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Darran

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Darran last won the day on October 30 2021

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About Darran

  • Birthday 08/26/1982

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  1. Riders can be a big plus in amateur races. James King for example yesterday gave the 2nd a cracking ride and you can make it pay in amateur races.
  2. A couple of winners last week including the Nap. We have action most Sunday's now between now and the end of August and there are 3 more races at Casterton in the early hours of the morning. Probably my favourite jumps track in Oz because I love the hedge fences they have their and well worth checking out the steeplechase race if you don't usually watch the tips and just look at the result. Race 1 As usual we start with the maiden hurdle and I do like the look of Hakuna Matata. She was 2nd here on the first hurdles start this prep and the winner Onset has boosted the form since as has the 3rd Dubawi Prince. A couple of weeks after that she went to Hamilton and tried to make all, but wasn't able to see it out and was beaten by Fort Charles who ran well last week. They look two really solid 2nd places in the context of this race and I think she can get a deserved hurdles success. Cappellani has certainly improved for his first hurdles start in Australia when he was behind Hakuna Matata in 5th place over course and distance. He was then 3rd at Hamilton behind Dubawi Prince and then 3rd last week behind Mighty Oasis when he was doing his best work late and was only beaten a couple of lengths. That suggests stepping back up to this trip should suit and he is certainly a danger. Gravistas ran OK at Sale and has place claims on his 3rd at Hamilton the start before. The other one to mention is good old Zedstar who has had 10 starts over jumps now for 4 2nds and 4 3rds. He was disappointing on his debut over fences at Hamilton and wasn't great on the flat at Geelong last week. He will surely win a maiden hurdle at some point, but he's clearly a frustrating horse. I think the price on Hakuna Matata is too big and she makes plenty of appeal. Hakuna Matata 2pts @ 3/1 with Paddy Power, Betfair, Coral and Ladbrokes Race 2 Tamarack was 2nd in the Australian Hurdle last time, but I'm not sure the strength of that race is that good behind the very good winner Saunter Boy. He ran over course and distance before that and was beaten 7L into 3rd place. I certainly think he's a possible winner, but I am going to look elsewhere. Cheners was 2nd over fences last time and was just beaten by Runaway. He does tend to run his race, but he has won just twice in 27 jumps starts so as much as he has place claims in a race like this I'm not sure he is going to win. Onset has done us well this season having won twice when we have been on including last time at Sale. The other win was when she beat Hakuna Matata over course and distance. I was impressed with her win last time and although she wasn't quite as good in the two runs in between those two wins she can win a race like this. She beat Yulong Rising last time, but I can't see the form being reversed although it was that one's first jumps run so he could build on it. The most likely winner for me though is Tolemac who has done very well over hurdles this prep. He was just in front of Onset at Warrnambool when 2nd and he was 2nd over course and distance when just getting caught late on. Mighty Oasis was 2nd to him at Hamilton and obviously he franked the form last week. He goes into handicaps for the first time, but he has a good chance of making it a winning one. So Tolemac is the main bet, but I will have a saver on Onset as well. Tolemac 2pts @ 7/5 with Bet365 Onset 0.5pts @ 4/1 with everyone Race 3 Elvison was so impressive when bolting up over course and distance last month that I have to be with him here. Historic was 25L back in 2nd and he reposes here having followed that run up with a win, but I can't see him reversing form if Elvison is in top form. Elvison ran on the 7 day back up in the Australian Chase, but his trainer said before the race that he was only running him there because it was a small field that wasn't very strong. He ran well enough to finish 2nd to his stablemate Britannicus and the month off will have done him good no doubt. He jumped so well over the hedge fences and that course form could well prove crucial here. Police Camp has come out which is a shame as it means Elvison is odds on now. Police Camp won a trial at Warrnambool on Tuesday and in that trial he beat Te Kahu who is going to be making his Australian debut here. In New Zealand he won 3 times over fences including over 6200m on his last start in October. Now he has won over 3500m, but when watching that trial he seemed to lack a bit of toe and even though this is 3800m I just wonder if he is going to come into his own when seeing a real test of stamina. He is with the right training team with Maher & Eustace so I certainly respect him, but I think Elvison can add to his course and distance win last month and even though he's odds on I think he still offers value at 8/11. Elvison 3pts @ 8/11 with William Hill, Coral and Ladbrokes
  3. Not sure how what happened to Bagan had anything to do with the fact it was an amateur rider race. Some of the jockey's in the race are better than a fair few pros.
