Sunday, 2 January 2011

The calm after the storm

The busiest day for months today, with ten selections. Funny how that happens sometimes, you can go along with one or two selections most days and then suddenly a day like today comes along and it goes crazy.

While it can feel a bit daunting with a big outlay at the start of the day, these sort of days can really give the bank a big lift. In the end, we had one non runner, three seconds (including two which traded very short in running) and a 6/1 winner. It all left us three points down for the day in the end, but despite a disappointing finish it was a promising day in many ways. We got good value with virtually all our selections and there were some good performances. Perhaps the beginning of the shift back to profit, which will surely come sooner or later.

It all started in the 1.15 at Folkestone, with Here's The Key (1pt), advised at 6/1. Going off at 5s this one ran an extraordinary race. Outpaced out the back, she hit 1000/1 in running on two or three occassions, and looked completely out of it. But my word did she finish well, absolutely flying over the last she was eating up the ground and looked for all the world like she would storm home, trading at 1.03 in running without actually getting her head in front. As soon as she was upsides, the very game winner battled back to win by a neck. A most frustrating start, but hats off to Denis O'Regan who never gave up on her, just the sort of ride punters' like to see, and one plenty of other jocks could learn from.

Then we had Steady Tiger (2pts) in the 1.20 at Ayr, put up at 6/1. This one was withdrawn before the off as a NR.

Then came our next, in the 1.55 at Ayr, Premier Sagas (1pt), put up at 8/1. After starting at 5/1, Nicky Richards' 7y.o ran a terrific race. Always prominent, he looked to be ready to put the race to bed going over the last, travelling strongly. But despite trading as low as 1.15 he couldn't finish the job, going down by 3/4 length to the fast finishing winner.

The effort by Noble Billy (1pt), in the 2.10 at Plumpton, the Sussex National, wasn't anything like the first two runners. After being advised at 13/2, he went off at 5/1 before jump poorly, and being pulled up.

Then came the days' winner, Dicklers Oscar (1pt), in the 2.25 at Ayr. After being put up at 6/1, she continued to be really nicely backed into 5/2 at the off. Given a very patient ride by James Reveley, she jumped herself into contention and forged clear to win by nearly three lengths.

The races continued to come thick and fast, with Beside The Fire (1pt) up next, advised at 7/1 in the 2.45 at Plumpton. This was our third second placed finish of the day, and ran into Manshoor, ridden by Tony McCoy, who was a late change because the 7lb conditional jockey, Matt Crawley who was down to ride was apparently unwell. Unsurprisingly there was plenty of support around for McCoy's new mount, and he gave him a cracking ride to push him clear in an enterprising effort. Beside The Fire was a bit outpaced early but finished really strongly to only go down by two lengths in the end. Hope you're feeling better soon Matt.

The final three selections ran poorly, and it's particularly frustrating that two of them were two point selections.

The best performance came from Nodform William (1pt) in the 3.00 at Ayr, at 11/2. After going off a well backed 100/30, he was there or thereabouts for much of the contest but couldn't quicken when required.

In the 3.30 at Ayr we had Bardolet (2pts), at 9/2. After starting at 4/1 he was out the back to begin with, made decent progress for a time, before falling away tamely.

And then came our last selection, Carmond (2pts), in the 3.55 at Folkestone. Put up at 6/1, he drifted to 15/2 on his first start for Oliver Sherwood, but couldn't really get into it despite showing up for a while, and finished 6th/6 in the end.

Confirmation of results with sps:

Here's The Key, 2nd/8, 5/1
Premier Sagas, 2nd/10, 5/1
Steady Tiger NR
Noble Billy, PU/14, 5/1
Dickler's Oscar, 1st/13, 5/2
Beside The Fire, 2nd/12, 5/1
Nodform William, 6th/12, 100/30
Bardolet, 11th/15, 4/1
Carmond, 6th/6, 15/2

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