Weekly Eye-Catchers – Horse Racing

horse racing

Hi all,

Champions Day Brings Down The Curtain Or Does It?

Champions Day is over for another year and I have to say its now well over its Frankel Days and is now the day that effectively brings down the curtain on the turf flat season. Yes, I know there a plenty of flat meetings, including the Group 1 Racing Post Trophy on Saturday, to go before Doncaster turns off the lights on November 11th but these days the flat season effectively ends on Champions Day.

I have a suggestion to the racing powers that be. Why not end the turf flat season at Doncaster on Racing Post Trophy Day and move the November Handicap from the November meeting to this one? You could even have a two-day end of season ‘festival’. At least the flat season would end with a proper bang rather than drag on with some mediocre racing as it does now. Mind you I have suggested that the start of the flat season at Doncaster should be on the weekend before the Craven Meeting given how slow the season is to crank into gear.

Eyecatcher Trainer Comments

One of last weeks trainer comment horse’s Romain De Senam was turned out quickly to win at Stratford on Saturday at odds of 4/5. I have what I consider to be another two interesting trainer quotes for you from last week’s action courtesy of the Racing Post.

Sizing Network – Jessica Harrington“Robert [Power] wants to get him into the Topham next year and he feels that’s the race for him. He might go to Cheltenham or Aintree for a race but we’ll have to see. He’s still a novice so he has that option as well. I think he could stay forever, it looks like he just gallops and jumps and Robert said he was always going comfortably”.

It took Sizing Network sixteen goes over fences to get his head in front but a last time out win at Clonmel and now a win at Punchestown means he is now 2 wins from 7 runs since joining present trainer Jessie Harrington over the summer. He jumped well again here and he looks best when he is ridden prominently. The trainer’s comment that they see the 7-year-old as a possible for the Topham Chase next April is indicative that he can win more races even when he reassessed after this win. Not sure whether he wants the going to be any softer than it was here.

Tom George – Miss Night Owl“Has toughed it out and that’s her third win in a row, so now the most important thing is getting some black type. There’s a mares’ race at Wetherby on Charlie Hall day, which we were half tempted to wait for, or a Listed chase at Bangor a week after. Hopefully, we’ve not got to the bottom of her”.

The mare made all to win this race on her handicap debut and showed a good battling attitude at the finish to hold off the eventual runner-up after the last. The Tom George comments indicate that there should be more to come from the daughter of Midnight Legend when racing against her own sex and she gets her favoured underfoot conditions which seem to be good or good to soft at worst.

This Weeks EyeCatcher’s

Tuesday 17th October


Sykes – Nicky Martin – The 8-year-old was having his first start for trainer Nicky Martin. Formerly with Philip Hobbs, the gelding won on his second start over fences last season at Chepstow and seemed to have a bright future over fences but seemed to totally lose his way after that run. The change of surroundings seems to have worked and this was his best performance since that win. Back over hurdles he travelled well through the race and was still in with a chance coming to the last but just faded out of on the flat. He looks on winnable handicap mark and this race should bring him on nicely. One of his wins has come on soft but all his other career wins have come on good.

Thursday 18th October


Seanour – Brian Ellison – A high class staying handicapper on the flat, who was unlucky not to win the Northumberland Plate last year. The six-year-old hadn’t run over hurdles since winning two novice hurdles back in December 2014. He was held up at the rear in the early stages of the race but was making headway when making a mistake two out. This effectively put paid to any winning chance he had and he had to settle for 3rd at the finish. This was a nice return to hurdling for the horse, who would have preferred more ease in the ground than he got here and probably needs further than two miles over hurdles. The market confidence before the contest suggests he can win more races in the sphere this winter.

Thursday 19th October


I Just Know – Sue Smith – The seven-year-old showed last season that he was a better chaser than hurdler when winning three times over the larger obstacles. Plenty of the trainer’s horses have needed the run so far this autumn but this one ran really well from the front and was still in with a chance coming to the last, before finally finishing 3rd. The ground would have been soft enough for the gelding. Starts the season 7lb higher than for his last win but he looks capable of landing a handicap chase or two this winter when the ground isn’t too testing and the trainer has hit form.

Saturday 21st October

Ffos Las

Cody Wyoming – Charlie Mann – The trainer has started the autumn in really good form and his 11-year-old made an excellent start to the season when finishing second in this handicap chase. This was his first run for 213 days and considering 5 of his 6 career wins have come when racing 8 to 30 days since his last start, then he should come for the run. Starts the season off a 3lb lower mark than for his last win at Lingfield back in November, a track he is 2 wins from 3 runs 3 placed at. Even at his age, he showed here that he can win a handicap like over winter when he gets his optimum conditions. His record on good to soft/soft ground when racing 8 to 30 days since his last start is 5 wins from 15 runs 33% +102.2 6 placed 40% and given his running style not surprisingly he is well suited by a small field being 4 wins from 6 r

All that’s left now is to wish you a profitable week’s punting.


John Burke

I have a MA in International Politics and having spent a number of years working in political campaigning but I eventually I realised that politics was not the world where I wanted to work I had been interested in horse racing since the late 1980s but in the early years I was merely just betting and watching racing like most people as a bit of fun and a hobby, then the hobby becomes a passion and that’s what happened to me with horse racing. I soon realised that to make money from my hobby I had to learn as much as I could about the sport and betting in general. The whole process took time but after a number of successful years of betting, I decided in 2011 to take the plunge, gave up my full time day job and decided to bet on horse racing as a part time business and I haven’t looked back since. I like to specialise in the better class of races and I love to solve the puzzles posed by big field handicaps the latter races often provide punters with great value betting opportunities. Whilst most of my time is spent reviewing previous races I like to keep things as simple as possible as even the biggest field handicaps can usually be pruned down to half a dozen strong contenders with the right sort of approach.
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