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Today’s Racing News: McManus to lay down the law with Newbury duo

Yesterday was a very profitable day for Betfair Daily News Column readers as we scored with Our Power 7/2, Earth Company 5/2 and an abundance of “Mark Your Card” winners, so let’s hope for more of the same today.

We have five meetings to get stuck into on Wednesday. The main card is Newbury, flanked by Leicester, while Lingfield, Dundalk and Kempton give flat fans some excitement on the all-weather.

Money Talk

Money Talk continues to highlight the Betfair Sportsbook big-money moves to keep you in the loop. This section highlights market moves between 1:00 am and 9:00 am.

14:15 Leicester – Scipion 11/2 into 7/2
14:35 Newbury – Guardino 11/2 into 11/4
16:45 Kempton – Adelaise 25/1 into 16/1

The morning market drifters !

Which horse is the Betfair Sportsbook market suggesting to Lay?

13:25 Newbury – Valsheda 2/1 OUT 3/1

Mark your card

The Betfair Sportsbook is paying extra places today!

The opening 12:00 Racing Excellence Training Series Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle at Leicester looks like a weak enough renewal with all six runners having some sort of chance. It could pay to follow trainer Micheal Roberts who has a 50% record scoring with two of his four runners at this venue. Today he sends Falcon Sun 11.010/1, who has a two for two 100% track record.

Trainer Olly Murphy has scored with ten of his 20 runners over hurdles at Leicester for a 50% strike rate. Today he sends Let’s Have Another 4.57/2 in the 13:05 WM Installations Maiden Hurdle and Storm Of Light 2.47/5 in the 15:15 @leicesterraces Christmas Meeting 28th December Book Now Handicap Hurdle.

Trainer Tom Lacey will look to keep his one for one 100% record over fences intact at Leicester with San Agustin 2.68/5 in the 14:45 KUBE – Leicester’s Leading Events Venue Handicap Chase. His runner gets first-time cheek-pieces and steps back up in trip after chasing home a well-handicapped rival last time out.

In the 12:50 Prodec Networks Maiden Hurdle at Newbury, Nicky Henderson will look for a fifth win in the race with I Am Maximus 1.75/7, who will appreciate going back left-handed. However, his price looks mighty short, and he may be worth taking on – see below.

Trainer Nicky Henderson is not as prolific at Newbury as many would think, with an overall strike rate of 21% but a level stakes loss of GBP99. He has a similar strike rate to Paul Nicholls and Harry Fry, although backing their horses would have yielded a loss of GBP26 and GBP18, suggesting Nicky Henderson horses are usually overbet and underpriced.

Trainer Richard Spencer will have his first runner at Newbury today with Wonderwall 4.03/1 in the 14:35 Betvictor Wishes Everyone A Merry Christmas EBF Stallions “NH” Novices’ Hurdle. Wonderwall finished seventh in the Champion Bumper at Cheltenham last season and will make his hurdle debut off a 273 daybreak.

Trainer Martyn Meade has a healthy 23% strike rate at Kempton with his two-year-olds, a strike rate only bettered by Charlie Appleby, yet his runners seem to be underestimated in today’s markets and may be worth a second look. He runs Kanakam 26.025/1 in the 16:15 and Adelaise 17.016/1 in the 16:45.

Horses for courses

This section highlights horses that have won twice or more at today’s tracks and could be in with a chance today.

11:40 Lingfield – Delicate Kiss – Has won here four times (21%)
12:00 Leicester – Falcon Sun – Has won here twice (100%)
12:10 Lingfield – Catch My Breath – Has won here three times (33%)
13:15 Lingfield – Marion’s Boy – Has won here three times (33%)
14:00 Newbury – Silver Forever – Has won here twice (67%)
18:45 Kempton – Juan Les Pins – Has won here twice (33%)

Weighted to go well

“Weighted to go well” highlights horses running that are more than 10lbs below their last winning handicap mark.

11:40 Lingfield – Delicate Kiss – Has won off 81 runs off 61
11:40 Lingfield – Agent Of Fortune – Has won off 76 runs off 55
12:10 Lingfield – Catch My Breath – Has won off 69 runs off 59
14:25 Lingfield – Real Estate – Has won off 73 runs off 59
15:25 Lingfield – Lady Pendragon – Has won off 70 runs off 66

Form Watch

This section highlights a trainer, owner or jockey who is in excellent current form and their runners or rides for the day.

Jockey Hollie Doyle has been riding at a 22% strike rate in the last 14 days. Today she heads to Kempton for a full book of eight rides with English Spirit 6.511/2 in the 15:45 Unibet Horserace Betting Operator Of The Year Handicap, quite possibly the pick of them.

The Heather Main trained runner gets first-time blinkers and drops back to seven furlongs after being caught late over 1m at Kempton last time out.

Furthest traveller

Today’s furthest traveller, trainer Mark Johnston has made the 271-mile journey from his base with his sole runner at Lingfield, Spy 4.57/2, in the 12:40 Play Coral Racing-Super-Series For Free/EBF Restricted Novice Stakes.

Race of the day

It’s worth having a crack at Newbury’s 13:25 Prodec Networks Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase, which looks like a competitive heat today. Still, predictably, the market has formed this race around an unexposed Nicky Henderson horse which, as mentioned in the above mark your card section they are usually overbet or underpriced.