  4. Cartmel's opener this afternoon sees Grageelagh Girl look to right the wrong of the last hunter chase of the season. I'm sure you all remember the weight cloth coming off after the last fence and thus she had to be disqualified. She would have won anyway and I did say in the race review that it wouldn't surprise me if her trainer decided to take advantage of the handicap mark. I also mentioned I didn't think the handicapper could touch the mark given the mark of the 2nd and that is exactly what has happened. She goes back over hurdles tomorrow and she has good hurdles form. She last ran over them at Bangor in 2020 and finished a close 3rd off 108 so even on that run the mark of 102 in a lower grade makes her look well handicapped. She's clearly in very good form at the moment and I think the drop in trip will help as I was worried she wouldn't stay in the final hunter chase of the season. She was entered at Newton Abbot earlier in the week, but I suspect Fergal has chosen this race as his daughter can take the ride against fellow amateur riders again. She's been entered over fences next week so a quick follow up wouldn't be a shock either. This is a very weak contest and I can only really make a case for the two horses who won the 2 divisions of a handicap hurdle over course and distance last month. Dan Gun has only gone up 3lbs but he wasn't quite as impressive as On We Go who has been in great form for her new yard. She's gone up 9lbs, but I still think there could be more to come and she is the biggest danger for me. I will probably end up having a saver on her given I think she might drift as I suspect Grageelagh Girl will be well backed. Sometimes you see something surprising in a race like this, but I'd be a bit surprised if that happened here given the strong claims of those two. Grageelagh Girl @ 7/2 with Bet365 In the 2nd race I am also going to have a small e/w bet on Watch Law. Now the Irish horses at the head of the market might just be too good for him, but I have watched his last point run and I think he has a fair bit of ability. He jumped pretty terribly for most of the race and was still only just beaten. He clearly has an engine as they pulled a long way clear of the others. Hopefully he can jump hurdles better because if he does I think he might be capable of out running his odds at the very least. Watch Law ew @ 20/1 with Bet365 In the 3.40 I think Post No Bills is worth backing e/w. His pointing form suggests that his handicap mark is one he could well win off and he makes his chasing debut in a pretty poor race this afternoon. He put his best run yet over hurdles last time at Fakenham and I think he can improve again for going over fences. Bookies are going 4 places and I would be a bit surprised if he didn't finish in the first 4 at least. Darius Des Sources is a danger as a wind op seems to have helped him based on his last two efforts and the Perth 3rd last time was his best run in ages. The main danger though is the favourite Mah Mate Bob who ran really well here last time when 2nd in a race he won last season. He's still 11lbs below that winning mark and down into Class 5 company he surely will go close again. Post No Bills ew @ 13/2 with Bet365
  5. Frankies Fire is out again at Perth this afternoon and she has to be backed again. That Hexham race last time was run in a crawl and the jockey seemed to get caught out by that. She was staying on well at the end after getting outpaced and the time of the race was so much slower than the rest of the card. I'd be surprised given the bigger field if they didn't go a stronger pace here and this is a really weak contest. There are so many who it is hard to make any sort of case for and we know she has the potential to be well handicapped if things go her way. Young William is shorter than her in the betting and has to carry 1st8lbs more yet if this was a point he would be a massive price to beat her on these terms. I don't trust the form of his 3rd last time and I suspect Pammi will reverse form. She looks the most obvious danger as her record at Perth is very good and I don't think the way the race was run last time would have suited. That run was a very rare time where she was out of the first 3 at the track. Amazingly some bookies are going 4 places so I am happy to have a decent bet e/w on her. I know she's becoming a cliff horse, but clearly connections think she can win given they are carrying on racing her so hopefully she can get that win. Frankies Fire e/w @ 13/2 with Bet365, Skybet and Coral (4 places)
