Saturdays racing – Around the courses

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Our blog on January 8th was titled “Welcome Rain” & then it was very welcome, I think we are in a position to call for it again! Good ground at the end of January is not ideal for National Hunt racing. We are now left with small field sizes, which is due to a mixture of the grounds conditions & the low prize money on offer, this all comes with the backdrop of the “Rise” in Jockey’s weights situation, which needs clarification from all parties involved & the sooner this is rectified to a suitable conclusion the better for everyone…..

And then we have the, what has become standard tweets & articles “Only X weeks to the Festival”. I think we all know how long it is to the start & the constant bombarding of tweets every Tuesday is getting a touch laborious, along with the Podcasts with Ante Post bets for which horse will run in which race & as has happened recently at Newbury, was made favourite for the race & wasn’t even qualified to run in it! (Just have a rest guys, we will all feel better for a couple of weeks off!)

Right, where were we, oh yes the blog for today’s racing…. This will be Chris’ last blog for a few weeks as he is taking some time away to spend with his family..
Plenty of racing, just some smaller fields to contend with & hopefully, we can find some winners & value!

Chris –

Cheltenham

1.55 Paddy Power Cheltenham Countdown Handicap

As usual, a competitive handicap over the intermediate distance, and whilst not as hot as the ones on New Years Day or the International meeting over this course, it nevertheless has some old rivals locking horns once more. Magic Saint returned to somewhere near his better form when 4th here on New Years Day, and whilst he was beaten a fair way, he has since been dropped another 2lb’s. Good ground will suit and having been runner-up here off 157 last spring, he will now run off 147 today. At the current prices he makes plenty of each-way appeal against a few of these who are either weighted to their absolute best, or may appreciate a slightly slower surface. A final reminder to shop around with several bookies offering enhanced terms in this race.

2.30 Paddy Power Cotswold Chase

A small field for this years renewal and one I was going to swerve, that was until I looked at the current prices. Aye Right has been a revelation for connections, winning the Rehearsal Chase in November off a mark of 151. That form gives him every chance today, leaving him just 1lb short on ratings of odds-on favourite, Chantry House, He boasts some smart course form too, finishing 3rd in the Ultima on the Old Course last season off 154, and 5th in the RSA back in 2020. With questions to answer over a few of his rivals today, he makes plenty of appeal and will likely be staying on nicely up the hill.

Jamie –

1:40 – BetVictor Solerina Mares Novice Hurdle (G3) – Selection: Grangee

This looks to be a strong renewal of this Grade 3 for the Mares. Willie Mullins has trained the winner of this race in 5 of the last 9 years and it appears he holds all the aces today. Grangee is a solid mare who is down in class today (Ran in Grade 1 last time out) and on all known form should be bang there in the closing stages. The daughter of Great Pretender ran in the Future Champions Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown’s Christmas last time around and was far from disgraced when finished fourth, beaten 4.5 lengths. Time will tell how strong that form is but she should be more comfortable today racing against lesser opposition and back against her own sex. The decent ground is another positive and at the prices she is arguably the value bet in this 9 runner race. Her stablemate Brandy Love is the main danger

2:57 – Virgin Bet EBF Mares Novices’ limited Handicap Chase – Selection: Emmas Joy

This is a wide open six runner contest with the favourite Precious Eleanor being 5/2 in the betting. Dan Skelton’s Emmas Joy is down a couple of grades today from listed level and should be in the mix. Her form this season is a little uninspiring with a well beaten 4th & 6th in listed heats but she should find the tempo of racing against lesser opposition today more comfortable. It must also be noted that those two races came on the back off a 20 month layoff. The step back up to 2m 6f could be a smart move from the Skelton’s and I’m feeling positive about her chances today. Has won on good in the past and the stable are in form.

Rich –

Uttoxeter – Good
4.08 Handicap Hurdle – Class 5 – 4yo+ – 2m 4f….
Doireann – Shirocco X Sew N Sew 5yo mare.

4 hurdle runs in her career, with 1 place from the 4. The mare was pulled up over C&D on December 7th on soft ground. She finished 3rd on her first 2 starts over hurdles but in small fields of 5 & 6 respectively. The opening handicap mark was 92 & it has now dropped to 87, the mark which she ran from on December 31st at Warwick, when a 7 & 1/2 length runner up to Shutthegate, a mark which she runs from today – Each Way

Lingfield (AW) – Standard
4.23 Handicap – Class 5 – 4yo+ – 6f 1yd…
Cappananty Con – Zebedee X Fairmont 8yo gelding.

