Tag Archives: medermit

Thursday Aintree Tips…. Includes 18/1 and 40/1 shots

THIS IS THE 2012 POST for the 2013 Aintree Thursday card, follow the link.




Good evening from the Major who types in anticipation of a tremendous three days of racing in Liverpool.

The opening day of the Grand National is heady stuff as is this years whole meeting. Not often you see the winner of all four championship races at Cheltenham line up at Aintree but this year, Big Bucks, Synchronised, Finians Rainbow and Rock on Ruby all make it – this is going to be a great Grand National meeting, the Major is jealous of those who get to go.

The Liverpool Hurdle

Big Bucks will be breaking records by taking this, Breaking the British record for consecutive wins that has stood since the fifties. Words cannot describe the achievements adequately. It rated as one of the Majors moments of Cheltenham when Voler le Vedette came with what looked like a winning run at the last, only to see BIg Bucks find more and power on.

I cannot see Big Bucks losing at Aintree but it is hard to tip at that price unless you want to get balls deep (technical racing term) and at this stage of the season, that’s a dangerous tactic, even if Big Bucks looks bullet proof.

Smad Place paid a lovely place bet at Cheltenham for the Major and still looks on the upgrade, maybe it can close the gap but it takes a leap to think it will win.

Given the difficulty in backing the odds on Big Bucks and the fact that eight runners may become seven, thus compromising a potential each way steal, the Major feels unable to tip a Liverpool Hurdle sort.

Final note on the race is that Crack Away Jack owes the Major a substantial amount for consistent and almost feverish, perhaps even religious following through thick and thicker. 50/1, the ex Emma Lavelle inmate owes me a packet and perhaps the new yard and a tongue tie could restore some lustre to his running. If it gets to race time with all eight runners, I might have a small slice because any hardcore racing tipster knows exactly what happens when you finally abandon a horse you have relentlessly backed in the vain hope it is returning to form! Seriously though, maybe a change of scenery might give Crack Away Jack hope.

Juvenile Hurdle Tips – Aintree 2.30

Red hot stuff as the Triumph principles, including Countrywide Flame (winner) meet again. These conditions could well see a turn in form and it will not be a surprise to see the Triumph winner overturned. He was a surprise winner at 33/1 at Cheltenham and the beaten field will feel they have plenty of chance to turn the tables.

Grumeti was third in the triumph and the trainer sent out Walkon to win this race after he had lost his Cheltenham assignment.

The Major’s selection though is Pearl Swan. I find it an advert in itself that Ruby Walsh chooses to go with the last hurdle Triumph faller ahead of the other Nicholls horses which include the very interesting Hinterland. Pearl Swan though is tipped because I thought he was still in with a chance at Cheltenham and I fancy this to be the horses day.

Betfred Bowl Tips

Another race where the quality smacks you right in the face. I can only machine the joy that would greet Hunt Ball in the winners enclosure, Liverpool loves a rags to riches sort and Hunt Ball is the very essence of that. He started the season winning a Folkestone handicap chase off a mark of 69. That was the start of a unbelievable run which culminated in his Cheltenham win, earning a mark of 154, yep that’s 85lbs higher. Watching how he finished that race, you have to wonder if it is a Gold Cup horse. The Major always loves an odd sort and the quirky owner Anthony Knott, farmer, is one from left field. YouTube his first win as an amateur rider, genius.

That said, not for me. Riverside Theatre is definitely a classy sort but comes from a tough Cheltenham race, I also don’t think he wants stepping up in trip. Medermit still looks progressive too and would be my selection but I have a feeling about a bigger priced one.

The Major though is opting to tip an 18/1 shot (bodog) in Master of the Hall. The tip missed Cheltenham so is slightly fresher – Even though this is less of an advantage this year, given the greater time between the meetings, many Cheltenham horses are prepared and targeted in a way that means they are seen to best effect there and it can be a tough training challenge to get them up again for Aintree. Master of the Hall does not have that challenge and his form is not shabby; he is not an also ran and I think 18s is superb, have a slice.

