Members Report: 07/04/16 (COMPLETE)

Brian Ellison had two qualifiers at Catterick from the micro system I researched for my new guide. Thankfully for my bank balance one of them one at 6/1>11/4. Hopefully he can have a few more as the season progresses. I had a good bet also on Dark Ruler that came to nothing. Most of the others were unfancied and ran as such. 

Anyway, a video will follow when it has ‘rendered’ with me having a quick flick through Day 1 of Aintree. No tips as such but hopefully something of interest. 





2.50 Aintree 

Don Poli – 2 points win – 11/2 (PP – money back free bet if 2nd to fav / Bet365/Coral/WH) 5/1 (general) 

I have to smile as over the course of 48 hours I have gone full circle on this horse – I told you about those emotions and attachments to horses you backed at the Festival – well, this is one. Last chance saloon. It has rained a lot up here in the last day or two. I was right by the track last night for a preview evening (and very entertaining it was too, Warren Greatrex is a good laugh) and it was raining late into the night. It has been belting down this morning. It must be at least soft by now. And, that increases our chance – not least the added emphasis on needing to be a grinder. This could be some slog, and we have king of sloggers. At the preview night there was a theory that his Gold Cup run may have been a prep for this -which, thinking about it, given the owners had a more fancied one, Mullins had a more fancied one, and he is chasing the trainers title – makes some sense. Certainly at the time most felt he was given too much to do. Warren also thinks the horse is ‘just thick’ – and will just keep running and doing what you ask him too. He is a tough horse also and fingers crossed he is over any exploits LTO. 

11/2 feels rather big now, what with the rain, and if he runs his race he shouldn’t be too far away. On Good ground I would have been worried about him being outpaced around here – but the ground should slow things down a tad and you do have to stay here – he has a long home straight to wind up. His jumping is usually very sound. 

Of the rest. Well, surely one of the Top 3 is winning this? I know there have been shocks in this before but I can’t remember if 3 horses from the Gold Cup have lined up in this. There are reasons why all three could bomb out but I am not sure what chases them home – Jonjo’s on softer or SDR for Nicholls maybe. On ratings and all known form, one of the top 3 should be winning this. I would love to see Cue Card win but it was a very heavy fall last time out and he may not be over that. If he is, with a clear round, he should go close. But I can’t touch his price. Djakadam had a hard race LTO to my eye, but if over that, is entitled to run his race. On this occasion I want the grinder onside again. 


4.40 Aintree 

Viconte Du Noyer – 1 point win – 8/1 (general) 

Katachenko – 1 point win – 16/1 (general) 


I have spent enough time head scratching on this one and in the end have gone with two still ‘could be anything’ types in handicap chases who, out of all of these, look like they have been targeted at this very race.

The rain does make a difference here and I cant see how there will be any good in it. If is ‘only’ on the soft side that will help plenty in here, if it is genuinely soft that could be a problem for a few…

Victonte Du Noyer – well who knows how good he could be. He had a break and returned over hurdles LTO. The trainer is 0/4, 2 places in this race. It looks like a plan – this race is no afterthought. The ground is a slight question but he has some form on soft and once chased home Vautour in 3rd. He could be smart and will show plenty over fences one day, and it may be today. He is a prominent racer and will come here fresh enough. At the prices he looked interesting. He may not be good enough but, if handling the ground, we should get a good spin. He should be progressive and ahead of his mark. 

Katachenko – clearly more of a punt at the odds. He goes for McCain here and this track hasnt been much of a happy hunting ground recently but maybe he hasn’t had the horses. He is also hitting one of his ‘in and out’ periods again but despite a ‘poor season’ he has had 50+ winners.  We know he can train. This one has been in the tracker after his Donny run where I thought a stronger pace would have seen him to better effect – and softer ground. He must go LH over fences. Again, given the rest prior to his last run, and his owner who loves a winner here as we know, and who this race is named after etc, I can only think this has been the plan. He is unexposed and will be up there, and he will relish the ground. Now, he may not be good enough when all is said and done but at 16s I am happy to take a chance. We don’t know how good he could be in handicap chases, in a race run at a decent pace. That win over the ill-fated Mon Successeur 4 starts back catches the eye and shows his ability. 

