BETS AT 44.0 AND 30.0 (TWICE) TO OPEN THE LEGER MEETING: Daqman finds some massive value bets on BETDAQ as the Ladbrokes St Leger meeting is launched at Doncaster this afternoon, including a 44.0 offer and two 30.0 rank outsiders.
FOUR BETDAQ RACES TONIGHT: Daqman also checks out four Betdaq-sponsored races at Kempton Park tonight and finds a 12.5 offer which should be shorter on the balance of form.
2.00 Doncaster Trainers are creatures of habit and the form of Jazz is almost déjà vu to what we saw in this race last year from Charles Hills’ winner, Regal Dan.
The tune Hills has been getting out of Jazz sounds so similar to what he got from Regal Dan: fair maiden efforts capped by an excellent recent run at the big York meeting.
Regal Dan was beaten a length in a nursery at the Ebor Festival; Jazz was two-lengths sixth of 14 in that nursery, staying on. Just like ‘Dan’, he now steps up to 7f for the first time.
Jazz runs instead of stablemate Captain Bob, who has the option of the £300,000 sales race tomorrow. Fair Ranger, also engaged here on Saturday, takes this earlier chance for ‘king of the nurseries’, Richard Hannon in place of absentee Djinni.
Problem for me over my cornflakes is that, by the time they line up, rain could be getting into the ground. Or not. I remember doing Haydock last week in advance of forecast heavy rain. They had hardly a drop. This column was the loser.
Braidley’s the one familiar with a soft surface and, unlike many in the field, has raced in this class 2, which seemed to find out Fair Ranger at York, though he was slowly away.
Fair Ranger, Emaad, Master Carpenter and Mrcarbonfootprint have been seen front-running, so I’m further inclined to Jazz, who has been getting outpaced at sprint trips but staying on. This 7f will suit. But remember its early days for these babies and the going might change.
Stunner or stumer? Football agent Willie McKay, who landed a gamble with Goal – his only runner so far this month – has, appropriately, Donny Rover running in this at 44.0 on BETDAQ, as I write. Well experienced and this is only his second handicap: he’s a stone lower than in the first!
2.30 Doncaster Three horses front the market, separated by 0.5 points. That’s how hard it is this morning, though BETDAQ layers make the play friendly, with offers on the field adding up to 109%. Bookies will double that as their take-out.
Richard Hannon is the expert. His form in this since 2004 is 10111, and Expert has run in the pattern at Goodwood. He returned to that course last time and was clearly the ‘moral’, beaten half a length, conceding 19lb to the winner.
Free Code and Justice Day both drop down from Group ventures, with Free Code not liking the firm ground, and dwarfed by the company when taking on Great White Eagle, and Justice Day not liking it York soft when outclassed in the Gimcrack.
Lightning Thunder gets the fillies’ allowance but, where you might reasonably claim that Justice Day and Expert are exposed, ‘Thunder’ is under a cloud here, betting wise, in that she has had just one race.
‘Never trust a two-year-old until after the second run’ is an old racing adage. She might ‘bounce’ or she may come on a stone. As they say on QI: ‘Nobody knows.’ I bet on potential only when I get a price so, in this case, I’ll leave it to the expert.
3.00 Doncaster There’s no three-year-old winner in the stats for this, which makes the performance of Excelette, third in her second season last year, all the more commendable. Masamah was behind in fifth.
Masamah, Judge ‘N Jury and Swan Song have all led in their races, so there should be plenty of pace on. Could-be snag with Excelette is that she has never won with cut in the ground: 10.5 takes that into account but it’s a gamble
The same applies to morning-favourite Justineo (so an even bigger gamble), though he has been placed on the soft and, if they ran to Goodwood form, he beats Masamah (hampered), Medicean Man (dwelt), Borderlescott (hampered) and Bungleinthejungle.
But Goodwood form is not reliable, and there are reasons, as my parentheses suggest, for it being particularly unreliable this time around.
Only Medicean Man (third in this race two years ago) has won in the pattern of 2013 and today runs his first handicap in England since last year’s Wokingham. But he has to give weight all round, and younger horses, aged four and five, are 7-10 in this.
Another racing adage – ‘if in doubt, go for the improver’ – suggests that we should not overlook Swan Song, brought along slowly and just now fulfilling her potential.
The trouble with sprints is that you can run them a dozen times and get different results unless you have a stand-out star among them. There is no Sole Power today, so I’ll have a bit each way on Swan Song and, trying to avoid the race becoming my swan song, I’ll save on the favourite.