5.25 Aintree – Silver Cross Handicap

David Pipe has a number of likely sorts but I am backing one that I think has a big run in it, Tenor Nivernais. Don’t ask, I don’t rightly fully know, just one I have allowed some excuses for and I still think a sort with a big run in it. At 40/1 generally you have to have a slice, thank me later!

Good luck to one and all.

Cheltenham Festival Day One Preview – Festival Tips including a 50/1 STUNNER!!

Marsh Warbler

Marsh Warbler could be overpriced but it is Cue Card for the Major - Good luck followers

Thankfully regular followers of the Major arrive at the festival in good touch.  The Saturday Service returned a 55% profit with placed horses at 18/1 and 15/2 as well as a 5/2 winner.  We also had Wales to beat Ireland at a shade of odds on and Hull to win at Coventry at 9/5.  This from just 8 bets. 

As always, the Major is free, amateur and unhinged – All of my advices are recorded in the top navigation, you can see every bet I advise, with who, the price and the outcome.  I also summarise monthly performances.  It is all there.

Now though we are at a National Hunt fans Christmas Eve, the excitement is palpable, the treasure trove of racing goodness shall overflow from Prestbury Parks ample cup.  The moment has arrived, let us sup. 

Regulars will also notice a change of scenery.  The Major felt that the festival deserved a sprucing up of the decorations, hence a new banner, one of carnage, drama, horses and Guinness. 

The Major has been working this evening in readiness to offer a run down race by race.  If you are on course then I wish you a terrific day.

The Supreme Novices Hurdle

Dunraven Storm strikes me as a forgotten horse in this race.  The animal had done little wrong but has been off course for too long.  25/1 appeals on original form and I would not put someone off an each way slice but a lot has to be taken on trust regarding well-being.  He may have been held by Cue Card on previous outings but not by much and the same can be said of Al Ferof who has fitness in his favour but at 9/1 probably is poorer value.

Gibb River is an improver but not even the stables second choice so that would be a significant shock.

John Quinn has had some very positive things to say about his Totesport Trophy winner, Recession Proof.  Not for the Major.

There is going to be plenty of pace on with three of four horses wanting to set a fair gallop.  This includes sorts like Hidden Universe who is going to want to get on with it.  So will Marsh Warbler who also likes to lead.  It is tough to win a race of this quality from the front.  Of the two (and there are likely more), Marsh Warbler is very interesting to the Major.  The Chepstow form looks very good and with the good ground in his favour, this one may be harder to peg back than many expect.  25/1 is a bit dismissive.

Zaidpour has let a few people down in the last two runs but the Major would be at pains to stress that was on heavy ground in Ireland.  This one could surprise a few although Ruby made the decision to go to Al Ferof.

Spirit Son has done little wrong and I would expect him to be involved.  Sprinter Sacre likewise is a quality beast.

The way the race is likely to pan out would have Marsh Warbler near the front at the turn for home.  I would expect the lively pace to be a real asset to the hold up horses with good form in the book.  That said, no-one wants to give Marsh Warbler too much rope.  This unknown may not stop too quickly.

This is likely to set it up nicely for the others.  I have to say Cue Card has the best form in the race. FACT.  I would be very surprised if any jockey did not want to be on this one, Joe Tizzard can score the first victory of the festival for Britain and for the punters.

My advice is to take Cue Card at 5/2 with Paddy Power and William Hill.  The dangers are Sprinter Sacre and Spirit Son rather than Recession Proof and Al Ferof in the Majors view.  Marsh Warbler is worth an each way saver at a price. 

I think Cue Cards price will be honest because of the record of the recent hotpot favourites in the festival opener.  Certainly last year, Dunguib did not have the same form against top class opposition and had a claimer on board.  I think Cue Card is a different prospect, I hope he finishes the strongest of all.  I might not think Menorah will win the Champion Hurdle but the form of Cue Card is still goo enough for this.

The Arkle

The Arkle is a tremendous race.  What a wonderful start to the festival, the Supreme and then BOOOMMM, the Arkle!

This Arkle is an intriguing contest and I have a few angles I want to pursue.  For me (and I don’t mind sticking my neck out!) Finians Rainbow would be a 10/1 shot.  I just think his form in small fields is over-rated.

