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Thoughts and selections

28th April

3:00 Wolverhampton - Win bet on Dansing Bear @ 9/1 (missed the 12/1 earlier)

Reasoning to follow...

A very tight class 6 3yo handicap with just 5 lbs separating the 6 runners on official ratings, so I think it will be a case of which one of them can improve more. And as most of these are stepping up in distance (only 1 has raced over this distance, finished unplaced) and also most trying this surface for first time (2 have run here but no places), these are the two areas I am looking for possible improvement.

Dansing Bear is making a big step up in distance as all 3 of this runs have come over 1 mile. On sire side, I am not sure about this as none of Kodi Bear’s progeny has run beyond 10 furlongs yet, but damsire is Dansili who does get winners over middle distances, and also the grand dam was a Listed winner over mile and half. So I think there is a good chance that he will stay.

Kodi Bear’s progeny has a good record here at Wolverhampton, 4 from 19 (+23 LSP) here compared to 0 from 16 at Lingfield, the course where all 3 of DB’s runs have been. Those 4 wins have come with 3 different horses, of 12 horses on their first run on this surface 3 won and 3 placed. DB’s half-brother won a maiden here (8.5f).

Ed Dunlop does well in 3yo handicaps here with almost 20% strike rate, it improves to 24% with 17% ROI with those making handicap debut. Shown below are stats for those that had failed to place in any of their races and were returning after the break, small sample but those numbers are very good.


I do have some doubts because of race fitness, as all 5 of his rivals have already had a run. But there are enough positives for me to take a chance. Favourite does have a good chance after his 2nd on return last time, but I feel price is too short.
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Thank you everyone for kind comments. Losing streak was at 15 and threatening to go on for over, so it was pleasing to end it.

29th April

Grade 1 Ryanair Novice Chase (6:35 Punchestown) - Win bet on Captain Guinness @ 6/1

I regretted taking on Energumene in the Irish Arkle, and I might end up regretting it again but at odds of 3/10 I am going to oppose him again. My selection Captain Guinness has already been beaten twice by Energumene, I am hoping he can make it 3rd time lucky. At Naas, Energumene comfortably pulled away from him, and at Leopardstown CG was still close up in 2nd when falling at the 2nd last. I doubt he would have beaten the winner, and the mistake probably came as he was trying to keep up with the leader, that’s what Energumene does, he is such a good jumper that it puts pressure on other horse’s jumping.

So if I rate Energumene so highly, what makes me think he can be beaten today? There are a couple of reasons why I want to take him on. One, he missed Cheltenham as he was found to be lame before the festival, so there is that question about fitness after that setback. Other reason is this is the quicker going than anything he has raced on so far, it might not be a problem for him as really good horses can run well on any going but looking at his pedigree the preference is clearly for softer going. It’s true that my selection also hasn’t raced on anything this quick, but his pedigree suggests he will be better on drier going. So that is the reason I feel it is closer between them today and I hope mine can at least give the favourite a race.

Horses that ran in the Arkle have a really good record in this race even those that were beaten at Cheltenham. In last 24 years, 11 horses that were unplaced in Arkle have competed in this race with 3 of them winning (+4.50 LSP) and 3 placing.

Rachael Blackmore has drawn a blank over first two days but she does have a good record at this course, 22 winners from 105 rides (+16 LSP) at Punchestown over last two years.

I do know that if Energumene is 100% then he will win as he is clearly the best horse in here, but with possible doubts about race fitness and going, for me the price makes it worth taking him on.