Newbury and Warwick

Good evening everyone! Yep I'm doing the blog on Friday night as tomorrow I am at my school again doing the final dress rehearsal for our performance of Our Day Out next week. I'm hoping Warwick survives the chill as I have two selections there tomorrow! It has been a tough week for the Bandit and the family this week. On Sunday I had to take our beloved cocker spaniel Freddie to the vet to be put down. It came so quick, on Saturday he had started to breath a little funny and cough as if he had something stuck in his throat. It got worse on Sunday and we found a large tumour in his mouth/throat. The vet thought it was cancerous and he was struggling to breath. Broke my heart doing it but I couldn't let him be in pain. Rest in peace little fella!
 
The photo for the blog is courtesy of Fran @Riosrider2 again. Give her a follow!
Last week was a complete shocker for my selections too, I was quietly confident of a few of them and couldn't believe how poorly they ran. To be fair the ground was shocking but I can't make excuses my horses just weren't good enough. Saturday is a cracking card at Newbury and the racing at Warwick is decent too. The festival beckons everyone! Whatever you are backing tomorrow with your well earned cash – good luck! Lets hope we take a step closer to beating the old foe!
 
The twitter gamble boys have opted for the following tomorrow – their big gamble will land soon!
 
@Tonythetyke Nightline 1300 Warwick
@DazGilbert1 Barters Hill 1640 Newbury
@Fernando_RFC2 Vibrato Valtat 1405 Warwick
@LiamKenniford Milan bound 1350 Newbury
 
Here are my selections :
 
SIGN OF VICTORY 1535 NEWBURY (nap)
Won first time out this year at Ascot more or less on the bridle and he looked very smart. He was then pitched in a little too deep amd was put in his place, but finished a creditable fourth, to FAUGHEEN. He has to carry alot of weight in the race, but he has that because of what he has shown. The form of his Ascot race has swung it for me. He beat DAWALAN that day who has since gone on and won twice and looks decent. BARADARI finished third that day and he obliged the other week. You can even go further down the field at Ascot that day day and find KILCOOLEY who rompted home at Haydock too. I like to find a decent priced horse in a competitive race and I think I have found it for tomorrow. He's probably better than this and will shown it tomorrow for my money.
 
BALGARRY 1535 NEWBURY
With Sign of Victory now a non-runner I will go for this fella to come up trumps in this race. He ran so well last time after such a long lay off last time and he may now step up today.
 
CONEYGREE 1425 NEWBURY (nb)
This fella just keeps impressing me, and he seems to get better and better. He has been raised a further 6lbs for his last success to a mark of OR153. That is still a little less than some of his rivals in this and he needs to improve again to trouble HOUBLON DES OBEAUX and UNIONISTE. My guy travels so well in his races though and hasn't put a foot wrong. My question against the other two is whether the ground is soft enough for them. I'm hoping my guy jumps with the same zest and enthusiasm again and he'll give them a good run. Cracking little race.
 
UNCLE JIMMY 1335 WARWICK (treble)
On of my old favourites! He won the Pertempts Qualifier here last year when I napped him on the blog beating GRAND VISION. He returned this season with an impressive defeat of SOUND INVESTMENT at Newton Abbott and followed that up with a second to PECKHAMECHO at Aintree. Interestingly ROLLING MAUL was well down the field that day and he went on to win well at Cheltenham on New Year's Day. He will like te ground and should make the transition to the bigger obstacles. He ran a stinker last time in November over hurdles and I find it really interesting that they have used that time to prep him for fences and not stick to hurdling.
 
DORMOUSE 1625 WARWICK
He has won 3 out of 6 here at Warwick and put in a grand show when defeating REGGIN PERRIN at Lingfield in November. Has flattered to deceive a little since but his marked has dropped back to OR118 and the jockey booking of Paul Townend really catches my eye. His mark has fluctuated between OR115 to OR120 over the past year and his mark is doable and he has carried big weight to success in the past.
 
My Dad's selections are :
 
Standings
Father 6-6 Son
Profit
Father -£42.32
Son £159.49
 
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Wincanton and Sandown

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Well what a start to the New Year Cheltenham was! The nap MON PARRAIN (25-1) went in as well as the nb PTIT ZIG (evens) and ROCK ON RUBY (5-2) brought a tasty profit on my Lucky 15!!! I know some of you had MON PARRAIN too and just wanted to say thanks to all of you who made some nice comments via Twitter on Thursday, much appreciated. I am bloody relieved to be honest, it was ages since I had put a good one up here!

So on to the first Saturday of the New Year and it isn’t great to be honest! I’m writing this on Friday as I’m treating Mrs GB to a weekend away for her birthday so will get limited time on Saturday. We’re off to pick her birthday present and then staying in the hotel we got married at, Whitley Hall, near Sheffield, it’s a beautiful place and would encourage any of you to stay there if ever you are up my neck of the woods.