Captain Chris is a very interesting runner – I am hugely surprised that connections felt this Arkle was the right race, it looks red-hot and I am not sure Captain Chris will not find it all happening a bit too quickly for him over the minimum trip. – His best races for the Major have been those when stepped up in distance.

Ghizao  has the best form in the race for the Major but the break (last ran in December is a concern. 

I don’t think that Realt Dubh will be inconvenienced by the goodish ground and as Irelands best hope in the Arkle, he warrants respect.  The Major has had a winner with him before.

Medermit will go off as favourite and after his narrow defeat of Captain Chris, it is fair enough.  3/1 is plenty skinny for the Major but not under-priced.  I would be happier if the last few runs had not been over half a mile further. On good ground back at this trip, I question whether the turn of foot is quick enough.

My idea of the best animals at the top of the market are Medermit or Realt Dubh.  I would love to go with the bigger priced horse but Noble Prince, twice defeated by Realt Dubh is not a fantastic yardstick, perhaps Irelands best will not be good enough. 

At a massive 50/1, the Major is going to take a chance on Stagecoach Pearl.  There are plenty of questions about some at the top of the market.  Stagecoach Pearl needs to be forgiven the last defeat at the hands of Finians Rainbow but let us not forget that this horse is rated 147 for a reason (same as Realt Dubh).  At least it will give you a race as it likes to go from the front.  A clean round and it might surprise a few and hold on for a place.  You never know, it might go one better!

Spinal Research Handicap Chase

This is a very tricky handicap.  Heading the weights is Blazing Bailey, a favourite at Cheltenham who has improved as a chaser.

Rare Bob also has good form in the book, particularly the last race where blinkers were applied for the first time sparking improvement.

Great Endeavour has been raised a stone since last festival due to improved performances, I suspect more improvement is to come.

Caroles Legacy has feasibly a decent mark racing off 4lbs lower than his hurdle mark, of interest.

Bensalem on 6/1 is of a similar profile but probably a better version of it.  Not only did the horse finish second last year, this followed a very poor error at the first.  He went on to improve as a hurdler, makes plenty of errors but progressive.

Reve de Sivola is even more progressive!  10/1 (Sportinbet)!! This horse was second to Peddlers Cross last year, very worthy form.  The problem is whether you are likely to get a clean round.  In my view, if he jumps well he wins.

Razore Royale is back to a winning mark if finding old form.

Sunnyhillboy is also fancied as last years runner-up in the plate.  While he has some likely improvement, I am unsure he is the likely winner.

In summary if Bensalem and Reve de Sivola jump, they will be the first two in the Majors calculations.  Those are big ifs.  That said, I just like the look of Reve de Sivola and at 10/1 (Sportingbet) am willing to take it on, hope that Daryl Jacob gets is settled and jumping and then it shows what a class animal it is on the home run. 

The Champion Hurdle

I covered my thoughts on the Champion Hurdle in yesterdays post.  Peddlers Cross is my nap of the meeting.

The Cross Country

I forgot to mention in my Cheltenham build up piece that a real joy at the first day is to head to the centre of the course for the Cross Country.  You will never get as close to these magnificent beasts as they tackle some interesting obstacles.

The Cross Country is a race the Major has an awful track record in.  Maljimar is my idea of the winner with Garde Champetre peaked and the weight catching up with him.  6/1 is available generally.

The David Nicholson Mares Hurdle

It is hard to get past the hat-trick seeking Quevega who was once considered a Champion Hurdle contender.  For the second season running she gets her shot on her debut for the season.  That was a fine training performance last year from Willie Mullins, I have to say that at just 7, you have to admire the record already. 

Sparky May has to be the main danger, rated a 4/1 chance and unbeaten over hurdles, it is hard to assess what the form amounts to.  On a line with Caroles Legacy it looks quite impressive and as such I would prefer this as a bet solely because the horse ran eight weeks ago.

If Quevega turns up in the same form as last year, there is no reason to suggest she won’t, then I think Sparky May has to find 9lbs further improvement.  That is not beyond the realm of possibility and I suggest a 4/1 stake.

The Lucky Last – The Centenary Novice Handicap

This is the trickiest race of the day for the Major.  The field of novices have some very interesting contenders.

