Tag Archives: tenor nivernais

The Saturday Sermon – Newbury Challow Hurdle Tips Horseracing from Leopardstown including their Grade 1 Festival Hurdle

Good evening from the Major who writes from the bed.  The good lady is alongside (fear not, a significant bolster, giant if you will, separates us), she is reading her book and biding her time before most likely snapping and letting me know that the tippety tap production of the Saturday Sermon is effecting her harmony.

The weather in Worcestershire is grey and mild, infuriatingly boring.  The wind is rising though and on it is the promise of significant morning rain.  The brook over the road from the Majors country seat is full of recent downpours, it is creeping remorselessly up my neighbour’s garden, devouring higher ground.

What a fantastic day of racing, we have been spoiled with the offerings this week.  The Lexus Chase had an enthralling climax with unbelievably brave Tidal Bay sticking his neck through the crowd to take glory on his only ever foreign excursion.

You can only speculate what this horse might have achieved if he had been with Nicholls his whole career.  He seemingly has the keys to him and a brave Hennessy performance preceded this heroic Lexus win.  The Major had written him off, well he is turning twelve.  Gold Cup horse… no, not for me.

In fact, I have been swimming against the tide for some time on the subject of the Gold Cup.  My views are simple.  Long Run underperformed significantly last year in one of the weakest renewals ever.  Take that out, he has won a Gold Cup aged 6 (rare and in doing so broke the track record), has won two King Georges (regaining it this year) and for me is the classiest staying chaser there is on the scene.

I have given my views already on the jockey situation but overall, I am a buyer of Long Run for the Gold Cup at 7/1 and the Lexus further convinced me.

Sir Des Champs has done little wrong but perhaps is not the world beater we might have imagined.  Flemenstar is a non stayer and drops to the Champion Chase.  Peter Casey thinks Sprinter Sacre will be quaking in his boots, I don’t think Flemenstar will get him off the bridle.  Tidal Bay is not a Gold Cup horse aged 12, no way.  Bobs Worth is the real danger as I do rate that one highly but he has not achieved as much as Long Run.

While we are on ante post betting, have a bit of Major Malarkey at 25/1 for the Welsh National.  It will be good for you, you can thank me later.

A very good friend asked me how I make money from writing the Major’s blog and was quite surprised to hear that I don’t.  I have never (and can never foresee a time when I might)  promoted services to my followers.  For a start, it is not my style, I enjoy writing this too much and prefer the honest relationship we have.  I offer you this for free, you can despise me when you have lost your money.  I don’t want the integrity of your hatred lost in a confusion over whether I was just wrong and cost you money or whether I was being evil and tried to trick you into backing a loser.  One I regularly am guilty of, the other I am not capable of.

I do not know you but you might have gleaned somewhat of my own mind, over time.  You might think me a little unhinged, you might enjoy it, you might be informed, you might be here through chance, a first time, or you might be here through reluctant familiarity, like returning to a poor soap opera as a matter of habit.

In providing my racing tips, I profess not expertise but an enthusiastic and positive amateur approach.  What is more, I believe any claimed expertise in my field is fallacy.  It is partly why I stick to my mantra of courage and roll the dice.  

By the way, I stole that, or at least I borrowed heavily to get to it.  If anyone can tell me (comment or tweet @tdl123) where from and get it right then I will be impressed….  Answers next Saturday.

Roll the dice, the courage to take chances… but as a horseracing fan and amateur tipster, is it not my job to remove chance, to be certain?  Is it not therefore an admission of shame to say that chance plays the master role?

Put simply, there is too much information to be certain of anything in life.  We can access such enormous amounts of data not just in racing but in all walks of life and it has a profound impact on how we view the world.

Using information wisely is a profitable business is all walks of life.  Yet there is little information, if any, to which I can claim exclusive access.

I have a rating engine I use which although using someone elses software platform is essentially my own.  This is not unique though and the source information for the engine is common.

My point is this, our views are so often based on things that everyone else can access too.  There is so much of this information too, I can access the strike rate of Sir Des Champs sire on left-handed tracks, if I want to, if I think it merit worthy.

