The site is currently plus 57.5 points for the year following a great few weeks.

The Winter Derby is always an exciting race and we have a thriller in store but there is a worry about a lack of pace and that would hurt my selection but let’s hope for such a big race that the jockeys will be revved up and that does not materialise .

Anaconda : One of a few that might go on . Has very little chance of lasting home no matter whatever way it pans out.

Aussie Reins : Hold up performer who will need a ferocious gallop and things to drop just right but if those two things happen it would be no surprise to see him involved.

Chil The Kite : Has been successful out foreign for Hughie Morrisson but ran poorly in Meydan on seasonal bow recently and is probably best over a mile anyhow. I find hard to fancy.

Circumvent : Likes it round here but not good enough.

Dick Doughtywylie : Has some decent form but he needs to improve a fair chunk to win this . Unlikely.

Farraaj : Unbeaten on this surface [2/2] and can run prominently. Won this last year and is second favourite so should be involved but I am fairly strong against him. There are two very good horses to beat and in my opinion both will have to run below par for him to be successful.

Grandeur : Deserves to be favourite and a very classy type and one from one here. He obviously likes this surface and will take all the beating. He is best coming off a strong pace and rather pulls himself up when he hits the front. It is always difficult to get a proper gauge on this type of animal but that is a good thing. People are saying his ”coffin box” draw in 14 means he is at a big disadvantage but I feel it will help him as he has needs to be delivered late so Moore can drop him right in. Huge chance but offers little value at such a short price of 7/4.

Mirsaale : Ran in the Derby last year and could help force the pace. Let’s hope he does. There will be worse outsiders but not for me.

Premio Loco : Not this time.

Rebellious Guest : In seventeen career runs up to the his last one at Kempton he had never gone beyond a mile. He blitzed a decent field of handicappers over today’s trip of ten furlongs . Have connections got it wrong up to now with him ? Even so he needs another huge jump up to get involved but could be worth watching in the future over this distance on turf also. Not today.

Robin Hood’s Bay : Genuine and loves this surface but I feel this race is better than most he has been contesting. No.

Vodkato : This French trained horse is the biggest danger to the favourite. He is not obvious on form but he has some real nuggets of high class efforts to his name and if he gets two vital things to go his way then his crazily inflated odds will look amazing come 3 55 or so. He wants a very strongly run race as he is a big long striding type and his second requirement is avoiding traffic. The two sort of go hand in hand. He needs a clear run more than most to wind his run up and if that happens he will be in business. Major chance.

Windhoek : Runs very well fresh and is here. I do think however that he will lack the tactical speed for this and his best form is also on log homestraights and Lingfield is one of the shortest. No.

Tinshu : No.

Summary :

Grandeur is very classy and will be extremely difficult to beat. He is very short at 7/4 while his principal danger, VODKATO, is 22/1 with Bet 365 and Bet Victor. That is terrific value. I suggest a 1 pt win on VODKATO at that price and will be looking at another bet with PP in the betting w/o the fav market when those prices are available.

More later…..


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