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Wednesday Racing Tips: Tony Calvin backs Moon De Vega to rise

The Chester May meeting is Groundhog week for punters and tipsters alike, if we are being honest. Do we tip or back the badly drawn overpriced horses, or the well-berthed, underpriced ones?

It is for that reason that it is probably my least favourite punting meeting of the year, and Wednesday’s ITV card is probably the worst of the lot given my tipping MO.

Two sprint handicaps, and three conditions-Listed-Group 3 races featuring mostly lightly-raced and unexposed contenders, where plenty of guesswork is required.

Nymphadora and New London look strong but are too short

I have no opinion the Lily Agnes at 13:30 – 2yo contests rarely do it for me, but Star Of Lady is the early shortener there – and I will spin you through the other races before I land on my sole bet on the card.

The 5f handicap at 14:05 must have been pretty straightforward for the layers to price up with the in-form Live In The Dream and Shamlaan in the race, but I was hoping for a touch bigger price about Nymphadora as a result.

That was wishful thinking considering she does have early pace, she is drawn in one and is well handicapped on her Listed win and Group exploits at two.

However, the negative to her chances is that it isn’t hard to see the early speedster Live In The Dream cutting her off at the pass from stall two, and I wanted a bigger price as a result, with the Betfair Sportsbook offering 9/2 (bigger on the Exchange).

There is nothing doing in the 6f handicap at 15:40 and I am sure the short-priced merchants will be all over New London in The Chester Vase at 15:10.

He could well be Godolphin’s new star on the block after his win under a 7lb penalty in a good time at the Craven meeting – and indeed, he is already the second-favourite on the Exchange for the Derby – but he is a very skinny price (the early 4/6 disappeared, and he is now 4/7 best in the market place) for what he has achieved.

And then there was just the one race in which to eke out a bet.

Beckett’s filly should relish the trip

You had to be very impressed by Above The Curve’s Leopardstown maiden success from Thoughts Of June, who re-opposes here, but there is no way in the world she was going to be missed in the market in the Cheshire Oaks at 14:40 – and she hasn’t been.

The third and fifth in that maiden have come out and won, and she was dominant at the line, so I wasn’t at all surprised that the first firm up made her 2/1. She is now a general 7/4 chance, and probably set to shorten further.

However, I think there is some mileage in taking her on each-way with Moon De Vega at 18/1 (14/1+ would be fine).

Now, this wouldn’t usually be my cup of tea from a betting perspective but I was expecting her price to be a touch shorter given her progress at two, culminating in a 1m Doncaster maiden win on soft ground. She went forward that day, and hopefully they will look to do the same from stall one here.

The form of that race was given a small boost when the runner-up won next time, and everything about this filly suggests she should relish this trip.

Her stamina and grit won her the day at Doncaster and she is out of a 1m3f winner, too.

Ralph Beckett may not have won this race but he saddled Manuela De Vega to finish second in 2019 , and a third in 2016, and Moon De Vega showed enough at Doncaster for me to have a small each-way bet on her.



Trainer: Ralph Beckett
Jockey: Rob Hornby
Age: 3
Weight: 9st 2lbs

I appreciate he tends to target the Lingfield Oaks Trial with his better fillies – he has won that race three times in recent years, and he has his York winner Luna Dorada in it on Saturday – but I will take a chance on the selection to minimum stakes.

I may even look to back her without the favourite when those markets appear.

A very low-key punting start for me then, but good luck if you are getting stuck in a touch more.

Profit and Loss (from March 26)

Staked: 61pts

Returns: 161.2pts

P/L: +100.2pts

Previous (April 14 2021 to March 25 2022)

P/L: + 183.1

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