Tag Archives: pandorama

Cheltenham Gold Cup Tips – BOOOMMM! Three Profit Days From Three for the Major – We are through the looking glass….

Punters of Britain the Major is on a high, another profit day on Thursday, with Albertas Run returning 6/1 and Big Bucks at evens.

Important news.  Regular readers will know the Major resides in the village of Defford, outside of Pershore in rolling Worcestershire countryside.  This is 20 miles north of the course and I can report some important news…. The rain has come.  The amount of rain tonight could be crucial and it makes the job tomorrow more difficult.  I have no idea what the ground will be like first thing.  I shall risk it and offer my advices but I warn all punters to freestyle if the Major was off.  For the record I am going to expect enough for good to soft, soft in places.  Perhaps dead, perhaps tacky.  Makes life tougher.

The Major does not need to be told that he rants.  For a very special and abusive friend, I have agreed to start highlighting the advices in bold for those with less time to read the analysis or reasoning.  This is a concession that may not last.

It is the day of the reckoning and the Major, though be art weighed in the balance will not be found wanting

75% of the battle is done.  We have wounded the enemy and he seems unsteady on his feet.  He has a nasty looking gash where we took his cut on the near side and then caught him with our own defensive slice.  His guard is still up though and his mind devious; in this injured state he is dangerous, on guard young man and keep a steady eye, his rapier slashes may be crude but we need dedication to the end to see this enemy dispatched to meet his reckoning.

Yet the Major is wearied from battle too.  Three days of analysis of some of the trickiest handicaps, snow blind from reading form lines, vigilance as we approach the last dear friends.  We are almost triumphant, yet ’tis many a slip between the crouch and the leap.

The Triumph

Grandouet has been put away since the defeat of Two Kisses in January.  Two Kisses is a reliable yardstick, the form is unspectacular but good.  Henderson always has a good sort for the Triumph and the jockey booking suggests this is it.

I hate to make strong statements as they can be wrong and this may mislead but I just cannot believe Smad Place is good enough, it looks over rated to me.

A Media Luz was beaten by stablemate Grandouet and although the assistance of AP McCoy will help, I cannot see it turning the tables.  At this age, the mares allowance is influential but I just do not think it will be enough in the case of A Media Luz.

Unaccompanied, another of the fairer sex and thus 7lb in, is the Irish leading fancy for the powerful Weld / Smullen team – Dangerous to ignore, particularly with the weather turning.

Zarkanda is an Aga Khan bred animal who while über impressive when defeating Molotof, is in better company here.  Molotof is the Henderson third string.  I find it interesting that Ruby has defected to Sam Winner though.

Yet Sam Winner has struggled to cope in his last race.  Looking highly capable in the heart of winter, has some of the sparkle gone.

This triumph is a classic.  The crunch decision is over the form lines you take.  Grandouet has to be respected but had been defeated by Sam Winner, who in turn was defeated by Marsh Warbler who ran poorer than expected earlier in the week.  Both may be forgiven a run but neither are rock solid.

Zarkander has been abandoned by Ruby but could be absolutely anything.

For the Major, Unaccompanied  It has the best Irish form, the Irish trainers are having a great week, this would get Friday off to a steamer.  Have an each way bet at 7/1 and hope the allowance and rain aid the cause.  Stick it in the toaster, butter, marmite, cup of steaming tea and thank me later.

The County Handicap Hurdle

The County is a puzzle hidden inside an enigma which is disguised as a rohypnol induced nightmare.

Alazari who picked up the Imperial Cup and is hunting the £75k bonus is an obvious threat but in a field of 28 and having run in the last week, I am unsure it is wise to invest at 8/1.

Dirar is sitting favourite and you can see why.  Stable form and profile mean it should be involved, interesting.

The Major advises you though to bet sensibly, this is an insanely difficult prize.  I would proffer a few thoughts as follows.

Snap Tie a pound off top weight loves Cheltenham and has been dropping to a very handy mark.  Having not run since October 2009 it would be an almighty training performance but Hobbs can do it and Dickie Johnson in the saddle is a huge boost, 14/1 is it enough?

Salden Licht gets the burden of an extra pound, thus is the top weight and despite making a couple of errors when chasing after Recession Proof in the Totesport is on the Majors considered list, particularly at 25/1, not out of it.

Get me out of Here is also extremely well treated if the tongue tie has the desired effect, I would not put you off, personally 16/1 is an OK price but not what I am after.