The Grand Annual form may well repeat, but Solar Impulse – all his wins have come on decent ground and soft would be a question – it wouldn’t help his chance. He may also not react to the blinkers again, and may feel that last run (albeit he did it well). Nicholls is 1/25 in the race, suggesting it is an afterthought where he just throws a dart or two, maybe. IF he repeats that last run then he will go very close. Those carrying 11-11 or more in this race are now 0/12,0 places – small numbers but given they are the best horses in the race on form, a surprise none have placed. It would suggest that some ‘lurkers’ normally take this. Dandridge – well if he jumps fine he should be very close to Solar Impulse – he is also unexposed. That race may have taken plenty out of him mind – to make that error and having to work hard for that second place. His best form is on decent ground also. Minella Present – I remembered late yesterday that I have been waiting for him to return – he would have bolted up at Cheltenham before Christmas but for being stopped a few times, the odd error etc. I am sure he was meant to run at Cheltenham so I can only think there was a problem. He is by Presenting as well and in theory won’t like it soft. If he handles the ground he could take this well – but he is a hold up hose and will have to do it the hard way. Now, with the ground changing, it may no longer be a front runners paradise (easier to get away on Good etc) – we shall see. I cant have Fayette County at that price. 

It feels open enough but hopefully these two give us a good spin. 


That is all for Tips.



Race 1 – Arzal could have a chance here, being fresher than most. His trainer was rather bullish last night (he was the other trainer at the preview) well, very hopeful. He likes to bully the oppo and will be sent to the front. He settles much better now and the trainer has no problems about the distance. He looks interesting and will be in my favourite place here – right out the front. The other I want onside is L’Ami Serge – this track could be perfect and he will stay – which is a question for a few in here. He will also like the rain softened turf. I will have a nibble at both of those, track side I think – for ‘interest’! I have talked myself out of GLV due to his jumping – but I hope he runs a good race. A decent little contest. 

R2 – The rain won’t help the fav but he may have the class. This change in ground may switch things in favour of Apples Jade. For fun money I may take them both on with Diego Du Charmil – although he was lucky the last day it was a good race, and Andy Holding (who was also at preview, WH radio I think,tipper on odds checker,speed guru,knows his stuff) said the time was very good and marked it down as a decent race. The question is whether that run has taken anything out of him – it being his first for some time – he could fold. Sceau Royal is better than he showed the last day and the ground may help. A small ‘track-side’ EW bet I think at his price. 

R4 – not much to say here. The fav should win and I can’t even think of a creative ‘way in’. A horse to watch and enjoy for me. I wont be betting in it at all. 

R5 – a tricky race and I have no strong thoughts. You would think one of the top 2 is winning this – at the odds maybe the ‘value play’ is on Pacha Du Polder. Mendip Express could go well, and I may have small EW nibbles on Dineur (66/1) and Major Malarkey (20/1) I dont really expect to be collecting but I will be there and will have to have something on this race! 

R7 – Greatrex really rates his horse, who is 9/4, and was rather bullish last night. The other to catch the eye is the Elliot horse, and I may have a small nibble on that one.  A trainer based bet I suppose, and not an overly confident one. 

So, an interesting and ‘classy’ day ahead. I can’t wait to see Cue Card and to watch Annie Power will be memorable. Hopefully I can get a return for the main bets. There will be the odd shock today, but who knows what races they will be in. As I have said, this meeting is usually tough for me, punting wise, but I will be having a great time whatever happens. 

Oh, and the sun is starting to make an appearance! 

Have a great day. 




Jumps Handicappers

3.15 Taunt – Horace Hazel (12/1 or shorter) 

4.40 Aintree – Aye Well (12/1<) 




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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

44 Responses

  1. josh

    very interesting video seem Liverpool is a very honest track as you only see the top 3 or 4 in the betting winning all the races .
    I think I will therefore find one or two at one of the other venues if I am having a bet.
    Thanks for your in sight and keep the good work up.

    1. Hi Errol, it was a light hearted look in general with a few useful snippets. 20 mins was a sweep through. There will be some shocks ,as well as a few fancied ones going in. In general in non handicaps there are not too many shocks. Agree, in terms of value and decent odds,given field sizes etc there dont appear to be many big price pokes to be had. But, we shall see.

  2. Nice video, the sort of thing I try to do the night before if I get time. I like Don Poli at 11/2 each way. I am on at 5/4 Iv Gorb, looks a banker to me. What about Surf and Turf at 28/1? I did like Solar Impulse at Cheltenham and the blinkers seem to be bringing improvement. I have done a couple more but wont go on any more. And two runners in the Masters, Bubba and Adam Scott.

    Do you agree with the train of thought that Silviano Conti and Holywell wont stay in the National?

    1. Hi Martin… Surf and turf is interesting but is nowhere near the same form coming into this as he was last year. Likes the track though and the ground, and the month. He could grab a place but I would be disappointed if something younger didn’t beat him this year.