The idiotic, select elements of this ‘sea of data’ that fit their pre-existing argument.  If you like Sir Des Champs, you might be minded to convince yourself that an extra half mile will see him beat Flemenstar.  If you like Flemenstar, you might select his unbeaten record to decide that he will be superior on the day.  This is dangerous, if you do not realise you are doing it.  It is easy to corrupt yourself into false confidence.

All I am saying is that there is enough data to pretty much argue anything.  It is the human condition that we believe we can control enough of what lies around us to predict the future, we are desperate to do this and you can see it in people all of the time.  If you even start to critically analyse what people say, just scratching the surface of their belief systems, you find it full of weakness, yet some convey their belief with such authority.

How frustrating that is, to meet the man born believing , in fact, knowing himself to be right.  These people, I believe are most afraid of their own mortality.  they will die scared.  They need to convey certainty in their knowledge, because they are too weak to accept that they do not know, that the world is far greater than the insignificance speck that is you and I.

Accepting we cannot predict, control and know is a terrifying prospect, the very idea that we have no idea takes us closer to our own insignificance.  Socrates knew it and you should be at peace with it too as it is inescapable.  It is as inevitable as your own death.

Bleak, possibly… but cheer yourself that you have the elixir of life, freedom, autonomy and vibrancy.  You are here, after all, many are not.  That thought, the one in your head right now, it is yours alone.  Drink deeply from the cup, let it run over and splash down you.  You are alive, you have your own mind.

My point about prediction and how thin and feeble it can be is why gambling is the best hobby a man could possibly have.  It teaches humbleness in the face of the infinite, it teaches you to try to garner just a slither of understanding of the small detail, not to fool yourself with an illusion of absolute control.

The belief that one has the ability to predict outcome with certainty belongs to the fool.  In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is King.  Know something and understand it is only something.

Ask yourself, have you ever had a strong sense of a horses chances only to see it lose unfortunately?  Have you ever used information to understand a picture but just not quite staked well, thus losing?

When doing so, do you feel frustrated or is there another emotion too?  Contentedness, a rested mind that you were able to comprehend the variables, even if it was without reward?  If you do not feel this, then please do not come back.  We here are gentlemen gamblers, at the snooker table we acknowledge those lucky deflected pots and we call our own fouls.

If you have felt it, then embrace it.

To the sports and remember, I am merely a guide shining a tiny narrow light into the cavernous kingdoms of information, my torch may flash on something you like but I am only searching myself, I offer thought, not fact.  The beauty of life is not control, it is choice and chance so be with me today followers… courage and roll those dice.

Newbury Challow Hurdle

Two terrific prospects for the Neptune clash here and both Clondaw Kaempfar and Taquin du Seuil look potentially top class.

The former was bought for a six figures and has won a decent bumper and two good hurdles, including a listed contest latest.  Never raced on heavy but the soft ground form suggests this is no problem.

Taquin du Seuil is another classy prospect and it was surprising to me that it is second favourite in the early prices.  Jonjo has used this race before with some decent horses including the ill-fated Wichita Lineman.  Taquin won a Uttoxeter bumper with some authority before bumping into the smart My Tent or Yours and losing.

That loss was interesting, while he was not that fluent at the obstacles, he was ultimately well held and I would suggest that the trip was already inadequate.

Stepped up a further half mile last time out and raised into Grade 2 company, Taquin Du Seuil smashed the opposition which although potentially a bit light for the standard, marks him as a serious prospect.

On the whole, Taquin du Seuil has achieved more to date than the others and I think, kept to these distances, he is a very smart prospect.  He is my strong tip for the Challow Hurdle and I would be taking those 16/1 prices on the Neptune now.

2pm Leopardstown – Istabraq Hurdle Tips

I do not think Hurricane Fly is likely to retake his Champion Hurdle crown come March but he should be able to give his fans something to cheer about here.  3/10 might be no punters price but neither Thousand Stars or Unaccompanied are within a stone of the former champ and any other outcome would be a major surprise to me.

Another Leopardstown favourite I will tip is Sizing Gold who is likely to go off around evens in the 12.55, having finished 10l down to the decent Don Cossack last time up, a repeat performance would be enough but surely improvement is on the cards.