Soldatino looks held unless there were excuses last time.  Dee Ee Williams more so.

Alaivan comes into it if the rain has been significant. 

Ski Sunday is a bit of an unknown.  The January run with subsequent winner Skint behind has a classy look about it.  It was only rated 66 on the flat but is a much better hurdling prospect, hmm.

Final Approach would not be 12/1 had Call the Police performed solidly on Wednesday.  Ruby and Mullins 12/1 in this sort of handicap, interesting.

Zanir at 33/1 could run a bigger than expected race too.

The Major has not ruled too many out of the County.  I have a shortlist of a few.  The most interesting of which is Snap Tie.  A Cheltenham horse, a mark that has dropped from two years off, 14/1 is as tight as I would want it but I just fancy the trainer and jockey if they have the horses confidence back.  It goes against many of the Majors principles, after all the time off the track is a significant downside before competing in such a big field.  I just have a sense that Johnson can turn him off and nurse him through, letting class do the rest.

The Albert Bartlett Novice Hurdle

Some time ago the Major put up a piece about Moonlight Drive which had been tipped to me antepost.  It definitely wants the rain which is coming and is a threat still but the softer the better.  Certainly the stable hold it in good regard it seems and as Recession Proof is a stablemate then they have a decent yardstick with the Totesport Trophy winner.

The hope was that Bobs Worth would defect to the Neptune and since that has not happened, it has to be a major threat in this given the ease of the Grade 2 success last time out.

The other horse of interest and the one I settle on to advise tonight is Champion Court.  At 10/1, I hope they have sorted the issues which caused the horse to hang so badly when it looked like it might get involved in defeat to Bobs Worth last time out.  The previous form has some depth, Bobs Worth could well be too good but with Henderson not enjoying the best week, I oppose with Champion Court.

The Cheltenham Gold Cup

The Major has a strong fancy in the Gold Cup this year which is odd because it is as open as any I can recall.  I would go as far to say it is the best Gold Cup in many years, it will be a privilege to watch the interwoven strands of form, story, conjecture and magic unfurl.

It is not so much a case for the Major of picking the winner, it is more a case for finding the least likely reason any of the main protagonists will fail to lose.  That is not to say the quality is poor, quite the opposite.

The highlight of our national hunt year is solved by answering these questions correctly:

1. Does Kautos small bleed excuse his poor King George run and is he capable of pulling his old school form out when it matters? (He would go down not only as the only horse to have regained a Gold Cup but to have done that twice, wow)

2. Is Denmans third to the non runner Diamond Harry, giving best part of 2 stone away, in the Hennessy a decent bit of form?

3. Is the ground soft enough for Pandorama, the Majors ante post tip for the gold cup?

4. What does the Kempes Irish Hennessy win form add up to?

5. How ripe is Imperial Commander and how good was last years Gold Cup?

6. Is Midnight Chase a credible threat?

7. Is it time to change the old guard?

8. Who wins?

The Majors view: 1. No, he looked shot in the Down Royal opener, I know Nicholls will not have had him wound up for that but I think he is on a slide.  2. This is better form than anything Kauto has done but only entitles him to place form in the Majors view.  3. Probably not but if the rain keeps coming, too early to tell 4. Nothing 5. The Major is unimpressed on both counts.  6. Not really, if he were mine he would go straight to the National. 7. Yes.  8. LONG RUN.

I am aware that the stats for 11 year olds are shocking and so are the stats for 6 year olds.  Here is the advice.  If the ground gets good to soft, soft in places, then go Pandorama.  If it remains any better than that, stick with Long Run. 

I am going to believe that his 6 year old status is offset by the fact that he has had an awful lot of racing.  This was probably the reason that he lost last festival.  I was standing by Nicky Henderson that day (not that I know him!) and it did not look like the expected script was followed.  After being on the go all of the previous summer in France and then all winter, I think Long Run was already over the top at the festival.  The way he demolished the King George field suggested he is a different prospect to me.  He should stay, he won’t mind conditions, he is inexperienced but…. 5/1 Hills (who offer £20 bet on the race and a free £10 at the weekend to all customers), Paddypower and Coral – Have the biggest slice your wallet allows and send me the postcard.

Master Hobday, if you are reading, it already carries a £20 from the Majors wallet for you, the man, the legend.

