Complete…TIPS…+ Jumps Angles..



3.35 Ascot

A Good Skin – 1.5 point win – 7/1 (general) UP

Buckhorn Timothy – 1 point win – 12/1 (general) UP*

Yep, much like Carlisle the other day a howler of a race for me. Not sure if more firm in that ground than I thought, BT never in it, couldn’t go pace, AGS travelled well but couldn’t pick up – maybe too sharp a test on what was good to firm it seems. Disappointed with that.

Antony summed up my troubles really. Poor. The historical stats, some concerns over his jumping around here, inexperience and concern over stamina were enough to dissuade me. And a niggle as to whether he wanted cut also. When you get one that wrong you have to ask questions, albeit not a shock winner. One of those. Struggling. Junction Fourteen ran a lot better than expected as well.

Still, at least the TTP stats are doing well, 2 x 12/1 winners on the Ascot card so far- I should just stick to the stats and cut out my opinion at the moment! 🙂  

Why these two?

Well, I am going to do something novel which in theory should/and has stood me in good stead in the chasing game. As our most popular Prime Minister from the 90s would say (in terms of no. votes cast- no i couldn’t believe it either) its ‘back to basics’… And to put it in simple terms I am going with two horses who have no problem with good ground, who both stay well, have profiles which suggest there could be more to come over fences…and wait for it, that rarest of things in these parts- they are both fit. Fitness will not be the reason they lose.

Now clearly, something that hasn’t run beyond 21f before and/or who is returning after a break, or who looks like a non stayer, will clearly leave me crying into my mid afternoon cup of tea. But, try as I might, I can’t get away from those two at the prices.

A Good Skin- now my race reading/jockey watching could be improved but I have watched that last race at Chepstow twice now and what a strange ride this one received. He ran a cracker. I think he could have won had he wanted to- but, that was a 22k pot, this is 56k, and why ruin his mark! 🙂 I urge any of you to watch that last race – two things caught my eye- well in general I don’t think Heskin let him go as quick/hit full speed, when the horses wanted to. As they turn for home I am sure he pulls him back a bit, maybe aware of just how well he is going. The next odd move is before the last- someone tell me what he was doing. NOW, he could have thought he was approaching the fence too quickly but he stopped riding, and tried to duck him behind Buckhorn Timothy, just as he was really flying. He jumped impeccably under pressure and ran well into 3rd. I could be seeing things but I thought it looked odd- maybe I am seeing what I want to see.

Anyway, ignoring that, this one hasn’t done much wrong over fences and he could come on for the run. He has won RH, he is 2/11,8 places over fences and rarely runs a bad race in a chase. The ground looks ideal for him. He has big field form in decent races. I hope they don’t hold him up right out the back as there isn’t loads of pace here on paper- Mid div will be fine and I liked how he moved effortlessly through that race at Chepstow. I think if he has a clear round he will go very close to winning this. He will be grinding away up this home straight when plenty of the non stayers in here have had enough (i have doubts about stamina for 5 of them, plus a couple more who have it to prove- there are 7 questionable stayers in this race) Anyway, he looks a good bet to my dodgy eyes. I will be saddened if he doesn’t run a good race.

Buckhorn Timothy- well I can’t back A Good Skin and not back this one because he was ahead of him the last day and he is 12s here. He could come on for the run, Tizzard is in form and I reckon Coleman could have ridden 2 or 3 in here- he picks him. He is lightly raced over fences and that last run was his best over fences. He could come on for it and it proved 3m and decent ground is fine. He seems versatile. He also races prominently which could be no bad thing in this race if my reading of the pace is correct. He won’t have an excuse on that front. His jumping took a while to warm up the last day – a couple of fences- hopefully he can get into a rhythm early.

A word on that Chepstow race also- horses that ran there LTO are 2/16,6 places in this race, last 10 years. That was a decent contest also. The winner was an unexposed one from the Curtis yard who was able to lead all the way really and dictate. The Mulholland horse ran well for a long way and came out and won on Friday- for one of the micros on the blog- beating Theatre Guide- that was a decent race. The Bowen horse came out and won the Durham National. There is substance to that race and the form could/has worked out well enough.

So, those two will do. I have no doubts about any of their profiles and it was about bloody time I backed something which didn’t really have some sort of question hanging over them. It may not work today but should keep ensure this long long summer slump ends at some point.

