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Darran

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Everything posted by Darran

  1. Good to see fans socially distancing then! Not going to help football being allowed to continue when things like that happen
  2. Welcome to the forum @Greg@ETFC and good to see a new convert to Non-League
  3. Group 1 action at both Caulfield and Randwick in the morning and plenty of clues for other big races to come in the next month and a half as well. Drew a blank last week although Flemington missing the forecast rain didn't help matters as it ended up being very quick ground. I have bets in 7 races tomorrow Caulfield R4 (5.15am) I like the look of Front Page here who has won 4 of his 6 starts including the last 3. He has gone from a BM58 to a BM68 and then won in Listed company at Flemington last time. That is like going from a Class 6 to a Class 5 and then into Listed company over here. Those races were in May and June so he is 1st up here, but has won both times 1st up so that isn't an issue and he was really impressive at Flemington winning by nearly 3L and clocking a good time. He is likely to be hard to beat, but I will have a saver on William Thomas. He is 4/6 over 1100m and 3/5 over course and distance. He is also 1st up and has won 3/5 on 1st time up so he could easily go close here. Front Page @ 7/4 with Bet365 William Thomas @ 13/2 with Bet365 Caulfield R6 (6.35am) Aidensfield is the pick here. She won her 1st two races here and at Sandown in May and then was 2nd a couple of weeks ago in a Listed race at Moonee Valley. I thought she was a bit unlucky there as well as she had to make a sweeping run on the outside whereas the winner got a nice run on the inside and was able to sit and sprint. The winner is a good horse anyway so it was a good effort and she looks like being capable of going 1 better here. Aidensfield @ 3/1 with Bet365 Caulfield R9 (8.25am) I'm pretty keen on Lyre here who looks to have been found a good opportunity in this G3 contest to end the card. She had some strong form in G1 races earlier in the year including being 2nd to Bella Vella in the Sangster at Morphettville and 3rd in the Goodwood at the same venue. 1st up she was 2nd over 1100m here last month and she was a touch unlucky as well. Going up to 1200m will suit and she really deserves to get her head in front again. She's got good draw in 3 so should be able to sit just behind the speed and then pounce in the straight. Lyre @ 6/4 with William Hill Randwick R3 (4.25am) Cinquedea had been struggling a bit on testing ground, but put in a much improved performance on a Good 4 over 1500m here a couple of weeks ago. He had a terrible draw and found herself way too far back in a race dominated by those on the speed, before flying home. He clocked the 3rd best final 600m, 400m and 200m of the whole day on that occasion. His last win came over this trip back in February and with a much better draw, down in grade hopefully he can build on that last time out effort. I do want Across Dubai on side again having been on him last time when he was 4th in the same race as Cinquedea. That's 3 solid runs now since arriving in Australia and he should be fitter for this 2nd up. Cinquedea e/w @ 10/1 with Betfred Across Dubai e/w @ 10/1 with Betfred Randwick R5 (5.40am) Probabeel ran a huge race 1st up over 1200m here a month ago a trip which would have been too short for her. She didn't have much room until late on either and when she got out she flew home. Her 2nd up stats are impressive and she has finished in the 1st 2 in 12 of her 16 starts. She won a G1 over this course and distance in February and I think she can take this G3 on the way to bigger targets this spring. Probabeel @ 17/10 with Bet365 Randwick R6 (6.15am) The G1 George Main looks a good chance for Verry Elleegant to land another G1 contest. I didn't fancy her in the Winx Stakes a month ago as I thought the 1400m would be too short for her, but she put in a really impressive performance to win that day. That was her 1st run since finishing 2nd to Addeybb in the Queen Elizabeth in April. Avilius won this last year and ran well last time, but he usually finishes behind Verry Elleegant now. Verry Elleegant @ 7/5 with Bet365 Randwick R9 (8.15am) Criaderas is 3/3 for Godolphin and set a track record last time (although that is from a small sample size), but the form hasn't worked out that well so I am going to take him on with Icebath. I have put him up the last twice and she hasn't had a great deal of luck in running either time. She found himself too far back last time and then got hampered around 200m out. She is clearly ready to win and hopefully she gets a better ride and more luck this time. Icebath @ 18/5 with Bet365
  4. So the first Saturday of the season and who knows how many more we will get so let's see if we can make some cash whilst we can. I have 5 bets and here are my brief thoughts. Bishops Stortford v Bognor I was close to putting Bognor up as an ante-post bet and certainly think they can get off to a winning start against a Stortford side who look set for a season of struggle. Cray Wanderers v Kingstonian This is the value play of the day. I have put Kingstonian up as a bet to win the title and as much as I think Cray can put themselves in the promotion picture again I do think Kingstonian are a big price to take 3 points here. As I said in the ante-post preview if Kingstonian weren't far away last season and I think the amount of draws and the games in hand they hand masked their true level. Add into the fact they have strengthened and I think they have a better chance of winning here than the bookies have them. Dorchester v Weston-Super-Mare I think Weston will go very well this season and they have a very strong side. Dorchester struggled last term and although they might improve a bit on that this is a very tough start for them. Barwell v Lowestoft I think Lowestoft are going to be in for a real season of struggle this term. After seasons of having cash, they don't really have any at the moment. Barwell look a solid mid-table side and they should be able to pick up 3 points to start the season. Atherton Collieries v Scarborough The home side look to have one of the smallest budgets in the league and they look relegation contenders. Darren Kelly has got a decent looking side at Scarborough and he will be hoping they can make the play-offs. They will certainly be expecting 3 points to start the season. Bognor 2pts @ 11/8 with William Hill Kingstonian 1pt @ 12/5 with Bet365 Weston-Super-Mare 2pts @ Evs with Bet365 Scarborough 1pt @ 7/5 with William Hill Barwell 2pts @ 21/20 with William Hill
  5. If there is one I don't know of it. Might be something out there for Step 1, but would be surprised if there was anything lower down.