He won this race last year & his last win was in February last year. His win in this race was from a mark of 68 & today he runs from a mark of 64. His last 4 runs at this course read 6/4/4/6 so his mark has dropped from his AW high of 74 last April. He has 3 C&D wins & 3 Places from 12 C&D runs – Each Way

That is everything for you today folks, thanks for popping by & for your support… We may have a nice surprise tomorrow at 7pm…

All the Best – The Arseonlineracing Team

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WattySpots – Part 6

Neil Watson was back at Haydock over the weekend & brings you WattySpots – Part 6….

Good day to you all, Saturday 22nd January saw myself popping down the road to the local, Haydock Park, for Peter Marsh Chase Day. While all the attention was on horses like Jonbon who duly went in as expected,
I have as usual picked out three horses who are worth noting down in the notebooks and trackers so let’s take a look at them.

1 – Fortescue – 8yo B Gelding
Trainer – Henry Daly.

A solid staying handicapper this season, Fortescue has ran well in some of the big chases this term, from his seventh in the Ladbrokes Trophy to yesterday’s third place in the Peter Marsh Chase.

He has five wins to his name but looks better right handed in my view.
If he was to go to Cheltenham I’d imagine it would be for the Kim Muir but I’d hazard a guess that the big Sandown Gold Cup in April on the final day of term will be a suitable race as he shapes like further will suit.

2 – Nells Son – 7yo B Gelding
Trainer – Nicky Richards.

After doing his first five career runs all in Scotland this was Nells Son’s first venture down south on the M6 to a racecourse and given like the others he was taking on Jonbon it was interesting to see how he’d fare.

In the end he was only beaten eight and a quarter length’s but was staying on and 2m 4f will be his trip once he runs again, like many from this Penrith stable he will make a nice chaser but should offer more over timber and is one to keep an eye on.

3 – Sao Maxence – 9yo B Gelding
Trainer – James Ewart.

This very lightly raced 9yo has clearly had issues in the past hence his belated handicap debut was his first race since 17th February 2020.

He travelled well enough in the early part of the contest, jockey Alan Doyle had a good hold of him and was in with a squeak when the more experienced horses put him in his place and he came fourth but only beaten just over four lenghts.

I think he has a race or two in him and will come on plenty for this in time. 

Neil Watson

Written by Neil Watson – @WattyRacing
Pictures – Neil Watson

An Arseonlineracing Publication – January 2022

Ascot, Haydock & More

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A cracking day of racing in store & maybe, we will see some potentially proper horses running today, one’s that could well become established. Some are very genuine horses, who run their true race & over the next few weeks will will find out if they are on their way to being proper chasers or hurdlers….

Again, we have some smaller field races than we would like, they maybe small but they are selective with some potential crackers instore, so we hope that the 4 of us can find some value from what we have to work with.

Haydock Park

Going (As of time of publishing)
Ascot –
Haydock –
Lingfield –

Charlie –

Ascot 2.20 Sbk Mares Hurdle (Grade2) over 2m 7f 118y

Selection – Molly Ollys Wishes – 8 year old Mare Out of Black Sam Bellamy and September Moon, has won 4 times from last 6 starts, beginning with a victory at Hereford on the 25th November 2020 when beating Valse Au Taillons by 2 and 1/4 lengths. Won again at Kempton on the 27th December 2020 when beating Empressive Lady by 2 and 1/2 lengths. Won again at Warwick in February 2021 when beating Pauls Saga by 15 lengths. Was 3rd on next start at Fontwell when finishing behind Brewinupastorm and Mcfabulous. Won again on next start at Wetherby when beating Miranda by 5 and 1/2 lengths. Was 5th on latest start at Ascot when behind winner Buzz in the Coral Hurdle. Although was 5th here last time she has won last 4 races when facing her own sex and is taken to gain another victory today at the expense of Western Victory and My Sister Sarah.

.

Haydock 4.15 Plank Lane Handicap Hurdle over 1m 7f 144y

Selection – Sacre Pierre – 4 year old Gelding out of On Est Bien and Goldance. Has had 5 starts so far winning twice, the wins came at Uttoxeter on debut when beating Keepyourdreamsbig by 6 lengths on the 25th July 2021. Won again on next start at Cartmel on the 30th August when beating Forever Forward by 10 lengths. Was 3rd on next start at Wetherby when finishing behind winner Porticello. Was 5th on next start at Doncaster on the 11th December when finishing behind winner Knight Salute and Porticello. Returned to Doncaster for latest run on the 29th December and fell when travelling well 3 out. With a clearer round of jumping should be in the mix here biggest threat to the selection comes in the shape of The Grey Falco.