  6. Race 1 2 years ago this Constantinople was finishing 2nd to South Pacific (also gone to Australia and has done well) in the King George V Stakes and he now finds himself running in a maiden hurdle at Warrnambool. I put him up on his hurdles debut as I thought his class would be good enough and it nearly was. His jumping wasn't perfect and no doubt it will improve, but the main problem is he over raced a bit and ended up pulling himself clear of the rest of the field as they went out on their final circuit. Jumping the last he looked the winner, but he was caught within yards of the line. His had a run at Flemington when again he pulled hard but ran well to finish 3rd. He is going to have to settle better here I think because the ground is going to be testing, but he clearly is the best horse in the race. Killourney was much better on his 2nd hurdles start at Hamilton when only just being beaten by Dubawi Prince that came on a Heavy 10 so the ground wont be an issue. He's run OK on the flat since and should go well. Yulong Rising ran well enough on hurdles debut in a handicap when finishing 2nd to Onset and he can go well if building on that. The only other one to mention is Mont Agel who handles testing ground and did well in his hurdles trial. There is a slight concern about him seeing it out in this ground, but Constantinople does handle this ground and I think he can finally win another race. Constantinople 1pt @ 5/4 with Coral and Ladbrokes Race 2 Capallani was OK on debut at Casterton a month ago and built on that when a 3L 3rd at Hamilton a couple of weeks later. He had won 2 on the flat prior to those and if progressing again has a leading chance. Hunua Hank is an interesting hurdling debutant. He has had 3 hurdle trials and I liked his jumping in the last of them. He was a good 4th on the flat 18 days ago and likes a heavy track. Thurmanator was 12L 2nd to Twin Spinner at Sale a couple of weeks ago and he was in front of Dr Dependable. I suspect the winner is above average and there is certainly nothing of his quality here. Mighty Oasis looks the one to beat though having now finished 2nd on his last 3 hurdles starts. His two hurdle starts this prep have seen him beaten 0.2L both times and this does look a good opportunity for him to get his head in front. It was a Heavy 10 at Hamilton last time so the ground isn't going to be an issue and the previous 2nd was over course and distance. Mighty Oasis 1pt @ 2/1 with William Hill, Coral and Ladbrokes Race 3 This looks a decent little race. Two of the maiden winners from Hamilton clash here in the shape of Dubawi Prince and Fort Charles. The latter was 4 seconds quicker and clocked a faster last 600m sectional as well which is interesting. Now the ground was downgraded from a Heavy 8 to a Heavy 10, but I suspect it was pretty testing for Fort Charles' race anyway. Fort Charles was visually more impressive as well although I think Dubawi Prince beat the better horse. El Diez also ran at Hamilton and was a good 2nd to Big Blue who was simply too good for them. Onset was 3rd and she has won since so the form is good. He took the Champion Novice over course and distance on a Heavy 10 last month. He was 6th in the Australian Hurdle in between and was in front of Out And Dreaming who was very disappointing in last. He had run very well behind Saunter Boy at Pakenham and here on his two previous starts and if he is in that form he's got a big chance. The other one to consider is Count Zero who is 2/2 over hurdles having won here and at Casterton last month. This is tougher, but he's hard to knock. Any of those could win this and it wouldn't surprise, but El Diez is the biggest priced of them and that surprises me so I will make him the bet as he looks the value. El Diez 1pt @ 9/1 with Bet365, William Hill, Ladbrokes and Coral Race 4 I suspect this is probably between the top 2 on the racecard. Under The Bridge was running well until falling here in May, but I suspect Once Were Lost would have beaten him and he went onto win the race. I'm rather surprised to see that he is favourite. That was a good effort from Once Were Lost and he was a solid 3rd in the Australian Chase last time. Yulong Prince hadn't looked anything special over hurdles, but he clearly loved the change to fences as he bolted up by 25L (beating Laylite) at Hamilton on his chasing debut last month. That came on a Heavy 10 and if he backs it up he's surely going to be quite hard to beat. I think at the prices both can be backed with preference for Yulong Prince. Yulong Prince 2pts @ 19/10 with Bet365 Once Were Lost 1pt @ 100/30 with Ladbrokes and Coral
  7. Maybe we have ante post threads for Cheltenham and Ascot and then individual ones for big races like the classics and the grand national where there is little ante post betting apart from the big race. Then come actual race day all tips are in the normal thread like today.
  8. I'm wondering if in future we maybe have separate threads for the big Festivals so chat can be had in advance should people wish and then have day of race runs for the other meetings. Think it would be good to get the chat going earlier as well.
  9. Had to be put down sadly according to a Tweet I have seen.
  10. Nature Strip beating the home team in exactly the fashion I thought he would. Shame the American blew the start as wasn't a fair race with him, but he beats him anyway in my view. Best horse in the world never mind best sprinter.