  6. I'm going to lock this thread so it doesn't get confusing. Any ante-post thoughts can go in that thread and anything on Saturday's matches can go in that one
  7. Wouldn’t be top of my shortlist but certainly one of a few teams who would be in with a play off shout
  8. Was writing the preview as you were typing this!
  9. Try William Hill as they have all the leagues priced up now. Some prices are the same with them anyway,
  10. Step 3 I think finish 15th May and steps 1 & 2 are end of May. Pretty certain all the step 3 league cups aren’t taking place this season
  11. Usually I write this at the end of July so it certainly seems strange to be writing it in mid-September. One of the the other strange things is the fact that the 4 Step 3 leagues start before the National League's and that has meant bookies have been very slow in pricing it up and as I type this Bet365 are the only ones who have priced up all 4. That's great news, but what isn't great news is the fact they aren't taking any each-way bets in those divisions. I have been in contact with them and been told it was a trading decision. It is really frustrating and although I was putting up some win only bets anyway, there were certainly teams who made e/w appeal. These 4 leagues were made null and void in March and that means we have the best form guide we have ever had and it is no surprise that the 4 favourites were those 4 teams who would have likely won their divisions for Covid-19 hadn't hit. I must admit it wouldn't be a big surprise if we end up with another non-completion this season so that added to the fact the season starts in 2 days time means these previews are going to be pretty brief. Also the National League's don't start until October (crowd restrictions allowing) so I won't be previewing them just yet as I am waiting for more bookies to price up Step 2 and with the Macclesfield situation most bookies have pulled their National League prices. Pitching In Northern Premier League South Shields tried everything they could to get promotion once the season was declared null and void, but it was just a complete waste of money as they were never going to get the decision overturned. Not surprisingly they are warm favourites at 11/8 for the title and I actually think that price is value. Money is still no issue for the club and they were a notch above their league rivals last season. They ought to be winning the title this season. I can see FCUM, Warrington, Basford and Morpeth all going well again, but I am going to cover Buxton who have strengthened really well over the break. They look to have a bit of cash based on who they have been signing. Pitching In Isthmian Premier Division I've backed Kingstonian the last two seasons and I am going to put them up again at 16/1 which is too big a price. On the basis they have got a fair bit of ground on Worthing as they were 10th when the season finished and 24 points behind them. They did have 3 games in hand though and they only actually lost one more game than Worthing. The problem was they drew 14 of their 31 games and that obviously cost them big time. It shows though that they aren't far away and they look to have improved again on paper over the break. They can be the one team to make the leap from mid-table to title contenders. Obviously Worthing are contenders having looked set to win the title when the season was stopped, but my other bet will be Hornchurch. They were another team who drew too many games last season having only lost 5 games. They had the best defence in the league and they look to have a good team yet again. At 10/1 they are worth backing as well. Pitching In Southern Premier League Central Tamworth were my main bets in this league last year and I think they would have won the league if it had of continued. They will be the main bets again this time around at 3/1. They look to have an even better squad this time around and I think they might be quite hard to beat. I also want Stourbridge on side. Getting Mark Yates in as manager was a cracking bit of business and he is more than capable of getting the best out of a strong looking squad. Pitching In Southern Premier League South 3 against the field for me here. I really fancied Weston-Super-Mare last season and they disappointed a bit although towards the end they were getting it together. They have signed really well over the break and as long as it all comes together on the pitch they have one of the best sides in the division. Truro were the most likely winners prior to lockdown and they have got stronger if anything so I have to have them on side. The final bet is Taunton. They went so close to pipping Weymouth two seasons ago and seemed to feel the effects of that last season where they under performed a bit. I expect them to do much better this time around. South Shields 3pts @ 11/8 with Bet365 Buxton 0.5pts @ 9/1 with Bet365 Kingstonian 1pt @ 16/1 with Bet365 AFC Hornchurch 1pt @ 10/1 with Bet365 Tamworth 2pts @ 5/1 with William Hill Stourbridge 0.5pts @ 14/1 with Bet365 Weston-Super-Mare 1.5pts @ 7/1 with Bet365 Truro 1pt @ 5/1 with Bet365 Taunton 0.5pts @ 14/1 with Bet365