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Chris –

Lingfield

2.30 Play Coral Racing Super Series Handicap

A typically competitive 3yo sprint handicap with plenty of interesting angles. I’m hoping that Minesbiggerthanurs secures the bragging rights once more. A winner over this trip at Kempton last month, he ran with credit when hassled over the minimum trip at Wolverhampton a fortnight ago, probably doing too much in front. Back over 6f, and drawn low, he should be able to grab the rail and dictate terms. He makes great each-way appeal at the current prices and could confirm himself a smart horse going forward. Talented claimer Theodore Ladd continues the partnership and takes off 3lb.

Haydock

3.45 Smalley Decorators Handicap Chase

A handicap over the minimum trip on testing ground awaits this field of 7, with Evan Williams’ The Last Day returning from almost a year off. It’s been even longer since he tackled a fence in competition, but he routed a field over this trip at Aintree 2 seasons ago, off just 1lb lower than todays mark of 132. He has won twice when fresh and with connections enjoying a fruitful campaign, he could be capable of out-running his double-figure price, especially on ground he appears to enjoy.

Jamie –

Lingfield –

1:55 – MansionBet Handicap – Selection: Mobashr 

Marco Botti’s Mobashr holds leading claims of maintaining his 100% record over the 1m trip at Lingfield today. This son of Mshawish is still quite unexposed with just the five races under his belt which has yielded three victories, including two over C&D. Last time out Mobashr won at his highest level yet (Class 2) and got the better of one of today’s rivals Animal Instinct by a half – length going away, whilst the third has won at the same level next time out. The form has a solid look to it. Mobashr will have to cope with a 5lb rise today in the weights but there is more progress to come from this 4YO. Another positive is that Ryan Moore has been booked for the ride and he has a solid draw in stall 6. Impressive Chelmsford winner Diderot is a worthy favourite but I am hopeful that my selection can get the better of him today.  

Ascot –

2:55 – Bet365 Handicap Chase – Selection: Fanion D’Estruval  

This looks a very informative handicap chase with Palmers Hill & Fanion D’Estruval being the two fancied runners in the market. I do like Palmers Hill who boasts winning form at Ascot, but with the ground being softer now Venetia Williams’ horses are coming into their own and I fancy Fanion D’Estruval to do the business today. Fanion D’Estruval brings in some smart form, including a 9l fourth in the Clarence House on this day last year. Venetia Williams’ charge is an improved horse this year in my opinion after a solid fourth in the Old Roan at Aintree was followed last time out by a fine performance to win at Newbury under top weight. With the stable operating at 32% at the moment I am confident of another big run. What a fine race in prospect and with the field at 11/4 at the time of writing this is quite a good betting race.  

Rich –

Lingfield –
1.20 Handicap – Class 2 – 4yo Plus – 1m 4f…
Protected Guest – Helmet X Reem Star 7yo gelding.

The gelding seems to like it around this course, having run here over C&D 7 times, winning once in a Class 4 handicap from a mark of 86 back in March 2021. His form over C&D reads 2/3/1/7/2/3/2 & that was where his last run was on January 8th in a C&D class 4 handicap, when finishing a 2 & 3/4 length 2nd to Trevolli, won won again on January 12th.
Up in class but now runs from 83 – Each Way

Haydock –
2.35 Peter Marsh Handicap Chase – Grade 2 – 5yo Plus – 3m 1f 125yds…
Royal Pagaille – Blue Bresil X Royal Cazoomaille 8yo gelding.

Last years race winner by 16 lengths. Has 1 win & 1 place over C&D with 2 wins from 3 runs at Haydock. He won 3 races on the bounce last season between December 2nd & January 23rd, including this race.
He finished a 49 length 6th in the Gold Cup at Cheltenham in March.
He made his season return on November 20th over C&D in the Grade 1 Lancashire Chase, finishing a 22 length runner up to A Plus Tard. A slight drop in grade today & is Top Rated 163.
His nearest rival in the ratings is Lord Du Mesnil at 152.
Gives weight to the field…. WIN

That’s everything for you today folks. We really appreciate you taking the time to pop by & read our thoughts.

