So far this week, the Major has not managed to draw a single mark on the enemy. First of all I tipped up a nil nil half time result at Leeds versus Arsenal. Seemingly neither club had read the Majors script that this might be a tight game and the bet slip could be binned after just five minutes play.
The previous evening, the Major had picked out a 20/1 likely sort running at Newbury. Unlike last Sundays 25/1 winner, Bertie May clearly hadn’t read the Majors post which suggested he would outrun his odds. He finished down the field and to be fair was never in the race.
So to Chepstow on Friday 21st January and a likely favourite that the Major is happy to suggest as a bet. The Neil Mulland trained Hobbs Dream races off a relative featherweight and is taken at a fine 3/1 to win. I would be tempted on course to match this in a couple of reverse forecasts with top weight and returning champ of this race, Notabotheronme and Kathleens Pride.
Notabotheronme at 14/1 could be a great bet. OK 3 miles around Chepstow in heavy ground is tough to get off top weight. However, this animal is a mudlark and sure to get round. We might be down to a handful of finishers from thirteen runners as Heavy at Chepstow is pretty bottomless.
Pancake also has to shoulder a hefty weight but make no mistake this lovely looking (beautiful white socks!) horse has raced at a pretty decent level. Who knows if Fridays Chepstow meeting is the one where Pancake remembers his lines. What is for sure, if he needs nurturing back, noone is better at settling a horse than Richard Johnson* Not one for the Major.
Hobbs Dream is the Major’s selection. Why tip this one up? Well it is already bottom weight but then gets a handy 5lb pull from the effective jockey Giles Hawkins’ claim to race effectively 8lb lighter than anything else. Last time out Hobbs Dream showed well, being held up, travelling nicely and winning as impressive as you can at a class 5 race at Hereford. Promisingly, this was also in pretty dire conditions. Chew on a chunky piece and thank me later.
Kathleens Pride is also of interest – lightly raced and possibly progressive. There may not be many miles on the clock at the age of eleven. This is a horse that has only raced three times in the last three years, winning twice. It has a tendency to jump left and it is no surprise to see connections keep trying at left handed tracks. 15/2, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see it race well again. It clearly goes well fresh, having won off long breaks in March 2010 and November 2010. Treat it as a saver or dutch it with the Majors favourite.
*possible better settling jockeys than Dickie are Noel Fehily, Ruby Walsh, Slippers Madden and Barry Geraghty!