  12. The quality racing in Australia continues this Saturday with top class racing at Flemington in Melbourne and Rosehill in Sydney. There will be Caulfield Cup and Melbourne Cup clues aplenty. I have bets in 3 races at Flemington and 4 at Rosehill. Flemington R1 (3.05am) A cracking race to get the card underway and I like two against the field. Schabau is quite a short price favourite here and although the ex-German horse has a good chance I do think there is value elsewhere. Persan has done nothing but improve and it was another good win last time. Crucially he wont mind what the weather does (there is a fair bit of rain in the forecast) and he does look value. Young Rascal won't need any introductions and he will improve massively for this step up in trip 2nd up. Don't forget he beat Mugatoo on his 1st start in Australia and that is top notch form. He has top weight here, but I think it is fully deserved. Persan @ 100/30 with William Hll Young Rascal win and place @ 11/1 & 11/5 with Bet365 Flemington R2 (3.35am) Immortal Love is 3/3 so far and was a G3 winner last time, beating two good horses in the process. He is already a course and distance winner and has won on Good, Soft and Heavy ground so again he wont care what the weather does. He drops into Listed company here and although there are a couple of possible improvers in the field he sets a high benchmark to overcome. Immortal Love @ 14/5 with Bet365 Flemington R3 (4.05am) This does look like it will be a match between Savatiano and Arcadia Queen who finished 1st and 5th in a G2 at Caulfield last time. Savatiano can uphold that form for me. Arcadia Queen has a poor draw in 12 and with Savatiano likely to make the running or sit just behind the pace she is going to get first run on her main rival and that could prove crucial. Arcadia Queen continues to have injury issues as well which is also a worry. Savatiano @ 6/4 with Bet365 Flemington R5 (5.15am) Aktau was a very progressive horse for Roger Varian and he won at Glorious Goodwood on his final start over here. He has continued that progression in Australia winning 3/4 and claiming the Mornington Cup on his last start. He is 1st up here, but that isn't a concern given he won 1st up over 1600m here in December. Given that I am not worried about the 1700m trip here although obviously he will be stepping up in trip as the prep goes on. There should be more to come from him. I am having a saver on Shot Of Irish. That one ran at Moonee Valley last week, but he reared up as the stalls opened and injured his jockey in the process. He was progressive last prep and given the forecast he is likely to get his favoured ground come race time. Aktau @ 100/30 with William Hill Shot Of Irish @ 8/1 with Bet365 Flemington R6 (5.55am) Windstorm is a really promising horse. He looked speedy in Western Australia and clocked some quick late sectionals on his first start in Victoria over 1100m last time to finish 4th. Going up in trip is obviously a positive and the long straight at Flemington should be ideal for him. He looks capable of taking this Listed contest on the way too much loftier targets. Windstorm @ 6/5 with William Hill Rosehill R1 (3.15am) Ex-UK Cadre Du Noir was impressive at Sandown last time having finished 2nd to Skyman the time before. The Sandown race was only a BM70 though and he is back into BM78 company here. Skyman ran poorly last week as well so that form wasn't franked. He does look progressive, but he looks very short at odds on here. I am going to back Korcho to bounce back instead. He was poor last time, but he was dropping down in trip on quicker ground and started slowly so everything went against him. He had won his previous two and looked on the upgrade so I am happy to forgive the run a couple of weeks ago. Korcho @ 11/2 with Betfair Rosehill R3 (4.25am) Yonkers clocked some quick finishing sectionals when returning last time at Randwick. He steps up 400m in trip here and if finishing his race off as well then he should go close. I am also going to back New King. Another horse to have come from the UK and we were on him when he won over 1500m here a month ago. He wasn't great last tie, but he got a slow start and was way too far back. He was impressive in winning the time before and I am prepared to give forgive the flop the last time. He won over this trip at Sandown on his final start in the UK so that looks a plus. Yonkers @ 6/1 with Bet365 New King @ 10/1 with Betfair Rosehill R7 (6.55am) Funstar will be a big danger although I think she needs further than 1300m so I am firmly in Special Reward's camp here. He has won 8 of his 15 starts and was superb 1st up when finishing 3rd and just losing out in a 3 way go. He has got a good draw in 6 and should be able to take up the running with there not looking like there is any other pace in the race. He also has a great 2nd up record winning 3/5. Special Reward @ 16/5 with Bet365 Rosehill R9 (8.15am) Entante won a G3 at Randwick back in April and then finished 3rd in another G3 here on his following start. He returned over 1200m here a couple of weeks ago in a BM88 and ran well to finish 6th over a trip too short for him. He drops down in grade again here into a BM78 and although he has to carry 61kg I think he can do it. He goes up to 1500m and although he's never won over a trip this short I think he can get away with it in this grade especially based on his 1st up run. Entante @ 4/1 with Bet365
  13. Looking forward to seeing Velasco in the 2.30 at Uttoxeter. He was massively impressive when winning his pointing debut in a time 17 seconds quicker than the other division of the maiden. His jumping wasn't always the best either and he looks to have a serious engine. I'm very surprised it went unsold at the sales given how impressive he was. I've had a small e/w bet on him, but he's certainly a horse to keep a very close eye on with a view to the future
  14. Sorry for the late notice on this one, but I forgot Jack Snipe was running until earlier today and only just had chance to have a good look through the race (3.50 Newton Abbot). There are a couple who don't mind racing prominently, but he should be able to lead again. Hopefully his jockey won't go quite as hard as at Uttoxeter, but I also wonder if maybe he needed another run as well to help get him up to full fitness. The form has been franked to a certain extent as the 6th beat the 2nd in a race at Sedgefield a couple of weeks ago. The Twiston-Davies horse has been well backed and is probably the main danger. Hurricane Arcadio has done well the last twice as well, but at 6/1 (or 13/2 if you can get on with BetVictor) I think Jack Snipe looks a solid e/w chance again. Jack Snipe e/w @ 13/2 with BetVictor (6/1 elsewhere)