In the 1.30pm, I am willing to give 4/1 shot The Real Article another chance.  Once a controversial handicapper over hurdles that ended up in graded races, he is looking to shape into a very useful chaser.  A fall last time out came when travelling nd jumping well enough and if the confidence is unharmed he will be a threat to all at this level.

In the 2.35, I am going to have a considerable slice of Zuzka at 6/4.  This mare was unfortunate enough to run into Jessica Harringtons Jezki in the Royal Bond (impressive winner of the Future Champions), there is no such opposition here.  If anything the Royal Bond stretched her a little and she did well to be within a few lengths of Jezki, all in all, she should have the guns for this.

You need the mind of Stephen Hawking to attempt to decipher the 3.05… just watch it!

More Newbury Racing Tips

The 1.35pm sees the chase debut of Colour Squadron who could be a decent jumper of the larger obstacles having run Captain Conan close over hurdles last year.

That said, jumping was an issue with the small ones and Newbury fences are tough enough.  The ground might help slow things up and could be an assistance but I cannot tip a chase debutant with that record at the obstacles.

Module is also full of promise but I prefer the chances of Tenor Nivernais and Bury Parade who have both registered chase wins.  The former might have a few quirks but definitely has some quality as shown when spread-eagling a Bangor field, that was not top class stuff but probably just the confidence booster Tenor Nivernais needed.

The tip for the Newbury Novice Chase though is Bury Parade who was an expensive purchase recently into the Ditcheat team after beating Super Duty at Carlisle.  That horse went on to smash-up a decent Cheltenham field in the Schloer Chase providing ample advertisement that the transfer fee for my Newbury tip could be money well spent indeed.  Take the hint.

Given I am all about Taquin Du Seuil, you would expect me to be on My Tent or Yours at cramped odds in the last and I will be!

To the football tips…

I am all aboard the Watford money express to Brighton at 11/4.  I also think 13/10 Leyton Orient to beat my old team Walsall and 5/6 for Tranmere at home should be in your multiples.  I must say that Sunderland look the value bet to me, Villa are in free fall at the moment and the Spurs form against them should not be taken literally.  13/5 home win is a bet.

Hull are a touch the wrong side of evens to beat Leeds at home and I think they should be bought.  Palace are 11/5 to win at Forest, with turmoil at that club, I fancy this being a good time to get them.

The Martin Hill Lucky 15 is Taquin Du Seuil, Zuzka, Leyton Orient and Bury Parade.  Load the cannons.

May your dinner be a simple meal.  Remove the finery and return to basics.  Have good company with you and sleep content.

Courage and roll those dice.

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.

The Saturday Sermon – Tingle Creek Tips…… Plus 40/1 Tip Shabash!

Good morning from the Major who has been up early pondering the days sporting action. Defford is fine and cool with a dark slick ground from the overnight rain. The coffee has been bubbling away and the Major is ready to lay before you the sporting delights of the day.

If you have come seeking the Majors advice this morning, thank you. It has to be said that current form does not warrant your custom. The Major always remains free, barely-profitable and entirely unhinged and it is at times like these that I wonder why people still visit. I rely on your good grace.

In fact, if you are reading this at all; given my recent record; you are either a loyal friend, slightly insane, entertained, stupid or you have lottery fever (you have been following the Majors advice for some time and have an unshakable belief that one day, we will land the mothership). I admire the last group the most.

No white flash like his brother but Kauto Stone is as good looking and fizzing with potential

Faith is an interesting concept. Not to think something or to assess merit on evidence but to know it. There are many biblical quotes on faith but I prefer the words of the great 18th century french philosopher Francais-Marie Arouet – Like the Major he assumed a pen-name, Voltaire, there the comparisons stop. He said of faith…

It consists in believing what is beyond the power of reason to believe.

Could we land the mothership today? To the sports my faithful few…..

The Tingle Creek

I do love the Tingle Creek. A tough finish but Sandown favours speed merchants. Couple this with the stiff railway fences down the back straight that are tricky and close.

It is a true test of speed and accuracy and requires a brace jockey too. If you do not have your horse in a steady rhythm pinging those tricky back straight fences.. pop, pop, pop, pop…. it will be game over.