      Stamina is always a conundrum in this race – I don’t think SC stays 3m2f at Cheltenham in a properly run race – so I am not quite sure why he will stay this – they wont hang around here given the quality of oppo – not sure, not convinced. Holywell – cant see why he wouldn’t stay- more in his head and how he takes to fences, he isn’t the biggest. A puzzle and a half – you could make some sort of valid case, at the odds, for quite a chunk of this field.

  3. Good video Josh,I enjoyed your ideas. I am not as wholly concerned with pace as you are but its a very interesting concept. I use Horseracebase and try not to discount horses if the jockey is in form,eg Azzuri likes the softer ground and has an in form Jockey/Trainer combo aboard so I will give that a look as an e/w chance.Ditto Sam Twiston Davies rides with longer odds as he is on form at present and gets good rides such as Saphir Du Rheu tomorrow,Noel Fehily is another in form with some longer priced rides and will be taken into consideration for the meeting.
    Good luck with your bets and at the races over the next few days too.

    1. Hi John, cheers. Yep pace is a funny thing, and what with the rain it may make it less of an issue here. I have backed hold up horses to victory this year (Lackamon/Empire of Dirt) but you need a lot more luck and the leaders to get it wrong/not be good enough/go too quick. And more chance of finding trouble, so in general, over fences at least, I like one to be in the front 3rd/half. Yep can see why you like those, good luck. Looks a trappy day in some of those races.

  4. Very good video Josh, interesting stuff, lots of info. Hope you have a good day, I love Aintree it’s a lovely course and always a good atmosphere.

    1. Cheers Tim – yep so do I – I would like to find a few more winners than in previous years mind!! Good luck.

  5. Hi Josh,

    Nice to hear your thoughts on tomorrow’s racing. I tend to agree with a lot of what you have said. Ben at NTF mentioned in a recent piece of research pointed out that the record of those horses that WON at Cheltenham and then came on to run at Aintree is +30% SR.

    Having a run at Chelters LTO is a positive in my eyes and on that basis, with the Mullins big armoury being shipped over my bets tomorrow are:

    Sizing John – no douvan to contend with should see him run well and looks the one to beat.
    Ivan Gorb, Cue Card, Annie & On the fringe – Yankee
    Dandridge & Solar Impulse – Dutch

    All the best and good luck whoever you are on.


    1. Yep running at Cheltenham is certainly no negative – just depends on how hard a race they have had and you simply cannot tell until they have run. You can make an educated guess, but connections rarely know until they race again. Sizing John – good chance if he stays. Yankee – looks good, if IV handles the ground they could well all come in! Yea can see why you have kept to Grand Annual form. Good Luck.

  6. Congratulaciones Josh!

    Good vídeo, but really i dont understand anything, only the presentación haha.

    Thanks, you are nice mate.

  7. Skybet have put a Price Boost up on Cue Card – they are 65% losers so promising?

    Can P Nicholls have another top weighted headgeared first time winner with Qualando 4.30 Taunton(going described as good but big rain forecast b4 racing starts?)

  8. Minella Present was too low in the weights to get into the Grand Annual mate. I think he would have won if he ran that day but the ground is considerably softer today so cant have him at the prices although fully prepared to have egg on my face since like you I have been waiting for him to run since that day. I personally took the 14s e/w on Pearls Legend last night and think that given the weight swing and ground he will reverse the form with the front two. Plus Aintree should play to his strengths. Plus he is a very consistent horse from an e/w perspective.

    1. Hi Nick – ah, well that would explain that then! – Still, he would have been prepped for that race in mind, this will be an afterthought and yes with the ground, and the odds, I wasnt tempted to row in. Yea can see why you have gone for PL – he is a solid EW bet indeed as you say. He has had plenty of hard races now and that must catch up with him at some point, and I don’t think he has anything in hand. He is open to attack with something up his sleeve – but then again, they may not be able to match his best form. Should be an exciting race.

      1. For sure certainly the most interesting one of the day in my eyes. The pitfalls of using my portfolio of tipsters approach is I have five in that race not including the front 2 in the market so hope something wins! (and thank god the micro is a not a qualifier!)

    1. That may well be the case Gaz, and it is a pragmatic odds based bet. Maybe 2 points is a bit too foolhardy – but it is possible that none of them run their races – and in that scenario I want a price. If he fails here I can’t see when else I will ever back him. All about who runs up to their best out of the top 3. Cue Card takes all the beating if he repeats that King George run.

      1. Havent rated it yet obviously but i would be astonished if that isnt a career best from Don Poli.Got much closer than I thought to be honest.Well done on Katchenko.