The TwitterGamble guys have gone for

@Tonythetyke Somchine 1405 Wincanton

@Fernando_RFC2 Unioniste 1535 Sandown

@LiamKenniford Earthmoves 1440 Wincanton

@DazGilbert1 Walser 1415 Newcastle

So, good luck everyone again! Let’s hope we have another profitable day!

VOLT FACE 1440 WINCANTON (NAP) (unplaced = -£5.00)

I’ve been waiting for this one since @tonytheTyke tipped him up in our #twittergamble the other month. He cruised into contention and looked all over the winner but then didn’t pick up at all and ended up finishing third. The ground was heavy that day which I think was the main factor, plus it was the first run of the season for him. He’s been raised 3lbs to OR128 for that but I think he will take this and kick on to better things. Kieron Edgar takes a valuable 5lbs off too.

REBEL REBELLION 1515 WINCANTON (NB) (unplaced = -£5.00)

Another class horse dropped in grade and off top weight! He’s slowly dropping to more a reasonable mark, and is only 3lbs higher than he was when competing in top level novice chases last year. He did run off OR150 back in April at Aintree. His mark of OR143 tomorrow is not bad and with the apprentice jockey taking 7lbs off in his claim that could prove to be very valuable. I thought he ran well in the Grand Sefton for a while and had the likes of HUNT BALL and DOLATULO behind. He could make a mockery of this!

TRIOLO D’ALENE 1535 SANDOWN (treble) (3rd 16-1 = £10.00)

The last time this fella ran in a class 2 handicap he smashed JUNIOR by 4 and a half lenghts off a mark of OR139. Since then he has won a Hennessy and ran in both the Gold Cup and Grand National. He is 4lbs lower today than his Gold Cup mark, he will enjoy the ground and the trip will be fine. He has a lot of weight to carry but as I always say in these handicaps, class is class and he’s not top weight for nowt! My only concern is how terrible the yard’s horses have been running! UNIONISTE has to have a great chance but I’m not sure it will be soft enough? BERTIE BORU showed what fight and determination he has after staying on to win well last time. A fascinating race!



AMORE ALATO 1500 SANDOWN (unplaced = -£5.00)

Ran in some good races last year and has some decent form in behind the likes of LAC FONTANA and IRVING who have both gone on to better things. He is nowhere near that standard but is a decent handicapper and he showed that last time when just being pipped by a well handicapped SNAKE EYES. Interesting that McCoy is on board today, having beat him. I think McCoy’s pushing and driving style will suit too. Hopeful of another good show.



My Dad’s selections are :

VOLT FACE 1440 WINCANTON (unplaced = -£5.00)

AMORE ALATO 1500 SANDOWN (unplaced = -£5.00)

RELAX 1535 SANDOWN (unplaced = -£5.00)

BRICK RED 1350 SANDOWN (2nd – 4-1 = £2.50)

Standings

Father 5-4 Son

Profit

Father = -£4.66

Son = £69.50

The Hennessy Gold Cup

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Photo courtesy of Sporting Life

The twitter gamble last week didn’t fair to badly with @DazGilbert1’s selection Silviniaco Conti (100-30) and @Fernando_RFC2’s selection FLETCHER’S FLYER (11-10) winning. The guys have put up some more tips for today. See below and remember to give them a follow!

I was gobsmacked by how poorly UNCLE JIMMY ran last week, there had to be something amiss he was being pushed along from over a circuit out, interestingly he still stayed on at the end. TAQUIN DE SEUIL I feel needs to go back over hurdles after that showing, doesn’t look like a chaser to me, although he’ll probably go and win a big race now I’ve said that! AL FEROF (5-2) won for the Bandit on the blog and he was very impressive, I’m hoping the same connections do it for me today in the big one! My dad won last week on the profit front and takes a 2-1 lead. On to today and another cracking day with one of my favourite races of the season – The Hennessy. I was on good old Denman a few years ago when he defied top weight in one of the best performances I have ever seen, lets hope we get another cracking race today, and we should!

The Twitter Gamble Lucky 15 is :

@DazGilbert1 VOLT FACE 1315 TOWCESTER

@LiamKenniford FINGAL BAY 1500 NEWBURY

@Fernando_RFC2 HAMMERSLY LAKE 1350 NEWBURY

@Tonythe Tyke UT MAJEUR AULMES 1535 NEWBURY

On to The Bandit’s selections for today!