Short and sweet.  I think it comes down to Divers 9/1 and Definity 7/1.  Back both for wins, or each way for those of lesser vigour…. thank me later!

In Summary

If Cue Card (or Marsh Warbler), Stagecoach Pearl, Reve de Sivola and Peddlers Cross don’ go well, it is a bad day because the Major does not fancy trying to recoup losses in the Mares Hurdle, Cross Country or the Centenary.

I hope that whatever you are on, you take great wedges of cash from the old enemy.  Allow yourself to be carried along with the tide, remember what the Major tells you, you go along once so enjoy it. 

Remember you can sign up for the email alerts in the left hand column.  You can also sign up to the tweet feed @tdl123.  Tweet me if you are on track tomorrow.  The festival tips piece for Wednesday will be written late on Tuesday and a little bit more drunkenly.  Have a great day.

Go to bed and sleep, Santa doesn’t come unless you do….

Saturday Tipping Service – Sandown, Ffos Las – Unleash the big cannon

Good morning to all fair punters of this land from what looks outside to be another dary and murky Worcestershire Saturday.

The coffee has been bubbling away for hours and the Major is prepared.

England expects 4 goals or more at 17/11, load the big cannons chaps!

Let us be inspired to take the fight to the enemy with some words from our greatest naval leader, Horatio.

If a man consults whether he is to fight, when he has the power in his own hands, it is certain that his opinion is against fighting – The Major trusts that his followers understand this sentiment and bet with stakes that befit men of valour such as we.

We have some fine sport this weekend. The Six Nations kicked off last night with a fine English win in Cardiff, Torres begins his Chelsea career with a match up against his old team and on track, Nicky Henderson unleashes the full power of his champion hurdle contenders to pick up the big graded hurdles. Tasty morsels that make me happy to be alive feeling blood coursing through veins and arteries, sinew tissue tenses as each event unfolds on the unwritten pages. Look in the eyes of those vacuous souls around you – get involved.

It is a great card at Ffos Las and while the Major has yet to visit that particular corner of Wales, I am reliably informed that this fledgling track is a great addition. It certainly would not exist without Dai Walters and so it is fitting that he gets to run Oscar Whisky, who served the Majors followers well on New Years Day when tipped up and winning well at Cheltenham at 4/1. He goes in the Welsh Champion Hurdle today and I am sure he will be fully tuned up for connections.

Let us start on the track.

The 2.25 at Sandown is a great novice event. Great because is throws up a quandry. Medermit undoubtedly showed the best form of these when hurdling but seemingly has unconvinced as a chaser. Captain Chris is still unexposed in the Majors view as a chaser and we may see the best of him today. The penny seems to be dropping for Rock Noir too who comes with impressive french form which has thus failed to fully translate. After two outings over fences, the Henderson Nadiya de la Vega may settle better and complete a hat-trick but Mr Gardner is another from this stable which could be anything.

With 9 runners this is a nice contest for each way punters, four bookmakers – Bet365, Skybet, 888sport and Blue Square go quarter odds the places, credit where it is due.

The Major sees it like this. Jonjo and Alan King don’t seem to have their string in the most sparkling form and so lines go through Medermit and Rock Noir, ruling out two nearer the top of the market.

The two I really like that could go on to better things are Captain Chris and Nadiya de la Vega. The former has smart form behind Arkle contender Ghizao, the later gets a handy mares allowance of 7lb. Reading the trainers comments the latter seems to the main stable hope in the race with Mr Gardner having to a fair bit more stepping up. Take Captain Chris each way at 9/2 with Bluesq and take a win bet on Nadiya at the same price. For those who like a reverse forecast, have a slice and thank me later. These unexposed sorts put the dinner on the table. Wimping out? Certainly but profits are profits. Push come to shove, if you just want just the one, then Hobbs seems to have some riches in the Novice Chasers category and so the Captain for me.

The Major tries to bring you the key races but always looks into the dark corners of a weekends depths to uncover the elusive value – quite rightly, not many people woke up this morning wondering about the Blue Square Sprint Series (Class 6) going at 2.55 at Lingfield, it certainly won’t worry the terrestrial TV producers!

