Thursday, 10 December 2015

Thursday 10th December

What a fantastic "winner" yesterday in Dan Skelton's Bekkensfirth at the rewarding odds of 12/1. The result never really looked in doubt as he was always going and jumping well and he looks set for a good run over fences.

Now just because I had a 12/1 yesterday it doesn't mean it's going to happen every day from now till Christmas!! - I could just as easily have a losing spell until then and that is one of the peril's of horse racing so always only spend what you can afford to lose and keep it as a hobby and not an obsession.

Three runners each for the stables we are following on Thursday and there are no clashes as they target different meetings.

Paul Nicholls
Taunton - Good to Soft, Soft in places. There is the prospect of further rain this am.
1.10 - Rock On Oscar was a point to point winner and ran just once for the stable last season when he ran too free to do himself justice. He is a big scopey individual that could be a work in progress as they teach him to settle and Nicholls sees him as a chaser in the making. 
He started the season over 2m 5f at Kempton on 02/11 were he took a keen hold and having come there to the win the race he was headed in the final strides by Duelling Banjos. Nicholls was surprised how well he ran as he thought he needed the race to put him right. If he can learn to relax he could be a fair type as he was also the stables only entry at the 5 day stage in the Grade 2 Class 1 novices hurdle at Cheltenham this Saturday.
The tongue tie is on again today and a first time hood is used to try and get him to settle a bit better on this his third start. He is up in distance and he should take the beating this time albeit he isnt going to be a betting price. - 2nd - Tanked along throughout and was perhaps going too well. Looked to be coming to win the race but found wanting when asked to go and win the race.

3.10 - Ceasar Milan was thought to be well handicapped, according to his trainer at the beginning of the season and there was a sort of thought in the yard it would seem to go for the Paddy Power Gold Cup at Cheltenham if all went to plan but he was pulled up on his return at Stratford in a Class 2 handicap chase after never travelling and that was disappointing. That was over 2m 5f on good and thereafter he went to Newbury for a Class 3 handicap chase over two miles six and a half furlongs on soft. This time he finished 9th of 16 where, after a blunder, he weakened quickly 3 out and was tailed off. He's dropped 3lb in the ratings to 135c and now tackles another Chass 3 over a half mile shorter trip. He needs soft ground so the going forecast is going the right way - however he needs to take a step forward from what he has shown so far this season but that said it looks a pretty open race and is worth an ew. 0 - Looked to be hard work to keep in the race and when the pace quickened he simply lacked any change of gear and it was a poor effort.

3.40 - Capitaine is said to be a big, strong and lovely individual who is well liked by Paul Nicholls. He is a half brother to a couple of winners in France and starts here in this Class 4 bumper over 2m 104 yards. He is in receipt of a 14lb 3yo weight allowance which he may be able to take advantage of given his size.

Dan Skelton
Warwick - Chase Course - Soft, Good to Soft in places. Hurdle Course Soft, Heavy in places. Further rain is forecast.
12.30 - Ashoka missed his planned engagement on 18/11 and is a horse that is said to jump well. He came form Mick Halford's stable in Ireland and he was placed in all 3 runs on the flat. The stables horses have been going well and a few have run well first time out but at the likely cramped odds it's one to just watch for a future time. - 1st 11/10f

1.00 - Notnowsam joined the yard earlier in the year from Noel Quinlan and was quickly off the mark at Warwick - being well placed to win a Class 4 Novice Handicap Chase over 2m on Good to Soft. He jumped well that day and won in a respectable time. With little miles on the clock and being a 4yo he is open to improvement. He returned over fences at Wetherby on 14/10 in a class 3 handicap finishing 2nd to Oliver's Gold where he was headed with a 150 yards to go. He then went to Huntingdon were he was 2nd again this time to Raven's Tower in a Class 3 novices handicap chase over two miles and a half furlong on soft where he made a mistake at the last fence and weakened. The cheekpieces are back on today and the easier going should suit but he is up against Kim Bailey's Red Spinner who is on a 4 timer. 2nd behind Red Spinner 9/4 - the CSF paid £5.88.

2.00 - Born Survivor was a highly rated point to point winner at Broughshane in Ireland last season where he quickened clear of a decent field to win comfortably. He joined the yard after being purchased at the Cheltenham April Sales for £220,000 and several of those who finished behind him in Ireland have also joined top stables in England. He is said to have size and scope and is very well regarded. If all went to plan he could go to the very top and he looks set to follow a similar route to the stables Three Musketeers and have a light campaign.
He starts here in a maiden hurdle over 2m 5f on soft which should be fine and I would imagine the stable would be extremely disappointed if he wasn't involved in the finish.
He has been well backed - Ladbrokes opened up at 5/2 yesterday and he's no 6/5 and 11/10 with most bookmakers. 1st - always travelling well and won with something in hand.

Ceasar Milan 0.50 ew at 7/1 with several bookmakers - one fifth the odds 1,2,3. 0 - Looked to be hard work to keep in the race and when the pace quickened he simply lacked any change of gear and it was a poor effort.

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