‘HURRICANE’ FORECAST AT ASCOT: The summer we’ve had you still wouldn’t be surprised if a hurricane hit Ascot, but Daqman is talking about the Mark Johnston runner, which he thinks is ‘wrong’ at 13.5 on BETDAQ today.

NEVER OUT OF THE FRAME: But he warns that three-year-olds have never been out of the frame in the last nine years of this race. So it is that he raises his stakes to jackpot level for two bets in one race.

Punters have short memories. That’s something you can rely on. You just need the patience others don’t have, and you will have big-odds winners.

My naps hat-trick was lost yesterday when Rayaheen was lamed (struck into) during her Listed race at Sandown. Hopefully, she will be back. Certainly she will be at better offers than she should be when she does come back.

As markets form for Goodwood, keep an eye out for ‘forgotten’ horses, particularly those with course form on the Sussex track and those from stables (Mark Johnston’s?) which do particularly well at the meeting.

The ‘forgotten’ form of the Johnston yard is that it always does well at today’s Ascot meeting just prior to Goodwood. It has had two winners and three places from eight runners in the Brown Jack Stakes (4.05), and two wins and four places from seven runners in the 10-furlong handicap (4.40).

I’m going to postulate that work companions of today’s runners in those Ascot races – Hurricane Higgins (4.05) and Hajras (4.40) – will be seen at Goodwood, and that past results at both meetings have something to do with that notion.

Johnston has no fewer than 20 possibles at Goodwood on Tuesday; 27 on Wednesday; six on Friday, and two on Saturday (but more can be entered for handicaps in last two days); how many ‘forgotten’ horses among that 55; how many could have their form boosted today?

Hurricane Higgins has a tough task giving weight all round in the Brown Jack, notably to Montaser. The stats say that Montaser is ‘a good thing’ to reach the frame.

In eight of the last nine years (omitting the year of the switch to Newbury at the time of the Ascot renovations), six second-season animals have run in this race, finishing 131142.

Montaser looks strong on form, despite being moved up to this trip for the first time: lightly raced, he finished well to win over 12f at Haydock and was not disgraced, though the going was soft, behind St Leger hope Rosslyn Castle at Chester.

Bilidn is massively raised in class (never won above level 5) and Western Prize doesn’t deserve to be second favourite at 4.2, at time of writing, when Hurricane Higgins is 13.5.

When ‘Higgins’ was third off today’s mark at Newmarket in May, Western Prize was four lengths behind receiving 16lb. Today he gets 9lb.

Forget Hurricane Higgins’ recent form with cut in the ground. He has run only twice with ‘firm’ in the going return and finished second and third at the level of Group-3 and class-2 handicap.

Hajras (4.40) and Robemaker have gone clear in the BETDAQ market this morning, with Love Your Looks the dog on a raft, drifting to 8.6.

Love Your Looks has failed twice when upped in grade, raised from her class-5 win to class 4 (second, beaten a head) and from class 4 to class 3 (second again, beaten a head.. again!). Now she’s in class 2, and I would love – pun intended – to have been one of those hitting the green early on.

Dandy could bounce back, but to what? His maiden win, albeit on the firm, hasn’t worked out, with just one winner coming from the 10 beaten horses. The visors are on.

Robemaker has a poor strike-rate (1-14) and back-to-form Haylaman looks the main danger to Hajras who, I’m told, is a lot better than his CV suggests, and is open to improvement after only four runs.

When we don’t have rain, we make it ourselves – York has been watered – but that may not be enough for Mid Mon Lady and Dragonera, who both want cut for the Listed (7.30).

Barefoot Lady, firm-ground winner twice, one of them Group 3, is left leading the market, but we’ve back to the same old, same old question at this time of year: can the older horses beat the improving three-year-olds, giving the weight away?

Blinkers have to transform Gathering; Firdaws was well behind Momentary in the Spring; Emirates Queen is a nervous sort, who was walked to the post for both of her maidens, winning one in slow time at Doncaster with 10 losers behind her.

It all suggests that Momentary, who stumbled and lost all chance in the Ribblesdale after beating the subsequent Oaks runner-up at Newbury, can take this for a stable which returned to form with Bridgehampton yesterday (I wrote about that one and kick myself for missing it). The 7.0 Momentary is wrong.

WIN-30 JACKPOT: 11.3pts win MONTASER and 2.4pts win and place HURRICANE HIGGINS (4.05 Ascot)
BET 8pts win HAJRAS and 2.2pts win (stakes saver) HAYLAMAN (4.40 Ascot)
BET 3.3pts win (nap) MOMENTARY (7.30 York)

* Daqman’s selections are backed to win 20 points (unless raised to jackpot level) so, if you divide 20 by his stake, you know the Betdaq offer taken at the time of writing.

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