It is an intriguing renewal today and one that has the bookmakers competing again hard for our stakes. I do love it when the enemy is forced into such generous tactics.

The winner for the Major is Sportingbet.com. For stakes placed through their online facility (check it may just be the app), they are refunding losing bets to Sizing Europe and providing a 15% bonus on winning stakes…. simply superb.

There seem to be three main protagonists in the race.

Sizing Europe is over from Ireland to show the class of his Champion Chase win remains this season. He will not mind conditions and is an accurate taker of the fences but the Major is not convinced he will win this today, Champion Chase winners have a mixed to poor record. I am also not certain he was the best Champion Chase winner we will have seen.

Kauto Stone has a big task. Nicholls clearly the world of the half brother to the mightier Kauto. He needs rain though desperately. Two miles will be on the sharp side. Although his half brother managed it (twice – legend), Stone will need to be top class too as he is surely going to be better over staying trips in the future.

Many are also pointing to the fact that Kauto Stone was the number two stable choice and Tataniano would have been his first selection. The Major is less sure, I read Nicholls comments as saying that the two horses have different preferences on ground and so both were in the race at the early declarations to give the trainer choice. The fact that Tataniano is out for the season is now irrelevant if Kauto Stone gets enough toe into the ground as he would have been number one choice in soft conditions anyway.

It is also interesting to see Wishfull Thinking stepping back in trip and not up in trip. After disappointing hugely in the Paddy Power, the horse was reported to be heavy on the chest. I think this horse has threatened top class but there are things to prove, well-being and speed being the main two.

There are your choices. I suggest a bet on Kauto Stone. I was hoping for a little more than 7/2 but that price reflects the trainers vice like grip on the Tingle Creek and the horses illustrious relative. For the Major, I remain unconvinced by the class of Sizing Europe and Wishfull Thinking has a few questions to answer too. While Kauto beat little in Ireland, his Down Royal run was flawless. Have a slice. Do your rain dance.

1.25 Sandown – Pertemps Qualifier

At 25/1, the price of a night in the pub could pay for Christmas on my selection in the handicap hurdle.

On Borrowed Wings carries one of my favourite jockeys, Noel Fehily gets an unusual right for the stable who have a great record for their few Sandown runners. I think his comeback run can get a line through is and I believe this horse to be way better than the dismissive 40/1 that Stan James have priced him up at, have a slice.

Poungach could be absolutely anything but this will not be the main target so I am happy to get involved with On Borrowed Wings at monster prices.

2.30 Listed Handicap Hurdle

Another at a price for you from the Major.

To Paddy Power and Ladbrokes for their 10/1 pricing of Tenor Nivernais who the Major believes may finally come good and show us the potential that connections clearly think he has.

The Fred Winter run at the festival was clearly not what was expected as the money that day suggested a bigger performance. On reappearance, the horse dissapointed again but the Major is going to stick with it.

Mister No at 16/1 is also immeasurable, who knows what his french form is all about. It is nice to see our Gallic friends coming to have a pop at our big races as we do theirs, good luck to connections.

Get stuck in to Tenor Nivernais though, I have a feeling the money will come again and you know how good the Majors nose is for a gamble.

3.20 Aintree – The Grand Sefton

The selection in the Grand Sefton is Linnel. The stable definitely do not go on fishing expeditions, particularly across the Irish Sea and so I read potential in this horse as absolute.

7/1 is the best you can get but it is still worth a few of your hard earned golden coins.

Finally – 12.00 Aintree Maiden Hurdle

Keys is very tempting here at 11/8 and I suggest a slice.

Keys gave me and a few friends a thrilling win at Cheltenham in the New Years Day bumper as we waited first to hear he had the photo call over Cinders and Ashes (re-opposes) and then to make sure he kept it in the stewards room (he did).

I thought he truly had the measure over a pushed out Cinders and Ashes that day and I think 11/8 is tremendous value in that context.

If you do not like backing shorter priced good things, take on Ile de Ray who for me is incredible value at 9s. Apart from Keys, I would rate his the best flat horse in the field and if he takes to jumping…. could go very well.