3.35 Doncaster Thus far it’s taken a jockey’s jockey to win this, like Mick Kinane, my rider of the century, and Julie Krone, world’s leading female jockey of all time.
Who fits the bill today? Well, my pick of them all would have to be Michael Hills, Derby winning rider of nearly 150 Group winners, on Callmeakhab.
When Gay Kelleway was too ill to ride through wasting, I gave her a job on my desk in Fleet Street. She responded years later by giving me the leg of a horse. The leg was good. The horse wasn’t so tasty.
Gay, whose dad, Paul, rode for two of the greatest-ever trainers, Ryan Price and Fred Winter, is up on a contender here, Pelmanism, from a yard which had good winners on Saturday and Sunday.
The handicapper is often a big help in classified races, which are basically weight for age, but not this time. He’s managed a septuple dead-heat here: seven horses on 70, five on 69, and not one declared lower than 65. And you want me to pick the winner?
4.10 Doncaster Three-year-olds 5, four-year-olds 4. That’s the past record of this race. Not an older horse in sight. Principal players are Roger Varian (Elkaayed) with current form figures of 1111121 and John Gosden (Gatewood) on 111.
I have a BETDAQ market totting up to only 104% in front of me, with those two dominating the offers. There should be value in whatever I choose, but what is it to be?
The entire, Gatewood, home from Down Under, acts on any going, which has to be my toast from the breakfast table. Save on Elkaayed.
4.45 Doncaster Regal Dan won the opening nursery on this card last year, and is the right end of the handicap at this time of year.
A big field but only 109% in the orange, as I write. It’s an ‘anything goes’ handicap but Secret Art should be involved in the finish on lines through Life Partner and Secretinthepartk.
5.15 Doncaster The winner seems always to come from the bottom half of the handicap (9st the highest weight carried). It’s not a betting race but I fancy a couple for places at 30.0 the win this morning on BETDAQ.
The handicapper has had a real down on Hazelrigg. Tim Easterby’s eight-year-old is dropped to 73 for the first time since he won this race in 2010 and, the way Tim has been going this summer, he could win a handicap with the stable cat.
Eland Ally, second in this race a year ago, is 10lb better off with the winner, Haajes, for threeparts of a length, yet is also 30.0 to Haajes’ 12.5 on BETDAQ, as I write.
5.45 Kempton (Commission Free 1st Month At Betdaq Classified Stakes) The handicapper has Gabrial’s Gift clear of Song Of Parkes, with third-in Frognal the first choice of the Racing Post Ratings and being claimed off to the tune of 7lb and 12.5 on BETDAQ this morning, back on the AW surface he much prefers.
6.45 Kempton (Betdaq 1st UK Race Commission Free Maiden Fillies’ Stakes) This is a decent prize and the top yards have milked it: Cecil, Gosden, Fanshawe, Stoute and Bin Suroor. But the market hadn’t settled for me at the time of writing, well over the BETDAQ norm at 120%.
7.15 Kempton (£200 Free Bets At Betdaq Handicap) Favourites have failed every time in this, despite consistent success for quality in the top half of the handicap, Apparently.
7.45 Kempton (Winners Are Welcome At Betdaq Conditions Stakes) It’s that man Hannon again! He had the winner of this last year and, on 98 for the year, could well hit the 100 here after hot chances at Donny.
Day of Conquest would be an appropriate 99er or ton-up winner, if only his form had worked out better. So it could well be Charlie Appleby again with Safety Check. Apparently.
DAQMAN’S BETS (staked to win 20 points)
BET 4.5pts win JAZZ (2.00 Doncaster)
BET 8pts win EXPERT, and 0.4pts win and place DONNY ROVER (2.30 Doncaster)
BET 2pts win EXCELETTE, 1pt win and place SWAN SONG, and 1.5pts win (stakes saver) JUSTINEO (3.00 Doncaster)
BET 3.3pts win CALLMEAKHAB (3.35 Doncaster)
BET 6.6pts win (nap) GATEWOOD and 4pts win (stakes saver) ELKAAYED (4.10 Doncaster)
BET 3.3pts win REGAL DAN and 2.3pts win SECRET ART (4.45 Doncaster)
BET 0.6pts win and place on each ELAND ALLY and HAZELRIGG (5.15 Doncaster)
BET 1.7pts win and place FROGNAL (5.45 Kempton)
BET 3.5pts win APPARENTLY (7.15 Kempton)
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