UNIONISTE 1500 NEWBURY (NAP) – The Bandit’s tradition is always to have a nap that has a bit of value. This guy has to have that at 16-1 as I write this. Not many horse in the past few years have won this a double figure odds but I reckon my selection has a real chance. Last year his defeat of WISHFUL THINKING at Aintree was smart and he is a pound lower in the ratings today, that could prove to be a very reasonable mark judged on the second’s performances since then. This fella goes well at this time of the year and he will love the ground. Generally he’s a tidy jumper and you need to be to stay this and win. He has had a wind operation which can really sort a horse out and while he will come on for the run the Nicholls string are firing at the minute. This horse for me is way better than his current mark suggests and I’m hoping he shows that today. FINGAL BAY could be his main opponent today, he stays all day and is a class horse. The way his yard are firing too has to make me put a few shekels on him too. Should be a bloody cracker!

DEFINITLY RED 1305 NEWCASTLE (NB) – this fella will go off favourite and at a short price but I have to put him in as I was so impressed how he went away from a decent bumper field last time at Cheltenham. He went straight on to my radar and this should be a stepping stone to greater things for him. One to watch for the season, I think he has the potential to be very good.

LIE FORRIT 1425 NEWCASTLE (TREBLE) – getting a bit long in the tooth but has always been a classy type. His defeat of NEPTUNE EQUESTER at Kelso in March is decent and his hurdle mark is far superior to his chase mark. He beat good old PIGEON ISLAND last time out to open his account of the sticks and has been raised 4lbs for that, not too harsh in my opinion. The ground shouldn’t be a problem and I’m hoping he shows improvement again today, this mark could be quite handy for him!

ALBERT BRIDGE 1350 NEWBURY – What an interesting runner this guy is! He has ran well on soft and heavy ground on the flat and has ran off a mark in the high 80’s in that sphere. Ran well and won last time in a maiden hurdle on soft ground at Plumpton. He is chucked in here today and could be anything and I like taking a punt on these types!

My Dad’s selections are :

EXITAS 1350 NEWBURY

THE DRUIDS NEPHEW 1500 NEWBURY

VICTORS SERENADE 1440 NEWCASTLE

ANQUETTA 1535 NEWBURY

Current Standings

Father 2-1 Son

Profit

Father -£12.26

Son £8.63

Trials Day

 
A bit of a disappointing week last week for the blog with only CAROLES SPIRIT returning a bit of profit. It has seen me draw level with my dad though at 3-3. There is a real twinge of excitement as I write this, it is trials day which means the Festival isn't too far away! Enjoy the feast of racing today and the return of one of the best horses in Big Bucks. I just hope he's over his injury and even a 75% fit BB would still beat these, I got 6-4 for him this morning, which I'm staggered at, what a bet that is! I just hope he runs well and returns injury free though. Good luck if you're having a flutter and we'll hopefully find you a few winners on the blog!
 
UNIONISTE 1515 DONCASTER (nap) – (3rd – 11-4 = £1.72) the class horse in the race and I love backing these top horses who carry a big weight. There are the gest horse so should have that weight, but love it when they still win. This guy will do this today the rain overnight will have helped and despite not getting into it in the Lexus, that race is way above this class. Harry Derham taking 5lb off is another huge plus.
 
CONQUISTO 1330 DONCASTER (nb) – (unplaced -£5.00) another to carry top weight. This race is much easier than the last couple of outings and for me the drop back to two miles is key. He won well at Aintree under McCoy earlier this year but trounced his rivals at Ayr over two miles last year. The ground is softer but he has won on heavy and this track will allow him to lead and attack from the final bend and out speed and out stay them. Cracking price!
 
MCLLHATON 1225 DONCASTER (treble) – (2nd – 15-2 = £4.69) ran very well on his comeback on soft behind JUNCTION FOURTEEN. He is nicely handicapped I think and he has a solid form at the track when third behind AFRICAN GOLD last year. Should run a big race today!
 
CAID DU BERLAIS 1255 DONCASTER – (unplaced = -£5.00) was very impressive last time and this looks a smart horse. The withdrawal of ROCK ON RUBY strengthens his chances more. He ran behind JEZKI too showing his level of ability and even though the form of his win isn't that good he looks a great chasing prospect.
 
I am also having a few dollars on the following at Cheltenham ULCK DU LIN, ROCKY CREEK, BIG BUCKS and RED SHERLOCK.
 
Here are my dads selections for today :
 
OUR MICK 1350 CHELTENHAM (unplaced -£5.00)
HOUBLON DES OBEAUX 1425 CHELTENHAM (unplaced -£5.00)
UNIONISTE 1515 DONCASTER (3rd – 11-4 = £1.72)
AMOR ALATO 1610 CHELTENHAM (3rd – 4-1 = £2.50)

Result
Son = -£3.59
Father = -£5.78
 
Standings : FATHER 3-4 SON
 
PROFIT
SON £69.29
FATHER £47.26