest they have kept him for this and it is not an afterthought. Hopefully he can sneak a place. 


Flat Horse Handicap Profiles…

3.55 Redcar 

King Of Eden 20/1 

Broctune Papa Gio 16/1 


King of Eden… His flat handicap form on Good- Good/Firm, 5/6/7f, C4<£6k, April-July reads…

1,4,1,1,1,3,1,1,10,3,1,1,1,2,3,2,3,8 – 9/18 – covering all of his career flat wins, 14/18 Top 3. 0/38, 5 places, all other flat races.

Now I use profiling like mini systems – you just have to keep backing the horses in their conditions as you never really know when they will pop up and go in. King of Eden is arguable regressive and he is getting on a bit now. His last win was in 2013 however he was consistent enough last year, and was only beaten a neck on one occasion. He has dropped down the handicap and given these are his conditions I had to have a play at 20/1 EW with 4 places. Other positives: He is 2/4 after a break of 121+ days in flat handicaps and is 4/6 in April, 6/6 in the places. The negative is that Jason Heart is 0/14, but he has placed on him a couple of times, and a lot of those runs was when he was learning his trade. David Allan is the usual go-to man 7/15, 9 places. 

We shall see, if he runs appallingly on his next couple of starts in ‘his’ conditions then maybe he has fallen out of love with the game. However I would be confident he will go in at some point this season, hopefully at tasty odds. 


Broctune Papa Gio… really likes Redcar, 7f/1m, C5 or below (all wins good-Good/firm)…


Another who clearly doesnt win as often as he once did but he still has the ability to win races. I would be less confident of this one than King of Eden mainly because he has yet to win on the flat above a mark of 67 (69 today), is 0/2 after a break, and usually comes alive a bit later in the season. However, he has his conditions, and I had to have a small play at 16/1. David Nolan is 1/2 and you never know in this game, maybe he will be tuned up and run his race. I dont think this mark is beyond in so we shall see how he goes. 



’90 Day Trainer’ 

One of my fav ’90 Day Trainers’ Miss Suzy Smith, has a runner today. Her record with this angle now stands at 71 bets / 20 wins / +110 BFSP since 2010. In 2015 she is 2 from 5, +8 points. 

Today she runs Azabitmour in the 3.25 Plumton. This horse was a qualifier last time out when winning, so owes me nothing now, however I can see no form reason why he wont give it another good go – not that form matters with this kind of approach 🙂 




In the 2.55 Huntingdon Noble Legend could get his own way up front, although there are a few who like to press the pace. His jockey isnt renowned for sending too many to the front but he has to be ridden that way and I hope he follows instructions. In truth this race feels like it could go to a more unexposed rival and there a couple of younger horses above him in the market. NL is yet to win RH from 4 goes (races mainly LH) but he has come down the handicap and is one of the few in this race proven in the class. I have had a smaller than usual nibble at 5/1. 

5.10 Plumton I have had 1 point on Rivermouth. He should get an easy lead and in a race full of dissapointing types he looks like the most likely winner to  me. Given how inconsistent the others are (i cant ever bring myself to back Brunettesonly again!) I think 5/2 is a fair price and there is still a bit of juice in that. He has only had 9 goes over fences, winning one. He has form on good – good/firm and could still have improvement in him. Tom Cannon looks to have a decent book of rides at the track and hopefully i havent picked the wrong one! In the context of this race, and the opposition, 5/2 looks ok to me. 





I wanted to find a horse or two to ‘advise’ in this race but it really is a difficult puzzle and I couldnt confidently put up anything. Having gone through the card you could quite literally make a case for nearly all of them. The majority have bits a pieces of form this year that would entitle them to go close. Many have been disappointing this year and come here on the back of poor runs. 

I will be having a small play on Samingarry 9/1 and Tinker Time 16/1. 

I have backed the former a few times now but he gets his ground here and he has dropped into a class where is a perfect 4/4 over fences. I was surprised how well he travelled at Uttoxeter, and for quite a long way. He would have hated the ground and he doesnt stay that far. He is getting close to last chance saloon for me but I will try him one more time. Tinker Time is from the unexposed end. There are doubts over his jumping but he looks like a good ground horse to me. I believe there is some ‘good’ in this ground and that could well help his jumping. He has some decent form in the book and does have the class to win this. If I am wrong and he is just a a poor jumper then it will be 1/2 a point wasted for me, but you can take chances on 16/1 shots. The big field may not help him but he is still learning his trade and has won at the likes of Cheltenham and Newbury – you dont win at those tracks, over hurdles or fences, unless you have some ability. 

Just A Par has been highly tried this season and this will be a much easier test. Clearly he has a chance. I backed Carruthers LTO when he brought the house down. He did roll back the years. This is tougher in my opinion and he has never done that great on undulating tracks. I dont think he will get an easy lead either. I think the last race was his Gold Cup, but I will be the first to cheer him on if he is to win again. What a horse, what a family. 



The Irish Grand National will go down on the official ‘blog profits’ as I have advised points/staking. The rest are my thoughts/observations and I would advise you to look at all the races yourself before parting with your hard earned. Last time I tried such a scatter-gun of ‘advice’ was on Boxing Day – and that didnt go too well!! I hope King Of Eden runs a cracker as everything is in his favour, he just needs to prove he still has it. I am probably most confident on the Tom Cannon horse at Plumpton. 

Hopefully a couple of the above run well. 



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Do join in the conversation below, we're a friendly bunch.. all questions welcome, and do share your selections or thoughts

4 responses

  1. Hey Josh,

    Happy Easter!

    It has been a while and I reviewed your recommendations; but unfortunately, fear entered and I decided not to follow any. Now it is generally the case that having made a decision such as this one, then you have a windfall…. Whichever way it works out, lets hope we recoup our expenditures at the bookies!!!!


  2. Happy Easter to you too!

    Well that is the point in my ramblings, you will agree with some, disagree with most haha. As long as I am adding something of value to your own analysis that is great. What you do with the info is up to you!

    Have a great day

  3. No Secrets ran pretty well and finished a never nearer 8th having clouted the 2nd last which could have got him into 5th – Really looking forward to Aintree with Good weather forecast all week there could be a few big priced winners – Best of Luck for Aintree Josh

    1. Cheers Joe, yes that was a shockimg error, travelled well, just didnt stay, whether that cost him a place who knows. Went to am unexposed one, couldn’t have her as fell and unseated in last 4 runs but there you go, at least we got so!e sort of run for 1 point. Yes all about Aintree now, looks like Willie is sending over some gooduns for a change

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