  9. There was an interesting trainer comment from Colin Tizzard after the Gold Cup, ‘that’s what happens when your’re going full pelt,’ or words to that effect. It was a fast run GC and I think Djakadam will beat Cue Card (think he prefers Cheltenham to Aintree), he’s ran 2nd in two top class GC’s and managed a good run after last year’s running at Punchestown (albeit beat by Don Cossack) clocking decent figures in the process.

    Don Poli still has upwards of 10lb to find on the front two and as yet still to achieve a decent speed figure on soft ground, something the other two do with a consistent regularity..

    The 2nd fav has won 4 of the last 6 – the 3rd fav has won 0 from last 10

    Of course the GC may have taken it out of those three & something else might win, think I’ll just Lay the favourite.

    1. I don’t see how you can have Cue Card at 5/4? Djakadam had a hard race in the Gold Cup whereas Don Poli trotted around and then ran on late. So I like my 6/1 each way from a value perspective.

      I think Solar Impulse is still improving but the race is competitive. I like Surf and Turf and Croco Bay at prices as well but no one is mentioning them?

      In the last race I have not heard from my Greatrex contact re the FAV. I think that the value has gone from it anyway in another competitive race.

      1. Ah, well I have out contacted you this time Martin, my contact is Warren Greatrex himself, and he really likes her chance haha – yea, not a price I will be taking though! Croco and Surf have a bit too much to prove now for me, on recent form. Maybe they will bounce back and you get a decent price. There are shocks in this race – well in most of them actually.

        1. I cant compete with that. Trainers are no good to me as they have nothing to gain from passing on info to punters. We shall see anyway. I tend not to bet much in competitive races unless at a price. Plus I don’t like get out of jail races. Anyway you go and enjoy Aintree and those underdressed fillies!

  10. The first race on the National Course for this Aintree, ground looked very dead, starter did his best to **** the race up, how he expects 20+ to be in line is byond me let alone 40 of them, could not see anything wrong with first start and suspect that wound more than a few runners up. Carnage of a race after that and looks like something that is a real stayer could run a big National. Makes it even more galling that a host of 2 1/2 and 3 mile horses are in it and a number of proven National types NOT!

    Bookies hammered in first 5 races but I’m not sure watching winners romp home by huge margins is “a great days racing” unless you are backing a host of short odds favourites and accumulating them up….tomorrow looks far more competitive though.

  11. Josh – what a great call, well done. Can you get the forecast right next year though please.

  12. cracking tip well done, sure Hutch will get a ban for that but who cares….I’m sick of seeing tossers on twitter going “boom” for odds on shots…Josh you really do deserve a BOOM!

  13. josh id say all of liverpool could hear you shouting that one home id say they heard me across the irish sea paddy

  14. Cheers Josh…even backed it on Betfair so that I didn’t hammer one of my BOG bookies (altho did lay a point back at 2.56 after the second last).

  15. Well done(through gritted teeth!)
    I had Dandridge&Pearls Legend ew-so didn’t get anything back on the race which was frustrating given how well they both ran!!
    Wish I’d had a tenner ew on yours Josh!!!
    And-as if to rub salt in my wounds-I had a £10 ew double on Apples Jade& Augusta Kate…..!
    Last one beaten a bloody nose to deprive me of £200+!!!

    1. Spooky Mick. Racing Consultants (paid service) put that double up as well. I was on at £20 e/w for £480…at least I laid £20 of it back after Apples Jade won, and we had the place return. Half a length in the end, officially.

  16. Brilliant . Well done Josh .
    You really can pick the big odds . Looking forward to your National outsider

  17. Was on Katachenko.
    I am sounding a little hoarse (excuse the pun),after shouting that one home!

  18. Well done mate. Micro winner to boot. You we’re right about Pearl Legend. Shame it couldn’t have lasted into 3rd.

  19. Well done my son. Ial ready had DPOLI and Kat backed b4 your post came up but on the back of your comments I also did Arzal 5/1 Dinuer e/w 66/1 throw in e/w on Azurri and Kayf Grace and the icing is defo on the cake.Main bets tomorrow r Carlos in the opener plus Blazer .In the Topham Eastlake Rarhin and Top Cat Henry on Jockey bookings and h/gear catch my eye

  20. Great result Josh
    Off down Alma De Cubba tonight with some of those well dressed fillies?
    Certainly happy you didn’t hang up the tipping boots on April fools day
    Enjoy the night I know from experience when my daughter was at uni in Liverpool that city rocks day and night these 3 days!

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