  11. I happened to be in Australia in January 2018 when Nature Strip first announced himself as a possible superstar so I have followed him for a long time now. He used to be all about going as fast as he could from the stalls and you wouldn't have given him a chance of staying 6f, but he is much more settled now and he can win over 5f or 6f which is crucial as Ascot's 5f is a much stiffer test then any 5f in Australia. I think he sits behind Golden Pal and then pounces once that one tires having gone hard from the start. On his best form he's the best horse in the race and if he runs up to it then he wins. The only doubt I have is that he has run below par in the past especially 1st up, but Waller knows exactly what he's doing and I suspect he has got him ready to peak here. The home team shouldn't get anywhere near him if he runs up to form.
  12. I am bringing this thread back as thought it would be interesting if any members have shares in horses at the moment. I have written previews when the horse I have a share in in Australia has run. She injured her hamstring when she last ran so is on a break at the moment. I also am involved in a syndicate with Racing To Profit who I can certainly recommend if you are looking at getting involved with a jumper over here. I am involved in a horse called Proud Mari who ran very well in a bumper at Worcester on debut last month when coming 3rd. She is leased, but they have also purchased a couple of horses. One is The Plumber who finished 2nd on his hurdles debut at Southwell this week having also finished 2nd at Market Rasen in a bumper on his first run for them. The other horse they have is one called Give Me A Boom who they still have shares in if anyone is interested. An exciting 4YO 'could be anything' chaser in the making. He's got a big frame to grow into, some size about him. Point experience and a massive run (6th of 12) in a 'winners bumper' at Fairyhouse Irish National meeting, up against 5YOs, all the big guns, horses with big price tags. He had x2 LTO winning 5YOs behind him. Trained by G1 winning Amy Murphy in Newmarket. She's very positive on him, looks like he's a touch of class and moves very well. He's having a summer at grass at the moment. The plan is for him to run at back end October/early November - a proper 'main season' horse, taking us through to end April/early May. Bumper/novice hurdles next season I suspect, into handicaps. Very much a chaser in the making. I know the guy who sourced the horse for them and he does very well with the horses he finds and he sourced The Plumber for them. There is more info including a video on the website https://racingtoprofit.co.uk/join-syndicate. Josh who runs it all is a really nice guy who I've known online for a while so like I say I highly recommend getting involved if you are looking at having a share in a horse at the moment.
  13. 3 jumps race at Sale tomorrow morning and here are my thoughts on them. Race 1 Don't think this is a very strong contest. Twin Spinner is favourite at the time of writing and he has had two hurdle runs in New Zealand the 2nd of which he finished 2nd. He's had 3 flat runs here and a couple of trials and he hasn't shown a great deal it has to be said. Like I say its not a strong race and he might be good enough, but I am happy enough to look elsewhere. 5 of these ran in the maiden hurdle contests at Hamilton last week and I imagine one of those will get their head in front. I Arize was favourite last week when I wrote my preview, but was a huge drifter and he went off $11. He ran no sort of race though and I couldn't back him here. Heroic Fighter was well beaten in 5th and I didn't see too much promise in that run. Dr Dependable has had 6 goes over hurdles now and has only placed once although the two 4ths at Casterton and Hamilton were decent enough efforts. The issue is Gravistas (ex Mark Johnson) was 3L and a place in front of him last week and I think he will uphold that form. It was just his 2nd run over hurdles after finishing 5th at Warrnambool which was a fair enough debut. I thought he travelled well into the race last week and just couldn't live with the first 2 late on. I don't think there is anything as good as either of those two in this so he has a good chance here. I also have to have a saver on Chairman's List who looks overpriced. He had two flat runs before the 4th at Hamilton and I think he will be fitter again here. He was a bit keen and just faded late on into 4th place. If he builds on that here then he has a better chance of winning than his odds suggest. Gravistas 1pt @ 16/5 with Betfair and Paddy Power Chairman's List 0.5pts @ 7/1 with Bet365, Betfair, Paddy Power and William Hill Race 2 Hey Happy is favourite for this at the time of writing which is a bit surprising as he was pulled up last week at Hamilton. His jockey reported to the stewards that he was under pressure from some way out and that he may have not backed up his recent jump starts at Casterton and Sandown. He also had a slower than normal recovery. Because of that I'm surprised that they are going again with him so soon and I am happy to take him on. Onset and Cernan were 3rd and 4th in that contest, which was won easily by Big Blue. They carried the same weight that day, but here Onset gets 1kg from Cernan and he was 4.5L in front of him at Hamilton. Onset had the better form