  15. Again plenty of cracking action in Melbourne and Sydney on Saturday morning with plenty of Group racing to look forward to. Race 4 at Randwick sees the return of the world's best sprinter Nature Strip (yes he is better than Battash) as he works up towards The Everest next month. He's obviously very short, but his 1st up record isn't actually that good and if he does get beat tomorrow I wouldn't be too worried. He has looked very good in his trials though so hopefully we will see him win. I have bets in 7 races 5 at Moonee Valley and 2 at Randwick. As I currently write Oddschecker are missing all the Australian meetings so I have just used Bet365 prices, but better might be available elsewhere. Hopefully Oddschecker will sort the issue out as I have asked them to. Also hopefully I can see an improvement profit wise as the last two weeks have not been good sadly. Moonee Valley R1 (3.30am) I like the claims of How Womantic here as she makes her return. She won her first 4 races which included a G3 win at Caulfield. Her only defeat was last time at Flemington in a G2, but she was caught wide there from a bad draw and had no cover and it certainly looked a run you could forgive. She's got a great draw tomorrow and I think she can continue her progression as she drops back down into handicap company. How Womantic @ 2.80 with Bet365 Moonee Valley R2 (4.05am) I am putting up ex UK horse Skyman here. He was due to run in a race here a couple of weeks ago, but was called off. It looked a very tough race for him though and this contest at this stage looks more suitable for him. He has won both his Australian starts and looks very progressive. He beat a fellow import last time and that horse has since bolted up in a race at Sandown. There are a couple of slight concerns about him as he doesn't have a great draw and will probably have to come from quite far back which given the nature of the track isn't ideal. In my view though he is better than this grade and those concerns are factored into his price so I am prepared to back him. Skyman @ 6.50 win and 2.38 place with Bet365 Moonee Valley R4 (5.15am) Given his main rival Shot Of Irish looks so much better on a wet track I think Junipal looks a real solid chance here. His run 1st up was a cracking effort given horses were struggling to come from behind that afternoon and he ran on well to finish 3rd to Showmanship which looks really good form. Apart from the winner he had the fastest last 200m in the race. All his wins have been over this trip so the extra 200m is going to be right up his street. He's a course and distance winner as well. Junipal @ 2.50 with Bet365 Moonee Valley R8 (7.45am) A G2 contest here which sees the return of Harbour Views and Surprise Baby. Harbour Views has been talked up as a Cox Plate contender although he was a bit disappointing a couple of times last prep and I prefer the chances of Surprise Baby. He was last seen running a really good race when 5th in the Melbourne Cup. He had a terrible draw in 20 that day and that poor draw probably got him beat. Obviously this race is half the distance of the Melbourne Cup, but he ran a really good race in it last year when 4th in what was a stronger renewal. He has only had 11 starts, but in his 5 wins he has won over trips from 1200m to 3200m so the trip doesn't concern me. Connections are suggesting he is ready to run a big race even though the Melbourne Cup is clearly is main target and I take him to make a winning return. Surprise Baby @ 2.80 with Bet365 Moonee Valley R9 (8.20am) If Rivet Dancer wins this after putting him up the last twice I will be annoyed, but I prefer the chances of Dabiyr. He has plenty in his favour. He is 2/2 at the track and 3/3 2nd up. His 1st run of the prep saw him finish 3rd at Flemington in a really strong contest. The step up to this trip is much more suitable for him and Craig Williams should be able to get him settled just behind the leaders and hopefully he will be too strong for them in the straight. Dabiyr @ 3.00 with Bet365 Randwick R5 (5.35am) An open contest this, but I think ex UK horse Across Dubai is worth backing here. William Haggas used to train him over here and he won on his last race at Chelmsford in a Class 2 a couple of years ago. He wasn't seen until this May when he ran a solid race to finish 7th and then built on that when finishing 3rd a couple of weeks later. I thought that was a very good run on testing ground given his best form in the UK was either on good ground or on the AW. He's got a decent draw here and hopefully he should be able to settle a bit further forward than he was able to last time. He will improve again once going up in trip, but I do think he is capable of winning over this trip and he looks a big price at double figures. Across Dubai @ 14.00 win and 3.75 place with Bet365 Randwick R9 (8.10am) It is a shame the odds on favourite has been scratched here because I was going to oppose him. Icebath is the main pick and ran a huge race 1st up when she recorded the 2nd fastest last 400m and last 200m of the meeting. She looks better than a handicapper to me and she has already been placed in a Listed contest and a G3. There should be improvement 2nd up. I am going to have a saver on Cristal Breeze who was 3rd behind Icebath in that race. I think he has more to come as well and although he won on a Heavy track on his Australian debut I do think his UK form suggests he will be better on a quicker surface and I do want him onside. Icebath @ 3.00 with Bet365 Cristal Breeze @ 5.50 with Bet365
