The Last Samuri – 1 point win – 18/1 (betfS/BV/PP) 16/1 (gen)
Favorito Bucks – 1 point win – 16/1 (gen)
Flying Angel – 1 point win – 20/1 (gen)
Having indulged for too long at the top of the market in recent big races i’ve reverted to my usual self in these types of races and gone for three at big prices- I usually like to stick to two but couldn’t decide what to leave out. Obviously this race will now be dominated by those at single figure odds but there were reasons to take them all on I thought…
The Last Samuri- he’s getting on but has only had 12 handicap chase runs, and has only been unplaced three times. He’s placed a few times fresh, has changed yards, weight isn’t a problem, he jumps and stays well, and I thought if A1 here on his return, he would run a big race. I don’t think connections have any set plans with him as yet this season and this is a nice pot to win. i thought he was worth chancing, in a race where big priced horses have won a few times.
Favorito Bucks – 16s was just a tad insulting for this progressive handicap chaser who took a step forward LTO. He races prominently, generally jumps well and appears to be improving. I thought there was plenty to like about his chance and he was overpriced for his in-form yard.
Flying Angel – as was this one who is a bit of a poke but I couldn’t help myself at the prices. He was on my trends ‘shortlist’ for this race and if could get back to the level of his run here two starts back, would out-run these odds. He does look like this trip should bring the best out of him but he has that to prove. I think the Hennessy may have come too quickly LTO, or in any case he was taken out of his comfort zone. He is another who should race prominently.
The ground is the conundrum here… I think it should be plenty soft enough but it is drying a tad. That shouldn’t be a problem for The Last Samuri. It’s an unknown for FB but I get a price to find out – breeding would suggest it should be fine and I was happy to take a chance. FA has stamina questions if it is a bog but has plenty of winning form on testing ground. He’s well handicapped again and nothing seemed to click last season. He should have a handicap chase in him at some point from around this mark.
Of the rest…well if this does dry out or isn’t as soft as I assumed, then Gold Present should be the one to beat. I was happy to take him on thinking he had it to prove on soft. Full Glass has stamina to prove and Thomas P has wellbeing to prove after LTO – both of those look too short given the questions they have to answer although if the latter gets back to the level of his Sandown run, he won’t be far away. Connections don’t know what happened at Newbury. I was happy to leave the rest at the odds for one reason or another.