All the Best – The Arseonlineracing Team

Welcome rain…

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Sandown

There is plenty of rain around this weekend & hopefully this will enable some of the trainers, who need to get a run into their horses in the near future.
We hope you are well after the holidays & we look forward to your company in 2022, let’s get to today’s blog…

Going….
Newcastle -Good To Soft/ Soft in places
Sandown -Chase Soft/Good To Soft. Hurdle Soft/ Heavy in places.
Wincanton -Hurdle Soft/Chase, Good To Soft

Newcastle All-weather track

Jamie –

Sandown –

3:00 – Unibet Veterans Handicap Chase – Selection: Rolling Dylan (Each Way)

The Final round of the Veterans Handicap Chase is always one of the early highlights in the racing calender for me. I think a good solid each way selection is Rolling Dylan who is a consistent sort who always gives 100%. The son of Indian River has ran twice so far this campaign with two second places to show for his efforts, including over c+d last time out. Rolling Dylan has winning form on soft ground to his name and on all known form should be thereabouts again. His current price of 12/1 makes him one of the each bets of the day in my eyes, especially with recent form figures of 421-22. I fancy Aso for the win overall.

3:35 – Unibet Handicap Hurdle – Selection: Volkovka

Fergal O’Brien’s Mare Volkovka has been much improved this season and holds major claims of going close once again. Volkovka is an admirably consistent horse who looks very capable of getting involved this afternoon against this opposition. A comfortable winner at Carlisle on her seasonal reappearance, Kolkovka improved further last time out over course and distance four weeks ago. She performed excellently to finish a close second behind Shirocco’s Dream, who I think is a Mare going places. The form is further enhanced as the fourth & sixth home that day Kissesforkatie & Emmpressive Lady won well next time out. She is in good form with the ground to suit for a stable who are enjoying an excellent season. At the prices she makes great appeal.


Chris –

Lingfield

11.30 Play 4 To Win Betway Handicap

Just the one from me today, and we go to Lingfield for the opener. A small field event where Buy Me Back aims to cast aside a few disappointing efforts over the past 6 months in higher grades. One of her better recent performances was here when a running-on 3rd in a better race over 5f, and having won here previously, she appears to be well handicapped again off 74. Now dropped back into a Class 5 and on her last winning mark, she has everything in her favour to go well at a fair price.

Rich –

Wincanton –
2.05 Handicap Chase – Class 3 – 5yo+ – 1m 7f 149yds….
On the Tear – Arcadio X Madame Coco 8yo gelding.

2 wins & 2 places from 6 career chase starts. A winner on his last start on December 14th at Catterick in a Class 4 Handicap Chase over 1m 7f by 2 & 3/4 lengths. Rain forecast will be of no issue for this gelding & if the going is a tad on the heavy side then all the better – Each Way

Sandown –
3.35 Handicap Hurdle – Class 2 – 4yo+ – 1m 8f….
McGowan’s Pass – Central Park X Function Dreamer 11yo gelding.

Made seasonal return on December 1st in a 2m 2f Class 3 Handicap Hurdle after 224 days away & he needed it, finishing a 23 length 7th of 11.
Rain is forecast & if it comes like they say, by the time this race is run, last on the card the going could be on the heavy side & his form on heavy & soft is excellent, reading 2/2/1/4/4/3/5/1 going back to 2017. He finished 2nd on 3 occasions from a mark of 125 & he runs off a mark of 122 today… EACH WAY

Thanks for popping by & for your continued support, we really appreciate it.

Good Luck – The Arseonlineracing Team

WattySpots – Part 5

Its the New Year & it’s the return of Neil Watson’s – WattySpots….

Neil Watson(Left)

Hello and welcome to the next installment this NH season of Wattyspots.

Post Christmas I found myself down at my local track Haydock for the traditional Last Fling Steeplechase Day, which is run in memory of a Haydock favourite that was owned by the late Trevor Hemmings.

Seven races were on the card and despite the conditions being very testing, I hope to have discovered some potential winners for you.

1 – Jungle Jack, 6yo Ch Gelding – Trainer – Donald McCain.

In what looked a decent novice hurdle on paper it became a real slog in the Haydock mud but this former Irish point to point winner followed up his recent Sedgefield win quite well in the end as he dug deep, on what is always a long run in on the hurdles course.

He definitely found the trip on the sharp side and will be even better when going back up in distance & he will make a nice chaser in time.

Haydock Park

2 – Georges Saint, 6yo Gr Gelding – Trainer – Venetia Williams.

A very good running on third in the same race as Jungle Jack, this dual chase winner back in France ran with credit on debut for his Herefordshire based trainer as he began life in the UK.

This race was a qualifier for the EBF Series and it would be no surprise to see him turn up at Sandown in March.
The 2m 4f trip will be far more up his street & he has plenty to offer.

3 – Mint Condition, 8yo B Gelding – Trainer – Jennie Candlish.