  16. Last week was a bit of a damp squid on the Australian front as not only did Moonee Valley get abandoned midway through the card, but I also found winners hard to come by. To be fair I was probably due a really tough week given how positive it has mainly been since I started these previews back in March. This week we are at Caulfield where the Group 1 Memsie Stakes is the highlight, although I found it too tough so no tip for me in that, and Rosehill is the Sydney venue. Caulfield R3 (3.55am) A pretty open contest this, but I like the look of Acting at a decent price. She is a G2 winner over course and distance and made a really good return when 3rd over 1100m here a couple of weeks ago. She stayed on the inside that day and it did look like the ground wasn't the best so you can upgrade the effort. Also the winner Bless Her has run up a sequence so the form looks good. Acting @ 9/1 with Betfair Caulfield R4 (4.30am) An interesting race here with a few horses returning that will be looking for further later on in the campaign so I am taking two against the field who should be ready for this. Morrissy ran a cracking race in the WFA G2 Lawrence Stakes over course and distance 2 weeks ago. He loves this course and distance and back in a handicap I think he has a really solid chance. Yulong January is the other one I like. He ran well 1st up in a G3 over 1200m at Flemington. He got tired late on there and he should be fitter here. He has won 2/3 2nd up and will enjoy the firmer surface as well. Morrissy @ 100/30 with William Hill Yulong January @ 9/2 with Bet365 Caulfield R5 (5.10am) This is basically the same race that should have ended the card at Moonee Valley last week. I put up Orderofthegarter and Polly Grey in that race and the prices allowed that. The problem here is both are under 3/1 so it's hard to put both up as a bet. I'm going to side with Orderofthegarter because I thought his run was huge last time after a long lay off. The draw isn't ideal in 12, but hopefully Damien can do the business. As per last week it will be interesting to see what Young Rascal and Schabau both do. Orderofthegarter @12/5 with Bet365 Caulfield R7 (6.30am) Tagaloa looks pretty hard to beat here on his return. He looked good in a jump out at Cranbourne recently and he looked a really promising horse in the autumn having won the Blue Diamond over course and distance before finishing 4th in the Golden Slipper. There are some unexposed horses here, but I think they will have to improve a fair bit to beat Tagaloa. Tagaloa @ 11/4 with William Hill Caulfield R10 (8.20am) Rubisaki has won 8 of her 10 races and finished 2nd in the other two. She was unbeaten in her last prep starting off in a BM78 and then going on to win a G2 and two G3's. She handles all types of ground and her closing splits were always top notch. She is surely working her way up to G1 level this prep and she should be able to take this on her way. The only concern is the wide draw, but hopefully she can fly home to win. As mentioned above Bless Her has been in great form and I can imagine that she will be the horse that Rubisaki has to run down. Rubisaki @ 7/4 with William Hill Rosehill R4 (4.50am) Amazingly it has stopped raining in Sydney so we are looking at a good track for a change. Ex UK horse Korcho has won his last two in good style and he stays at BM78 level as he looks to land the hat-trick. He handled good ground in the UK so I am not concerned that he is on a drier track. He comes back to 2000m, but that shouldn't bother him either. I think he can land this before stepping up in grade. Korcho @ 9/2 with Bet365 Rosehill R6 (6.10am) Sangria was poor at Randwick at the start of the month, but that was on a Heavy 9 1st up so we can forgive that performance. She will prefer this drier surface and was a Listed winner at Flemington back in March. She has won a trial since so is clearly in good form and I am expecting a much improved performance here. Sangria @14/5 with Bet365 Rosehill R7 6.50am) Chris Waller has always spoken highly of Overlord and although he has yet to win a race he has bumped into the very promising Peltzer (goes in the race befofre) twice and then ran 4th of 18 in the G1 JJ Atkins at Eagle Farm in June. You would hope that he can finally break his maiden tag here. Overlord @ 6/4 with Bet365 Rosehill R8 (7.30am) A few ex UK and Irish runners which will be familiar go in this G3 handicap over 1900m. Frankely Awesome will surely do better than she did last time, but I have to be with Mugatoo. He has won half of his 6 starts and has continued his progression in Australia from that he showed in this country. He was 2nd to Young Rascal in a G3 here back in March and than ran as well as could have been expected in G1 company. I thought he wold struggle to win over 1500m 1st up in a Listed contest here a month ago, but he was really impressive in winning. You have to think he will be Caulfield Cup bound and I think he can win this on the way. Mugatoo @ 5/4 with Betfair
  17. Granted he's becoming a bit of a cliff horse, but I have to give Ballyknock Cloud another chance at Fontwell this afternoon. He didn't show a great deal at Newton Abbot on his return, but I imagine he needed the run as it wasn't as good as his form from last year. As I keep saying about the horse he is well handicapped on his pointing form and he's now down to a mark of 95. He steps up in trip here and interestingly he is the only horse that his trainer has run since racing resumed so they clearly think he can win a race off this mark. When he won his points he made the running and I wouldn't mind seeing them attempt the same tactics here. As for his rivals there are a few making their chasing debuts which always adds an unknown factor. Rivers End is one of those and he was well beaten in a Restricted in January on his first start after coming over from Ireland. He has got his handicap mark based on 3 hurdle runs over 2m. He's been backed at big prices now he goes chasing and going a mile up in trip. It will be interesting to see how he gets on, but on the face of it even off 79 he doesn't appeal as much as Ballyknock Cloud does and at 12/1 he is worth backing e/w. Ballyknock Cloud e/w @ 12/1 with everyone
  18. I have no idea to be honest. My suggestion would be to have a play around and see what suits you. There is a hell of a lot of info on there like you say, but by using it you will have a lot more info than your regular punter which is always a good start.
