13th July 2018
The Bet With Ascot Heritage Handicap at Ascot (12.45) is our target race this weekend….
This is a class 2 event for horses aged 3yo+ over the straight 5f trip….
A field of 20 runners goes to post on ground described as good to firm….
Kevin Ryan’s Major Jumbo drops back to 5f under track specialist Jamie Spencer and heads the weights off his mark of 103….
At the other end of the list, Michael Wigham’s Foxy Forever carries 8-9 courtesy of his mark of 88….
The field boasts three last-time-out winners. Tanasoq is up 6lbs, Copper Knight is up 6lbs and Line Of Reason carries a 6lb penalty on the back of his win last week at Ayr….
We’ll get to my selections for tomorrow’s race in a moment….
First a quick word on the action elsewhere this weekend….
It’s a big day of racing tomorrow for big handicap punters like us….
We’ve got the Bunbury Cup at Newmarket over the 7f trip. I’m backing two-against-the-field for that one – with both my selections trading at juicy prices….
Up at York, another big field goes to post for the John Smith’s Cup over the 10f trip. Once again, I’m doing my usual trick and going two-against-the-field with a pair of runners trading at prices they can easily outrun….
You can get immediate access to these extra bets on the website when you take a FREE 14-day test drive of my Against the Crowd service….
Back to tomorrow’s target race and the pick of the prices….
The in-form David Simcock’s POLYBIUS has run some nice races at Ascot….
Not least when 4th in last season’s Wokingham at the Royal meeting off a mark of 101, a performance he followed up on when finishing 2nd in last season’s renewal of tomorrow’s race off a mark of 102….
He’s dropped down the rankings in the meantime – thanks in large part to a disappointing campaign in Meydan earlier in the year – and he gets another crack at this race off a handy mark of 96….
Oisin Murphy was on his back for both those races and he resumes duties in the saddle tomorrow for the first time since….
The 7yo didn’t light any fires at Epsom last time but I can forgive a horse below-par showing on his first run of the season. He certainly hasn’t been over-used this summer and given that he’s now looking like a well-handicapped animal, I’d imagine his best effort will be saved for a proper pot like tomorrow’s….
It’s been a while since he got his head in front. But this track and a big-field bring out the best in him. The yard is going very well right now and I can see a big run at the price form a handy berth in stall 12. The 14s is a nice price….
Robert Cowell’s EVERGATE could never be confused with a serial winner. He’s won just twice from 17 starts on turf….
But just recently there have be signs of life. And the tide could be about to turn. He ran well over 5f at Nottingham last month. Then again at Newcastle in a first-time visor at the end of the month. He looks like a horse that is ready to strike….
The headgear has been retained and the stiff 5f strip at Ascot could be just what he needs.
The high numbers have been favored in the five runnings of this race to date and he gets to go tomorrow from stall 20. He’s got the right man in the plate to take advantage. This has the look of a ‘spare’ for Frankie Dettori. But top riders are top riders for a reason, and they can often get that necessary extra something out of a form-horse that lesser men can’t. The 14s is acceptable.
The Pick of the Prices....
To recap on where my contrarian money will be going tomorrow afternoon….
In the Bet With Ascot Heritage Handicap (12.45 @ Ascot).
That is my take on where the value lies – but you will no doubt have your own ideas and that’s exactly as it should be.
That’s all from me this week.
Enjoy your weekend.