The second day of the British flat season sees plenty more good racing to be had with cards at Ascot, Doncaster and Carlisle as well as a couple of meetings over in Ireland as well. After successfully nailing the winner of the Dubai World Cup on Saturday we are looking to strike again while the iron is hot.
We’ve had a good look through the cards for Sunday and have come up with a couple of bets, both of which come from Doncaster where the Lincoln meeting continues on another good day of racing in Yorkshire.
A field of 19 has assembled for this Class 4 handicap over 7 furlongs & yesterday’s Lincoln, where they all congregated down the middle suggests the draw shouldn’t be a massive factor. Jamie Spencer rides the favourite Diavolo who won well on handicap debut on the all weather but then disappointed when last of 4 off this mark. He’s yet to totally convince so it might be best to look elsewhere. Challet probably has more sound claims as he won 3 handicaps last year & has done it in this grade off just 1lb lower. He should go well but at 4/1, he’s a bit short in such a big field.
However, at the prices, I prefer the chances of Seven Brothers. On form figures alone, it might seem difficult to understand why he’s recommended as a bet but I feel a return to the winners enclosure is imminent. He has an excellent record when fresh, winning on debut as a 2 year old before again winning last year first time up, this time when narrowly getting the better of the very good handicapper Popmaster. That handicap win was off a mark of 86 & today, he’s 2lbs lower. After that, he ran in 5 consecutive Class 2 handicaps including a pair of heritage handicaps. His best finishing position was when 2nd on soft ground at Goodwood. What I find interesting is that he was pitched in at such a level, remember he also ran in a Group 2 as a 2 year old, so his trainer must rate him highly. It’s also worth noting that the winners of those 5 handicaps are now rated 106-97-95-103-105, yet the top rated horse in this field is just 85. On his last start of last season, he was dropped to Class 3 & although he finished 9th of 13, his effort can be marked up as he was badly hampered; admittedly he wouldn’t have won but he would have finished much closer. If he shows up fit & ready to go, I think there are plenty of reasons to suggest he could prove better than this mark & if the past is anything to go by, this is the time to catch him.
Back Seven Brothers (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 8.50 Skybet BOG (⅕ odds 1-6)
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Another straight track handicap, this time in Class 3 over 6 furlongs where another large field has assembled with 18 heading down to the start. This is very open with the in-form Mick Channon, who landed the Lincoln yesterday, having the current favourite Chairmanoftheboard. He finished the year well but his record fresh tempers enthusiasm. Of the others, Ey Up Maggie will probably struggle to last home whilst Pendleton might need it softer. Woven & Bergerac both hold chances but are inconsistent whilst Tipperary Tiger would have a chance if he can transfer his all weather form to turf.
Ghathanfar is my bet in this. He’s not exactly started the season on the all-weather in sparkling form but I think his 2 runs will have put him spot on for this. The small fields didn’t help, nor did his race position, so I’m prepared to forgive those runs. He thrives on turf in big fields & in straight track handicaps over his optimum trip of 6 furlongs, he’s always in with a shout. In fact, his record when contesting 6 furlong handicaps on turf, all of which were last year, reads 1-2-2-3-7-3-5. His 5th was when narrowly edged out in the Ayr Bronze Cup off a mark of 83 whilst his 7th was when sent off favourite for the Great St Wilfrid consolation race off 84. The fact his last 4 runs haven’t been when tackling optimum conditions means that his mark has dropped to a lowly 77, a mark I’m absolutely convinced he’s better than. In his last 2 seasons, he’s had a couple of pipeopeners on the sand before running on turf & his race record on his first run of the year on grass reads 1-2. In my eyes, he’s the each way value of a very competitive heat.
Back Ghathanfar (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 13.00 Skybet BOG (⅕ odds 1-6)