It’s a relatively quiet Saturday this week but there are two that jump out at me as potential value.
A nice big handicap with 20-odd runners that gives us a good opportunity for favourable each way terms. TAUREEN STAR looks like a 4 year old with potential improvement in him. He is a ‘hold up’ horse (meaning he is kept out the back and usually arrives late with a challenge) who is almost always competitive and looks to have improved over the summer, winning first time out at Yarmouth. That was a weaker race than this but he looks one at the lower end of the handicap who has improvement in him and that’s what you need to look for in a race like this.
Jamie Spencer is a bit of a marmite jockey but he is good on hold up horses and he knows how to ride this horse having won with him 3 times – all the horse’s career wins have come with Spencer on board. In a big field handicap like this you are guaranteed a fast pace and that suits a horse like Taureen Star who can arrive late as the front runners who have gone too quick tire at the end. Or at least that’s the plan…
The second one that I fancy is in the next race at Ascot in the shape of CARDSHARP. He won nicely first time out and carries a 6lb penalty on his back in this race as a result which is not inconsiderable for a 2 year old. However that was a nice piece of form and Mark Johnston has such a good record of improving his 2 year old runners over the course of the season.
I would have expected this one to be around 2/1 but the presence of an expensive Godolphin-owned debutant that was bought for over £500,000 has resulted in a higher price. There are two others with reasonable runs under their belt (Haddaf and Jellmood) but Cardsharp looked the part with his win and should improve again. I am far happier backing the 7/2 shot with a win and racecourse experience ahead of a promising newcomer at 13/8 or similar.
- 4.00 Ascot – Taureen Star – 2pt each way at 10/1 with Bet 365 (paying 5 places)
- 4.35 Ascot – Cardsharp – 4pt win at 7/2 with Ladbrokes and Coral
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- : SC4