I'M OFF to York on Saturday for a jolly boys outing and I'm doing a full review of the card for the boys so it would be rude not to share my thoughts. Here we go…
For those who like a nice big price for a bit of craic I would recommend FINGAL'S CAVE at 28/1. Last two runs haven't been great but he won at 16/1 three runs back which suggests he is a bit unpredictable and Daniel Tudhope has been booked as the jockey which is a change and that might be helpful because he's the most underrated jockey in the country in my opinion.
Most likely winner ignoring the prices is probably BATTERED which is highly appropriate for the trip that I'm on so that might be a sign. He's gone up in the weights for his last win but is probably still improving. Yours at 11/4. Both of the selections are ok on soft ground if this rain keeps up.
This will be a real spectacle as 20 of them rattle across the Knavesmire for this sprint. Blink and you miss it stuff. Not to brag but I tipped OUT DO at 25/1 two starts ago at a Royal Ascot and he lines up again here over the same distance. His trainer David O'Meara is going through a slightly slower spell over the last couple of weeks which is a concern but I won't let my old pal go unbacked at odds of 14/1. He owes me nothing.
The race is absolutely wide open so there is no shame in throwing two or three darts at it in the hope of finding a winner. Normandy Barriere (12/1) and MUNTADAB (12/1) are two others to consider at nice prices. If this rain continues the ground could turn soft and if that's the case I would have a strong preference for MUNTADAB and I would be less keen on my old pal Out Do who likes to race on the top of the ground.
This is a really high quality race. The best races in the world are ‘Group 1' and this is a Group 2. To give you some perspective on the value of these horses, Hathal, who isn't even the highest rated horse in the race was bought for about £300,000. Anyway, my tip for this is SUCCESS DAYS who has come over from Ireland for the race and I think his crafty trainer Kevin Condon has found a good opportunity for him to win another Group 2 race. They certainly aren't here for the ale. 3/1 is a good price I reckon.
He just lost out to Johannes Vermeer last time who is a decent Aidan O'Brien horse from Ireland. If he were entered he would be an even money favourite. Success Days also beat Fascinating Rock last year who is a winning Group 1 horse. Soft ground no problem for Success Days.
STAXTON sprung a shock on his debut winning at 50/1. To win first time out is unusual for a Tim Easterby horse which perhaps explains the price. That might have been a poor race but he looked decent and he looks the best of these to me so I'm surprised that he is second favourite. 3/1 looks good value and I think that will do for me.
I was going to tip Euchen Glen but he's a non-runner so it's back to the drawing board. The tentative selection now is an each way bet on GRACEFUL LADY (13/2) who looks to be improving and should go close if the potential soft ground isn't an issue.
By this point we'll be half cut and probably be more interested in the fillies in the grandstand than those on the track.
APPOINTED looks far too big a price to me, so much so that I'm concerned I've missed something. David Allan in the saddle, softer ground should be ok, looks to be an improving horse… what's not to like? 9/1? Yes please.
Another race to get yourself down by the rails as they thunder past. A sight to behold. CHATBURN (11/2) is another David O'Meara horse ridden by Danny Tudhope but it's not just blind loyalty to those two that leads me to pick him. He won nicely last time out and this quick 5 furlongs will suit him. I do have a concern about the rain though so if it turns soft I am more interested in the favourite VALIDATOR (5/2) who has proven form on soft ground and is improving.
Recommendations (with apologies for the ground dependent selections):
- 2.05 – Battered – 3pt win at 11/4 with Betfred and Hills
- 2.05 – Fingal's Cave – 1pt e/w at 28/1 with Skybet, Bet365 and others
- 2.40 – Out Do – 1pt e/w at 14/1 with Ladbrokes and Betfred (unless the ground is soft)
- 2.40 – Muntadab – 2pt e/w at 12/1 with Hills, Ladbrokes and others
- 3.15 – Success Days – 4pt win at 3/1 with Paddy Power, SkyBet and others
- 3.50 – Staxton – 2pt win at 3/1 with Betway, SkyBet and others
- 4.25 – Graceful Lady – 1pt e/w at 13/2 with Bet365, Hills and others
- 5.00 – Appointed – 2pt e/w at 9/1 with Bet365, Coral and others
- 5.35 – Chatburn – 2pt e/w at 13/2 (unless the ground is soft) with Bet365, BetVictor and others
- 5.35 – Validator – 3pt win at 11/4 (only if the ground is soft) with Bet365 and BetVictor
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