WhichBookie racing analyst Will Smith provides a preview and an ante-post each-way selection for the Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket on Saturday 25th September.
|Go Fox||11/1||Each Way
|Ever So Much||12/1||Each Way
Date of Tips: 31/08/2021
Disclaimer The odds for these selections were correct at the time of publishing (10:46 31/08/2021) but may have changed since. Please check the latest price before placing your bet.
We are entering the final day of the month today and with every month that ticks by, that build up to the National Hunt season begins to crescendo more and more. It’s my favourite time of the year and even though there are some big flat engagements between then and now – it is already lighting a fire inside me and I can’t wait to be back deciphering big weekend handicaps at the big tracks. However, for now, focus lies on Hexham – with the Northern track offering a sumptuous starter for those looking forward to this winter’s main course.
Starting with the 5.15 race, which is a 2 mile handicap chase for horses rated 0-100. This race brings the improving Captain Cobojay to the table, who is eyeing up a third quick win in suggestion since joining this yard. It would be a brilliant achievement for a horse who had looked like he was turning a bit sour in Ireland and had been reviliatised by a switch of yards and environments. However, perhaps for the reasons of his previous form in Ireland, I have never had him down as the most trustworthy. Instead, I will be taking the equally good form of Graystown for the Coltherd combination. Having tumbled down the weights after a series of poor efforts, this horse has been back to his best the last twice at Hexham with a close second preceding a decisive win last time out. He was given a bit of a break to freshen up between then and now, and does have a higher mark to contend with, but should still have a massive chance in the context of this race. I did not think I would be getting any sort of each way price about this horse, so therefore the 5/1 available generally, looks a good each way bet.
The 6.45 race is the next port of call and it is a 2 mile handicap hurdle for horses rated 0-115. Sea Prince looks the likely favourite and a deserved one at that, with his win last time at Cartmel being well advertised and he only has a small hike in the weights to contend with. However, I am intrigued by Go Fox, running for the Irish yard of Patrick Neville, who has always been shaping like a handicap hurdle might be in him at a certain level. These Irish raiders in northern tracks have to be given the utmost amount of respect. Despite recent form figures looking pretty woeful, his run on the flat behind Dalton Highway a few weeks ago was a run of great credit for a big outsider and might have left him spot on for a bid in a much less competitive race over hurdles. He is currently a price of 11/1 with Paddy Power, which is worth the risk I believe, as an each way bet.
The 7.45 race is the final race on the day and is a staying handicap hurdle. It’s hard not to like some of these JP McManus owned veterans and the record of Ever So Much, who is always in the hunt off a certain mark – speaks for itself. He ran a big race for us a few starts back at Cartmel when almost going in at a massive price, and he shapes like he might well still have big runs in him despite his advancing years. He will have to overcome a poor effort last time out, which is a small concern – but he bounced back from a bad run in the past and his last win was over this exact C&D. Once again, it’s the attractive price and each way terms that are drawing me. At a price of 12/1 with Coral, who are offering 4 places for this race, he is worth an each way bet.