The Foxhunters

The two races after the Gold Cup are surely designed as a bookies benefit to drag in any remaining cash. 

Gone to Lunch could be dangerous if showing the best of old form.  Baby Run is a worthy favourite, nothing wrong with betting that.

For value though the Major plumps for On the Fringe.  Probably too young, where Baby Run is starting to wear.  9/2 (Hills) On the Fringe for the Major.

The Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys

Conditional jockeys riding make this one of the most trappy handicaps of the festival. 

That said, there is one that stands out like a beacon to the Major in King of the Night.

This horse gets to race off a mark of just 139 despite having lost by a nose to Sprinter Sacre (now rated 145) when giving a full stone away.

From the champion trainer, plenty of scope.  11/1, the best the Major can come up with.

The Lucky Last – The Grand Annual

Christ, if you need a win here you are in trouble.

I might have the long priced answer too.  The Major has always had an eye for Sports Line.  OK, he gets way to frisky in his races and is often fighting for his head but when he does settle he looks classy.

What catches the eye is the switch to Timmy Murphy, I think they plan on burying him away in the field under the best rider at the last to first tactic.

33/1 is the sort of price to get you out of any trouble.

The Cheltenham Festival Summary

I hope you have had a terrific week.  The Major has taken not given and this is a refreshing change to last year.

In not many hours from now, the point in the year that National Hunt fans aim at is the furthest from us.  Thank god that the 2012 antepost markets are already open. 

Let us draw blood once again tomorrow.  I hope the racing is glorious, your victory magnanimous.

Gold Cup night deserves the best french cuisine.  Have some duck in the country fashion seared and with green peppercorn sauce.  A good Bordeaux.  Tip well, this is right.  Be upstanding for the Queen at midnight.  Find a nice girl from Cork whose sing song voice shall last with you for many days.

This Gold Cup, I hope you have every reason to be glad in your heart.

The Best 2011 Three UK Racing Ante Post Bets

Master Zhuang and a frog.

He'd be all over dutching Big Zeb and Masterminded

The Major has a number of big horses on his watch list for key National hunt races of 2011 – As usual I am willing to wear these thoughts on my sleeve and allow the future to ridicule me as it unfurls the yet unwritten pages….

Once the great Chinese philosopher Chuang Tzu had a dream in which he flew around as a yellow butterfly.  When he awoke he said ‘I dreamed I was a butterfly, flitting around in the sky; then I awoke.  Now I wonder: Am I a man who dreamt of being a butterfly, or am I a butterfly dreaming that I am a man?’

Dreams are a wonderful powerful thing.  In the Majors, the following headlines grace the front pages of the Racing Post……….

Pandorama wins the Gold Cup – I have been hugely impressed by this horse – This is one the Major put up for the Hennessy and the way the horse was backed that day suggested that the Noel Meade stable believed they had the potential winner on their hands.  Although Pandorama blotted the copybook that day, hitting a fence before throwing out the anchor and being pulled up, thankfully nothing was amiss and it meant that Pandorama has been in my mind since. 

As it was again heavily backed before winning the Lexus (on the Majors shortlist that day), it became an ante post must.  The only question is what race?  Is it a potential Gold Cup star?? 16/1 each way with Ladbrokes is the advice as they go non runner no bet on the 4 championship races at the festival.  OK, there are serious horses in the Gold Cup but let’s not forget that Pandorama has previously given Weapons Amnesty a beating and that horse dished out a seven length thrashing to reliable yardstick Burton Port before being shortened into 6/1 for the Gold Cup before injury took over – 16/1 Pandorama could look silly come March. 

Riverside Theatre Takes King George as Kauto Fails to Shine – 12/1 for the King George – This is a bet the Major is very keen on as I think it is possible that Kautos best runs are well behind him and Long Run just looks like he needs another year of nursing to me.  12/1 is generally available. 

There is a question on whether he stays and so we would want the ground to be OK but if we get it then I think this may be 6/1 at the off, even though we are only a fortnight away.  Don’t forget Riverside has an unbelievably good Kempton record winning four from four. 

Masterminded nailed by Big Zeb – Both of Mastermindeds runs this season in the Majors opinion have put him back in the same form he was in when he won his first Champion Chase.  I think Nicholls has got this master back on form and punters forget that the horse is just 7.  He has also been the highest rated horse in training for some time.  Just because he is class does not mean Big Zeb cannot beat him in the champion chase though.  