Of the rest…

Well i couldn’t get away from the trends here… in last 10 years those carrying 11-4 or more are 0/35,7 places… top 2 in the weights 0/20,3 places. Those carrying 10-2 or less are 0/25,2 places. I have used that as a guide here. I think the top two are worth taking on at the prices- clearly they have all the class and one of them could hack up-maybe they will have it between them. Tea For Two has his weight, his mark in a handicap, good ground and fitness to prove- as well as breaking that trend. SDR has his wellbeing and form to prove, his fitness and he will be hoping to improve Nicholls 0/15,6 places record in the race. He does have questions now and is a bit of a talking horse. He can clout a fence also. 3/1, 11/4 is short and he must be taken on, surely. (of course I can picture him looming up on the bridle over the last 2, I can also see him being under pressure turning for home)

Will they/wont they stay? I have stamina questions/doubts over Junction Fourteen (also a wellbeing quetion), Un Ace (also form+fitness), Killala Quay (Coleman could have ridden him I am sure,stamina to prove), Fourth Act and Workbench. Happy to leave the lot. There are stronger, proven stayers in here.

Voix D’EAU- well he is interesting and could take this but there is a stamina question based on how he has run. His breeding is a bit ‘flat’ looking also, albeit we know that can mean sod all (The Young Master) His trainer reckons he needs this trip but I decided I didn’t want to be making an educated guess this time. He has been kept to LH tracks as well for the most part. This may be what he wants, but he is single odds and happy for him to beat me. Trainer is in good form though. He may look like the winner at one stage.

Anthony is interesting – BUT- he didn’t jump very well LTO in what was a very poor race. He was chased home by Wilton Milan for goodness sake. he jumped to his left under pressure and that was on soft. This is quite a step up and quite a deep race. He is 12s but all of that, along with the weight trend, meant i was happy to leave him. He is a bit too inexperienced for a test like this. He won’t want to be jumping left here. Unexposed though.

That leaves Hadrian’s Approach who will gallop and gallop. He has form and wellbeing questions, and fitness questions. I also think the ground could be too lively for him and he could get outpaced around here. A strange jockey booking, first ride for the yard. IF they thought he was winning this 56k pot surely one of their regular pilots would be up. He may run a good race but over 29f when last seen, on good, he got outpaced at a crucial part of the race. Happy to leave him but would be nice to see him run well.

So, that’s the lot I think. I have gone what look like the ‘obvious’ ones here and I will have no excuses. One of the top two may win but at their odds, in the context of all above, I wanted to take them on. Something may relish this trip but I am yet to be convinced as to the stamina for most of these.

I think one of the selections, one of the top 2 in the weights, or the Harry Fry horse should be winning this. Those 5 would be my shortlist, with Antony lurking. (that is half the field!) If anything else wins I may turn my attention to the winter all-weather season 🙂 I joke- that definitely isn’t happening. At the prices I like my two.

Good luck whatever you back. Bar that horror show at Carlisle I have been reading the chases well enough, without any returns yet. Well, the losses are mounting up. They have generally been running well and hopefully these two can also.




Sat Trainer Jockey Combos

3.20 Weth – Menorah (14/1<) 2nd 12/1

Sept/Oct Trainers


1.55 Ascot – BallyBolley NR(DNQ on my pointers)

5.20 Ascot – Count Meribel (DNQ on my pointers)

2.45 Weth – Ballyoptic ‘Fell’ (1 run 90 days+ rest pattern. Quals on non-handicap hurdle angle also)

3.20 Weth- Blacklion UP (DNQ on my pointers)


1.55 Ascot- Crimson Ark FELL/UP (October runner positive+ 1 runor more 90 days)

3.35 Ascot – Junction Fourteen 2nd 16/1 (as above)

5.20 Ascot- Hard As A Rock  UP (Oct + 1-5 career runs)


3.00 Ascot – John Constable UP (hncp hurdle + class positives)


5.30 Ayr – Vinny Gambini UP (no positives, but note if 4/1 or shorter,money a good sign)



Handicap Hurdle/Chase Portfolio


2.35 Ayr – Cuil Rogue UP (unexp hurdlers)


3.35 Ascot – A Good Skin UP (Tom George same distance)


Flat Angles

Varian fillies/mares

2.55 Newm – Tansholpan 3rd 12/1>8/1 (25/1<)



That lot will do for today I think!

Good luck with your bets…whipping up the eggs now for when SDR outclasses them all on the bride in the 3.35! A few of you seem bullish that he might and if neither of mine go in I hope that’s what he does for you backers.


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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

28 Responses

  1. Really interested to see how Tea For Two goes. 7/9 right handed (although the tipster who earlier in the year pointed that out hasn’t bet this race), may be a tough ask at the weights but Lizzy Kelly generally couldn’t use her claim on him last season, and can tomorrow. East to back tonight, so may drift further. Looking forward to your preview, Josh.

    1. Hi Paul, yep just looking now, tips will be up within the hour- on my pondering stage! Struggling to ignore the 10 year stat that those with 11-4 or more on back are now 0/35,7 places in this race, top 2 in weights (ignoring claims) 0/20,3 places- stats there to be broken. He has class and maybe can carry it, and be ahead of that mark, but there is the fitness questions, there is question whether he is best with cut, albeit may handle it. When I think of all that lot above together, 5/1< may feel short enough for me. Pondering...

