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( i will be back with notes in the morning, complete by 11am latest but hopefully earlier than that, as will the rest of this post…)
Fox Appeal – 1.5 points win 9/1 (general) (was 10s about last evening) UP 6/1*
*Well that was over rather early sadly- as soon as Jacob decided to have him so far back and let him jump his fences himself. No part of that was that enjoyable to watch. He booted him into only one fence and he flew it, the rest he just let him jump – and he could be better on that score. Where is Paddy Brennan when you need him, booting them into fences. He will win one one day, not with a ride like that or being that far back. Abject, never gave the horse a chance. Money came and he travelled strongly on the whole, but all those little errors caught up with him in the end. You just can’t be that far back. I think that is a cliff I can see with this one.
He will be the only tip in this.
Well, its his time of year, he is fit,he is well handicapped on old form, race conditions look fine,trainer’s horses are going well,she is 2/7, 3 places in the race last 10 years and I thought 10s/9s was decent enough all things considered.
Last October he ran two crackers in G3s at Ascot and Cheltenham off marks of 151 and 152. I would like to think off 141 here he could get competitive. As JV points out below he does appear to have a preferred profile but there is no way, based on that Cheltenham run alone, that I can say he can’t go close here. That proved that LH is ok, that class of race is ok (he is a previous G2 winner back in the day) good ground is ok, undulating track is fine, trip is fine etc. Now, he can make the odd error. That is the fear, that he gets crowded, loses some lengths at the odd fence. That was worth a chance at 9s as with a clear round and luck in running I will be rather disconsolate if I don’t get a run for my money here. There can be no excuse unless there is genuine firm in the going which they are not disclosing.
Given the trainer’s record in the race, and this ones decent record on his next start after a long break… (3,1,2,1,3…X) I am minded to think that last run was a prep. 21f seems a bit short for him these days and he did get outpaced there. His form around 24f at Ascot and 25f at Cheltenham last October would indicate as much.
I have backed this one before I think without much luck but it got to the point with all of the above that if I can’t back him here, I don’t know when the hell else I could. Plenty of boxes just seem to be ticked for me. Hopefully he bounces over the first couple of fences, sits just behind the pace, and we can enjoy a good run from there on in. Jacob had better not hold him up out the back- cardinal sin in most chases really, and even more so if you are on one who can make a slight error.
He is also top 3 in HRB ratings (55% win SR in handicap chases,need to dig into those fig more in terms of field sizes/class etc, but a good guide) and top 3 in Geegeez Speed ratings also.
So, that is why I like him. He looks solid enough to me.
Well it should be said that I was partly influenced by the fact that the top 3 in the weights in this, in last 10 years, are 0/32, 4 places, carrying 11-8+ a negative. That put me off Indian Stream a tad but she looks solid enough here. A perfect 3/3 after 60+ days off she has been a winning machine. She needs another step up here from a 10lb higher mark and importantly takes a step up in class. Trainer is in form though and a big run wouldn’t shock me.
Southfield Vic – short enough for me given I don’t know what to make of his summer Novice form and this is a deep chase. Nicholls only 0/13,2 places in this race last decade also. This is very different from those novice chases and I was happy to let him beat me at the odds, which he may.
A Good Skin- not without a chance and depends whether he is fit. Trainer decent enough record with handicap chasers returning after 60+ days. His mark keeps going up without him winning though, and he can be held up out the back which causes problems. But, he could run a big race, and is a danger..
Then we are left with guessing as to fitness/future autumn targets…if all of these had a run under their belt, the majority would be dangers. I didn’t want to be guessing, even if educated guessing, as to fitness in this race. It’s that tricky time of year with more head scratching that usual.
Buachaill Alainn – he is a big price but this is deeper than last year. I didn’t like the fact he was 0/7, 2 places 60+ days off, or that trainer was 2/34 in 3m handicap chases 60+ days off, and 0/12,1 place Class 2 such runners. He is moody and will need to be ridden plenty. But, he is a big price. I will be leaving him.
Kruzhlinin – good record fresh but now 0/11,2 places 12+ runners,0/5,0p 141+. He has that weight trend to overcome. But, there could be more to come this year and given yard clearly no massive shock. Is the National a target again, and if so is the season spent building up to that with a win over hurdles along the way…
HenryVille- he has enough to prove for me after recent chase efforts even though he is unexposed. I would want to see more in a race of this nature before parting with money on him. It wasn’t his fault the last day when running well,but there is also a stamina unknown also.
