Tag Archives: hoof it

The Saturday Sermon – Ayr Gold Cup, Newbury Tips, splash of football

Good morning from the Major who rises a little later than usual to find Worcestershire blanketed in a consuming blue grey cloud.  We have fallen between the cracks in the season and all is calm for now.

Whether it be my heavy cold (which persists) I can not tell but I am feeling the chill air a little more than I should and so have lit a fire.  Now you might be thinking that it is September and the temperature really does not warrant it and I would find it hard to resist that argument, save this.  I am a pyromaniac and I enjoy it, I require little encouragement to reach for the flammables.

There is something enchanting about the dance and lick of flame, the warmth emanating from the violence, I find it irresistible.  No work in my garden goes without an incendiary event and my usual aim is to have something so fierce burning that the American military register as a suspicious launch type event.

The sparks that leap from the flame, I think it was Descartes who likened them to our lives.  When we are young and at the heart of the fire, things are so pure to us.  We are exquisite because we have not polluted our minds with knowledge, we can imagine the impossible because we have not yet blinkered ourselves with common sense.  This dulls as we grow, as the spark leaves the fire and spirals away in the air.  We might add knowledge but it weighs rather than frees, burdens us, until we fall to the floor, all light extinguished.

This may sound like an urge not to seek learning.  Quite the opposite.  I advocate a life of learning for you, it is tremendous fun.  When you are younger though, you absorb information in a different way, you thirst for it, as you age and weary, we are reluctant, losing the burning intense heat we once had.  Hold on to it.  Stay close to the fire my friends.  Allow wonderment.

Last week was much better, we may not have been sensational but we hit the bar several times.  I thought Talent was mighty unlucky in the St Leger, still, she once again stole my heart when barging between colts with just three hundred metres remaining, brave girl.

To the sports… Get on parade soldier, for it is a day of treachery, the enemy has conceived cards so deceitful, that only our best will see us through to a profit.  Tread warily and have your bayonet fixed for we will meet them hand to hand if we must.

Ayr Gold Cup Day

Now I must confess that these big sprint handicaps are not really my idea of finding a good bet.  Naturally, I understand the attraction of looking at a 28 runner field that is 8/1 but find the calculations too obtuse – Too many obvious candidates is my usual problem.

Therefore today, I shall give you my notes but know this, the Gold Cup is not a betting race for me.  You make your choice, this is your divine position and while taking my position is my business, I shall presume how to tell you yours.

One trend really stands out for me.  Ten of the last thirteen races have gone to Nicholls, Fahey or Ryan.  That is telling and where I would start my appraisals.  Such a stance is indeed quite a rough treatment of the data we have available but in this sort of contest, you have to make a stand somewhere.  On draw, my preference would be 6-16 but I would not make it a red line either.  This in spite that the high numbers seemed advantageous, seems illogical but watching the replay of those races, I am not sure too much bias exists and track record and pace has influenced my target stalls.

Of their runners, Baccarat would be highly interesting but the popular concern is the ground for which he is untested.  Being out of Dutch Art, I have no such fears as his sire tend to produce sprinters who like traction.  Highly considered with the capable Hanagan up top and drawn 14.  Definite candidate.

I would love Hoof It to win but he needs the ground to dry out.  From the trainers I discarded, the stand our horse is Red Dubawi who has been bought over from Ireland.  Conor King has been riding with such distinction for a teenager and is already able to go toe to toe with the best, his 5lb claim is simply a bonus.  Jack Dexter is also going to be popular, looking a group horse in his exploits over the last two summers.

Having meandered through the lot, my single dart is going to be a win bet on the Keith Dagleish trained Lover Man at 33/1 with Coral.  He does not fit lots of the trends for a winner in the race but is drawn well (for me) in ten and comes as an unexposed sort, this being his first run in Britain.

A horse I think is a must bet is the 9/2 shot Light Weight.  The Danehill Dancer filly looked a good horse winning at Newcastle in tremendous style and only has Braidley to be concerned about in my view.  That colt showed well last time too but has a ten pound raise as a consequence and my girl in good to soft (family have good record in it) with a stone in hand looks a must bet.  High Confidence.

