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Interesting that the Scottish Grand National at Ayr is a week before the Grand National at Aintree ( And yes there will be a AOLR Podcast for the Grand National).
The flat started last week at Doncaster (On the Turf ) but the only Flat racing in the UK today is on the All Weather, with Turf Flat racing coming from Leopardstown in Ireland with Trials day & the Group 3 Ballysax Stakes up for grabs….
Ayr, Newbury, Chepstow (NH). Lingfield & Wolverhampton (AW) & Leopardstown (Flat) are the fixtures today. With ALL 4 of us blogging today, we will have 4 selections for the Scottish Grand National at 3.35 & a selection from from the other meetings!
Ayr 2.25 Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle Grade 2 over 2m
Selection – Barrichello – 6 year old Gelding out of Gentle Wave and Tambourine Ridge, has had 10 runs over hurdles winning 4 times from last 5 starts, after having wind surgery, had placed 2nd in previous 5 races prior to that and should be bang there come business end of this race if showing same attitude today. The main threat to the selection comes in the shape of Onemorefortheroad who has won 5 of his 10 runs over hurdles.
5.15 Prestwick Open National Hunt Flat Race over 2m
Selection – Jimmy’s Jet – 6 year old Gelding out of Jet Away and Southway Queen, has had just one career start and that came here on the 25th October last year when beating Jack Of All Shapes by 3 and 1/4 lengths with Haut Berry a further 6 lengths adrift in 3rd. Wears a tongue tie for todays race and has changed yards since that win, although this looks a bit deeper than that last race showed enough ability to get the win. The biggest danger to the selection comes in the shape of Call Me Harry had won twice before pulling up at Cheltenham last time out.
3.00 Jordan Electrics Ltd Future Champion Novices Chase
Do Your Job has run admirably in some fair contests this season, using that experience to win a handicap at Newcastle over this trip in February. He escapes a penalty today unlike some of his rivals and a mark of 144 gives his leading claims back in open company, should he continue to progress. Looks versatile regarding the ground and should get a decent pace to aim at today.
3.45 PW McGrath Ballysax Stakes
Piz Badile caught my eye when breaking his maiden tag at Killarney at the first time of asking. He then wasn’t seen for over 3 months before running here in the Eyrefield Stakes over 9f at the end of the season. He just came up short there on the run-in, finishing a close 2nd, despite hitting trouble in running against the rail. His fitness may need to be taken on trust today, but looks the ideal type for some success over middle distances in 2022, starting today!
Scottish Grand National – Ayr – 3.35 – Grade 3 Handicap Chase – 4m
Charlie – Major Dundee is the one I’m siding with in this race, has won 2 of his 3 starts since going chasing and finished 2nd in the other, this 7 year old Gelding out of Scorpion looks to be the real deal and if maintaining that kind of form today could easily go in again. The biggest threat is Win My Wings who has 3 wins from last 5 starts
Irish raider Stormy Judge has proven popular in the betting over the last 24 hours, and I won’t let that put me off here. His best performance came a year ago when showing bags of stamina to win on heavy ground over 3 miles. After a below par comeback he showed more last time out when 5th in the Leinster National. It’s not hard to think one of these big end of season contests have been the plan for some time. He encounters better ground today, but he could come alive over this test, with Danny Mullins looking for another big race win this term.
The annual cavalry charge around Ayr for Scotland’s great race sees 23 horses lining up. You can give some sort of a chance to every runner and the one I like is Fantastikas for the Twiston Davies combination. The Imperial Racing owned 7yo is enjoying a solid campaign, with two wins, a second and a third. He didn’t quite fire at Cheltenham where he was always on the back foot in the Ultima and eventually plugged on for 7th. I believe the step up in trip, which connections obviously think he will cope with may suit him as this will be run at a less frantic pace. The best piece of form Fantastikas brings to the table is his 3rd in the Dipper, the winner L’Homme Presse took the Browns at Cheltenham and the 4th Oscar Elite ran a big race in the Albert Bartlett when third. I like this horse at an each way price on ground that will suit him. Trainer has a good record in this race too…
*Each way advised*
Cool Mix -Fair Mix X LucyLou 10yo gelding.
2 wins & 9 places from 19 chase starts & was last seen on February 5th at Musselburgh, when a 5 length runner up to Glen Forsa in a Class 3 2m 6f Conditional Jockeys Handicap.