This season Masterminded has run some top horses into the ground including the seemingly improving Somersby. – You can get 15/8 but Big Zeb at 7/2 with Sportingbet who are also non runner no bet at this early stage has to rate as the bet.  I am pretty sure the winner is one of these fabulous 2 milers and I think 7/2 is incredible value.  Remember, for all of Mastermindeds beautiful exuberant jumping, Big Zebs Champion time was 4.5 seconds faster than Mastermindeds signature win in 2008. 

You cannot go wrong betting on Big Zeb and dutching Masterminded to protect the stake.  After all the opposition is going to come from Tatiano, Sizing Europe, Forpaddydeplasterer and Woolcombe Folly – Unless the Folly is a better horse than we have yet seen then the bet cannot fail as the opposition are some way behind this pair.

Posts to come this later this week:

How to subscribe to the Major – Details of how to use the various bits of technology I am trying to employ to subscribe to the Majors posts.

2011 Championship Football Bets – A post dedicated to the wild west of the Championship.  Such a tight division, so many influences in play but there is some real value to be had finding the quality outfits with the set ups to make it to May with enough points to reach the promised land.

On the 4th Day of Christmas, the Major gave to me….

Leopardstown Racecourse Category:County Dublin

Cooldine to win at Leopardstown - Wait for 9/2

Two bets yielded no results yesterday and a lesson for the Major.  The emirates game was clearly not enough to inspire a change in the mental well being of the Chelsea ranks who were outplayed for the whole game and deserved losers.  Positivity did not disgrace us at Southwell but finished 4th, one place out of the money…. we shall go back today in a much richer target environment. 

RACING IS BACK!!! PROPER RACING.  Leopardstown hosts a card of top quality racing including the Grade 1 Lexus Chase

Although racing goes ahead at Leopardstown, there was an inspection to ensure the frost was out and to look at the state of the ground.   It is heavy and Leopardstown is like Chepstow, conditions tend to be at the end of the spectrum, this will be very heavy and we need proven horses in the ground and horses that will make the trip. 

The Lexus goes off at 2.35 giving us 4 races to look at to see if the thinking holds up.

Having read the Pricewise views, I have to say that I cannot understand why he thinks so many of the market leaders will be inconvenienced by the heavy ground.  The stats suggest that J’y Vole, Joncol, Cooldine and Pandorama will all enjoy the mud.  His selection Money Trix, which will be crashing in price as I type is the one I feel may well be put off by it.  The Major is no Pricewise but today I feel he will have done me a big favour as more often than not I agree with his basic premise even if our selections are different.

I want to keep this simple, J’y Vole and Cooldine are the two I think have the ability and will enjoy the conditions.  They are both trained by the great man Mullins who is in decent touch (9 places from last 16 runners).

I think Cooldine is probably the one Mullins wants to win it with.  The services of Paul Townend are up top, I think Cooldine will stay 3m in the heavy and that the opposition is good but not that good.  Having two from the same stable as the ones you fancy can be difficult and we need to watch the markets carefully but Davy Condonholds a strikerate of 6% riding for Mullins where Townend is 21% – I fancy Cooldine is the player and 4/1 is available, have a slice but maybe wait and see what happens to the price first, I think he might touch 9/2 and for a fifty pound stake that pays a further £25.

Thegreatjohnbrowne looks a transformed horse now going over the bigger obstacles and I did not expect there to be prices of 11/4 (sportingbet) today – I recommend a healthy investment on this one who just keeps improving over the larger obstacles.  He won’t be inconvenienced by conditions either.

On the football pitches, I would take a few bets today – Stoke to beat Fulham being the first.  The Cottagers looked woefully short of ideas against West Ham and they are looking a tired outfit.  Murphys best days are well behind him and Duff while able to produce the occasional piece of skill is certainly no consistent threat.  Corals are evens which is a bonus price, have some.

There is a touch of 11/2 that Blackpool can win at Sunderland and I like that.  I would expect Sunderland to have enough to beat them but after all, they have two ways of playing.  Blackpool fear noone, including Sunderlands strong home record – At 11/2 I am siding with the sea siders.

At the risk of painfully putting good money after bad, I suggest Everton to win at West Ham is an 11/8 steal.  West Ham are still poor in my view, it just so happened that Fulham were poorer.  They won’t enjoy the soft defending that Fulham offered and Cahill, Arteta, Saha and co can cause problems.

