All in all another good week, with another +10 points to the pot.
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Straidnahanna – 1.5 point win – 10/1 (PP/BFsports) 9/1 general WON (recorded at 9/1, which there was plenty about, dont think 10s lasted too long but hope some of you got that price – 6.75/1 after the R4 – profit on race, to advised stakes, of +9.125 points
Scotswell – 1 point win – 40/1 (Bet365/BV/Lad) 33/1 general UP – unable to lead and dictate, not sure if sulked,but made a crunching error which put paid to that. One to keep an eye on though, still go wins in him over marathon trips, maybe wait until the main man, James Reveley, is called back from France to ride him.
Firstly, Straidnahanna is a system bet below also and if you are a system follower its up to you how you play it. I think I will be sticking with the 1.5 points above, albeit if I find myself getting bullish throughout the day I may throw another 1/2 at him, for the system’s benefit!
Firstly I just can’t have any of the top 3 in the market at the prices, I just cant. Another Hero is clearly progressive and going the right way. Out of the three, with a gun to my head, he would be the one. But, I don’t think he really beat much LTO and he will need to step forward again. He is also a hold up horse in a race and at a track where I like to be handy. There are 2 or 3 in here, including both selections, who will make this a test, who could get away on the front end and who will definitely put pressure on all those jumping in behind. He will like going LH though and I wont fall of my seat if he wins, I would be disappointed if he ‘dotted’ up though, famous last words.
Lookingwell could be a fine chaser in time but this is no 4 runner – potter around in your own time – novice chase. He did more than potter around LTO in fairness but he still made the odd error. This is a completely different test for one so inexperienced. If he passes it, on only his 3rd chase start, then he could be one to keep an eye on. He has to go out there and prove it in this sphere, which makes 7/2 short enough – you will find better 7/2 shots to back I think. Warrantor was up there in market but is now drifting, and I can see why. He has it all to prove in open company having won a weak, heavy ground beginners chase at Lingfield. Again not the kind of profile i like to be jumping on in a race of this nature. He was put into a G2 on his reappearance which catches the eye, but for now i’m happy to let him prove me wrong. Money is coming for Jac The Legend, but I cant have him either. He needs to step up for me and i think there are many better horses in here than him, on what they have done in chases to date.
So, given I dont like those four at all in context of their prices (the egg is well and truly prepared!) what should I be taking them on with..
Straidnahana...goes for the crack team of Smith and Cook. She is 5/12, 7 places with her handicap chasers here in the last 730 days which is no bad thing. This horse drops in class and this is sure to be his easiest assignment this season. Indeed I think he has the best chase form of these to date. On his seasonal reappearance he ran a cracker, over slightly further, and just got touched off by a progressive, decent chaser from Nicky Richards, Gold Futures. He hasnt been seen since – waiting for good ground no doubt, worth following in the spring maybe. There was a good gap back to the rest. He then raced in a 22k C2 at Haydock, in the mud. He was coming to win that race there, albeit it was still 3 from home. But that was a good field and it was a right old slog. Not sure if a tired fall or what. But, this is no 22k C2 Haydock chase, that is for sure. It is possible on his next start (4th) that he was still feeling that run/fall. That was also a very good race, won by Sego Success (who would be fav at Warwick in their big one) with Reaping Reward in second (chased home Soll/AAchen at Sandown), Achimota who is solid yardstick in 3rd. He didnt have much chance in a graduation chase LTO, given his rating and the weight he had to carry. That trip was too short and they were decent horses in front of him. Maybe the run was a tad disappointing, but at 10/1 I can overlook that.
He is a prominent racer, and while he can hit the odd fence, he could find these calmer waters much to his liking. I had to back him at that price, I just couldnt leave him. If he runs his race, he won’t be too far away at all. He is a CD winner as well, which helps.
Scotswell – well well. This is a punt. The only reason I would be put off would be the price. ‘He is 40/1, he cant win’. You SHOULD NEVER be put off by the price when at that end of the market. (I am put off by the top 3/4 due to their ‘short’ price) That can only be based on his last run, in heavy ground, after a long break, over hurdles! 3 big negatives for him. If, if, he had placed in that race, he would be a 14/1 shot here, maybe 10s. This one owes me nothing after his fine win 3 starts ago (yes you guessed it, tipped up on here! :)). He loves to front run, is a superb jumper when on song, gets this trip and a fair bit further. Better ground is ideal, but he has gone close on soft and gone close off this mark. I am praying to god that Lucy bumps him out the front, sets off quick and tries to lead them all the way. If, if he is fit, and this is not another pipe opener, hold on to your seats. Maybe he should be an EW bet at those prices, but I always want 1 point on the win side, and I didnt want to bet more on the race. If he does need the run, he wont place. I cant understand his price. When I look at his profile, his suitability for race conditions, his running style, his past form at the track in this class, the fact he has won easily of OR 121 (124 here) then I just had to have a bet. Had to. He is 10, granted, but this is only his 16th chase start. He may bomb out, but I think we will be dreaming for a time, certainly as they head out on the second circuit! (if he is held up then we know he isnt here to run well/win)
Dangers…well I like Beeves but as yet he doesnt have the chase form of the selections, is better on better ground (does handle it though) and comes here after an ‘iffy’ looking break of 66 days – maybe waiting for the ground though. He is the other prominent racer out of the three, but I hope he doesnt cause them to go too quickly. Straid may just track the pair and pick up the pieces. I dont think Wilton Milan or Distime will stay – well they now have stamina concerns to prove, as well as form questions to answer. Shimla Dawn is unexposed but also has stamina questions, that penultimate start suggesting he doesnt stay – albeit only 4th chase start. Jury is out though.
All in all, I think we will get two good runs for our money here, at decent prices. Maybe one of the fancied ones will go in, but i won’t be annoyed I haven’t backed them.
That’s all on the horses front today.
4.10 Catt – Straidnahanna (any odds)
2.40 Catt – Tektehlot (12/1<)
3.00 Plum – Fountain’s Blossom (12/1<)
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