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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Galway Hurdle betting - Thursday (Ladies Day)

A cracker of a day yesterday with four winners including an 11/2 and a 12/1 (16/1 on Betfair).

Another good day too for my place lays on which is going very well. For 2014, it's produced a profit of £1480 at Betfair SP to a £10 stake which is a fantastic return if I may say so myself.

It's Galway Hurdle day today which, as one would expect for the richest hurdle race in Ireland, is very competitive. Here's today's Irish Independent article:

AS a general rule, British trained horses don't have a great record in the Galway Hurdle (4.55) although in 2010, Donald McCain's Overturn ran a cracker carrying 11st 6lbs to take the prize across the water for the first time since 1991. Since then, normal service has been resumed with horses trained by Paul Flynn and Michael Winters (twice) claiming the richest National Hunt race in Ireland. Of course, British trained horses only made up a small percentage of all runners down through the years so it would be foolish to overlook them based on a small sample size - and I've a sneaky feeling that John Ferguson's Parlour Games has a better chance than odds of 12/1 would suggest.  With four wins on the flat and two over hurdles, the six-year-old certainly has talent and even though his weight of 10st 12lbs off 141 might appear restrictive,  he gave the impression that he's plenty of improving to come when defying a penalty to land a facile victory in a novices' hurdle at Market Rasen a couple of weeks ago. That was just his third race since switching from the flat, and from what we've seen so far, a decent future awaits under the winter code. Leading Irish fancies Thomas Edison (4/1) and Bayan (7/1) will certainly be no pushovers but with some bookmakers offering five places on each-way bets, it's worth taking a chance on a talented horse at a double-figure price.
IN the opening beginners chase (1.50), Elegant Statesman can get the Ladies Day crowd off to a flying start with layers expected to open up around carpet (3/1) for the Henry De Bromhead trained gelding. The assessor had piled the lead on following some notable performances last season and it all came to a head when the son of Vinnie Roe could make no impression in a handicap at Leopardstown at Christmas. He got back on track when coming second in a maiden chase after seven months off at Kilbeggan recently, and the JP McManus owned seven-year-old has enough talent to see off the likes of Tylers Cottage and Our Man Zebo.
Half an hour later, Alelchi Inois (11/10) is napped to take the Guinness Harp Novice Chase (2.20). A French import, he won a maiden hurdle on his first start for Willie Mullins last year and he went in the notebook as one to watch over sticks; but later made no impact when stepped up in class to graded level. Mullins has since tried him out over fences and that's where his future lies it seems with two wins in that sphere in as many races.
Finally, Dermot Weld's Tested should take all the beating at 3/1 in the Listed Fillies Stakes (3.40). She finished mid-division in the Irish 1,000 Guineas, but bounced back to form when taking a Listed race with a bit to spare at Naas last time.


1.50: Elegant Statesman
2.20: Alelchi Inois (nap)
3.0: Sister Slew
3.40: Tested
4.15: Ground Invasion
4.55: Parlour Games (e/w)
5.35: Pirate Cove
6.05: Clondaw Farmer

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Galway Plate betting


Good morning all,

Two winners yesterday but nothing to write home about. A tricky enough card today with the highlight being The Galway Plate. JP McManus has a few horses entered and has a great record in this race. We also have the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood for which Kingman is very difficult to oppose. Plenty to look forward to today then - here's today's Irish Independent article:

THE 20/1 which was widely available over the weekend for Alderwood to win today's Galway Plate (5.30) has predictably been slashed since Tony McCoy opted to ride the Tom Mullins trained ten-year-old. Now chalked up as low as 6/1 in places, he's part of a seven-strong JP McManus contingent as the leading owner attempts to win the race for the third year in-a-row. The heavily backed Carlingford Lough was a very popular winner under McCoy last year at 7/2 and Alderwood will surely raise the roof if the champion jockey gets him home ahead of all others this evening. But I have my doubts over McCoy's choice, and have opted to back another McManus horse, Rum And Butter, which was available at 20/1 with a number of firms yesterday. Don't get me wrong, I know I'm not qualified to question the champion jockey's decisions considering the only time I've sat on a horse was when, at the age of six, my old man threw me and the brother up on the back of a piebald in a housing estate in Ballybrack. That ended with a split-head and a trip to Loughlinstown hospital so it's somewhat surprising that I'm still interested in even watching the animals today. But coming at it from a punter's point of view, which is my brief here, it worries me that Alderwood hasn't been seen in 275 days when finishing second-last in a Grade Three at Naas (having jumped poorly throughout). Yes, he may be working well at home and connections know a lot more about the horse than we do, but I still feel there's nothing like racecourse experience to prep a horse well. To come back and win such a competitive affair after a big lay-off is a tough ask. Conversely, Rum And Butter has been in flying form, winning three on the trot including a seven-runner novice at Market Rasen recently at the expense of Scots Gaelic. He remains unbeaten over fences and I don't think he's unduly punished carrying 10st 11lbs. Dessie Hughes' Art Of Logistics has claims too, while Paul Nicholls' Caid Du Berlais has not been sent here just to enjoy the scenery.
In the preceding maiden (4.45), Dermot Weld's Whitey O' Gwaun is nap material albeit at a restrictive price of 5/6. A half-brother to several smart winners, his disappointing run in a handicap at the Curragh last time can be overlooked as he needed to oil the hinges after ten months off.
In the opening maiden hurdle (3.0), take a chance on Most Peculiar at 4/1. Willie Mullins' five-year-old shaped well when third to King Leon on his hurdling debut at Ballinrobe, and went one better in a bumper at Cork to finish second to MacBride, an Aidan O'Brien trained gelding which has since won another bumper at Tipperary. 

3.0: Most Peculiar
3.35: Cacheofgold
4.10: Dubawi Phantom (e/w)
4.45: Whitey O' Gwaun (nap)
5.30: Rum And Butter
6.05: Sister Slew (e/w)
6.40: Focussed
7.10: Brooch

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Galway Festival, day two betting tips (Tuesday)

Good morning folks, here's today's Irish Independent article:

WITH a strike-rate of one in five, Aidan O'Brien's unraced two-year-olds are always highly regarded and I suspect that Ask Me Nicely will prove popular at 8/1 for the Topaz E.B.F. Fillies Maiden (6.05), as we push on with day two of the Galway Festival. She's well bred and is closely related to some smart winners including Beethoven although, like more than half the field here, she will be racing for the first time. Both O'Brien and Dermot Weld have dominated this race in recent years and we have to go back to 2005 to find a winner which was not from Ballydoyle or Rosewell House with Weld saddling the most recent victor, Tarfasha. To be honest, there's a lot of guesswork involved here but the market will be a good guide and the Weld trained Chinese Light gets the nod at 9/4. The fact that she's a full sister to Group One winner Chinese White does not go unnoticed.
With a total prize fund of €115,000, the Topaz Mile (6.40) is the feature race of the day and as one would expect, the 21-runner handicap is a competitive affair which, from a betting point of view, looks wide open. As is so often the case at Galway, once again it's the Dermot Weld horse which catches the eye and at odds of 14/1 or thereabouts, Calibrate can be backed each-way. She showed some promise here last year but was ultimately unsuccessful when making her debut in a maiden, but later showed her worth by landing a similar race at Gowran. This term, she attempted a handicap at the Curragh and while the result looks poor (seventh of nine runners), she actually shaped much better than it appears on paper. She was still going well when hampered a furlong out but wasn't given a rough time by Pat Smullen once it was clear she wouldn't be taking home some prizemoney. The handicapper has left her with room to manoeuvre off a mark of 93 although the topweight, Balty Boys, looks set to give her a run for her money having landed a competitive handicap at Newmarket last time.
Gordon Elliott has had a few near-misses at Galway down through the years but Takeyourcapoff might be the one to get him back in the winners' enclosure at Ballybrit in the Handicap (7.10) at a generous enough price of 7/1. This mare is another one of his useful dual purpose recruits and she beat some decent sorts to win a handicap hurdle at Roscommon back in June.
In the concluding maiden, I realise I'm on dangerous ground opposing the Weld trained favourite (Antique Platinum), but I like the look of David Marnane's  Henson, which should be available somewhere in the region of 3/1. He's a bit of an oddball to be honest and at times he can almost look disinterested - yet he's rarely out of the frame and I reckon he'll shed the maiden tag sooner rather than later. 