That was his 4th run in a year, since finishing 5th of 22 over C&D in this race, 8 & 1/4 lengths behind the winner. Was running a nice race until a mistake at the 21st fence but regained himself to run on well for 5th.
That was his first run over 3m & his only other start over 3m, was in October at Cheltenham, when 3rd by 10 & 1/2 lengths to Definite Plan over 3m 1f.
He carries 10s 4lb & a claimer takes off an extra 7lb & has a first time Tongue Tie. His last win was from a mark of 126 & tomorrow runs from 125..
1:35 – Play Pick 6 at BetVictor Novices Handicap Hurdle
Selection: Mot A Mot
Trainer Sam Thomas has inherited Mot A Mot from Nicky Henderson and he could be poised to strike today. The 6yo has only raced six times to date and is still worth giving a chance. Mot A Mot was highly tried last time out in a trial for the Ballymore at Cheltenham which Hillcrest won that day. My selection found it all too much and eventually faded into a well beaten sixth. These are calmer waters today and off what could be a generous weight off 10st 10lb, I think he has a solid chance. I like the angle of that this is his first run after having a wind op, which will hopefully do the trick. The good ground may even bring out more improvement too.
3:45 – P.W. McGrath Memorial Ballysax Stakes (G3)
This looks to be a wide open renewal of the Ballysax as the road to Epsom begins. Aidan O’Brien has an outstanding record in this race, helped by the fact he has won the last three editions. He sends Bluegrass to Leopardstown today and this beautifully bred Galileo Colt has been working well on the gallops apparently. Bluegrass ran three times in his Juvenile career which saw him a Curragh Maiden and then finished a far from disgraced third in the Zetland at Newmarket. We all know how much the Galileo’s can improve from 2 to 3 and with that in mind I can’t see this horse being far away. Aidan likes to send one of his big Derby hopefuls to this and Ryan Moore has chosen Bluegrass over stablemate Scriptwriter. There is a lot to like.
3.10 Priory Bell 1,000 Guineas Trial Stakes – 3yo Only – Fillies’ Group 3 – 7f…
Agartha – Caravaggio X Ayra Tara filly.
A very busy filly in 2021, running 8 times between May & October, with it taking 5 runs to break her maiden, running over 5 & 1/2f & 6f before finally winning over 7f (C&D) in the Group 3 Silver Flash Stakes on July 22nd by 2 & 3/4 lengths from Juncture. Before her maiden win, the Caravaggio filly had finished 3rd, 3rd, 2nd ( to Sacred Bridge) & 2nd ( Homeless Songs).
A month later on August 21st, she won her 2nd race, when beating Sunset Shiraz in the 7f Group 2 Alpha Centauri Debutante Stakes at the Curragh. September 12th, the filly ran in the 7f Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes at the Curragh, finishing a 3/4 length runner up to Discoveries.
Her final start was in France at Longchamp, on very soft ground, when finishing a 5 length 4th in the 1m Prix Marcel Boussac to Zellie.
This is her seasonal return & she has to give the field 3lb.
Dangers could come from the lightly raced Contarelli Chapel (2 runs) & Sacred Bridge (8th in G1 Cheveley Park Stakes) & both step up in trip.
3.25 Edmond Blanc Stakes – Group 3 – 4yo Plus – 1m
The Revenant – Dubawi X Hazel Lavery 7yo gelding.
Top Rated 116. Finished 3rd in this race last season, just 1 length behind winner, Wally & runner up Duhail, with Wally winning a G3 1m 2f race in May & Duhail, landing a C&D G2 in May & finished 2nd on 3 other starts.
The Revenant ran 3 more times after his 3rd in this race, finishing 4th to Duhail, 2nd to Real World (Both in G2 company) before finishing 4th to Baaeed in the G1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot in October. Unlike last season, he has had a run this term, when winning a C&D Listed race on March 10th by 3 lengths.
Has 4 C&D wins from 6 C&D runs.
That’s everything for you today folks, thanks for popping by & being 1 of the 3,000+ that have visited our website in the first 3 months of the year!
Our Podcasts have also been quite popular & I can confirm that the 4 of us will be on the Grand National Podcast, which is being recorded on Wednesday evening! That will be fun!
All the Best – The Arseonlineracing Team