The contrarian word on Day 2 at York....

Last Updated: 22.08.2018

Wednesday, 22nd August 2018

The contrarian word on Day 2 at York….

Tomorrow’s Clipper Logistics Handicap at York (3.00) is one of the top five most valuable events of the season for mile handicappers....

If you’ve got a smart mile handicapper on your hands, this is one of the races that will be bleeping away on your radar – probably before the season even begins....

This is a real target race for the trainers of such horses. Especially if the horse like a left-handed turn....

The Clipper is the most valuable mile handicap of the season run around an anti-clockwise bend....

So, it will come as no surprise to learn that the horses which have already shown their hand to the handicapper don’t have the best record in this race....

This race a is a real target races and you generally need a horse with something in hand – some scope at the mark....

Only one horse has won this race in the last 15-years having raced more than 20 times on turf. Twelve of the last 15 winners were aged 3- or 4-years-old....

  • Fancied but vulnerable....

The fancied horses have gone well in this race with 9 of the last 15 winners coming out of the top three horses in the betting....

And the market has latched onto the horse in the winning habit. Seniority has won 3 of his last 4 – posting an improved effort with each win....

Sharja Bridge – returning off a 65-day break and dropping back to the mile – and Afaak are also fancied....

Bear in mind though that all three are weighted higher than all but one winner of the race over the last 15 years....

All will be conceding weight to plenty of rivals – and all must be vulnerable to something further down the list and yet, perhaps, to fully reveal its hand....

Watching brief....

Keep an eye on Firmament and Baraweez tomorrow afternoon....

Both are by Cape Cross. And that sire has a strong record in this race....

His 8 runners across the last 15-years produced 3 wins and 3 places. That’s a record that suggests his progeny are well-suited to the specific challenges the York mile presents – and that they are ultra- competitive being able to do it so consistently in such a valuable race....

Of course, Firmament won the race in 2016 off 96. Baraweez was 4th last year off 95. They go off 98 and 96 respectively tomorrow. 

Firmament has dropped 11lb from his peak but is short enough for me at 8s. Baraweez simply doesn’t look to have the scope at this stage of his career....

But both are worth watching out for....

  • Two-against-the-field....

David Barron’s KYNREN, for example, who can be backed at 10s....

Last time at York off 96 and trying 10f for the first time in the prestigious John Smith’s Cup, the 4yo ran a cracker to finish 3rd....

He lost 2nd late-on that afternoon and it could be that this step back to a mile will suit and see him to even effect....

If that’s the case, then I expect a big run. The two horses that beat the horse at York were certainly progressive animals....

Euchen Glen was rated 99 and now ranks 106 on the official scale. Thundering Blue ran off 100 and is now up to 109....

Kynren has gone up just a pound. And that could leave him still nicely weighted for tomorrow’s assignment.

Saeed Bin Suroor’s Reach High is interesting, but very inexperienced for a race of this nature. And he’s also drawn out in the widest stall of all which won’t help him....

The other one that appeals is the William Haggas trained ORIGINAL CHOICE at 12s....

He ran two cracking races in big handicaps at Glorious Goodwood over 10f and 8f....

I reckon he ran a better race in the second race over the mile. And he did it despite a poor draw....

You can give his jockey a pat on the back for that because he was patient. But the horse played his part too and can be expected to do better still under more favourable condition....

Het gets his chance to prove me right tomorrow. His trainer likes this meeting and this race is no after-thought. I expect he’s been headed for this assignment since he was given a mid-season break. The price is fair enough....

The Contrarian Bet Box….

To recap on where my contrarian money will be going tomorrow afternoon….

In the Clipper Logistics Handicap (3.00 @ York).

  • Nick’s Contrarian Picks – KYNREN (10s generally) & ORIGINAL CHOICE (12s generally)

Get the latest odds here >>

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.

  • The last word….

That’s all from me for today.

Win, lose or draw – enjoy the racing....

I’ll be back tomorrow with my contrarian take on the action on Day 3 at York....

Until then. Stay tuned.

Nick Pullen

Against the Crowd