DAQMAN ON SONG WITH 7-2 WINNER: Rock Song (WON 7-2) kept most of the Daqman bank intact yesterday, and there are bets today at Pontefract and Carlisle, with Master Rajeem the nap for a trainer currently with a 50% strike-rate. A P McCoy booked.

JACKPOT BET ON ‘JACKPOT’ AT PONTY: Follow Daqman as he checks the BETDAQ market and finds that a four-horse race at Pontefract is full of intrigue. He raises his stakes to jackpot level on Hit The Jackpot.

Graham Lee will surely never regret his career change. There could even be a Classic on the cards, the way the ex-jumps jockey has been riding the Flat.

But right now he is highly sought after, by southern and northern stables alike, as the man to do the job. Snag for the punter is: which one is the job?

Normally you can spot a significant casual ride for a class jockey but – as at Pontefract today – Graham gets four single mounts. Charles Hills, Ollie Pears, Nigel Tinkler and Ian Williams all want his services for one-offs.

And tomorrow at Nottingham, Kristin Stubbs, Kevin Ryan and Stan Moore are keen to buy the benefit of Lee’s special talent and link up for solo rides.

Of this plethora of trainers, Ollie is loafing in the cold-trainers’ list (93 days without success); and ‘Tink’ hasn’t had a winner this year from 20 starters, Flat, AW and Jumps. Ian Williams is doing ok. Hills is hot.

He’s had three winners and three in the minor placings from his last six runners but none ridden by Graham, whereas Williams had him ride one of his three places out of the last four runners but not the winner he had at Kempton on Monday.

So it is that The Welsh Wizard (2.40 Pontefract) looked the one. Until I checked on the BETDAQ betting. Mick Channon’s Elidor had leap-frogged the Lee-Hills runner in the early exchanges.

Channon has had a good year, scoring freely at the end of March, though six of his last 11 runners have hit the woodwork, placed without winning.

But what’s this? Both had been overtaken by an early-doors plunge on unraced Libertarian, entered in the Dante Stakes, with the stable’s choice for today’s job, Philip Makin.

That leaves as the outsider of four, a horse called Thorpe, first run back after being gelded, trainer Ralph Beckett. Poor form so far but taking on meaning in this race today.

And why? Because of Beckett’s figures at ‘Ponty’: 14 of his last 15 runners there have reached the frame, five of them winners.

Of course, he’s certain to reach the frame today – since there’s only four runners – barring accident to Thorpe. But Thorpe is his only runner of the day there, and he has Seb Sanders booked.

I can’t remember for some time a race of such insignificance being so intriguing when you take the covers off. Thorpe at 15.5 was my ‘pound’ bet today, with a saver on the favourite.

Better bets must surely be in either the class-2 handicap or the class-3. As I shall say repeatedly this Flat season, you can’t rely on horses below class 3.

For new readers starting here, my old mentor, Paul Major, of Horse Sense form, used to say: ‘Not below C-level!’ He was talking not about the water table but about the lie of the land where punters are concerned.

For ‘C-level’ now read ‘Class 3’ for this valuable rule: you simply cannot rely on horses at a lower level to reproduce their form when you want them to not even if they’ve just won. In fact, that makes them less likely to.

Even at a higher level, at better meetings, you get 40-1 and 66-1 winners, as we have done in the last few days. So remember the golden rule.

That takes me to the class-2 10-furlong handicap, where the horse I originally put up for the Lincoln was subject of inspired money this morning.

Hit The Jackpot is reunited with Daniel Tudhope, who was away riding Penitent on Lincoln day so I dropped ‘Hit’ from him my jackpot calculations.

Team O’Meara-Tudhope are back together with this Pivotal gelding sure to like the ground – the forecast rain would be welcome – and, with Group form in Ireland, could still be overpriced at the 5.7 I see in the orange.

My bets are charged to the BETDAQ account (see below) at stakes to win 20 points. Always. Whatever the day. Whatever the meeting.

But you will see that I raise the stakes, and the winnings target (to what I call ‘jackpot’ level) in the better races at the better prices. That’s what I call horse sense.

Danger warning number 2: three-year-old handicaps are very difficult. In fact, for all three-year-old races, you simply cannot rely on two-year-old form.

This time the adage is: last year was last year, this year is this. We’ll talk about that some more next week when I list my horses to follow, with the Classics in mind.

BET 1.3pts win on each THORPE and (stakes saver) LIBERTARIAN (2.40 Pontefract)
WIN-30 JACKPOT: bet 6.3pts win HIT THE JACKPOT (4.15 Pontefract)
BET 12pts win (nap) MASTER RAJEEM (5.25 Carlisle)

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