FIVE BIG-HITTING SATURDAY BETS: The market has been talking winners all week and yesterday there were 18 winning favourites or joint-favourites. Do your own check today, starting with the following five big punts this morning:

GAMBLES: ASCOT 3.00 Shan Blue; HAYDOCK 3.15 Yeah Man; NEWCASTLE 3.57 Crazy Crackers

FIRM FAVOURITES:
ASCOT 1.15 Inthewaterside; HAYDOCK 2.10 Salver.

ONE IN THE BULL’S-EYE, PRICEWISE:
Daqman has win-50 bull’s-eye bets at both Ascot and Haydock today as he goes head-to-head with Pricewise (current scores 25-9 to Daqman).


BRAVE BID FOR CHELTENHAM

⭕ 1.50 Ascot (Reynoldstown Chase) Named after a dual Grand National winner of the 1930s, but the race has produced only one Liverpool legend since then, Royal Athlete (1990), though, in its heyday, Gra∂e-1 greats Brown Lad, Little Owl and One Man were among its winners.

Cheltenham entry Apple Away has the mares’ allowance and has won four of her last six starts. Her two defeats in that sequence were both when 14 lengths behind Grey Dawning, so I doubt she will want to take that one on again in the Brown Advisory!

Improver Brave Kingdom could be a punt for the Brown Advisory, if he could beat Apple Away just as easily today.


RUBAUD OR LION: WE WIN

⭕ 2.05 Wincanton (Kingwell Hurdle) Rubaud completed a four-timer when Elite Hurdle winner here in November but has since been belittled by Constitution Hill (Christmas Hurdle) and Lossiemouth (International Hurdle).

Last Spring he won going away from Colonel Mustard in the Scottish Champion Hurdle and, on his home track, could be too good for Nemean Lion.

But we win either way because a good run from Nemean Lion boosts our bet on Jay Jay Reilly in the next at Ascot.


JAY JAY IS BIG BIG VALUE

⭕ 2.25 Ascot Back-to-back winners are rare in a handicap like this but Irish Hill comes to today’s renewal off a rating 8lb lower than when scoring last year, if you add in Freddie Gingell’s allowance.

That means he gets weight from Bad who must have gone bad – if he was ever that good – to suffer defeat in class 4 here at Ascot in December and require a wind op plus first-time cheekpieces.

And Irish Hill should make up the eight lengths and more that Rambo T beat him at Newbury at the end of December. The turnaround is 16lb.

Rare Edition is a hat-trick-winning novice who came back to form the last day and will relish the extra distance.

Hyland is down in trip and 12lb higher than for the first of his autumn double. Le Milos switches from fences but may be the key to this race.

His 12st top spot means that Skelton stablemates Jay Jay Reilly and Santos Blue have realistic weights.

Jay Jay had also switched from chasing to land the Lanzarote, with Graded runner-up by a neck here at Ascot, Impose Toi, beaten favourite third just behind Greatwood fifth, Nemean Lion. Solid form.

Betdaq Betting Exchange 7.5 Irish Hill, 12 Jay Jay Reilly


IRON HORSE HAS WILL TO WIN

⭕ 3.15 Haydock (Grand National Trial) PREVIEW: See Tuesday.

There is often something to back each-way in the National from finishers in this race: the 2012 runner-up, Neptune Collonges, won at Aintree; the 2017 runner-up, Blaklion, finished 4th at Aintree; and Mon Mome, 7th in the 2009 Trial, won the National at 100-1.

But today’s pair in the same colours, Famous Bridge and Iron Bridge, both need to win to get to Aintree with a chance.

Iron Bridge hasn’t scored since a 125-rated novice and, though second, was trounced 34 lengths in the Welsh Grand National.

Famous Bridge made a mistake on a sound surface in the Great Yorkshire and was pulled up. Had previously landed a double here at Haydock on soft-heavy in the late autumn.

But not a single favourite has won this in the decade, and why Yeah Man is at the front of the market this morning is a mystery. He’s up 16lb for failing to win even one of his last four chases.

The weight rise was for running second at Down Royal to The Abbey, with Galon de Vauzelle third: both have identical records since; beaten in five of their last six starts.

My Silver Lining’s Warwick Classic hasn’t worked out and Animal, who beat him at Sandown in early December, has failed three times since. Snipe is improving but, only seven, is here a year too soon on the stats.

With four of the last five winners of this Trial of double-figure age, carrying between 11st 4lb and 11st 12lb, we shall assume that the hardened warriors are having their National here today.

Iwildoit and Highland Hunter the one-two in the 2021 Welsh Grand National, and Chambard, winner of the Kim Muir (2022) and the Becher Chase last December.

Iwilldoit (BETDAQ 9.6 this morning) was third in the Welsh Grand National when Iron Bridge (7.1) was second, receiving 4lb, similar to today. I’ll take those two for another battle in the mud.


GOLD BOOST FOR BUSY MAN

⭕ 3.36 Ascot Chase Only three with a chance of winning but a triple whammy of form horse, improver and small-field tactician.

Said to be back to his best, Ahoy Senor’s front-running tactics produced results of 1211 in four-horse races in 2021-22 at around 3m, but he was beaten for finish by Bravemansgame and – at Cheltenham in a bigger field – by L’Homme Presse.

Is this steep drop in trip likely to give him a lead that L’Homme Presse can’t catch?

All we know is that the only occasion over fences that Ahoy Senior tried this trick at around today’s trip, 15 races back in October 2021, he was caught and unseated rider two out.

He has been in poor form for a year now, with the exception of an attempt to make all in the Aintree Bowl last April. Shishkin ran him down.

That leaves Pic D’Orhy, second to the same Shishkin in this race in 2023, regarded as the improver in today’s field, yet with his rating a flat 162 for all four races in the last year.

All three principals are the same age, yet Pic D’Orhy has raced 29 times, and the two others only 18 (Ahoy Senor) and 13 (L’Homme Presse).

L’Homme Presse (which ironically means Busy Man) is unbeaten in completed races since April 2022.

He takes time to wind up and, as I see it, the tactics of Ahoy Senor will play into his hands and boost his Gold Cup hopes.

DAQMAN BETS

1.50 Ascot (win 12)
BET 4pts win BRAVE KINGDOM

2.05 Wincanton (win 12)
BET 4pts win RUBAUD

2.25 Ascot (win 50 bull’s-eye bets)
BET 7.7pts win IRISH HILL
BET 4.5pts win JAY JAY REILLY
(5pts place to cover all win stakes)

3.15 Haydock (win 50 bull’s-eye bets)
BET 8pts win IRON BRIDGE
BET 5.75pts win IWILLDOIT

3.36 Ascot (supernap)
BET 20pts win L’HOMME PRESSE


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Start with a bank and decide how much you can afford to lose over a period of time, and determine the size of your bets accordingly. Daqman makes this variation every day.

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THE STRIKER Tues: ARSENAL v CHELSEA
THE ULTRA Tues: LAZIO v JUVENTUS
THE EDGE IPL Tues: Chennai Super Kings v Lucknow Super Giants
DAQMAN Mon: Pontefract NAP
DAQSTATS Mon: Pontefract NAP
THE ULTRA Mon: Serie A Preview
THE EDGE IPL Mon: Rajasthan Royals v Mumbai Indians
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