  19. Wasn't great on the flat this morning with my first blank day since I started doing these previews. Obviously we got some voided money back. On we move to the final jumps action of the season in Australia and it really is a cracking card at Ballarat. Hopefully we can make some money from it. Race 1 (4am) Small field to start, but a cracking race with 4 good horses taking each other on. Eckhart and Wolfe Tone were both really impressive when breaking their maiden tags at the first time of asking at Pakenham last month. Wolfe Tone went and followed that up with a win in a BM120 at Sandown 3 weeks ago. I thought he was really impressive that day as well as the front 2 pulled well clear of the rest. The issue I have with both of them though is if they really want 4000m in a Heavy 10 which is likely to ride even testing than that. It's enough for me to not go with either of them as much as either could easily be good enough to win. I have been a big fan of Flying Agent and although I did vow to myself I wouldn't back a Horner ridden horse again I am going to back him here. He was set way too much to do last time at Sandown over fences, but it does look like 4000m will be ideal for him given his running style. We also know that he can handle a Heavy 10 track having run really well both here and Warrnambool over fences on that surface and those two tracks do seem to get really testing compared to the other jumping venues like Sandown or Pakenham. I also like San Remo and he is over the odds for sure. Now I did say the same thing last time and he ran a stinker in the Wolfe Tone race last time, but he clearly wasn't at his best as he didn't jump well and never got involved. He's trialled well since behind Flying Agent on Tuesday and crucially for me he was only just beaten by Bee Tee Junior at Warrnambool on a Heavy 10 on his previous hurdle start. Given how well that one ran against Ablaze in the Grand National Hurdle and is his main danger in the Grand National Chase on this card that is for me the best form in the race. I am hoping back on a testing surface he can show that form again. Flying Agent @ 2/1 with Betfair and Betfred San Remo @ 15/2 with Betfred Race 2 (4.40am) The 1st maiden hurdle on the card is over 3400m and on the face of it it looks a good opportunity for Beau Balmain to get his head in front over hurdles. He was 2nd to Wolfe Tone at Pakenham on hurdles debut and then 3rd at Casterton 2 weeks ago when a mistake at the last cost him with re-opposing Little Phoenix finishing in 2nd. The concern tough has to be the really testing conditions. His 3 runs in heavy ground on the flat has seen him finish last twice and at Caulfield back in April his jockey said he didn't handle the Heavy 9. He probably wins if he does handle the track, but at the price he has to be taken on for me. Ablestock has respected connections and has been running well on the flat at a low level. Had a few quiet hurdles trials so hard to know what to expect. Little Phoenix has been solid in 5 hurdles starts and has been 2nd twice and 3rd twice, but his worst effort was on a Heavy 10 at Warrnambool where he really struggled in the ground so I can't have him here. That leaves me with a couple worth backing outside the front 3 in the betting. Infinite Reign made a solid hurdles debut here over 3200m in a Heavy 10 when 5th behind Ventura Storm. He was then 3rd just behind the 2nd in the race Eckhart won. Since then he was 3rd at Moe on a heavy track and he looks to have a solid chance in the conditions. At a double figure price I am also taking a chance on Ross's Point. He had 2 hurdle starts in September 2018 and didn't show too much on ground that would have been too quick for him. He didn't run over hurdles again until last month when he was a really good 3rd at Warrnambool in a Heavy 10. He then pulled up at Pakenham where again his rider said he needed a wetter track. He won a hurdle trail at the end of last month in a Heavy 8 and in a race where you can pick holes in the fancied horses in the conditions I think he is well worth backing at a big price. Infinite Reign @ 13/2 with Betfred Ross's Point e/w @ 16/1 with Betfred Race 3 (5.20am) Doesn't look a strong contest and no real surprise to see Home By Midnight at odds on. He is the classiest flat horse in the race and landed the Launceston Cup back in Feburary. He was also 2nd in an Auckland Cup when trained in New Zealand on a Heavy 10 track. Had 3 trials where he wasn't asked to do a great deal, but it looks a good opportunity for him given he handles conditions. Wazuzu is also making is hurdles debut and won on a Heavy 10 at Warrnambool two starts back. It was only a BM64 so he certainly isn't up to the favourites flat class, but the fact he handles conditions is a plus. Zoffany Rocket and Peace Brother are also in single figures, but the former isn't certain to handle the ground on hurdles debut and the latter fell 2 out when getting tired at Pakenham and has never run on a heavy surface. I fancied Jeparit last week, but he was massively disappointing and has also never run on a flat track. First Crush has been given some bizarre rides by Horner, but he has shown the best hurdles form of these. On his hurdles debut he was given a very kind ride over course and distance on this ground and then has run well since despite his jockey leaving it way too late. I think Home By Midnight is the most likely winner, but will have a small bet e/w on First Crush in the hope he might finally get a good ride because he is certainly over priced at double figures. First Crush e/w @ 12/1 with Betfred Race 4 (6am) It is a shame Gobstopper is a non-runner as he has had such a good season, but we still have a good race on our hands. I think the favourite is the one to beat here. I put him up last week and he was really impressive as he continued to build up to this contest which he was 2nd in last year to Ablaze. That is obviously very good form and we know that he handles course and distance on a Heavy 10 track. Instigator clearly has ability, but finds it hard to win. He ought to have beaten Sollevare in a maiden hurdle at Pakenham and then ran well to be 2nd to Wolfe Tone at Sandown. He should be fine on a heavy track, but he is more likely to finish 2nd than win. Sollevare wouldn't be out of it as on his next hurdle start he was only beaten 5L by Ablaze when 4th in the Grand National Hurdle. Saunter Boy is a classy flat horse and won on his hurdles debut at Casterton last time. He might have been slightly lucky there and his runs on a heavy track on the flat have been nothing special. Northern Voyage should be ready to peak and he's the won to beat. Northern Voyage @ 5/4 with Betfred Race 5 (6.45am) Ascot Red is favourite for this contest and won it last year. He has