JACK’S ALL RIGHT ON BETDAQ AT 16.0: Daqman sifts through two races in particular today, one at Pontefract, one at Uttoxeter, and finds a 16.0 offer on the Flat and a nap over the sticks. The 16.0 ‘Jack’ could be an ace!

ALL STAKED TO WIN 20 POINTS: Remember, Daqman’s bets are all staked to win 20 points, including the nap, which is the horse he regards as the best of his selections.

It looks odds on an outsider. If the stats work out, the first four paper favourites for the King Richard 111 Handicap at Pontefract today have, all told, only around a one in 10 chance of winning.

The results by stall over the last decade reveal that only one horse has won from the first five stalls and all bar one was within five stalls of the highest draw, with the bigger the field the bigger the chance for the very high numbers.

The favourites, Klynch (in 5), Mr Wolf (in 4), My Kingdom (in 2) and Flowing Caper (in 3), therefore have a mountain to climb, and the chances of last year’s winner from 8, Cornus (in 10 this time), are greatly enhanced.

The dual winner in 2008-9, Dickie Le Davoir, looks like a must lay from stall 1 but be warned that he’s a Johnny-come-late who likes a strong pace and a difficult task.

If your horse is drawn 6, 7 or 8, he is coming from where six of the last 10 winners were installed. Summer Dance (in 6) is now rated below 78 for the first time since he won at Beverley last Spring but Arganil in 7 and Thunderball in 8 have done their winning on AW.

Thrust Control (stall 9) has a four-out-of-six strike-rate when running on good to firm below a mile: form figures 110101.

After running mainly in class 2, Jack My Boy is down a grade and back to his last winning mark; his customary blinkers are removed, but he has won without. This is not Haajes’ surface and Haadeeth hasn’t won since the debut nearly two years ago.

So my short-list is Cornus, Jack My Boy, Summer Dance, and Thrust Control. Paul Midgley (Summer Dance) is on a long losing run at Pontefract, as is David Nicholls, by the way.

Thrust Control is a class-6 horse these days, so I’m taking CD-winners Cornus and Jack My Boy at 9.8 and 16.0 on Betdaq value this morning.

The second race I chose was the 3m handicap hurdle at Uttoxeter on the basis that so few horses can get the trip. In fact, the race has been split in two.

In the first leg at 6.20, only three horses have won over the distance but, now 13, Balladeer hasn’t won a hurdle race since 2003.

Folie A Deux seems to be a two-miler, while Divy, Beat The System, Yeoman Spirit and Winter Alchemy are on long losing runs and, though lightly raced and unexposed, Jackson has a lot of catching up to do at the age of nine.

Sovereign Spirit is a plater these days and Whereveryougoigo looked to benefit from a slow pace at Stratford.

It seems to me that Snake Charmer will set the pace and is a back-and-lay bet at the 9.2 I saw this morning but Chit Chat looked an above-average novice recruit who saw this trip out well at Worcester.

There’s a worry about Chit Chat’s handicap mark but Jonjo O’Neill and Richie McLernon won it last year with a six-year-old which hadn’t even broken its maiden but raced off 8lb higher than Chit Chat.

In the second division (9.20), Flying Doctor, Everaard and Herne Bay are the distance winners but only Ian Williams is in any kind of form and he’s booked Richard Johnson for Herne Bay.

A winner three times off higher marks on good to firm, Herne Bay goes well fresh and it may end up a McCoy-Johnson battle with the champion trying to get Frosted Grape home, taking over from a sequence of apprentice rides on this dual course winner.

BET 5.5pts win CAVITIE (2.15 Wolverhampton)
BET 11pts win DARK PROMISE (4.00 Pontefract)
BET 2.2pts win CORNUS, and 1.3pts win and place JACK MY BOY (4.30 Pontefract)
BET 5pts win (nap) CHIT CHAT (6.20 Uttoxeter)
BET 2.3pts win and place HERNE BAY and 2.5pts win (saver) FROSTED GRAPE (9.20 Uttoxeter)