An easy 9/1 winner and an EW 12/1 2nd were much needed and made it a decent start to the month for the shortlist. There are a handful of interest today that I couldn’t resist something on…
2.00 Hexham – Russell has a decent enough 20% SR with her handicap chasers here and at 5/1 this one looks to have as good a chance as any. It was his record fresh that most caught my eye. All form when returning after 50+ days reads… 3,UR,1,6,1,1,5 … returning within 50 days… 9,14,5,UR,4,3,6,5,8,3,PU. He is best fresh and is 2/2 over fences returning after 61+ days. He doesn’t have many miles on the clock and you cannot say yet this mark is beyond him. All race conditions look fine and the trainer is in form. This appears to be the time to back him. Tom Scudamore gets the leg up which is interesting given Buchanan is here. Interesting.
3.15 Fontwell. Well you could back Chris Gordon handicap hurdlers blind here, and even more so when teaming up with Tom Cannon. Well I do back them blind and it is a micro angle I have followed for a while now. In a sense the horses are irrelevant as such is the level they normally play at here (C4/5) form can go out the window. However, this one has a decent level of form in Ireland and will be fit. Longsdon’s record with handicap hurdlers here is only 1/29, 9 places to date and while his should be feared, I wouldnt want to take that price.
3.25 Ascot – Messrs Haggas and Moore dont team up too often here in handicaps but they dont mess around when they do. 4/10, 5 places in the last 5 years. That makes Squats of immediate interest at 11/2 (WH). He has great course form and this could be his race, albeit he has found it hard to win in recent months. His speed rating is impressive and the drying ground will help. On paper he shouldn’t be too far away and 11/2 allowed a small play for me.
4.25 Fontwell – Cannon/Gordon run Morestead Screamer in here and I had to have 1/2 on at 14s. He has run ok to date but of more interest is the step up in trip. He has a lot to find on ratings but, like I said, this is one angle where it can pay not to get to hung up on the chances of the horse. If he won i would not be surprised, if he got stuffed I wouldn’t either – but 14s allows that. In the same race Bally Legend runs for Keevil who has a decent record here with her hurdlers. There are plenty of pointers which suggest he could run a decent race here after a break, and as such I couldn’t resist another 1/2 at 9s to find out.
7.45 Wolvs – finally I couldn’t resist an EW bet on Coillte Cailin here at 12/1. Kirby is 4/11, 6 places on this trainer’s handicappers here, including 1/1 on this horse. The horse is 3/9, 8 places over CD in handicaps. He drops back into C5 here and has placed in C3 at the track. All in all, given the above, 12s looked a fair EW play.
A few more horses there than I hope will be the norm but you can make a decent enough case for them all at the odds. But, how/if you play them is up to you.
4.35 Ascot – Harlequin Striker (16/1 or under)
5.10 Ascot – The Cashel Man (14/1 or under)
7.45 – Lus Buddy goes for Amanda Perret here.