LEGEND 20.0 FINAL FLING ON THE FLAT: Lists of BETDAQ offers in the orange described as ‘sensational’ by Daqman today sees him spray his stakes around big value bets – including a 20.0 shot in the November Handicap – on the final day of the Flat season.
DAQMAN NAPS 8.6 BETDAQ MORNING OFFER: He steps up his stakes to win-30 for every bet, revealing a top jumper to follow on the very day that National Hunt takes over. He dares to make it his nap at 8.6 on BETDAQ this morning.
12.30 Saint-cloud (Criterium de Saint-cloud) Aidan O’Brien, who has won this four times, including with Fame And Glory, sends out Mekong River who, by Galileo out of a Fillies’ Mile winner, is unbeaten after four races.
Mekong River wears blinkers (swapped for visors) and cheekpieces but galloped them into submission in a Listed at Leopardstown last time by more than six lengths and five lengths.
Clive Cox’s Shankly has that ‘could be anything’ look, as a winner of an ordinary race on firm ground, but by a sire, Monsun, whose magnificent progeny – including Fiorente, Novellist, Stacelita and Shirocco – all won on the soft.
You’d expect Roger Charlton’s Laugharne to be by Dylan Thomas but he’s an Authorized, so loved it soft for his Goodwood maiden.
It’s a big step up to today’s Group 1 but, intriguingly, Andre Fabre’s jockey Maxime Guyon is booked, going for a hat–trick after winning the last two renewals.
1.50 Doncaster With one exception, this has gone to horses aged three and four, with all winners carrying less than 9st, and all bar one at a double-figure SP.
Stall 2 has won this two years running, beating 5 and 1, and a single-figure, ground-saving stall could be vital on this stamina-sapping surface.
The alternative has to be a hold-up horse which can quicken out of the mud.
Favourite Treat (12.0 on BETDAQ this morning) and Magistral (9.2) have won on the surface, are drawn low and, as three-year-olds, should improve. CD-winner Dusky Queen is in that age group, though she has a mountain to climb with Lilac Lace.
But Lilac Lace – drawn wide in 16 – is a front-runner and has only ever won bossing small fields. Stablemate Laffan comes into it but has drifted like a lonely dog on a raft, over my betting weir at 32.0 this morning.
Jockey find of the season Oisin Murphy doesn’t have a ride in the November Handicap and is mysteriously missing from Highland Colori in the sprint at 2.25, so this is his only ride on the final day.
His 5lb claim brings the Lincoln winner at Doncaster, Levitate, down to 9st 1lb in this and he had a summer break for a late campaign which has already produced results.
The 12.5 this morning on BETDAQ is tasty, and I could afford two or three bets in the race because of a sensational 104% orange when last year’s Total SP on the race, revealing the bookies’ take-out, was a massive 135%.
2.05 Wincanton (Elite Hurdle) Paul Nicholls has won this six times and his form figures in this since 2009 are 1211, with subsequent Aintree Hurdle scorer Zarkandar winning it for him last year, but four-year-olds haven’t scored for 10 years, since they landed a hat-trick, launched by Nicholls’ Azertyuiop in 2001.
Is Far West an Azertyuiop? Is the 4lb he gets from Melodic Rendezvous enough? It looks close, with Melodic Rendezvous a Grade-1 novice winner, but Far West only a class-2 winner, albeit runner-up in the Triumph Hurdle.
My view at this stage is that Far West needs rain. Cotton Mill needs further. Karinga Dancer needs to improve. The top weight has won three of the last four runnings of this. So his 5.4 looks wrong.
2.40 Wincanton (Badger Ales Trophy) Paul Nicholls is 12112 in this but his pair have to give weigh to some smart horses down the handicap
David Pipe has won it off the bottom before (Abrigante 10st 4lb in 2007) but the career horse in this (that means I want to follow him) is De La Bech (8.8 this morning), very highly regarded and has blossomed at home. A long holiday to overcome but targeted at this race.
3.35 Doncaster (November Handicap) My ABC guide yesterday – favouring young horses below 9st and with Doncaster experience – turned up Forgotten Hero and Nicholascopernicus, which were charged to this column’s account at 16.0 and 15.5. I can see 17.0 and 15.0 this morning.
With a 106% list of offers this morning, compared with a 132% Total SP a year ago, I could have another pound as every bet is value, compared with the squeeze later on.
Communicator, 3lb lower than when second last year, was top of the Racing Post Ratings on past form, but their ‘future ratings’ today just favour Conduct.
As a Selkirk, Conduct will love the ground, his stable is acey-deucey (November form figures of 22113112) and he looks primed with a Doncaster run over shorter, staying on, last time.
But he is very lightly raced for a six-year-old and clearly has problems, so you have to trust that they have been able to hold him together.
Border Legend is up in trip again but that should suit this big horse, who is also by Selkirk, and looks big at 20.0, as I write. He’s a ‘sneaky’ one to me, unexposed and saved up for this.
Rhombus is dangerous with Silvestre De Sousa taking over but is no value and can be considered only a stakes saver. Lahaag hit form when upped to today’s trip last time out, but Nicholascopernicus, second that day, should just about catch him on revised terms.
The five points Lahaag was in front of him in the BETDAQ market this morning reflects the pulling power of his trainer, John Gosden, who has won this race twice, but does it reflect the horse’s chance?
DAQMAN’S BETS (Bets are to win 30 points)
BET 5pts win LAUGHARNE, 3.8pts win SHANKLY and 5pts win (stakes saver) MEKONG RIVER (12.30 Saint-cloud)
BET 4pts win MAGISTRAL, and 2.6pts win on each FAVOURITE TREAT and LEVITATE (1.50 Doncaster)
BET 7.5pts win MELODIC RENDEZVOUS and 3pts win (stakes saver) FAR WEST (2.05 Wincanton)
BET 4pts win (nap) DE LA BECH, with 1pt win (stakes saver) STANDING OVATION (2.40 Wincanton)
BET 1.5pts win and place BORDER LEGEND, and 1pt win (stakes saver) RHOMBUS, to also cover: ante-post 2pts win on each FORGOTTEN HERO (16.0) and NICHOLASCOPERNICUS 15.5 (3.35 Doncaster)
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