Rated 136 over hurdles, he matched that on what was his second start over fences as he got the better of Ashdown Lad in the 2m 6f Novice Handicap Chase.

Runner up behind the useful Kiltealy Briggs, who ran with credit in the Kauto Star Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day.
Mint Condition has a nice future as a chaser and does seem to like Haydock, so a return here in the Grade 2 Altcar Novice Chase would be no surprise.

Naturally given the very testing conditions it can often be hard for horses to give a true running but all being well these three can go on and improve even more before the season is out.

Providing the weather and the government don’t intervene I shall be back here in January for the Peter Marsh Chase.
Happy New Year to you all.

Article by Neil Watson.
Pictures – File

Published – January 2022
An Arseonlineracing Publication.

Here’s to you 2022…

Welcome to Arseonlineracing’s first blog of 2022…. Yes we are still a 100% Independent racing blog & website with NO affiliate links….

After 2021, we hope to start this year with a big bang, but we don’t care to much for fireworks so we will just have to hope that this blog does the trick…
2021 was kind to us here at AOLR & we are looking forward to what 2022 can bring for us as team…

The lads have been amazing this year & if it wasn’t for the 4 of us helping each other when certain situations arose, we could have walked away but as a team we have stuck together & that can only do us well for the future, which starts today!

Going –
Catterick -Soft
Cheltenham – Soft
Fakenham – Soft
Musselburgh – Good to Soft, soft in places.

Exeter Racecourse

Chris –

Cheltenham

12.50 New Four Eighty Restaurant Festival Handicap Chase

Destinee Royal switched to fences fairly late in her career, the now 9yo having only had 5 starts over the larger obstacles, winning twice. She ended last season in good form over staying tests, winning on soft at Wetherby on her penultimate start. She looks a thorough stayer and with the firing in the winners once more on soft ground, she makes plenty of appeal on her reappearance this afternoon in what could be a great day for the yard.

3.10 Dornan Engineering Relkeel Hurdle

A fascinating contest for this Grade 2, I’m siding with proven form in Brewin’upastorm. After the chase career was put on hold he’s won 3 from 4 over hurdles, all over this intermediate trip. With a few questions over his rivals in terms of race fitness or ground, he looks an attractive bet at the head of the market to continue his fine form over timber.

Jamie –

1:40 – Betway Handicap Hurdle – Selection: Geronimo

Another bold bid is likely today from the progressive Geronimo under the Champion Jockey elect Brian Hughes. The son of Masked Marvel ticks plenty of boxes as he is in excellent form with three wins from his last four starts, the second placing being a close one to Tommy’s Oscar at Doncaster last time out. Geronimo will relish racing on this decent surface, with the ground still amazingly being good to soft at this time of the year. Brian Hughes is in red hot form (12-44 in the last 14 days). All is set for a big run at decent odds at the time of writing (7/2) and I feel the step back up to 2m 4f will suit him well. Very open race…

3:10 – Dornan Engineering Relkeel Hurdle (G2) – Selection: Stormy Ireland

A small field of 6 for the highlight of New Year’s Day at Cheltenham. At the prices I am going to side with Stormy Ireland for the in-form Willie Mullins team. A Grade 1 & 2 winner in the spring, Stormy Ireland gets a handy 7lbs from her rivals today. On ratings that gives her a fair shout this afternoon. I am happy to forgive a poor run in the Hatton’s Grace as it looked like she needed the run quite a bit. With the cobwebs blown away she could be the value bet in the race. The softer conditions look like they will suit on all known form.

Rich –

Musselburgh –
1.40 Handicap Hurdle – Class 3 – 4yo+ – 2m 3f 171yds…
Kavanaghs Cross – Califet X Mugs in Milan 7yo gelding.

5 runs in 2021, placing on 4 occasions before winning at Kelso on his last run in a 2m Class 4 Maiden Hurdle by 2 & 1/4 lengths on December 5th. 3rd Has since won & drops from 113 to 112 today…

Catterick –
3.20 Handicap Hurdle – Class 5 – 4yo+ – 1m 7f 156yds…
Beatiarius – Vinnie Roe X Chione 7yo gelding.

2 runs in 2021 having returned from a 386 day break from the track. The gelding finished a 1 & 3/4 length 3rd at Hexham on November 5th in a 2m 48yd Class 5 Handicap Hurdle to Baraboy before finishing a 1/2 length 2nd to Killane on his last start at Newcastle on December 9th in a 2m 46yds Class 5 Handicap Hurdle. Still a maiden.

That is everything for you guys today, we wish you all the best of health & happiness for 2022. Stay safe out there.

All the Best – The Arseonlineracing Team.