If you were after a tip for the Becher, my money will be staked on Nicto de Beauchene.

To the sports fields of our great nation….

Two teams to back this weekend. I think Swansea are priced well enough at 5/2 to have a slice at Blackburn. I also think the 5/4 that Liverpool win at Fulham on Monday is like finding money in the street!

Why not double up Keys and Liverpool to give a very tasty £100 return to a £20.

Tonight I hope you dine well in a good restaurant where the wine flows, the misty effect of the grog sedates the senses and you are left with a contentment that only a donkey choking wedge of used notes and a flaxen haired lustrous sort sat opposite can provide. Shabash! Tip well.

Courage, roll those dice.

Taunton – Tuesday 1st February – Horseracing Tip – Handicap Good Thing?

Good evening fair punters of Britain.  Following a stunning Saturday service of profits, January finished on a high.  While I have not yet updated the top tabs with Sundays advices, the months profits will be close

Babylon, Babilu, Babel... call it what you will

Babilu could go well at 25/1 but Teshali is taken as the good thing

 on 30%.

Let us see if we can get February off to a flyer with a monster piece of value for the Major, running at Taunton in the 3.50 tomorrow. 

Taunton is a course I must visit at some point.  It looks pretty and although it doesn’t have particularly key races, their prize money seems to be on the better side for their grade of races.  They have decent competitive races and this is a good example with several top trainers sending some interesting sorts.

Timmy Murphy gets one of his rare rides for champion trainer Paul Nicholls as part of his retained service arrangement with David Johnson, on Teshali.   This is a hugely interesting horse now handicapping following three pretty poor novice events, it really smells of being a plot horse.   The horse had excellent flat form winning multiple times in France and in all probability a lot more can be expected.  11/2 with Victor Chandler.  Suspicious looking money would be a huge clue!

Tenor Nivernais is currently 4/1 and goes for Venetia Williams.  Again a nice flat horse this one showed more on debut in Britain and probably has more to offer.

An interesting sort is Babilu who is currently a huge 25/1.  There are a lot of interesting things about this one.  It seems to have had a hurdling career of two parts.  In the second it seems to have been a lot better too.  Lean Burn who was beaten by this one earlier in the season looked to have boosted that form subsequently.  Probably very vulnerable to something more tasty in this race, you cannot help but view this one as interesting.  Especially as Babilu won its only race at Taunton.

Headgear might help Ocean Transit but not for the Major.  Troubletimestwo is dropping to a more feasible mark but is best watched.  Via Galilei for the Moore family is worth a sniff with Joshuas 7lb claim.  Picot de Say could surprise a few but 33/1 reflects the training performance required to have it ready to go to win this off a massive break. 

Very interesting is Karky Schultz who has the services of Paddy Brennan booked for a second ride since seemingly returning to a better vein of form at Kempton.  Perhaps connections are expecting another decent outing.

Simply Blue has had problems but another interesting sort if you go back to the Wincanton win in October 09.  The thing I am probably put off by is that the Alan King and Jonjo trained second and third that day hardly went on to greater things.  25/1 is fair but I would rather take Balibu.

Two good runs in a row is likely to be too much of an ask for Kings Revenge.  My Shamwari is dropping to a more realistic level of racing but does not inspire confidence. 

Henry King is looking for a second course success and probably won’t hang around.  This field is surely too good to let him slip the net though and 7/1 seems poor value for this one.

Sir Frank is well bred and has a fantastic novice strike rate even if it does expose his true form.  7/1 you will get an honest race, it is just not the likely winner for the Major.

Causeway King is not for the Major either, doubtful it will feature.

So having run the rule over the field and having eliminated some and found value in others, it is time to decide where to drop the pin.

Some people think that horseracing is an unfair gambling sport because trainers often know far more than we do about a horses readiness.  Sometimes this is what levels the game up. 

Tomorrow I take a chance that 11/2 Teshali is a handicap good thing.  It will either win on the bridle or be tailed off half a mile from home.  At the price, we can afford to find out!  For those who like a right price, Babilu (ancient variant of Babylon)  is taken to outrun 25s.  Teshali for the Major.