I am not touching the Silver Cup but am prepared to stick with connections and back Valonia at 5/1 in the 3.15.  A lot of money has been invested in this good looking chestnut and she holds plenty of top class entries.  Qatar Racing have seen enough to think she is a worthy addition and the trainer has been able to keep her in the yard.  I suspect 5/1 might look big.

Newbury Tips

My bet of the Newbury card is for Meteroid in the nursery who is trading as 2/1 favourite.  He won a Warwick maiden with plenty of style and although that form might look nothing more than average, I think there is plenty to come.  While the ground may be unproven, the sire, Dynaformer, has a good record of his offspring so it is not off-putting to me.

Sticking with favourites chances, surely Kassiano is a good bet at 6/4 in the 1.50.  He has run with high distinction in Dubai (2nd in a G1) and has transferred Tapeta form to turf where he went readily away in a conditions event at HQ, last time out.  This is an Arc trial race although you won’t find any of these names prominent in the Longchamp betting!

At Newmarket, I will be having a small interest in Amnesia at 2.30 with Murtagh booked.  His raids are so productive now he is more selective.  His strike rate in the last 90 days outstrips Buick, Moore, Barzalona et al by 5%.  The horse looks OK too!

Jallota on paper ratings looks a shoe in at 6/4 but horses being dropped massively in class after failing further up are not my bet.

Equally there will be no bet but I shall be watching the Cesarewitch trial closely where I would expect Broxbourne to run with credit.  This race could throw up all sorts though.

In the football, Liverpool looks a bet at 8/13.  I also like Cardiff at Tottenham who are 19/20.

The Martin Hill Lucky 15 is going under some reconstructive surgery.  I think Martin himself might be finally losing heart.  Yet, I ask him to hold on for one week further as: Light Weight, Valonia, Meteroid, Kassiano is one to set your watch by!

Good luck to all of you today, I hope your dinner is in great company.  Courage and roll those dice.

The Saturday Sermon – Ripon, Perth, Tramore, Newbury, HQ, Chester, Arlington… We need more racing

Good evening from the Major who writes to you from the bed, the darkness is complete outside, the Major lies alone, it is late and still – My ears ring with the tinny silence.

What a disaster last Saturday was.  I knew that I was chancing my arm with a full run down of the Shergar Cup but all the same, I put up no-show for you.  This week, we shall be more selective, we are presented with a great koldtbord of racing and variety gives us plentiful angles of attack.  Opportunities to approach the enemy entrenchments under the cover of darkness and deploy our arsenal before the devious swine has time to respond.  Let us select well.

Keep a weather eye, there are some heavy downpours predicted, coming in as most of our weather will from the Atlantic.  Tramore and Chester will get the most of it.

Newbury hosts the best racing of the day and I am very much looking forward to Soft Falling Rain testing the metal against a British mob.  He has done everything asked of him internationally but his form is open to question, even if the string of 1s does catch the eye, more of that to come.

I have no time to review the Tramore festival where I expect the ground to turn heavy and will seek some early value accordingly.  It is my wish one day to tour Irish racecourses in a drunken fortnight of frivolity.  The mischief I could make given the chance.  I shall be at Limerick at Christmas and intend to do it justice, I would like to see Punchestown too for their Christmas card but shall be in Dublin City instead, family commitments.

While there, I shall go with purpose to the Merrion Hotel, a fine five star establishment which looks worthy of a visit for the hospitality alone.  You cannot glean from their glossy website though the true purpose of the Major’s visit, no, they do not advertise it, probably as it might not be such a popular draw locally.

The Merrion is argued as the likely birthplace of Arthur Wellesley.  As a young buck, he joined the British Army and was soon enrolled as an aide to Lord Buckingham who ruled in Ireland at the time, that suggests a high background as these things were important at the time, he was high minded enough to run successfully for parliament too.  Pleasingly to me, he liked a gamble.

Arthur served as a light dragoon for a short while as subaltern but did not stick around to enjoy the drubbing they gave the French in Egypt at the turn of the nineteenth century.  No, greater things were destined for Arthur – He was to buy more senior colours and act as Colonel of the 33rd seeing action in the low country in 1793, commanding with such deft touch that he soon rose to Brigadier and was largely credited with the drilling of infantry to fire their muskets in steady organised rounds against advancing enemy, which it is easy for me to visualise in your mind by simply reminding you of the film Zulu.

