2.Jumps Profiles 20/21
3.Monthly Trainers (Jumps)
# 1- One Style – 1 point win – 7/1 (gen) UP -1
#2 – Joe Farrell – 1 point win – 10/1 (bet365/Unib) 9/1 (WH) UP -1
#3 – Oldgrangewood – 1 point win – 7/1 (888/Unib) 13/2 (gen) UP -1
That’s all from me today, as of 09.50, write ups at bottom…
2.Jumps Profiles 20/21
(All ‘any odds’) (5/35,15p, -5.2)
1.57 Aint – Yorkhill ♦ 22/1 UP
4.25 Hex – Mymilan ♦ 7/2 UP
3.Monthly Trainers (Jumps)
(3/34, 7p, -18.2)
3.42 Aint – Earlofthecotswolds (8/1<) 14/1 ‘DNQ’ (on 8am odds) UP 15/2
2.52 Winc – Manofthemountain (14/1<) H1
3.27 Winc – Viva Vittoria (14/1<) H3 16/1 ‘DNQ’ (on 8am odds) UP
Tips write ups…
Well, he tends to have One Style, and that’s get out, make all. Or try to. VW/CD are in form from what we have seen, she has them ready. I think he could get an uncontested lead here which is always likely to lure me in. He’s 5/8 over fences and has ‘young’ legs in a race like this, and I like to try and have one of those onside. He does need to step up a bit but there was enough there at 7s, and in what could be hard work, he will keep going. He went off too hard at Cheltenham before falling in a hole. VW won this last year with Burton’s Well and I can hope it’s been the target again. It’s a decent pot to win considering he could have had his sights slightly lowered for his return. I suspect VW thinks he’s still well handicapped and wants to strike for half decent pot. He should give me a good spin anyway. Whether something has more ‘class’ come the end, we shall see.
I just thought the rain may help him as it will slow things down a bit and he’s had a run, which may be no bad thing in this. I thought his Chepstow return was solid. That was a deep Vets race for me, Present Man/Crosspark in the top 3 indicating as such. But it all happened a bit too quickly for him on that ground/trip and he walked through 4 out, when he hadn’t got motoring and was just ahead of Crosspark at the time. That knocked the stuffing out of him. Interesting that they put CP on for the first time. I can see why, to sharpen up his jumping. But this ground/pace may help him there. I hope they ride him close to the pace also, in a no excuses position, and if he can hold a position he will run a big race. He looked overpriced to me. Of course, he may just have regressed further but he showed plenty last season and is lightly raced over fences for his age. While i’ll try not to give back all of our 2018 Scottish National winnings his Hennessy run was ok, given the oppo, and his Midlands National run was very good. He was ahead three out there, before probably not getting home in the ground. But he was left behind by two unexposed / younger types, Truckers Lodge taking it having run 2nd in The Welsh National the run before. Captain Drake, who was my poke in that, a decent 2nd. He hacked up on his return over hurdles and should have some sort of National in him maybe – regional possibly, but he handles the mud fine. I think he looks set to run a big race, fingers crossed. I thought Sean may have had the choice of a couple in here, but I could have that wrong – he’s ridden Ballydine plenty for example. Well, that’s the only one he maybe could have ridden.
Of the rest…
In order of some preference maybe… hmm…
I like Minella Celebration – at what was 6s/13/2, I thought that wasn’t value given my ground concerns. I don’t think he wants it proper soft, but we shall see. I think he will run a decent race but something will outstay him in last 1-2 furlongs.
Sametegal – at what was 4s, he has stamina to prove in soft, and looking at a few of his last few runs i’m not sure he wants 25f in soft. I could be wrong on that one but I didn’t think he was overpriced given that question. I think there will be stronger stayers here for all that he has solid form when last seen, in the context of a vets race.
Vieux Lion Rouge – I won’t put you off him but Pipes been a bit hit and miss in recent weeks and I suppose that swung it for me, for all that the horse has a superb record fresh. I thought Joe having a run (if he runs his race, as always) would see him reverse their Chepstow vets form last season. But if back to that form he’d be thereabouts.
I thought Vintage Clouds would need it, although he does have an ok record fresh. I can’t have Sue’s at the moment yet really, they’re generally needing it and not firing and in last couple of seasons have generally seemed to leave their handicap chasers a little short of fitness on first start. If he was a1 he’d run well, but I wonder if they are targeting one of those Haydock races he likes, get his mark down a bit while building up fitness. He was woeful on his return run at Kelso last season, the year before that he won on his retunr, but in late November.
Ballydine – interesting given soft is fine, he stays and is lightly raced for a race like this. But he’s clearly had issues and taking fitness on trust. But he is interesting at what was 14s or so. Still, not enough there for me. He’s clearly a bit brittle which I suppose means he may be a1, tricky. IF they could keep him sound, given his Sandown form, he’d be of interest for the Vets Final, and maybe that’s the grand plan. I could see him going ok, if fit, and running his race. Hard to know what to expect though. And I hope Sean had the pick.
Actival – has to prove his stamina and in this ground. Not really for me, for all that he’s got a lightly raced profile for a race like this also. One to keep an eye on as he could have one of these in him, and as he gets older 3m could be what he wants.
Don Poli is being well backed but I can’t have him, for all that if he ever got back to anywhere near his best, could hold a position etc, he’d take some stopping. He clearly has his supporters and it would be fun to see him run a big race again, somewhere. He is just a bit slow though.
