It's been a busy few days. Just lately I feel a touch on the back foot, which isn't ideal. However, I still like to write blog posts and make an effort to keep the info coming.
The testing ground conditions have made life for horses and punters equally tough. It is time to be extra careful.
Just three two-year-olds races today.
Looking at the 2:20 Bath.
Quite an intriguing fillies' stakes over 5f on good to soft going.
Clive Cox does exceptionally well at this course. Star Alexander was fancied to go well on debut at Ascot. This 40,000 guinea yearling purchase was a beaten favourite. I can imagine connections were a little deflated with that lacklustre effort. Time may tell, it was a decent race. Starting favourite was a significant pointer to me, and being fancied in the betting today suggests a big run is expected.
Daddies Diva won on her third start and a fair juvenile for Rod Millman. She has pace and even though carrying a penalty here could still put in a decent performance.
Another filly who disappointed on debut is Richard Hannon's Divine Covey, owned by Her Majesty the Queen. This homebred daughter of Dark Angel was seriously backed for her debut at Sandown. However, after showing speed, tired rapidly and finished sixth. There was something strange going on that day because a few horses seemed to run bizarrely. I wouldn't be surprised to see this grey filly run well today.
Charles Hills does well at this course. He can win with debutantes although his statistics suggest they are more likely to be placed than win. Sabaaya is a British-bred daughter of Oasis Dream. She has drifted in the betting but still interesting.
An outsider who may have a glimmer of hope at huge odds is Jungle Boogaloo trained by Ali Strong. The stable don't have many two-year-olds but she knows her horses. This daughter of Bungle Inthejungle was a 50/1 that day. Not a bad looking sort. I noticed she pulled like the proverbial train - a couple of furlongs, if not three. In fairness, she tired in the closing stages to finish sixth. Whether Jungle Boogaloo has ability is a difficult question to answer. Will she pull? Many unanswered questions but that's what you are dealing with when speculating if a horse can win at odds.
Conclusion: I can't help but think Star Alexander will take some beating. Daddies Diva will most likely need the fancied runners to falter to win with a penalty. She has pace and proven ability but these win penalties are hard to defy, especially in the face of stiff opposition. Added to the mix, Divine Covey could go well. She didn't start odds on for her debut for a laugh. There is little doubt she disappointed to some extent and better should be expected. Sabaaya has each-way claims if priced 13/2 & less SP. I would be inclined to think a placed effort is more likely than a win. Can Jungle Boogaloo win at huge odds? This isn't an easy race to win and it is difficult to assess if she has any ability. Strangely, I am measuring her ability on the fact she pulled extremely hard on debut and hoping that if racing with less temperament will show more. On balance, I would have to take a watching brief although intrigued to see how she goes.