#startracking Wednesday December 23rd 1pm

OK I’ve just seen the Boxing Day final declarations and there is quantity as well as quality. As you will see below just the three #startracking runners. The Organist is un-backable at Fontwell 1.30, Bally Beaufort takes a massive leap in grade at Kempton 2.00 and with just seven runners has to be a watching brief but Top Gamble steps up in trip and grade in the Rowland Meryck at Wetherby 1.45 and David Noonan claiming 5lbs rides and Top Gamble is worth a two star** bet.

So here is the #startracking guide to Boxing Days eleven racecards

Down Royal                Of interest – Noble Endeavour/Venitien de Mai in the beginners chase, Marito in the Hunter Chase and Ger Fox has two rides for Noel Meade.

Fontwell                     Poor quality, small fields and The Organist is unbackable.

Huntingdon                     Good fields and Richard Johnson! As for winners you are on your own!

Kempton                    Absolute quality. Of interest – Open Eagle for Mullins Walsh in the first, the three Graded races and I am putting up a two star** bet in the C3 handicap hurdle at 3.45. Gunner Fifteen needs to learn to settle better but he wears a hood for the second time, was fifth last time when sent off 13/8F in a much stronger race won by Rock the Kasbah at Haydock, races off the same mark here and in Messrs Fry and Fehily I have total trust and wouldn’t be surprised if he made every yard. Leopardstown                        Absolute quality. Of interest – Coney Island in the first as he was second to Woodland Opera, the two graded races and in particular Douvan at 2.55. Going to put another two star** bet up in the bumper at 3.25 IF he is odds against. Bacardys represents the Mullins powerhouse but got rave reviews from the Irish PtP community. FUTURE STARS Richard Pugh 08 May 2015An early faller at Rathmorrissey on his debut he hardly put a foot wrong when winning next time. While he won the maiden previously won by Champagne Fever at Quakerstown, this fellow was at this stage of his career even more impressive. He oozes class and everything seems to come very easily to him. He is out of a six-time winning Robin Des Champs mare and is almost impossible to fault at this stage in his career.”

Limerick                             Moderate fare except the Willie Mullins runners ridden by nephews David and Danny and perhaps Whistle Dixie in the mares handicap hurdle.

Market Rasen                 Plenty of runners, competitive racing. I am putting up a one star* bet in the 1.00 in the shape of Money Maid. An Irish PtP winner but an eight race maiden in this country, ran her best race to date last time out, I like the in-form combination of Graeme McPherson and Keilan Woods and I like 100 rated horses in 0-100 handicaps.

Sedgefield                  Plenty of runners, competitive racing. Have a pin handy!

Wincanton                 Plenty of runners, competitive racing. The Pertemps qualifier at 1.40 is of interest despite Scoop The Pot being a non-runner as his trainer Philip Hobbs has got Tom O’Brien on another JP horse, If In Doubt (who I backed in the Pertemps Final in 2014 and Hobbs won the race with Fingal Bay!!) and 7lb claimer Conor Smith on Sadlers Encore who hasn’t run for best part of two years.

Wetherby                   Plenty of runners, competitive racing. I’ve found another two star** bet here in the 2.20 in Abricot de L’Oasis. According to Dan Barber of Timeform he is the best handicapped horse running on Boxing Day, has the clock to match and you have to be with the Dan Skelton/Ian Popham pairing. Back at the right trip and dropped 3lbs he’ll do!

Wolverhampton        A bloody AW meeting as well!! Twitter is terribly excited about Jamie Spencer riding Dove Mountain for Gordon Elliott in the 3.40!!


#startracking bets for Boxing Day

Two star** bets

TOP GAMBLE              Wetherby 1.45

ABRICOT de L’OASIS  Wetherby 2.20

BACARDYS                  Leopardstown 3.25 (IF Odds against!)

GUNNER FIFTEEN       Kempton 3.45

One star* bets

MONEY MAID             Market Rasen 1.00

The more ambitious may like to put them in multiples (Phil!) perhaps excluding Bacardys.


Before you bet….

Look what I found at the bottom of a Nicky Henderson/Stan James blog 18/12/15 talking about some of his better novice chasers, “…I’d have liked to have run them before now, we’ve just had a few snotty noses and things. That’s why we haven’t had too many runners. But they’re getting a lot better so all those came back into play this morning and there are some pretty smart horses there to be going novice chasing. But you need to be getting them out there quite soon because if they’re going to be meeting targets in March, they’ve got to get experience. You need three runs but it’s bloody nearly January. And then it’ll be February and then, before we know what’s happened, it’s going to be March.” Good to know he’s on the ball calendar-wise!!