I did look at Pobbles with some mild interest as he’s 10 and can go well fresh, yard in decent form and will relish the ground. But he is usually ridden patiently, can hit a fence, and his form when last seen leaves a few questions. I’d hope the market would guide with him but he may run a race of promise and could be worth keeping an eye on for a similar contest.
I could leave the two 13 year olds and if one takes it then i’ll sit and applaud. Perfect Cadidate has never won fresh I don’t think and Colin’s are a bit hit and miss at the moment also.
Hmm, I was toying with leaving the race, wading in with Itchy Feet or finding one that could take this if he doesn’t… and my pin landed on this one who looked worth a go at 13/2 I thought.
The main question really is fitness – has he been primed for this or is it a prep? All in the context this is a weak renewal also. I think he was transformed by the wind op in the off season last year. He returned here last year, in a decent handicap in Nov, a solid 3rd. As was the case in this race in 2017, packed with 150+ horses that day. Both those two races were much deeper than this I think. If I ignore Itchy Feet for a moment… is there a Cepage or Riders On The Storm in this, as with his return race here last season? No. A repeat of last year’s return may be enough. He sprouted wings after his return last year, suggesting he probably needed it. His Newbury win was decent and his two Cheltenham efforts, the win and the 4th, were so solid, running on in both. They were up there with career bests on RPRs, and they’ve realised this is his trip, having tried 25f a few times in what was an interrupted season the year before. As handicappers go…ignoring Itchy Feet/Midnight Shadow… none of the others can match his handicapping form of last season, they don’t come that close – (for all that obviously I like the Summer Plate form – Imperial Presence formlines etc, but that was no Festival Stable Plate sadly) Dan’s team are in fine form, he is a target trainer, and I just wonder if this year they thought about having a proper go at this. They can ready them, and he’s placed a few times on seasonal returns. Given his age and how hard handicaps will be after Xmas, it would make perfect sense to have him primed for this. He’s ran here 6 times over fences, placed in 4.
IF fit, and 13/2 was just big enough for me in the context of this race/his recent form when last seen, I thought he’d be the one to give the fav most to think about.
Itchy Feet – well he isn’t 4s like Rouge Vif or 11/2 like Frodon – those two were also miles clear top rated HRB ratings (urgh, I know) , they both had winning records fresh, had more chase experience and usually raced up there, leading/or tracking the pace. Those are the factors that in hindsight should have lured me in at 4s, 11/2 (as well as their form/profiles of course). He doesn’t tick any of those boxes and I thought 3s about right. He will come on for the run I suspect, but of course he may have so much in hand it doesn’t matter. I think he will have him ready enough though, as he’s one of his best horses. His jumping will be put under pressure. I can live with him hacking up at 3s, more so than the other two, but I won’t be putting you off a saver or from wading in if you think he’s the one – and my danger horses have been doing fairly well in recent days. A game of fine margins at this end of the market when making decisions, and an area I’ve always struggled with.
Magic Saint is interesting but he does have stamina to prove and this ground won’t help in that regard. Given that I could leave him, for all that he’s lightly raced an ‘unexposed’ in conditions, so could leave me with egg on my face.
I didn’t really want to be with anything else. Of course all three of those may fluff their lines, and then it really is open.
I don’t like the Tizzard yard form really at the moment and his horse is hit and miss, for all that he has ability. I didn’t think 6s or so was overpriced given his profile, his chase win in a 2 runner race, stuffed at Cheltenham in the Stable Plate, for all that all of Colin’s ran that week as if they were ill. Very odd. He’s had a wind op which may help. Not for me at the odds today.
Midnight Shadow will go very close, and may win, if fit. But i’ve taken a strong view on Sue’s, generally, esp her handicap chasers – now 1/46, 4p in the last 2 years with handicap chasers returning after 60+ days off. The yard 1/27 last 30 days, 0/16,2p the last 14. The horse does have a decent record fresh though, so maybe those stats irrelevant, but I was happy to leave today. I could have him wrong though, obv on his Itchy Feet 2nd, he’d be entitled to go close if a1.
Imperial Presence is in superb form and will give it a good go from the front I suspect. He won’t live with some of these if they run his race and the capper may have him now. A repeat of his last two runs shouldn’t be good enough but he could be one of a few to run his race of course. Although that was some slog when last seen and it may leave a mark. Annie Mac should have more chases in her this year, and will look well handicapped at some point no doubt. But she has 3/4 runner C4 novice chase form, so I want to see more in a race of this nature before backing with confidence. Interesting one though.
Nuts Well may grab a place but again his form isn’t up to some of these for all that he still seems to be improving. A bold show wouldn’t shock me but a few should be too good and he may be best on better ground. If Yorkhill wins, fair enough. Some training feat and at least a decent priced winner for the Trainer Profiles quals. It would be great to see Sandy get him back to something like his best as they could have some fun. He’s always found jumping a struggle though. It will be fascinating to see what he can do this year. I thought the other two had enough questions also. Getting Twisters right is proving a challenge this autumn, sadly. Clondaw Castle wants better ground I think and again Tom George not firing on all cylinders just yet.
Anyway, a fascinating race – and rather open IF Itchy Feet doesn’t take this. I had to take him on, as is my want with 3s shots in races like this but we shall see. He may make that look big.
Pace wise… Crievehill, Cracking Destiny, Nuts Well, Imperial, Vision can be up there, prom. Oldgrangewood was ridden closer to the pace than he has been at times when last seen, and on his return last year – hopefully Harry has him behind the pace, on the rail, mid pack, and not held up out the back.
As always, GL with any bets,