Back in England, Arthur stood in parliament again but you cannot cage such a soul and soon he was embarking on adventure in the East and India bound with the 33rd who were to see vigorous action around modern-day Bangalore as the British suppressed the last of the local resistance to rule from the Mysore princes.  His action and leadership were highly regarded, becoming known for valuing preparation above all things.  His promotion to Major General followed but was a heavy prize as it came with immediate action against the Marathas in Peshawar.

This was a short and nasty piece of action and Arthur led his men against a far more numerous force, he lost two horses and was injured in the action in which many thousands of Marathas were killed in a decisive but bloody victory.  An officer of his company was quoted as saying that our Arthur was as calm and collected as anyone could be.

I do not have the time to recollect his entire actions of the following years but from 1810, he saw more action in the Peninsular Wars than most of us would see in several lifetimes over.  By 1813 he was building to his finest hour, warming up with some skirmishes against Spanish and French forces in Spain, keeping the lads match fit.

Fighting the French in Spain, his military brilliance defeated Joseph Bonaparte, elder brother of the more famous.  Arthur was promoted to Field Marshal, you know you have secured a place in history when Beethoven pens a ditty in your honour.  It was also this action which secured further title for Arthur, in his mid-40’s he was bestowed with the title which we commonly refer to this man, one of our finest Britons, the Duke of Wellington.

Two years later, 1815, present day Belgium and one of the most famous victories of our bloodthirsty history as the Iron Duke served it up to the French at Waterloo, a short distance from Brussels and served the same to Bonaparte junior.

The battle was joined badly and Napoleon was able to make an early ransacking of the Prussian (allied) force who bought a force of 70,000 well-drilled Frenchmen to the field.  The Duke had a similar sized force of which a third were British and of which a third, battle hardened veterans of the Peninsular Wars.  These men had served with the Duke previously and placed great faith in his ability to see it through.  Napoleon felt he had the upper hand and even remarked at breakfast on the day of the great battle of Waterloo that the Duke was a poor General and that taking victory was as easy as eating his breakfast.  Oh you poor man Napoleon, run, run you fool, for he will surely do as he has said.

Of the 140,000 on the field, 40,000 would not survive the day at a rate of 4 to 6 in favour of the Dukes allied force.  The French would be forced into a disorganised retreat and Napoleon, dominant master of Europe in two careers would be finished, for good, exiled to St Helena for the rest of his days.  We still keep some of the guns we captured at Waterloo in the heart of London at the Tower.  The Duke went on to serve as Prime Minister and granted equal status to Catholics.  Upon death at 83, he was granted a full state funeral, no quibble or complaint.

My favourite snippet of the Dukes life was an account of a publisher who threatened him with blackmail,seeking payment to prevent distributing an account of a rather racy affair the Duke had engaged in.  Wellington’s response, publish and be damned.

Well in the shadow of such great men, we deign to bring battle to our enemy.  Saddle up young man and remember, preparation is the key.  Be sharp.  To the sport.

Saturday Chester Tip

I always fancy my chances at Chester.  Draw, jockey and course aptitude are what we seek there – Low, good and frequent are what we look for! The tight little turns of the Roodee mean that a rail draw is important, a jockey that knows to ask for full effort before the bend has finished (short run in) and a horse that does not mind the sharp contours.  Throw in a penchant for softer conditions and I fancy we have a set of criteria that will narrow most of these fields nicely… Shabash.

I like two of the runners in the 2.35, the favourite 11/10 shot Bushranger and 6/1 shot Weisse Socken.  The latter has course form which is vital and I would be on but coming out of draw 6 and being a hold up sort, I would fear that the race set up is not right.  Thus I suggest a hearty slice on the favourite who is just the right side of evens and comes from a yard with a present 30% strike rate.

Ripon – Great St Wilfred Tip

The Great St Wilfred is the main event and it could be a bookmakers party with it difficult to thin the field down too easily.  I am only having a very light investment and first of interest is Louis the Pious who represents the yard of O’Meara who is seeking a hat trick of wins in the race, some feat.