Little Jon- can he jump, will he jump? He is probably the worst jumper in the race on all known form to date. So far he looks like a small field, flat track horse. 0/11,0 places all runs undulating/very undulating tracks. He has enough to prove for me even though I have always thought he has a decent chase in him. Just needs to jump better. Does also have a stamina question, yet to prove he can’t stay though. Will watch with interest.
Killala Quay- big stamina question for me and wins have come dominating small fields. He won’t be able to do that here- happy to leave him until stamina is a bit more evident.
Upswing- if fit and raring to go could go close. Is this a prep for November chase at Cheltenham where he came second last year? He is a hold up type, right out the back. Usually. He can hit the odd fence as well. Jonjo is hot and cold. On balance happy to leave, but if he is here to win, he would have a chance.
Another Her0 – a couple of questions to answer now with the fall LTO and the break. Jonjo is actually 0/12,1 place in handicap chases at Chepstow 60+ days off. So both of this two have that minor stat against them. Maybe he uses this track to blow cobwebs away before future targets.
Buckhorn Timothy – Tizzard 0/26, 2 places with hncp chasers 60+ days off returning over 3m. Slight niggle and in any case I can’t think this one is good enough to take this race. Slight stamina q for him also
Tinker Time – a few niggles including form on undulating tracks, 0/5,0 p 131+, 0/2, 0 places track. Class question and patching recent form, some good, some not very good. Ok record fresh.
Audacious Plan – question over recent form, 0/4,1p track, 0/7,1 place 12+ runners, yet to win after a break, usually needs a run.. 0/5, 2 p 91-365 days. Class question.
Potters Cross… WON interesting indeed…finally…now he is interesting at a price I suppose. He is unexposed and the trainer’s horses are going well and she can ready them after a break if desired…he creeps in and those carrying 10-00 have done ok in this race 3/11 or so. But,on balance of his form safe to say he is inconsistent and his only recent win was in a small field. Can hit a fence also.
So, really, Fox Appeal is the only one in here that I don’t have what I would call a ‘major’ question against, whether it is fitness or in case of those in top 3 in weights, that trend. The odd error is the only niggle for me and I hope i get a run for my money having built him up! He has been frustrating at times but ALL i am asking for is a repeat of the Ascot/Chelt runs from this time last year. If I get one of those, we will be excited jumping the last couple of fences. A few in here can win and it wouldn’t be a shock, there are a couple who would leave me scratching my head. Rarely has Fox Appeal looked the solid bet in a race, but I think he might be here! Given the number who may come on for the run or have targets down the line, he won’t have excuses.
PACE… Killala Q, Potters Cross and Southfield Vic can get on with it. Fox Appeal was prominent the last day and he better be again here, just sitting behind these three on the inside rail. He should be able to hold his position over this trip better than he did the last day.
I am not going to tip in the Cesarewitch and going through all 34 runners with the stats/trends looks a bit daunting also. I will be leaving the race but there is the trends post HERE>>> If they help you find the winner, then do say.
3.15 Chep- Flying Angel UP (yep, 1 run 90 days positive)
3.50 Chep –
El Terremoto (no, not against my positives,may not stop him of course0
4.25 Chep –
Ballyoptic WON 8/1>9/2 (no,not against my positives, may not stop him..let’s just say NTDs horses that have had 0 runs this season have done OK at Chepstow in the past)
5.00 Chep –
Little Jon (none again) UP
2.40 Chep- Let’s Hope So UP (ticks all three positives, 1+ run 90 days,1-5 career start and its October)
4.25 Chep – Crimson Ark 2nd 16/1 (yep, 1+ run 90 days and its October,all runners)
5.00 Chep – Fox Appeal (yep, 1+ run 90 days, October etc) UP
2.25 Hex – Touch of Steel UP (ticks box, all handicappers…horses first chase,on back of three PUs. you never know!)
4.05 Hex- Civil Unrest (all handicappers, tick) WON 7/1
3.00 Hex – Wicked GamesUP (no ticks against positives,maybe if 4/1 shorter but trainer 6/158 in non handicap hurdles,2/59 with those running 60+ days off)
5.10 Hex –
Lady London (no ticks again)
Handicap Hurdle/Chase Portfolio
5.35 Chep – Golden Milan- UR
A few reappearing that I need to dig back out/review etc…
Harry Fry Mares
2.40 Chep – Meribel Millie(10/1< guide) UP
Saturday Jumps Trainer Jockey Combos
3.15 Chep – Rock The Kasbah (14/1<) WON 6/1
4.25 Chep- Tea In Transvaal (any odds) UP
5.00 Chep- Kruzilinin (14/1<) PU
Varian Fillies/Mares (25/1<)
1.45 Newm- Imtiyaaz UP
That is all for today. Hopefully some winners buried in there somewhere.
Good luck with any bets