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.
Date of Tips: 23/07/2021
Disclaimer The odds for these selections were correct at the time of publishing (11:43 23/07/2021) but may have changed since. Please check the latest price before placing your bet.
It was great to see the WhichBookie sponsored day go down so well a few days ago at Lingfield, with the six race card running very smoothly and some nice winners of the feature races. It was a frustrating day for myself personally, as my two official bets came 2nd and 4th respectively. That being said, if you read the preview of all the races that I put up, I selected winners in 3 of the remaining 4 races, including a 9/1 shot with Fox Leicester. That was small beer to me unfortunately, but I hope a few managed to get on those horses. Unfortunately, we were dealt a cruel blow on the ante-post front, as Copperless was pulled out of the Galway Hurdle after an unsatisfactory piece of work. He had been doing everything very nicely at home up until then, so it was a shame to see his bid not materialise.
My attention moves to Uttoxter this afternoon, where they host a competitive card of jumps racing. There are 8 races to get stuck into on the card and I will be focusing on the 2.40 race to start, which is a 3 mile handicap hurdle for horses rated from 0-110. These sorts of races can often be tough to analyse, as the horses nearer the top of the weights are stepping back down in grade but after some poor form, whereas those at the bottom of the weights are in better form but in a lesser grade. In these instances, you have to trust your gut and sometimes take a chance on certain horses, and on this occasion, I’ll be siding with a horse out of form but dropping back in grade this time out.
That horse in question is Laugharne, who comes back into this grade of race for the first time in a long while after a series of disappointing efforts. This doesn’t take away from the fact that he is very well handicapped on some of his old form, and if he can rediscover some of that old spark, he would have to have a big chance. He is a two time winner over 3 miles in his previous efforts, including winning off higher marks than this in the past. He is at the top of the weights, with a mark of 110 giving him no room for manoeuvre. On this occasion, with the price being so tempting – I can’t let it slide without having a small bet on it. At a general price of 20/1 with 3 places available – he should be backed each way.
And the second race I will be having a bet in will be the competitive Novices Chase at 4.20 – where three very nice summer horses are battling against each other. These can often be good races for the time of year, and it will be interesting to see how Pisgah Pike, Beyond the Clouds and Courtandbould all fare. On this occasion, I will be siding with the latter, Courtandbould – who should take very close rank in this event after a solid effort on chasing debut. This time last year, he was a very progressive novice hurdler in the summer months – culminating in a good second behind McFabulous in the Persian War at Chepstow.
He was subsequently beaten twice comprehensively over hurdles, but there were excuses available for both of those runs. He made his chasing debut last month at Southwell and despite being turned over by Mick Pastor, that horse is a nice type on his day, and his jumping should improve massively for that outing. Most importantly though is the weight that he will be receiving from his two main rivals – who both have winners penalties to overcome. With not much between all three on official ratings, Courtandbould is the horse most well in for today’s contest. At a standout price of 2/1 with Bet365 – I will be taking a chance.