been in really good form on the flat and we today's conditions will hold no fear for him. You would imagine the flat runs have been used to build him up for a repeat bid. He has an obvious chance, but he seems a little short in the betting for me. Solar Coaster has some good chasing form in behind good horses in hot races. The ground would be a concern for me though. Longclaw has a chance on his chasing debut with two decent hurdle runs the last twice at Warrnambool. It's a tricky little race, but I am going to take two against the field. The Dominator is likely to blast off in front and in the conditions they might find him hard to peg back. He won well using those tactics at Pakenham two starts back and then just didn't stay 4200m in the Crisp Steeplechase at Sandown. The ground isn't a concern and I like his chances here. I also thought So Belafonte was over priced here on chasing debut. On the face of it he was disappointing at Casterton last time, but his rider lost an iron and it cost him his chance. He won over hurdles here back in June and the form of that race is strong. So given we know he handles conditions and has trialled well over fences I think he should be shorter than his current price. The Dominator @ 100/30 with Betfred So Belafonte @ 15/2 with Betfred Race 6 (7.25am) The big race of the Australian jumps season is the Grand National Steeplechase over 4500m and it is around £100k to the winner. Albaze has done amazingly well since going over jumps as he is 5/5 over both hurdles and fences. He has already won the Grand Annual this season and he was really impressive in doing so. His trainer has spoken about bringing him over for the Grand National at Aintree in a couple of years time after he gets even more experience and it will be great if he does come over. Next year he might go to Japan for the Nakayama Grand Jump and he has the potential to be one of the best jumpers Australia has produced. He landed the Grand National Hurdle last time and he was really gutsy out in front beating Bee Tee Junior who re-opposes here and looks to be his main danger. Strictly speaking at the weights Bee Tee Junior should reverse form, but I think this extra distance in wetter conditions over fences will suit Ablaze more than it will Bee Tee Junior and I rate him a strong pick here. Bee Tee Junior is actually making his debut over fences although he did win a 3 runner trial on Tuesday. Of the rest I thought Accounted Four won really well last week at Casterton. This is stronger and on much softer going, but he is clearly getting better the deeper into his prep he goes. Michelin disappointed last time and the trip is an unknown, but the ground wont be an issue and he has place claims as well. Ablaze @ Evs with Bet365
  20. Really looking forward to the action in Australia this weekend as we see the first Group 1 of the new season, the Winx Stakes at Randwick and we also see the Grand National at Ballarat on Sunday as the jumps season ends with an all jumps card there. That preview will come tomorrow, but first of all I will look at 9 races from Moonee Valley and Randwick Moonee Valley R1 (3.50am) I could be throwing good money after bad money, but I do want to have a small bet on Rivet Delight again. On the face of it he was disappointing at Flemington last time when behind Coming Around, who looks set to go off odds on here, but he was at the back of the field that day and the race suited front runners. Connections have said that this former Racing Post Trophy winner is set to sit closer to the pace here and if he can show the form he showed at Caulfield 1st up then I think he is value here. Rivet Delight e/w @ 16/1 with Betfred Moonee Valley R4 (5.45am) Tigre Royale has won 4 on the bounce now the last two coming in this grade at Randwick and Sandown. As that suggests he is clearly progressive and he won very easily last time. It was a Heavy 9 at Randwick the time before and given there is plenty of rain in the Melbourne area both today and tomorrow I suspect the ground might reach the Heavy range so we know that wont bother him. The other one I like is Kentucky Tornado who was 6th at Flemington last time in a decent race. She clocked a fast 200m that day over 2000m and now up to 2500m looks ideal. Tigre Royale @ 6/1 with Bet365 Kentucky Tornado @ 16/5 with Bet365 Moonee Valley R8 (8.15am) Given the time of the race you might want to wait to have a bet closer to the off as it is based around the ground being in the Heavy range. Jungle Edge loves a wet track as he showed when winning a G3 at Caulfield two starts back when I tipped up the 2nd Viridine. That form is strong given Viridine has won twice since. Last time he was back in a Good 4 track at the same venue and only beat one home. The wetter it is the more I would like his chances. I put up Brooklyn Hustle last time when she dropped into BM78 company 1st up and she duly bolted up. She's a good horse and looks up to winning at this level, but I am not sure she will want it that testing and Jungle Edge has the edge for me. Jungle Edge @ 3/1 with Bet365 Moonee Valley R9 (8.45am) I really can't wait for this handicap over 2040m as it looks a fascinating contest. Young Rascal wont need any introduction and he has his first start since leaving William Haggas, but his new trainer has said that Haggas has been helping him a fair bit to train the horse. His win at Rosehill two starts back is a very good piece of form, but I think tomorrow's run will be all about building towards bigger targets later in the spring as the trip is on the short side for him. We have former German horse Schabau running who has been talked off as a Melbourne cup horse. He has actually won over this trip twice in Australia and he has claims. I was on former UK horse Skyman last time and he is now 2/2 in Australia, but he is way out of the weights and as much as he is progressive he would have had to have improved massively on his UK form. For example he only get's half a kilo from Orderofthegarter who was 2nd at Royal Ascot to Benbatl in 2017. I put him up last time on his first run for nearly 2 years and he ran a huge race over 1600m to finish 2nd. Going up to this trip is obviously a plus and although stall 12 is a concern he looks to have a really good chance. I also want to have Polly Grey onside as the former New Zealand runner has been in really good from since coming to Chris Waller. She got no luck at Flemington two starts back and then last time over course and distance she had to do a bit too much to early and was just denied. She has drawn 1 here so she certainly wont be caught wide again and a Heavy track will be no issue. Orderofthegarter @ 3/1 with Bet365 Polly Grey @ 9/2 with Bet365 Randwick R3 (4.10am) I put up ex UK horse New King when he won a couple