for me going into that race and she should uphold that form. That could mean she wins the race, but the unknown runner is Yulong Rising who is easily the best of these on the flat and makes his hurdles debut. He's had a couple of trials and jumps well enough and he had a run on the flat last week at Sandown which was his first race since October. No doubt that was a prep for this and the fact they have decided to go the handicap route rather than the maiden route suggests they think he can win this. I'm happy to back both him and Onset as they look the two most likely winners to me and Hey Happy is helping make the market. Yulong Rising 1pt @ 9/4 with everyone apart from Bet365 Onset 1pt @ 16/5 with Paddy Power and Betfair Race 3 Some of these ran at Hamilton last week. Flying Pierro and Cheners were 3rd and 4th in the open steeplechase behind Historic. Flying Pierro didn't jump well so if he improved on that he wouldn't be out of this, whilst Cheners was a little disappointing. Looking Around was 3rd in the 0-114 chase which was a weak affair and he was beaten 28L. Joshua Reynolds failed to finish in one of the maiden hurdles and he has certainly becoming disappointing over hurdles having started off this year with a very promising 2nd at Hamilton in April. He trialled over fences 4 days after the run last week and I was impressed with his jumping so maybe the larger obstacles will spark him back to life. Ultimately though I want to see how he gets on in a race first so I suspect the race will be between Runaway and Valac. Runaway made his steeple debut at Warrnambool last month and he was running well enough until he got hampered at the last by a faller and he ended up basically pulling up. It's hard to know where he would have finished, but probably 3rd in front of Cheners. He then ran in a BM120 Hurdle at Sandown when 3rd behind Blandford Lad and Constantinople which was a fair effort. Runaway just seems to have become a bit frustrating though and I think Valac can win this. He's never actually run on a heavy track before so that is an unknown, but if connections are happy to run him on it then I am happy to back him. This race is much weaker than the two chases he has run in. First of all he won a BM125 on his chasing debut at Pakenham and then he was running a huge race in the Brierly at Warrnambool when falling at 2 out. Again hard to know where he would have finished but he was travelling every bit as well as the winner. He had a trial last week where he finished last but it was clearly being used as a school round for him. He jumped well apart from one mistake. This looks a good race to get him back on track and I must admit I think he only has to jump round safely to collect. Valac 2.5pts @ 7/4 with William Hill
  14. Hexham used to have a hunter chase on Derby Day, but sadly that hasn't been around for a few years now. However we do have a potentially well handicapped pointer in the shape of Frankies Fire in action in the opener. Now she ran in this race last year and came last without really ever getting out of last place. Hopefully it can be the complete opposite this afternoon. She ran a few times last summer and showed very little, but she had a one off run over hurdles at Carlisle last March and she finished a good 3rd so it's not like she has never shown promise over hurdles. As I have mentioned in the previews for the 2 hunter chases that she has run in this year, she has looked a different horse this season in points. She's beaten 2 hunter chase winners and has finished 2nd twice to Senor Lombardy, who finished 5th in the Festival hunter chase and Kalabaloo who has won a hunter chase in the past and was 2nd at Cheltenham in April. Then came the 2 hunter chase runs where she finished lame in the first of them and then tried hard in the race won by Downtown Getaway, but found it too tough in the end and pulled up. I'm not surprised they are trying hurdles with her as I get the feeling she's not big enough for rules fences. Crucially she hacked up at Hexham's point to point track 10 days after the Kelso effort. That proves she can do it at a rules course and now she's just got to go and do it in a race run under rules. She does run from 3lbs out of the handicap here, but then her jockey takes 7lbs off and let's be fair on pointing form she has probably about 2st in hand so that doesn't worry me at all. Obviously there is going to be that question about her going and doing it in a handicap and she could disappoint again, but she could be so well handicapped that she has to be backed. The favourite Bird On The Wire does look like the biggest danger as he's fairly consistent and ran well over course and distance a couple of weeks ago when 3rd. Frankie Fire's stablemate West Lawn won over course and distance in March, but has run poorly in two runs since. Fraterculus is another whose fairly consistent although he's never won and wasn't great last time, but his yard's horses are still running well and he has a good jockey on top. It's hard to say anything positive about the others so it isn't a strong race and Frankies Fire has the potential to have so much in hand over the handicapper that she should be pushing for favouritism. Frankies Fire @ 6/1 with most bookies
  15. Totals for the season so far are 50.5 staked and 60.5 returned.
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