#startracking Entries Sat. Dec. 26th & Sun. Dec. 27th Update

BALLY BEAUFORT             (Nigel Twiston-Davies)

26Dec15 2:00 (Five Day) at Kempton, Kauto Star Novices’ Chase (formerly the Feltham Novices Chase) (Grade 1)

If he turns up here this will be a big step up in class, C3 handicap to C1 G1!! He’ll be a double figure price and could possibly ruin an excellent official mark of OR144! Have to be a watching brief or 0.5 star e/w. Ryan Hatch (no claim) rides in a field of seven. We’ll watch.

BRONCO BILLY                  (Jonjo O’Neill)

27Dec15 12:20 (Five Day) at Chepstow, Download The Coral Mobile App Maiden Hurdle

28Dec15 2:35 (Five Day) at Leicester, Old Year Novices’ Hurdle

Only two weeks since his last race, prefer if he didn’t run. Update Thursday/Saturday am.

CAPARD KING                  (Jonjo O’Neill)

27Dec15 12:50 (Five Day) at Chepstow, coral.co.uk Money Back If Your Horse Falls Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase

Looks a good opportunity off OR139. The downside would be heavy ground and those undulations in the Chepstow straight. Possible bet.


27Dec15 2:20 (Five Day) at Leopardstown, Paddy Power “One Account Multiple Ways To Bet” Handicap Hurdle 3Jan16 1:50 (Early closer) at Naas, Lawlor’s Hotel Novice Hurdle (Grade 1)

“If the handicapper puts him up say 10lb at worse he could be interesting in one of the 2m Christmas handicaps..WELL the handicapper has put him up 11lbs but he IS in a Christmas handicap! The jockey who has had the most rides and winners for Noel Meade this season is Ger Fox and he can claim 3lbs. This could be our Christmas Cracker!!

STILLETTO                         (Paul Nicholls)

27Dec15 3:10 (Five Day) at Chepstow, coral.co.uk Best Price Guaranteed On Horse Racing Handicap Chase Stilletto has run in and won a solitary C4 beginners chase at Catterick and has been given a mark of OR132. Here’s the rub, the horse he galloped all over at Catterick, Amore Alato, was leading by six lengths when coming down at the last in a C1 G2 novice chase at Ascot last Friday. If he had stood up he would have run to about OR145. Stilletto could be a real handicap snip and there is every chance the handicapper saw the Ascot race the same and Stilletto could be put up for standing in his box. His owner Roger Brookhouse has a history of fast tracking and over facing his youngsters and I reckon he fancies a go at the Chepstow C2 £30K handicap! He would be getting two stone from topweight Mr Mole, also trained by Nicholls, who was 5th in the G1 Tingle Creek for Gods sake! Is this the Christmas Cracker?

THE ORGANIST                (Oliver Sherwood)

26Dec15 1:30 (Five Day) at Fontwell, Selftrade Stock And Shares ISA Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle

She is in the “could be anything” bracket and as a wide margin C & D Huntingdon winner if she did line up can’t think she would be any price. Bigger days ahead. Just three rivals, she’ll be 1/10!!

TOMBSTONE                    (Gordon Elliott)

27Dec15 1:45 (Five Day) at Leopardstown, Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle (Grade 1)

3Jan16 1:50 (Early closer) at Naas, Lawlor’s Hotel Novice Hurdle (Grade 1) If he takes the Leopardstown G1 route then my Neptune bet is on the line! Tombstone travels, jumps and has gears but I’m just not sure this real winter ground is ideal.

TOP GAMBLE                   (Kerry Lee)

26Dec15 1:45 (Five Day) at Wetherby, 188Bet Rowland Meyrick Handicap Chase (Grade 3)   Now rated OR153 he steps up 4f as he moves from handicap to Grade 3 company. As a 7yo son of Presenting out of a Sadlers Wells mare heavy ground may be an issue but he certainly knows where the winning post is. David Noonan claiming 5lbs rides.

WOODLAND OPERA       (Mrs John Harrington)

27Dec15 1:45 (Five Day) at Leopardstown, Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle (Grade 1)

3Jan16 1:50 (Early closer) at Naas, Lawlor’s Hotel Novice Hurdle (Grade 1) Like Tombstone we could be about to find out if he can hack it at Grade 1 level? Would expect if he lined up against the Mullins batallion’s to get a double figure price.


Cotswold Chase Jan. 30th Cheltenham Trials Day is warming up!!

O’FAOLAINS BOY, a leading ante-post contender for Sunday’s Coral Welsh Grand National, will miss the Chepstow marathon and wait for Cheltenham’s Cotswold Chase next month.

It’s a shame that Djakadam appears likely to side-step the Lexus in favour of the Cotswold Chase (Cheltenham Trial Day, Jan 30)


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