Friday, 10th June 2016
Good afternoon, contrarians,
On the menu today….
Nobody needs reminding that next week is Royal Ascot week – 5 of the best days of racing on the planet. Loads of Group 1 races and a stack of top-drawer handicaps combine to make a fantastic meeting. It doesn’t get any better on the flat.
The forecasters say there will be rain. And that should make things interesting. A soft ground Royal Ascot is the exception rather than the rule and it would certainly shake things up.
Plenty of horses will have been prepared for their races in anticipation of the usual fast ground. The markets have been framed that way too. We must wait and see how much rainfall we get across the weekend and into next week before committing to a view.
Against the Crowd will be on-point for each of the 5 days of the meeting – Tuesday through Saturday. And I’ll be bringing you my idea of the value as and where I find it.
As per usual we’ll be avoiding the obvious short horses and focusing instead on horses flying under the market radar.
We figure you can find the favourite and the fancied horses yourself. Our role is to draw attention to and make a case for competitive horses you might not otherwise have considered – at prices most punters ignore.
I’ll be in your email box on Monday afternoon with my selection for Day 1 of the meeting on Tuesday….
Before that we’ve got some action this weekend to consider. Let’s crack on with that….
Musselburgh has its day in the spotlight tomorrow and the highlight of the card up there is the Scottish Sprint Cup (3.45) – a handicap event over the 5f trip – and ROYAL BIRTH is well worth supporting at the generally available 16s.
This horse has clearly had his problems. He debuted back in 2013 but he’s had quite a few breaks from action and has still only had 6 runs on the turf and a handful more on the all-weather. He’s plenty less exposed than a lot of the opponents he lines up against tomorrow.
It is only really this year that he’s been seen in a sustained sequence of races and he progressed up the handicap on the all-weather – steadily rather than spectacularly – over the winter.
On the turf he’s produced two decent efforts on the bounce at York – in decent company – finishing-off in both races in the manner of a horse with more to come.
Those performances haven’t stopped the official handicapper from dropping him a couple of pounds – which can only help.
He was in with and around the likes of Duke of Firenze, Red Baron, Blaine and Kimberella in those York races – and was far from disgraced. Some of those current luminaries of the sprinting game re-oppose tomorrow – but at half the price. I like the 16s about Royal Birth and I’ll be on it each-way.
Over at York the Listed-class Ganton Stakes (3.00) sets an interesting puzzle over the turning mile and JALLOTA is a fair-enough price to strike at 6s.
Last time out he won a handicap at the track off a mark of 103. The handicapper reacted by putting him up to 110 – hence he’s been given another crack at listed level.
He’s also stepping up to the mile and needs to prove he stays that far. But last time at York he wasn’t stopping at the end of the 7f and, given that he’s fit and firing, he’s got a good chance of landing another decent pot tomorrow.
He’s up against a couple of horses reappearing off long breaks in Mutakayyef and Muwaary. Mindurownbusiness has been doing most of his own business on the AW tracks. All of those are shorter in the betting on Friday morning and I reckon Charlie Hills’s horse is a bit of value at the price.
The Contrarian Bet Box….
To recap on where my contrarian money will be going tomorrow afternoon….
In the Scottish Sprint Cup (Musselburgh 3.45)....
In the Ganton Stakes (York 3.00)....
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.
I’ll be back in your inbox later today with ATC Extra. We’ll be firing shots at tomorrow’s 888Sport Charity Sprint at York….
And, just to recap, I’ll be back on Monday afternoon with my idea of the value on Day 1 at Royal Ascot.
Enjoy the racing, enjoy your weekend.