Bournemouth have sold their two key strikers and don’t look the same outfit that have been performing so well in League One – 6/4 that MK Dons win on the South Coast is worth a touch.

May your bets be blessed with sweet success and the wedge you take from the enemy pay for your extravagant New Year Plans.  Don’t say this is the Majors comeback….. he was never gone!

Can the Major make it an all profitable November Saturday Service?

Good morning from fine Worcestershire where the hard frosty ground gives a beautiful backdrop to the Majors Saturday preachings.

Another fine sporting weekend to be enjoyed.  Two groups of people to thank for the fine sporting offerings today, the good folk at BHA, Newbury, Newcastle and sponsors sportingbet who pushed through the move to get the fighting fifth to Newbury – Well done, good show.  Well done also to the small army of people required to cover the majority of the Newbury track with frost covers last night to ensure that the gods of weather could not upset the Majors eggs on toast.

The coffee is simple, Gold Blend, we ran out of the expensive stuff and the Major needs to restock for Christmas.  The environment is wholesome and we all know a pure heart and a clear head is required when going into battle against the old enemy, him with the satchel who shall try to deceive with his dark and twisted approach.

The Major has been working for your benefit for some hours and today, the results are important for a few reasons.  Firstly, every Saturday service in November has been fantastically profitable.  The lowest return was 148% of stake, lovely.  Let’s complete the month with another stunner.  Secondly, it is building towards Christmas and the Major understands that in the time of credit crunches, recessions, student fee increases and swinging cuts; the Major has an obligation to return a profit…. let’s see what the art of the possible is….

Hennessy Day.  What a great day, let’s start with a look at the race.  Denman bids for a third Hennessy which would be a first.  This is a moment of horseracing history but we need to reflect.  Denman is an amazing animal.  A twice Hennessy victor, a Gold Cup winner and a top class chaser.  ‘The tank’ was an apt nickname, on his day he travels powerfully with an arrogance to match his class.  It is a measure of his success that he puts more than half of the field out of the handicap today, shouldering 11-12 giving 8lbs to horses like Niche Market (an Irish National Grade 1 winner) who still remains 8lb the wrong side of the handicap, unbelievable.

However, before we get too breathless at what this horse has already achieved and hopes to achieve today, we need to consider the greatest chaser of them all.  It is unfair to consider Denman in the category of the greatest without considering Himself, Arkle.

Arkle, for those who do not know (please do not return), was a bay gelding and was simply the best chaser to ever race.  In a similar style to Denman he came to prominence when many suspected he was second fiddle to Mill House, the stables other top chaser.  However Arkle proved to be in a different class.  He was a freak winning 27 of his 35 starts.  His losses were usually injuries.  His sole loss in the Hennessy was finishing second to a horse that went on to place twice in the Gold Cup ( a great white chaser called Stalbridge Colonist) – On Hennessy day, Arkle who lost by half a length was trying to give him best part of three stone.  Watch the film, if Arkle had not got so close to the last fence, maybe he would have been the first three times winner of the Hennessy.

I love Denman (although admit to being a Kauto man), I love his brashness, his attitude, I dearly hope he can win.  Let’s enjoy the day,a  great day.  Just have in mind though the greatest of the all.  If Arkle ran today, Denman would be out of the handicap by 4lbs.

So who wins the Hennessy after all this is a sport tipping service! 

This is a puzzle.  It is a huge ask of Denman and as much as I wish him well, I have to consider that at ten and with lots of second season improvers queuing up to have a pop, Denman is very vulnerable today.

Burton Port is a very interesting contender having the services of Geraghty.  I think it is a testament to the way this 6yo is considered at home that Barry Geraghty, no spring chicken but one of the Majors favourites is getting 3lb below his lowest riding weight for 3 years to take the ride.  Well done Barry, enjoy the sauna.  The horse looks an out and ou stayer to me and I suspect there is a lot of improvement.  This is my each way advice to you, let’s hope Barry is not too dizzy and can steer us round for a decent winner.  Bet 365 bless have gone 9/1 paying 1/4 to FIVE PLACES.  Very generous chaps, you shall be remembered in the Majors prayers.  Get stuck into the port faithful followers.  Pandorama could be the fly in the ointment, consider a saver.  Lots of other fascinating runners, how is Neptune Collonges who was looking good prior to injury, Weird Al who deadheated the impressive Little Josh at Carlisle last time out, Taranis returning from a knock…. this is a class field

Before the Hennessy kicks off at 3.05, we have the delectable delight of the return to track of Big Bucks.  The only one of the big four horses expected to give the bookies a thrashing at the festival, Big Bucks is going off 2/7 – Not a price for the Major but what on earth could beat it?  What bank would give you a 28% return by mid afternoon?? Stick it in the accumulators!!