Dangers litter the field and Zacynthus stands out as a potential handicap blot on first run for Kevin Ryan who notably has come from Luca Cumani and having been campaigned previously at 7f is now dropped back to 6f, suspicious.

They go for the hood on Hoof It who could outclass this lot if remembering a little of his old self, remember this one looked a Group 1 sprinter waiting to happen when winning the Stewards Cup two years ago and although he has yet to rekindle that enthusiasm for racing and despite that he may fast becoming a cliff horse for the Major – I am willing to go in again at 12/1.

Newmarket Tips

From a Stewards Cup winner to a Stewards Cup respected 5th… The 32red class 2 handicap at 2.55 has two horses I am interested in.  Richard Hannon seemed pretty relaxed about the performance of Ninjago when finishing 5th, this seems fairer company and at 5/1 I would not put you off.  Yet my preferred option is to back the Neil Callan ridden Hasopop at 10/1.  Last time, the selection was slow away and then met trouble early on, he still made good progress to finish within three lengths of Body and Soul and that race was of similar ilk to this, 10/1 does not give his chance justice and regular readers know the value I draw with Mr Callan in the saddle.

Arlington Million

ATR are showing the Arlington Million which is excellent as we have an excellent chance of winning it with a European horse, we have some good contenders and Europe carry a good record in the race.  Quarter to midnight is the allotted time, I am sure I will see you there.

I will have an interest in The Apache currently freely available at 9/1 and a horse I think has an excellent chance.  OK, Grandeur has given my selection a bit of a beating at York last time but it was not that far and the real appeal is in the record of Mike de Kock in this North American forays.  He has had 19 runners at Arlington and won with a rather impressive 9, he knows how to get one ready.  I think it is perfectly reasonable to assume my horse was more in need of the run when finishing behind Grandeur and I am hopeful.

Newbury Tips

No rhyme or reason as o how I jump from course to course, just the meanderings of my mind, broken and misguided but still full of energy firing off at wild tangents like a hose broken free, dispersing it’s highly pressured contents, spraying them wildly causing disruption.  Deep and dark run my thoughts, cold and scared in the night, yet come the morning as the sun rises, those thoughts are confined back to that world and in the day, I breathe again in normality.

Does that give you faith that I know the winner of the Geoffrey Freer?  It seems it should not.

A big price winner of the Geoffrey Freer is a rare thing and so it pays to concentrate on the principles.   There are some pretty good stayers might yet emerge from this pack.  Lost in the Moment is one that stands out.  He has finished fairly close up in Dunadens Melbourne Cup and so has every right to command a mark of 110.   The issue with him can be applied to many other of the contestants here too – Is this his main assignment?  Is he fully wound up?

The rain though is persuading me to back either Biographer or Red Cadeaux.  The latter is a fine globetrotter who has won hugely valuable prizes in Hong Kong and was runner-up in the Dubai World Cup.  He is Melbourne Cup bound and so think this will be a confidence booster and do not expect him to be knocked around too much.

Biographer though looks to be a good bet – He looks more sure to be targeting this prize and at 5/1, I think we have a very live chance.

In the preceding race, the Singer Stakes, I think New Approach will continue his fine early stallion career by producing the winner from either Speedy Approach or Be Ready.  The latter is a Godolphin horse who must be incredibly well-regarded to be put in at debut at this sort of level, the money has been flooding in and he is 2/1.  Whatever you say about class though, I always value some experience with my juvenile tips and thus, I am sticking with Speedy Approach who has experience and the assistance of Mr Murtagh in the saddle… 6/1… easy!

The Hungerford Stakes is a cracking contest because of the intriguing presence of Soft Falling Rain, a horse I have been looking forward to seeing.  Having tipped up Mike de Kock for victory in the States, you might think me about to plunge heading into making it a fine day and suggesting his highly regarded colt who has won all seven starts is a great 6/4 bet. well….

I am less certain, on a line of form through his Dubai exploits, he is not far ahead of my selection, Tahwid at 9/2.  Now I accept that Soft Falling Rain probably has more potential but we have a price on our side, a small field and crucially, match fitness assured.  The de Kock runner missed his target assignments at Ascot and as much as I would like to see a star emerge, I shall stick with Johnny Murtagh at Newbury.

