Zerachiel – 1 point win – NR
Fourth Act – 1/2 point win – 15/2, 7/1 (general) 3rd *
*oh well an easy enough win for Doing Fine but more than happy to take him on at 7/2, that seemed like the right price. I always think that is short enough for hold up types,and was a small unknown about the track,in that context. These ones keep winning at the moment. Good run from the Buckler horse in second and one to note, part of me is glad he didn’t win! Decent run from Fourth Act but he jumped poorly again here. You will always want a price. Headgear didn’t help that much. Maybe they should try racing him more prominently.
Hmmm. Well, the last three chases I have looked at/tipped in, have been won by ‘could be anything types’, unexposed at said trip, that I have been put off by their price, generally 6/1 or shorter.
This one, arguably along with Bob Buckler’s horse, are the only two ‘could be anything’ types in the race, and the selection is a decent enough price for me in which to take a stab.
Zerachiel- well he comes here in form- he may have benefited from the winner the last day being a monkey but it would have been a promising run whatever, staying on well. He is 1/3,1p over fences and could not be getting the hang of it. He could just be too inexperienced. LH is an unknown to a point, as is decent ground (but it was decent enough the last day and that question applies to a few in here) and of course he may not stay! Those types of concerns/unknowns are always questions with ‘could be anything types’ which is why I am always reluctant to take 6s or shorter, although clearly I could be a better judge at that end. As it happens I was struggling to make a case for any of the more hardy battlers. And in that situation I thought I would take a stab. I should probably have left the race but couldn’t resist. You know me. Ian Williams is in form and used to do well with a horse called Freddo around here, over similar trips. He knows what is needed for a test like this. Hopefully he gets into an early rhythm and I have something to cheer through the race. He could make a mistake early and be shunted along at the back, just not good enough. He is top 3 geegeez speed and top 4 HRB to make me think that he has shown enough to get involved.
Of the rest…
Well it has that tired end of season feel and something has to win. Azure Fly- I just wasn’t confident enough at 13/2 to wade in here- I liked him the last day at 10s, when withdrawn, in part because it was a flat track. He was well stuffed in this race last year and the 5lb less he has on his back wouldn’t have made any difference last year. I think this should be run at a decent clip also. He will really need to stay up this hill and I just have my doubts. BUT, if he does, and he repeats those recent placed efforts, he should be thereabouts. A shame he wasn’t 10s+ as I may have had a go. I can see why you would fancy him, but niggles over the track and him staying around here, + his run in this last year, did put me off at his price. He will relish the ground unlike many in here. I don’t think that was an excuse last year but it is better this time around so maybe that will make all the difference. Provided the blinkers were the reason for the shoddy run LTO, he will give backers a spin to the bottom of the hill- and then who knows!
The Buckler horse hasn’t quite done enough, his run 2 starts ago was a concern, as is his lack of experience in big fields. He is 16s but is also rock bottom of HRB ratings which did catch the eye – but they can win from down there. I would be a bit annoyed if he demolished these, but on the strength of his form there are a couple of niggles I think.
I can’t back Any Currency at 14 now, not in his current form. I tipped him in this last year when he won- clear pace angle, in form, he made all etc. Port Melon – well the jockey is enough there to put me off,against pros.
Spookydooky- I fancied him the last day in perfect conditions but he was poor. The ground is an uknown here – he may relish good ground but he has proven himself in soft/heavy, which makes his last run a head-scratcher. He looks like a stayer, is well handicapped, and jonjos are in the best form they have been all season. I can see a case but I wasn’t over convinced. I couldn’t really find an excuse for his poor run LTO,and as I say I have no idea about Good. Maybe 7s is ok, I think I wanted a bit bigger.
Fourth Act has form over CD but he can’t half clout a fence and usually comes from further back. He is a danger if putting it all together. Tizzard’s string are bouncing again and I can see a case for him. 15/2 may be ok actually but his last three runs, and his jumping, did put me off. He doesn’t really come here in great form and again, more one I would have been interested in were he 10s+ or something. But then, my judgement of price can be crap and maybe 15/2 is ok, if he is back in form. I may have him as the main danger actually. A repat of that G3 run here may be enough, and when he last ran there is a chance a few of Tizzard’s were a bit off. Hmmm. (yep, one of those where I change my mind while writing, he is worth a 1/2 point I think)
Doing Fine is short enough for one who doesn’t like winning too often/on recent efforts. He may win. He jumps and he stays well but he is short enough for me and worth taking on. Troika Steppes just looks out of sorts, can hit a fence, is a bit of a plodder and I am unconvinced he will stay this trip. When he won over 25f here he was able to dictate his own pace up front, in a race for inexperienced jockeys, the ride won it as much as the horse I think. I could be wrong. I can’t have the other two.
So, Zerachiel ‘could be anything’ and Fourth Act has looked like a stayer and has some decent G3 runs to his name, one around here. His jumping can be shoddy but he didn’t wear headgear when last running here. His last run ‘could’ be down to the form of the yard at the time. He has had a little break and the yard couldn’t be in better form now. Those two will do. Azure Fly will have me crying into my tea no doubt. Buckler’s would be painful, but I wan’t to see more.
Trainer/Jockey Combo – Live Test
4:25 Chelt – Iora Glas (12/1 <guide) WON 16/1 (10pR4) 14.4/1>12/1>8/1
8.00 Sedg- Oh So Gigolo (any odds for now, 9/1< best)