      1. Josh, interesting stats with regard to weights carried – presume not taking into account jockey claims – in Ascot handicap chases on (Andrew Mount’s Trend Horses column). I know race specific trends are different, and may be more relevant, but an interesting counterpoint to those nonetheless. Ironically he was using the 3m figures to point up a selection in another race.

        1. Yep they are before taking account of jockey claims. Historically been tough for those near top end, we shall see if it continues. Not massive stats pool by any means. Fact no trainer won more than once nay suggest it isn’t a target race as such, and maybe used as a prep for some classier types for future race…this could be a prep for SDR for Hennessy etc . Shouldon’t be a good race. Out of all of them reckon this may have been A Good skins early season target, last race a prep. Maybe.

          1. Well, the selection he was actually pointing out led to a 20/1 winner, which I’m more than happy with haha. Mr Mount is flying at the minute.

  2. Looks a tricky race Josh, fired some stats in to HRB looking at race stats back to 2009. Fearing “back fitting” stats, I looked at;
    age (6-10),weight (10.6-11.3), rating (135-150), h-runs (hcap nh) (0-13), h wins (hcap nh) 0-1, max distance ran (2m5-3m5.5).

    Results bring about 2 possible runners in Killala Quay and Un Ace. Couldn’t have Un Ace on possible good/quickest ground but Killala Quay interests me somewhat. Hardly given a hard time at Chepstow couple of weeks ago and seemed to pull up quite abruptly? (Reminded me of Sausalito Sunrises run at Chepstow last year before hosing up Cheltenham a month later)
    Longsden won the race last year with Pendra and has gone to the trouble of booking Davy Russell for this and a couple more rides tomorrow. Can’t remember an affiliation between the two in recent years so looks interesting on that front.

    Killala quay has won a group 2 over 2m5 at Kempton last year staying on pretty well so I’m hoping it may see out the 3m trip on a not too dissimilar course like Ascot.
    i appreciate its a long shot but the Ascot 3m is hardly the stiffest stamina test and fairly flat so if Davy can get his fractions right and get him to jump well up front and bowl along he may get a few of these in trouble

    1. Hi Leon, does look tricky. I would like to think Coleman had the choice- Russell is over for his retained owner in another race I think. Horse went wrong the last day – lost his action- clearly nothing too serious but his last three runs pose questions now. I also have a stamina doubt- that kempton win – he was able to dictate from the front and jumped to the left. A decent price clearly but he can beat me. Not a total head scratcher if he wins but on balance I was happy to leave. GL , we will all need it!

  3. I am out in London this evening and so will have to work harder in the morning to find winners in the 3.35 does sapphire du Rhein not oytclass them? I am on at 7/2 and expecting it to go off shorter/

    1. he may do but I am not touching 3/1, 11/4 now. 7/2 ok – stats for those at that end of handicap are not great in this race – and his chase form isn’t that great for me- he won a weak G1 at Aintree, admittedly a G1 but there were no G1 animals in behind. He hacked up in a 3 runner race at Carlisle- was classy run but jumping not under pressure and was on soft, and not sure if second there to compete. Then the wheels really did fall off. I just didn’t want to make excuses for him really at that price. Is this a prep for the Hennessy? I can sit back and enjoy a classy performance and if he does it then credit to connections.

      1. SDR is a classy animal, no doubt about that but at 5/2 he is far too skinny for a horse that has been constantly switched from chasing to hurdling. Nicholls is bang in form and who am I to question his decision but his two chases at the end of last season were not exactly brilliant and he represents no value for me.

        Hadrian’s Approach had a crap season last year by his standards but Henderson’s runner certainly has the class to place or better today and is worth an EW bet at 16s.

        The other I like, which I am glad you mentioned is Buckthorn Timothy for the Tizzards who are also in great form. He has a good SR at > 20% and his front running style is something I like. I’m concerned a little about the ground, as it appears that he likes it a bit softer than what he will get today. At 11/1 I also think he’s worth a squeak and I would rather be on at 1/4 odds EW and take a chance on him than SDR.

        Good luck whoever you’re on.