Trainer: Nicky Henderson
Jockey: Nico de Boinville
Age: 6
Weight: 10st 9lbs
OR: 122

Connections have wasted no time going over fences with market leader Valsheda who makes his chase/handicap/seasonal debut today. He arrives on the back of a Novice Hurdle win at Exeter over today’s trip of three miles, but that bare form leaves him a good deal to find today.

This is a step up in class, and he is conceding race-fitness and experience to his rivals, some of which are hardy handicappers.

This is surely a big ask for all he is unexposed, and there is little reason to think he should be favourite for this contest. It’s somewhat baffling, and I would be hugely surprised should he not drift in the morning markets from his current 2/1.



Trainer: Jonjo O’Neill
Jockey: Jonjo O’Neill Jr.
Age: 6
Weight: 11st 2lbs
OR: 129

Quartz Du Rheu arrives on the back of a two-month break after scoring at Carlisle in a race that turned into a sprint. However, it’s hard to be negative about that run, especially when he showed a bright turn of foot to win going away. He had previously been able to grind out a victory at Worcester in September over the same trip, so his stamina doesn’t need to be questioned, and a two pounds higher mark for his latest win looks more than fair.

Since stepping up to this trip, his form figures now read 1121, and this promising six-year-old is firmly on the upgrade.

All of his best work has come on good ground so today’s good to soft has to be a slight question, but he has few negatives to his chances.



Trainer: Ian Williams
Jockey: Charlie Todd
Age: 7
Weight: 10st 1lbs
OR: 116

Tide Times would have surely won on chase debut at Market Rasen if not for a blunder at the final flight when making his challenge. That was a big step back in the right direction for one that had been out in the wilderness since his early Novice Hurdle promise last term.

He sits on a handy mark of 116 on the balance of his form, but this today is a stiffer task than his latest assignment, and he will need to improve.

Big race verdict

A good race but one with a false favourite, in my opinion, and while I wouldn’t write off I K Brunel or useful hurdler Colonial Dreams, QUARTZ DU RHEU looks a good bit of value. This six-year-old is firmly on the upgrade and is unexposed over this staying distance and looks to have been given a chance by the handicapper after a cosy win at Carlisle when last seen. He is a better chaser than he was a hurdler, and despite winning three of his last four starts, he still sits three pounds below his hurdle rating and can correct that here.

Timeform – Silver out to land gold at Newbury

Timeform’s Tony McFadden highlights a Nap and Next Best selection at Newbury on Wednesday.

Betfair Exchange Trophy latest betting news

Gary Moore thinks conditions at Ascot will suit Goshen in the Betfair Exchange Trophy this Saturday but it’s Nicky Henderson’s No Ordinary Joe that leads the betting. Max Liu has the latest…

Back JP’s runner to lay down the law on Maximus

I Am Maximus could prove a different proposition switched to a left-handed track in the 12:50 Prodec Networks Maiden Hurdle at Newbury, but his price is short enough for which his form doesn’t warrant – over hurdles at least.

There are three places to play for, and Head Law for Jonjo O’Neill looks a good bit of each-way value at double-figure odds.



Trainer: Jonjo O’Neill
Jockey: Jonjo O’Neill Jr.
Age: 4
Weight: 11st 4lbs

The JP McManus owned runner was picked up from France after scoring in good style to turn over an odds-on favourite in his debut bumper run, but his first start in Britain over hurdles suggested he may be worth keeping on side.

He was very keen from the get-go at Bangor, which came after a 354-day break, but he travelled strongly and looked a big threat until his early excursions, and the lack of race fitness took its toll. He was far better than the beaten distance of 18 lengths suggests. The winner was the useful 129 rated Washington, who wasn’t disgraced in defeat the next twice in hot novice contests at Cheltenham behind some smart rivals, including I Like To Move It rated 138. .

The third at Bangor is rated 117 which gives a good guide to debut form and he is sure to improve for fitness and experience today, and it would be no surprise to see him put in a bold showing. He did cost a hefty 150,000euros for JP McManus, and it would be disappointing should he not be able to run up to a mark of around 120 here which would certainly put him in the frame.

Final Word – You don’t have to be a bore to make it pay

It was a good day all around yesterday at Wincanton. Some good racing, some great results and even better people. I never thought I would have such a love for a racecourse, but Wincanton does feel like home after three years of tipping in their boxes and the people you meet along the way make the long drive all worth it.

Those really good days don’t happen as often as we would all like, so when I watched a recent interview with another punter/tipster who said: “You must not boom a winner and keep a level head at all times.”

I thought, what a bore!

Let me tell you from significant experience. It makes no difference to your ability whether you celebrate a winner or sit there like a damn china doll with no emotion, but what’s the point in doing anything if you can’t enjoy the good times?

Here is my philosophy.

Boom, the winners, enjoy the good times, have fun with it, and run down the track chasing your winning horse home. Celebrate that all the hard work that goes into finding an excellent valued winner or the fact that you chose to follow a tipster’s write up you found interesting.

It’s a huge misconception that you need to be boring and have an emotionless experience with betting to make it pay.

If you have no passion for this, then go and do something else, life’s for living and for enjoying, and I’ll be damned if I am not celebrating to Ricky Martin’s Livin’ la Vida Loca on a good day.

Until tomorrow, be lucky.

Follow Daryl Carter on Twitter @DarylCarter7

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