of weeks ago as there had been clear promise in his first run in Australia and he was given a cracking ride by James McDonald to score. He looked progressive in the UK and the one concern I had last time was the 1500m so going up in trip to 1600m is obviously a plus. For a change it has been fairly dry in Sydney so it won't be as testing as last time, but it will be soft still so that will be no concern and I think this son of Frankel can score again as he continues to improve. New King @ 5/2 with Bet365 Randwick R6 (6.05am) One of the horses I was most impressed with since I have started previewing the Australian action every Saturday is Adelong who won 3 on the bounce in May and June. Her record now reads 8 starts for 6 wins and 2 2nds and we now get to see her in Group company. She looks a Group horse and I think she can take the step up in grade with ease. Adelong @ 21/20 with Bet365 Randwick R7 (6.45am) As I mention above the Winx Stakes is the first G1 of the season and I am going to take a couple against the field. The Bostonian has a superb record 1st up having won 6 times in 7 attempts. Indeed 9 of his 10 wins have either come 1st up or 2nd up. He loves a wet track so the ground will be ideal for him and 1400m 1st up looks ideal and drawn in 1 I expect him to sit handy just off the speed. I was tempted by Master Of Wine and he did win 1st up over 1400 last prep, but that was a BM100 and I am not sure he can repeat that in G1 company. Instead I think it is worth giving Melody Belle a chance to atone for a poor run 1st up. That came in a G2 at Rosehill and she was too far back in the testing ground that day. She was a couple of places behind Master Of Wine in the Queen Elizabeth in April, but I think Melody Belle is more suited to 1400m than he is. Her record over this trip is 5 wins in 7 attempts so I am prepared to give her another chance on better going. The Bostonian @ 5/1 with Bet365 Melody Belle @ 10/1 with Bet365 Randwick R8 (7.25am) Granted Minted was nearly 4L behind an impressive winner last time, but she finished the race off well as the closing splits show and he looks like the step up to 1400m will suit him on just his 8th start based on that run. He gets in her off 52kgs and he has a solid chance in an open contest. Kinane was had a good spell last time and connections turned down a big offer for him, but I just wonder if he might need further especially as it took him getting up to 1600m before he won. He's a very promising horse though. Minted @ 5/1 with Bet365 Randwick R9 (8.05am) I was keen on Cristal Breeze a couple of weeks ago, but he was a non-runner and I think this ex UK horse can go very well here. He won on his 1st Australian start at Canterbury in June which was his first run since he was 2nd at Newmarket this time last year. He then ran at Randwick over 1300m and was 2nd behind Handspun which I think was good form. I don't mind the drop back to 1200m although granted the draw could have been better than 13, but I still think he can go close. I also want Icebath onside as she was running well in stakes races when last seen in April. She was 2nd in a Listed Race here and then 3rd in a Group 3 at Rosehill. In both races she didn't have a great deal of luck and last time she was in 9th with 400m still to go and didn't get clear air until 100m out. She has trialled well going into to this and has already been a 1st up winner in her short career. Cristal Breeze @ 8/1 with Betfair Icebath @ 4/1 with Bet365
  21. Funnily enough it seems to be the one thing the Aussies don't really care for is the rating of a horse. They talk more about actual weight carried from race to race rather than if a horse has gone up or down ratings wise.
  22. Not saying using the Spotlight's isn't a good starting point, but be very careful in only using them. Very often they are working to tight deadlines and it is impossible for each writer to actually have spent that long on each runner. When it comes to hunter chases for example I have seen loads of errors over the years in the Racing Post spotlights and the verdicts on Oddschecker in them. As for the daily newspapers the fact so few of them actually make a profit from their naps tells you all you need to know about following the vast majority of them. Don't forget they are forced to make selections in every race or give a Nap everyday and that doesn't mean they are backing what they are tipping up.
  23. The race Dido ran in at Newton Abott was a frustrating one for us. First of all the main bet was disappointing, then Bubble O'Clock looked the winner before falling and then sadly losing his life finally Dido who had drifted out to 33/1 flew home to finish 2nd. Given that was his first run for nearly 14 months it was a really good effort and went someway to alleviate the slight doubt I had about his form under rules in the past. His pointing form suggested he could be well handicapped and the Newton Abbot run backed that up. If he comes on for that first run in so long he is surely going to go close here in the 5.10. Schnabel is the favourite, but he runs like he needs further not a drop in trip which he gets here. Hidden Glen and Running Wolf look bigger dangers to me, but again as you would expect for the grade it isn't an overly strong race. The one thing that would worry me is if thunderstorms hit the track as I don't think Dido wants cut in the ground, but I would be amazed if they didn't pull him out if they got a lot of run. Slightly unusually for me I am going to suggest backing him e/w as I am reasonably confident he can be in the first 3 again and at 11/2 with Bet365 or 5/1 elsewhere I want the place part onside. Dido e/w @ 11/2 with Bet365
  24. Its probably one reason I’ve not really used it myself but the Aussies are all about info and if you read my Aussie previews you will know that I use stats as the info is easily there in the places I use. I do think sometimes you can have too much information but it’s good to know that it’s all there in one place for free
  25. The Sporting Life had a contract with ICS which came to an end on Saturday and Timeform have picked up the contract which is why they are now the same. Great for Timeform as they now have their comments pretty much everywhere apart from the Racing Post. Not so good for the public who want more option in looking at these things. As for a different website I must admit I haven't really used it myself but there is a hell of a lot of information on racingandsports.com which is an Australian site, but they have in depth form for plenty of other countries including the UK. Here is a link to a race at Uttoxeter tomorrow to show all the info you can have. https://www.racingandsports.com/form-guide/thoroughbred/united-kingdom/uttoxeter/2020-08-17/R8/enhanced-form