        1. Good luck – i am personally happy to be proved wrong with hadrian’s albeit quite a few of you like him on here so I may be doubting myself!! He stays 30f well, I just wonder on this ground, after a break, without loads of pace on paper here, whether he may just get tapped for toe at a crucial point- he can also hit a fence and could be taken out of comfort zone. I don’t like his recent profile and there is a reason his mark has fallen- because he hasn’t been in good form, not deliberately so. Looks fragile and while I agree he has a touch of class, and is well handicapped, this doesn’t look like ideal conditions- I also think he needs softer, if only to slow everything else down. IF he travels well early, can hold a position and is there turning in I will be watching through my fingers as he will keep galloping! GL
          BT- yep agree could be better on softer, but was encouraged by run LTO which was decent ground, albeit no firm in it like here- but he did pick up when asked so clearly didn’t feel the ground. It may happen too quick for him but he should be at the front, and may try and make all. Just hope he jumps well, can be iffy but then is getting more experience. Was a decent price to my eye given I want to take on top two.

  4. I forgot to post Shadow Warrior, 25/1, 6.10 Che. May go well in the surface? Anyway back to the drinking, break over.

  5. quite like HADRIANS APPROACH ew in the 3.35 below a winning mark will stay the distance likes ascot generally runs well first time after a break 12/1

    1. Hi Anthony……I backed HA yesterday. A 1st fence faller in the Grand national last year, but a CD winner here…..I couldn’t resist an EW tilt at 16s. If confidence has returned.

      BOL mate.

  6. I note that Geraghty / Johnson have gone to Wetherby though Geraghty has won this race three times in the last ten years.
    Interesting that Nico de Boinville; rides frequently for Henderson; is at Ascot, three rides but nothing in the 3.35.

    Weight is historically crucial, less than 11.3.
    So; ignoring Un Ace; top rated under this weight criteria is Hadrians Approach. 12/1.
    Owners: The Racing Post refuses to disclose any info about Mr & Mrs R Kelvin-Hughes.
    SP 7/1-14/1 covers 8 of the last ten years results.
    I expect the jockey Paul Moloney has been camping on Henderson’s doorstep.
    Hadrians Approach is dropping back in trip and OR 153 has dropped to 141, last seen in 2012.
    Placed 9/18, even FTO hits.
    If you see the KH’s at Ascot, give them a wave.

  7. Not had too much time but both Pearl’s Legend (Ascot 14:25) and A Good Skin look like excellent e/w bets. Have also had a small bet on the Romford Pele in the 14:45 at Wetherby.

    1. I’d never put anyone off Pearls Legend but I have a small share in a couple of horses in the yard and when I visited a while back John Spearing was bemoaning the lack of rain and that he may need time with his NH horses. The horse will be fit enough or he would not be running but I think based on that and a look back may just need the run today although I have had a small nibble but not as much as usual.

      One of the Tipsters I use who had an amazing win correlation when his tips agreed with Josh in the big Saturday races put up Buckthorn Timothy at 16/1 yesterday lunchtime and it has also been selected by Nick Hardman, although after the aforementioned Tipster and also Josh’s post yesterday, and I have to agree that IF SDR is near his best he wins but if not BT looks a cracking e/w bet (lets hope so)

      Good Luck all

  8. Saphir all the way for me. Might have plenty in hand off the mark and had a soft pallette op over the summer. Also have him in a couple of small doubles with Diego du Charmil.

    1. I see that Paul Kealy has napped SDR which will attract more money for it. I am happy with my 7/2 but would not go lower. Anthony could go well with no weight at a price?

      I also like Really Special, 2.55 Nkt, look to have promise maybe? I think Arty Campbell may have messed up in his last race and could go in, 4.10 Asc.

      Good luck.

  9. SANTA ANITA….Breeders Cup….Am off to California for this meeting as part of my to do bucket list so would appreciate tips, general advice etc… even though the flat is over and everyone is focused on the upcoming jumps season…many thanks and gd luck whatever you are backing today…cheers John

    1. Hi John … you want to head over to geegeez.Co.UK Matt B loves the breeders cup meeting, has been a few times and will produce (has already) plenty of free posts, vidoes and snippets to get stuck into if previous years are to go by. Worth having a look. Not sure if he has anything up yet but certainly will do. GL

      1. Much obliged Josh will check that out…ATR have a micro site as well which is good if anyone is interested John

  10. I’m your biggest fan josh but you /we are desperately due a winner on the official tipping front. Very dissapointing and any newbie reading your column would be feeling somewhat unimpressed.

    1. You don’t need to tell me that Michael. The wheels have well and truly come off my subjective judgement. My tipping has been abject (and that is putting it politely) for an age. As one emailer said to me last week – maybe i am out of my depth. Thank god I rediscovered an ability to research some trainer stats of use which are finding good price winners.

      The tipping is clearly free for a reason- bar one good spell it is becoming evident that a bit of work is clearly required. Maybe I should wait for soft/heavy to maybe lead to a resurgence as sure as hell I am not reading this good/firm chases well.

  11. Nick Hardman had 2 grat winners today, Antony being one of them. Thanks for flagging his service up Josh. It appears to be the real business.

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