The fighting fifth is a sit out race for the Major too.  Peddlers Cross has to show plenty on official form but there was plenty to like about the Cheltenham novice win.  If the real Binocular turns up then 4/5 could look daft.  The Majors winner from a fortnight ago (Nearby) looks out of his depth.

The 3.40 is a race in which I have spent some time considering options.  Of 15, I have it down to a few.  One of which, I think the enemy is making a considerable mistake with.  Mount Oscar will strip fit for a blow at Chepstow and on a winning mark could take this, 10s available with Paddy but not for the Major.   The favourite stands a great chance converting back to the bigger obstacles, a transfer of form (not a certainty) would make Working Title a threat to all.  The Majors advice though is to play Pocket Aces at 20/1 (sportingbet) to three places (although 16/1 Skybet go 4 places) – This horse has a 7lb useful claim in young Mr Cannon and is well weighted on better form.  Last time out at Cheltenham, over shorter, it looked like the penny had dropped making good late headway.  Have a chunky slice and thank the Major later.

The Major wants you to have advice for the big Saturday events as well as a few tasty morsels from things you won’t have picked up.  Why you would have looked at the 6.50 at Wolverhampton for example, is a question without answer.  The Major has.  This means he can give you West End Lad.  The Major is curious, verging on the suspicious over why they insist on running this horse over trips such as this when his best form is much shorter.  Russ Kennemore rides again after a decent second last time out… 10/1 generally, get involved.

To the frosty football fields of Britain. 

Some no bets are Arsenal and Liverpool who I suspect will both get beaten as I think they both have a soft underbelly.  Watching brief.

I do like the look of Stoke to beat an overrated Man City.  11/4 is a great price – Stoke beat Liverpool at home and fear no-one.  Man City might struggle, this is one that the Major likes to go after.

Leeds are a great 3/1 price to win at Reading, they are unbeaten in six and Reading are not a consistently good defensive team.  Andy O’Brien is a key player for Leeds now who have attacking options and now a rock to build on.  I think they are play off good things, they can get Reading today at a tasty price.

I like Martinez, the Spaniard in charge of Wigan.  I have often used his team to effect this season and todays trip to West Ham is a great opportunity.  Thankfully for the Major, the West Ham headcases have made a strong campaign of save our season around this game and this could play into Wigans hands.  Maybe the Major is wrong but Wigan can use the nonsense campaign as a springboard of their own – They are being told to turn up and play the part of the defeated.  West Ham have their own problems.  Noble is out and Parker will probably return but who knows if he is in top shape after his chest infection.  Wigan are 14/5 and with Cleverley returning, I fancy a plunge on this one.

Bristol City are a super price to win at home to a shockingly poor Sheffield United.  The red half of Bristol have had a season of two halves already but the new boss has them firing and recent performances have been strong.  6/4 with Hills is an unbelievable price.  Bristol City are on the up and have beaten Swansea away and Leicester at home in two of their last three.  Their loss was no disgrace, away to Leeds.  6/4, I cannot get over that!  Load the heavy cannon for this one.

In the eggball, the England international looks to be a terrific encounter with a bruised South Africa likely to prove tricky opponents.  I have been backing England in their autumn internationals as you know and think a slight victory is on the cards today too.  1/2 though is way too skinny.  In a tight contest, maybe take a small interest with Stan James that Nick Easter is first try scorer at 25/1.

Difficult week this week.  We need one of the bigger priced advised bets to pay if we are to maintain our streak.

The nap is simple enough, Bristol City at home is to be trusted at 6/4.  £20 returns £50.  A purple for a red is a good exchange in my humble opinion.

All the talk of Hennessy has me thinking that a late night brandy might be the calling today.  I hope yours is VSOP and in some fine crystal.  All the MAjor asks is that as you shift your bank note wedge which was digging into your ribcage, drink to the Majors health and then be upstanding for the Queen.  Ask the man to top that brandy up, tell him the Major sent you.