THURSDAY was a bit of a disappointment with Boomer finishing a close second although we did get a bit of a return on Vivid Diamond who finished third. I have four more selections picked out for Friday on what looks to be another good day at Doncaster even if some of the races haven't attracted quite as many runners as they might have hoped.
I don't have a tip in the big race of the day (3.15pm) which looks a match again between Dee Ex Bee and the great Stradivarius. Although I have a soft spot for Dee Ex Bee and he has another couple of additional pounds in weight to help him I still think Stradivarius will do the same as he has for the last three races between the two and find enough to get past Dee Ex Bee in the home straight. It will be interesting to see if they try any different tactics with Dee Ex Bee this time. He needs to make sure that the race is run at a testing gallop to get the most out of his stamina but that usually leads to him being an easy target for Stradivarius as they head for home so it's a tricky conundrum for connections.
Although this is a Group 3 there are quite a few who haven't been in peak form recently so I think the official ratings have to be taken with a pinch of sat. CALIFORNIA LOVE is an improving filly who has been running well in handicaps. This is another step up today but she has Frankie Dettori in the saddle and sometimes it pays to side with the in-form horse rather than one who is searching for a return to previous good form. Furzeen the favourite is quite short in the betting given what she has achieved on the course in winning two class 5 novice races. Although she looked good in those two wins this is a big step up and I much prefer the value available on California Love. Be sure to get the 4 places that are on offer with quite a few of the big bookies including William Hill, Ladbrokes and Betfair.
I was close to backing Wheels on Fire in this race who has decent form in Listed and Group 3 races and should probably be a bit shorter but the performance on Thursday of King's Lynn in winning the valuable 2 year old race has swayed me in another direction. The horse that beat King's Lynn last time out was GOLDEN DRAGON who appears to have a lot to find on official ratings with quite a few of these opponents but I think we can upgrade him quite considerably given the performance of King's Lynn in a very competitive race. Golden Dragon now looks like a very good value selection at 14-1 and I'm surprised his price hasn't contracted much after that win for King's Lynn. Golden Dragon will have the benefit of Oisin Murphy in the plate, coincidentally the jockey who rode King's Lynn to victory on Thursday. Perhaps it was meant to be. Alligator Alley and A'Ali are both clear and obvious dangers and I would probably side with Alligator Alley out of those two but they are both way too short to tempt me in with a bet when we can get Golden Dragon at much bigger prices.
Aidan O'Brien horses who win on debut have to be taken very seriously and WICHITA is one who did just that. O'Brien usually leaves himself a bit to work on with his debutants but Wichita beat 17 rivals at The Curragh on debut and should improve again here. Molatham looks potentially quite today too but I like the 5-2 that we can get on Wichita and wouldn't be surprised if he is backed into clear favourite near the off.
I'll admit that I'm taking a bit of a flyer here with INTISAAB who has come down the weights to such an extent that he is surely likely to pop up again soon. There were signs of life at York (twice) and The Curragh this season so he's not gone at the game completely yet the handicapper has dropped him several times to the point where he is now 15lb below his last winning mark. Daniel Tudhope takes the ride on him for the first time this season so that should be another big help and he looks like a decent value each way punt against the field.
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