This is where the Major sees a nice bit of value in the ten year old Misaro, Now OK, this one holds absolutely no sectrets from the handicapper but it has dropped 9lbs to below previous winning marks and seemed in fine fettle when chasing home the winner at Wolverhampton last time out. Probert (a fine young jockey) takes the ride again and at 9/1 with Skybet (again good work) and William Hill, an each way slice is advised – These are the only two markets open at the moment, as a Ron Harris horse, we could some price movement.

The big race at Sandown should be a penalty kick for Binocular who will go off at a 1/12 sort of price. On ratings, it is two stone ahead of anything else so why would it not win. If you need an interest, Blue Square go 10/11 that Binocular wins by less than 12 lengths. I cannot imagine Henderson wants to give the horse a hard ride and fully extend him. Plus on goodish ground with a horse that doesn’t like to hit the front too soon, I would take less than 12 lengths as an OK bet.

The Welsh Champion Hurdle stars Oscar Whisky who is likely to go off at 1/6, again not a casual punters bet. I have to say that I think the horse is good but I am unsure that this good ground is ideal. It should not stop him winning, no bet advised but I think Barizan if the rain holds off could steal a march and out-run 20/1.

I am more interested in some of the other Henderson sorts. He certainly has an embarrasment of riches in the stable this year. Loose Performer is available with value at 5/4 with Skybet (4.15 Ffos Las). At that price, even in a maiden hurdle I would have a chunky one.

To the sports fields of Britain….

Marvelous stuff in the rugby last night. No advised six nations tips today but the Major has a number of people better equipped to review the first weekends action and offer better value advices – Watch out for a post mid week from ‘Gentleman Jim’ and ‘The Frisky Gardener’…… don’t ask. I also have a couple of people watching the golf markets who are promising to offer some pearls, guest bloggers are always welcome. If you want an interest in the six nations then Italy in the -12 handicap at 10/11 with Bet365 is of interest.

Hull have spent well bringing experienced league striker Matty Fryatt to Humberside and I would take them to win at Scunthorpe comfortably at 7/5 with Blue Square, Hills and Ladbrokes.

Tottenham should have little problem with Bolton but Spurs have two ways of playing and no bet advised.

Wigan are not doomed yet but throwing the lead at West Brom will not have helped their cause. 10/11 is the price in the draw no bet market for Blackburn and it is strongly advised.

Man City play with huge caution when away at top teams. At home to West Brom they will be far more open and attacking. This will also suit West Brom who are utterly undaunted by such encounters – a recipe for goals? 15/2 is probably OK for West Brom but the Major prefers 3.5 goals or more at 17/11 with Red32 – Get stuck into that it is a price of utter beauty cast in the furnaces of the turf accountants foolishness and insanity.

I also like the chances of Villa at evens against a Fulham team that look less comfortable on the road. I have been impressed with Fulham who the Major read as a relegation possibility. With players returning and some interesting squad additions, they look set to climb the table. I do feel that Villa are in the same boat though and with a probable stronger back end to the season, the Major tips Villa to beat Fulham today.

Although Stoke are strong at home and Sunderland are missing Bent and Cattermole, I still like the 14/5 about a Sunderland win in the potteries. Gyan is a class act and Sunderland are well organised. Load the light gun.

Cricket paid well with one bet and one win in January and let us hope that strike rate can be kept up as the Major advises the finale of the one day series going to England. 11/10 looks skinny on the surface given the current 5-1 status of the series but Australia rest key players (Watson and Clarke) and England played well with the bat in defeat.

The Major has a sizzling date with a fine flame haired Welsh hotpot so it is fitting that the nap goes at Ffos Las (Blue Ditch is the translation) – I trust Loose Performer to hack up at 4.15 affording luxury truffles, caviar, champagne and other delights on my lady companion……. that said, a value meal will probably suffice if the Majors experiences of South Wales are anything to go by.

I trust your flask will be charged with the good brandy. If you are also entertaining an earthy sort from the valleys then my advice is to allow your wallet to drop to the table with a thud, the mere sight of the red notes will be enough for the desired effect, with her eyes like saucers, call the man over and let him know that ‘Bydd y dyn hwn yn talu am bopeth’ – I am sure the rest will take care of itself.