Just the one selection for Sunday’s racing, coming from Newmarket. Saturday was a disappointing day with all four bets failing to provide any return and all of them finishing unplaced. Silenceofthewind was well-backed on the exchanges and went off a single figure price, he travelled really well (traded at 2.50) but never found anything once asked a question and then hung badly. He just looks a bridle horse and he needs them to go ridiculously quickly up front, something they didn’t do today. That being said, he’s not one I’ll be following. Al Khan was restless in the stalls and never went a yard. It’s a run that’s worth putting a line through and I just hope that the experience won’t mentally scar him, as he’s still got a lot of potential to be a very competent sprinter. Wannabe King is probably the one to take out of the day, even though his finishing position looks on paper, useless. He was held-up, something that doesn’t suit and he was still on the bridle when encountering trouble, with his rider deliberately going for a gap that wasn’t there. The softer ground won’t have suited either and back on a genuine decent surface, in a valuable handicap and perhaps with a more positive jockey booking (Silvestre De Sousa a likely candidate for this yard), he’ll be winning races off his likely revised rating in the high 80’s. The Nifty Fox held every chance but faded tamely into last. He’s lost the plot completely. As a side-note, I haven’t advised anything in the 1000 Guineas and I just feel it’s too tough a race to call. Lyric of Light is interesting at double figure odds, as is Moonstone Magic if she continues to drift in the betting. That being said, there’s even some big outsiders capable of making the frame, such as Alla Speranza (who would be a bet in the Epsom Oaks if the ground was soft) and the likes of Starscope, which this race might come too soon for but will be winning Group races in due course. I’d probably like to put about six selections up, but that isn’t really feasible and I’ve just decided to let it slide from a blogging point of view.
ROCK A DOODLE DOO (14:05) almost looks too good to be true, given he handles soft ground and looks to be on a very workable mark. His yard are yet to have a winner in 2012 but he is still worthy of investment, especially as she’s gone well fresh in the past and looks to need a big-field handicap like this one to show his best. An improver on the all-weather in 2010, he was only seen five times on turf last year but made a striking impression on more than one start. His win on fast ground over this trip at Ascot was taking, not getting the best of runs but still winning, and showing that a decent pace in a big-field was what he really needs. This was followed subsequently by a really unlucky run at Royal Ascot, where he was hampered and blocked in on numerous occasions before finally getting a clear run. It came all too late but he did ridiculously well to finish only 4 lengths behind Fox Hunt that day and importantly, that start came on soft ground which should mean today’s conditions are no problem. He had excuses on his next two starts, not staying further at York and then being given far too much to do back to 1m4f at Ascot and this has meant he’s now 3lbs lower than the aforementioned Royal Ascot effort, so he looks obviously well-handicapped. His fitness has to be taken on trust having not been seen for 274 days but went very well on seasonal reappearance last time round and I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. He often finds trouble and might be one of those types who is just constantly unlucky, so reuniting him with Martin Dwyer, who was on board for his last success, could be no bad thing. Rock A Doodle Doo is well-handicapped, being easily capable of running to 104 or so in this sort of strongly run handicap, with conditions no problem and available at double-figure odds, he’s definitely worth a bet. The yard’s current slight slump is a little worrying, but Oriental Scot for that stable ran very well this week (would have won with a better draw) and losing runs are always going to occur with a fairly small pool of horses. Hopefully this one can end that slump, and he has plenty in his favour to do so today and I’d be backing him up until the 8/1 mark.
14:05 Newmarket – Rock A Doodle Doo; 2pts @ 14/1 Bet365, Betfred (bog)