Perth Summer Champion Hurdle

The summer champion hurdle is a listed handicap affair.  This is simple.  Aazif will win and 4/1 from Bet365 is a godsend.

The Martin Hill Lucky 15: Aazif, The Apache, Biographer, Bushranger

May your dinner be delightful and in the finest of company.  Courage and roll those dice.

The Saturday Sermon – Goodwood and Galway Festival Tips #crowdsourcingmultiple

Good evening from the Major who writes from bed, tonight alone, the warm air that held Worcestershire tightly has been disrupted by newer fresher air.  The scene is turbulent as these two competing forces skirmish across the sky, flashes of battle, the roar of conflict.

The good lady has left for Birmingham for the evening, my two boys sensing my lack of true paternal control have sought some ruin, getting amok among the house.  At first it seemed that they were not to be quieted but like all things, decay came to their once seemingly perpetual energy, at last, peace fell.

Peace is a precious commodity for the Major, such is the nature of my work and home, that seldom is there time to spare and nothing to think of, all is vigour, rush and noise.

As I lie here now, listening to the wind and rain rising again in the country air, the window flung open, one can appreciate the tremendous value of peace.  It is akin to being free….. freedom is choice, I choose to listen to the fat rain, thrown down in a childish tantrum.  The good lady finds the occasional passing traffic a reason for the fenetre to always be ferme.  Yet in these moments alone, well the kiss of tyre on wet tarmac is a pleasurable a sound that I could wish for, a sound that denotes my free will.  In such small things is my happiness grounded.

Doing things that please you is a common theme in these parts.  We float on the breeze just the once.  Latch on to whatever meaningful pleasure you can my friend, you have my explicit permission.

This year, I received a piece of advice from a respected fellow gentleman gambler that struck me at first as an odd suggestion but it stuck with me as sometimes these things do and I dwelt upon it, which improved it.  He suggested that unless you are one of these snooty professional gambling sorts (if you came here for highly reliable tips by the way, you have made a grievous turn) then you can do worse than simply waging on outcomes that please you.  If there is a football game on, back the team you would like to win.  If a horse runs and you like it, or the trainer, or silks, or jockey, or name… you get the idea.  Wage on your desire.

This may seem simple but it is unusual.  Most gamblers I know select the most likely outcome they can imagine with the caveat that the outcome gives them a return that will excite them.  Fools.  Such men will happily bet a horse to win but even if they think an odds on horse is an utter certainty, they refuse to wage because the rewards of success are too slender for them.

The slightly more sophisticated approach, that more seasoned and considered sorts preach concerns value selection.  Us ‘value’ advocates consider ourselves more refined than the other ‘hoi polloi’, we certainly accept defeat more readily, seeking to learn it’s precious lessons.  Indeed ‘value seekers’ regard themselves as superior,a  wonderful feeling I can tell you.  It is not the likeliest outcome we seek but the greatest difference in our favour between likely outcome and bookmakers price.  This can have you backing all sorts of weird and wonderful outcomes, solely because you feel them ‘over-priced’.  I once was explaining this to a man who asked me for a tip.  I gave him a 20/1 horse and just before the off, he asked whether I thought it could really win.  I said it was unlikely, I thought the correct price for the horse to be 8/1, thus unlikely to win anyway.  He seemed perturbed.  The tip came last.

What about this  advice then, to back outcomes you simply desire?  Well, I have to say, it bears examination well.  Consider with me a moment.  Permit yourself to forget our continuous crusade,  our strain against the dark enemy who prices his markets in such wickedly deceptive ways and would have us twisting and writhing in our own doubts.  Imagine instead that each sporting wager was determined by your preferred outcome.  It may not be sophisticated but it would make winning somewhat more pleasurable, n’est pas?  Pleasures enhanced, simplicity, no need for calculation.

Anyway, I wish I was at Goodwood tomorrow.   Regular gentleman @iamnotluke  is reading this on a train, travelling across our green and gold land, hurtling towards those Sussex Downs – Train travel can be the most pleasing.  I hope that his train carries good coffee, I hope the Racing Post is spread on the table, that the company is excellent, that the choices made, the freedoms expressed, whether resulting in bounty or defeat are appreciated for the wonderment they bring.

We float by on this breeze just once and I pity those that never savour the moment, the anticipation building towards a great sporting event, that childish tremor inside, the moment where all dreams of tremendous successes and beautiful equine explosive displays and beautiful people, the colour, the muscle, the definition and the ambiguityLike strands flung far out, weaving their stories, it comes back together in the end, for all of us.  In that you can trust, it is one of your only certainties.

Goodwood is one of our sports finest days and know this, racing is the finest of all sports, to all in attendance today, enjoy – It is good to be alive in England on such a day.    To the sports.

Goodwood Tips

I love Goodwood – It is such a stunning course and while the racing is top class, the atmosphere mingles smartness, down to earth anti-snobbery and damn fun in fine measure.  I also think that Goodwood is a specialist track.  It has quite a camber and not every horse will act upon it.

It is Nassau day at Goodwood and Hannon and Hughes will unleash Sky Lantern, she seemed desperately unlucky not to master Elusive Kate at Newmarket.  Carried across the track by the winner, who has previous when it comes to a leftwards drift.  We will come to the Nassau.

We start in the 2.40 RAC handicap.  This is very strong handicap and it would not be surprising to see some of these sorts competing at a higher level before the autumn closes.  

Sir Michael Stoute has had a few winners in the last few years and he is represented by the Queens horse Bold Sniper.  When it comes to potential improvers, he is high on the list as he bears a St Leger entry… interesting.  He looked a little unlucky at Ascot to me as his draw did not help and considering that, he performed well.  Royal Signaller appeals at 14/1 as one that is overpriced but I am happy with the 11/2 about my selection (Stan James / 888).

The Nassau looks a cracker and it seems to revolve around Sky Lantern.  She was a powerful winner of the Guineas and was unlucky against the older Elusive Kate at HQ.  She has also won here before, which is a huge plus too.  Perhaps the big question is whether she will step up well.

The same question applies to Just the Judge who is also asked to race over a further distance for the first time, having finished in the places behind Sky Lantern twice.  Connections could have put Secret Gesture into this but opted for another crack at Sky Lantern with Just the Judge – Will she exert a Toronado style revenge?

Just Pretending is the O’Brien main threat and is seeking to improve on classic places too.  Ambivalent has won a G1 in Ireland when doing it from the front in the Pretty Polly.  I imagine that style will make her vulnerable here.

Two very interesting runners are Hot Snap and Sajjhaa.  The former was the big let down in the Guineas.  She beat Sky Lantern as a juvenile and surely the 1,000 guineas was not her running, yet it worries me that she has been off for this time.  Sajjhaa is an international sort that has won at the highest level in Dubai and run well in Hong Kong.  Suroor suggests she will be better for the run and conceding a chunk of weight here would be hard.

For all of these intriguing sorts, the Nassau normally goes to a fancied sort.  The biggest winner in the last 15 years was an incredible 11/2.  As such, I suggest Integral as a valid alternate to Sky Lantern.  My selection gave such a blistering display at Sandown in a listed contest that you had to take notice.  As Moore v Hughes hots up, I shall be on the former here.

In the Stewards Cup, I could get immersed in terrible detail but instead I am going to gamble that Hoof It has been campaigned with this in mind.  The horse is 16/1 (Bet Victor / Stan James) which could look huge if so.  He is only a pound higher than his last victory in this and although he looked bob average in the listed debut this year, it is noteworthy that he carries two G1 entries later in the season.  The race has a history of quality – Some winners of this have lumped the big weight, let us hope Hoof It can do the same.  Heavens Guest is just one of a host of dangers.

Mezel did well to win up north combatting inexperience and may be a much better prospect here.  That is my last selection at 4/1 in the 5pm, that is my last Goodwood selection but a strong one – That form was well advertised by the second, Free Code who went on to win at Thirsk next time… plenty of scope for Mezel.

Galway Tips

I am going to have a pop at Iniesta in the opener which looks both an obvious and ill-informed choice.  I care not.  Princess Aloof looks similarly well placed to win the second.

Stuccodor last lost a year ago in the Galway festival of 2012! Since then he has won 5 times and has risen 30lbs in the handicap as a result! Now you might worry that such a rise might put pay to his chances back in hotter company but there are two reasons to stay aboard.  Firstly, the horse loves the slop and not all of these will.  Secondly, his last victim has since won three times, hardly suggesting the handicapper has caught up!

Three favourites I hear you cry! Well look, I think they are the best value.

Now, something from the other shelf, the winner of the Ladbroke Hurdle.  Two appeal and I am having a slice of both.  Security Breach is only a 4 year old and has taken some backing but did get off the mark at Gowran last time and has won on heavy too.  If Landero did not have such concerns over the ground, I would have been investing.  He was pulled from a race earlier in the week when the ground went soft and it is much worse now.  This leaves me with my Mullins runner, a 9/1 chance with Paddy Power.

The football season has kicked off but I shall watch for now.  Sheff Utd looked mighty impressive tonight although lack a finisher.  They may be my new money train, watch this space.

May your dinner be held in the most upliftingly beautiful company.  Courage, roll those dice.

The Martin Hill Lucky 15: All Goodwood Mezel, Integral, Hoof It, Bold Sniper

The #crowdsourcingmultiple

Thanks to all who submitted their tips – If you are not part of the conversation on Twitter… get involved!

@h103efa 3.05 Thirsk Blockade

@onedeswalker 3.15 Goodwood Just The Judge

@Spinitg  2:35 Galway Princess Aloof

@Lukeyboy1325 3:30 Newmarket Urban Dance

@IamNotLuke 2.30 Goodwood Bold Sniper

@cafcbrad  3.10 Galway Stuccodor

@mytentoryour 4.30 Newton Abbot Union Saint

@danieldrazek 3.45 Galway Landero

Midweek Hotpots – Tuesday Tips from the Major – Fontwell, Bath and Pontefract

Good evening from the Major who is horizontal in the hope of a swift recovery for an injured knee.  The mind is unaffected and the sharp sense of adventure leads me to a foray into the Tuesday cards… saddle up young follower, your charger carries your sheepskin, the leathers are clean, your tunic red, bright and pristine; your sabre shining as ready for parade.  To the cards and the riches, fortunes and mysteries of a new day.

Steep, sharp, camber......... Try and pick those with course form at Bath, Fantasy Fry for the Major

Bath 7pm

It is nice when the clocks go back and the evening meets come thick and fast.  Denizens of our creed of gambling men know I prefer the national hunt season but watching the 7.50 from a sun bathed Windsor tonight, one was struck by how simple it would be to sit at one of those tables on the trackside and enjoy a nice Sancerre as the sun sets and one of those Berkshire strumpets tends to wanton fun with a look of utter nothingness in her wonderfully vacant eyes.

None of that has anything to do with the winner of the 7pm at Bath tomorrow night.  Although I hope the good citizens of Bath have the weather too as well as the strumpets.

Fantasy Fry is the 13/2 selection.  I like the fact it is more certain to act on the ground than many.  I also like the fact it is the only one in the field with a course win.  There are some tracks where that is important.  Cheltenham, Southwell and Bath being some.  The extended 5f sprint at Bath can be carnage.  A downhill stretch some on a camber, a tight left hand bend a furlong and a half from home and an uphill finish, I like horses that have proven they can handle it.

3.10 Pontefract

Hoof It at 4/1 is a cracking bet.  In a field of monkeys, this is the potential improver.  Not many are guaranteed to like conditions, this one seems to like a bit of rattle under his feet.  Fallon booked for a second time, get stuck in, load the thunderous cannon, let it boom, let it boom!

2.50 Fontwell

American Trilogy is the forecast favourite and while Fontwell is a left handed track which will suit his sometimes violent digressions to the left when jumping obstacles, I think his tendencies hides deeper issues – For the Major one to watch. 

Fruity O Rooney is being asked to shoulder a fair old burden.   Reliable.

Swansbrook won an easy return to action, as you would expect him to and with that confidence booster under his belt, I put it to you that he is the likeliest sort.

Seven bets to cover Fantasy Fry, Hoof It and Swansbrook in singles, doubles and a treble?  You know what Jesus would do.

I have a few days worth of bets to add to the records, forgive the sloppiness.