5.05: Shield
5.35: Jacksonslady
6.05: Chinese Light (nap)
6.40: Calibrate (e/w)
7.10: Takeyourcapoff
7.45: Sretaw
8.15: Henson

Monday, July 28, 2014

Galway Races, day one betting (Monday)

Good morning folks, The seven-day Galway Festival is here and alongside Goodwood, there should be some good betting opportunities throughout the week. Fancy O'Brien's horse in the maiden and I reckon Weld's bumper horse has been laid out for today. Below is today's Irish Independent article.

THE 52-race, seven-day marathon that is the Galway Festival kicks off with a Novice Hurdle this evening (5.10), where Henry Higgins (10/1) can get punters off to a good start from Charles O'Brien's yard. The four-year-old was last seen on the flat at Leopardstown in early June when going from last to first to win a decent enough handicap with plenty to spare at odds of 7/2. I reckon he's beginning to run out of options on the level but he's relatively unexposed over timber, and his latest effort  in this sphere (fifth of nine runners in a Grade Two juvenile hurdle at Fairyhouse) wasn't the worst considering the ground was quite testing. O'Brien says he'll continue to mix both codes for the moment and I doubt he'll go home empty handed this evening.
An hour later, Aidan O'Brien's Jamaica (nap) looks like banker material in the maiden at what seems to be a very reasonable price of 6/4. A son of Galileo, the two-year-old was an eye-catcher in the parade ring on his debut maiden at the Curragh in late June, shaping well to finish third behind the even-money favourite and stablemate Gleneagles (which has since gone on to win a Group Three at Leopardstown). He stayed on strongly in the final furlong and unless one of the unraced horses here produces something special, Jamaica should dispose of his rivals handy enough leaving the likes of Vocaliser or Dudes And Diamonds to battle it out for minor honours.
The big race of the day is the Connacht Hotel Handicap and there are at least half a dozen horses which I'm finding hard to cross off my list. As such, stakes will be kept reasonably modest (6.45). It will be interesting to see if money comes for Tony Martin's Quick Jack, which has been useful over both codes, winning a handicap at Newmarket in August and also novices' handicap hurdle at Cheltenham in November. He's beaten a number of these before and may have some more to come before the handicapper catches up but I doubt the bookmakers will take any chances here and he'll probably go off around 4/1, which is a little short for me in a 23-runner field. Instead, Storm Away gets a tentative each-way vote at 16/1. The five-year-old mare won a maiden at Wexford back in May after which trainer Pat Flynn mentioned that Galway might be a good target before they send her hurdling.
It's almost obligatory to back a Dermot Weld horse at Galway, and Call Vinnie (15/8) can send punters home with a smile on their face in the concluding bumper at 8.15. Weld has a very good record in these races at Galway with eight wins from 21 runners in the past ten years, and Call Vinnie comes here in good shape having won a point-to-point at Templemore back in April. 

5.10: Henry Higgins
5.40: Oscar Vespasian
6.10: Jamaica (nap)
6.45: Storm Away (e/w)
7.15: Tom Dooley
7.45: Primogeniture
8.15: Call Vinnie

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Irish Oaks at The Curragh

Sorry folks, it's been ages since I updated. I've been mad busy with this and that.

A very brief summary of the last month:

The place lays took an absolute hammering but recovered well and I'm now over 100 points in profit for Wayne Bailey Racing on Racing Index:

This is good as it attracts more subscribers but I have to be careful not to take on too many as the liquidity in the place markets is low and prices can be moved quite easy.

The automated trading strategy has been up and down as well. It got off to a flyer and hit €170  profit (to a €10 trading stake) quite quickly but took a hammering last week. It's recovered a bit and now stands at €130 profit:

The €1000 challenge was put on ice as I was busy on other things but I hope to revive that soon and I'll post in due course.

Otherwise, the betting has been going OK. Had a nice big bet on Slade Power last week and I'm hoping for a bit of success in the Irish Oaks with Marvellous which is currently trading about 5/1 although this market is very open and at least four horses have serious claims.

Here's today's Irish Independent article which looks at the Irish Oaks:

Looking forward to Conor McGregor tonight in the UFC in Dublin. He's 9/2 on so I won't be having a bet but he's great craic and has plenty of charisma. Should be a good one.

Conor McGregor: