The contrarian word on the weekend action....

Last Updated: 12.10.2018

Friday, 12th October 2018

The contrarian word on the weekend action….

First things first. I’m having a crack at Sunday’s Irish Cesarewitch at Navan. Look out for me in your mail box tomorrow morning – when I’ll bring you my thoughts....

Now, onto the business at and....

Tony Martin was the last Irish trainer to win the Cesarewitch – with Leg Spinner back in 2007....

He’s gone close-enough with plenty in the meantime too....

The target-trainer has a cracking record in the 2m2f contest which is run at Newmarket tomorrow afternoon – his last 11 runners producing the winner and five additional horses that made the top 5....

That’s no mean feat in a race that routinely attracts 30-odd runners. The last horse to go close for him was GOLDEN SPEAR in 2016. He placed 5th that afternoon – just 7-lengths off the winner – and I reckon he’s a solid bet at 25s to run another big race tomorrow....

  • Targeted at this pot?

He’s been very lightly campaigned this term – racing just twice since May. And there’s no doubt in my mind that Martin has set out specifically to prepare him for another big tilt at this big target....

I’m not in the slightest bit concerned that Golden Spear got beaten 10-lengths in the trial for the race at Newmarket last month....

There’s no way Martin would have had him cherry ripe for that assignment. That race would have served only to give the horse another sighter of the Newmarket track and to assist with brining the horse to the boil for tomorrow’s race....

The 7yo gets to run off a mark of 86 – the same perch he ran 5th off in 2016. He gest to run out of a single-figure draw this time round. And that can make a difference....

After placing 5th in this race in 2016, Golden Spear went on to win another big handicap next-time-out at Leopardstown – just three weeks later....

Martin clearly had the horse in good heart at the time. And maybe it just didn’t pan out as hoped at Newmarket. Maybe they’ve been thinking about redemption ever since....

They get a chance to get hold of a bowl of that stuff tomorrow afternoon. And I reckon the price is sweet enough....

  • Two-against-the-field....

You can’t head into a 34-runner contest like this with just one horse running for you. I know people who will probably be backing around the board and lumping money on four or five....

Myself? I’ll make do with one more dart. And the one I want to be with is Alan King’s JUST IN TIME at 16s....

He’s done nothing but improve all season and you could make a case that he should be coming into this race having won each of his last four races....

As it is, he won three of them. At Kempton he got beat by Vis A Vis....

But he only got done 2.75 lengths – despite having to do plenty from too far back on a dep AW surface against a winner making all and despite clipping heels on the first circuit. The one that beat him is 6-points shorter in the betting for tomorrow’s race....

Last time out he won the Mallard Handicap at Doncaster in handy enough fashion – striking late. He stays 2-milles and his performances this term hint that that tomorrow’s trip could well see him to better effect still – especially on the quicker ground....

First Mohican placed third in the Mallard for the yard in 2016 before running 2nd next time out in the Cesarewitch.  The Doncaster race worked nicely as a prep that year and it can act as a springboard again this time around. I think the 16s is handy enough....

The Contrarian Bet Box….

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

In the Cesarewitch Stakes (3.40 @ Newmarket).

  • Nick’s Contrarian Picks – GOLDEN SPEAR (25s generally) & JUST IN TIME (16s 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 now.

I’ll be back a little later today with ATC Extra....

And I’ll be back in your inbox tomorrow morning with my thoughts on Sunday’s Irish Cesarewitch at Navan....

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

Until next time. Stay tuned.

Nick Pullen

Against the Crowd