Racing Post Trophy day at Doncaster today and hysteria abounds as Aiden O’Brien attempts to beat Bobby Frankel’s record 25 Group 1 races in a single season (yawn).
The sponsors have devoted their entire front page to this possibility (zzzzz) and at 3.25 A O’B is throwing four darts at the board, including the 6-4 favourite Saxon Warrior, the mount of Ryan Moore. Strangleholds on the top contests are not necessarily good for the sport and we hope that the apple of Jim Bolger’s optic may be the party pooper.
Described as the ‘best horse I have trained’, Verbal Dexterity has already pouched the Group 1 National Stakes by an easy 31/2 lengths and with the step up to a mile looking sure to suit, we recommend you snap up the 7-2 currently available.
Two Group races form the nub of Newbury’s card, starting with the Group 3 St Simon Stakes at 2.15. Favourite for this is the somewhat quirky but talented Frontiersman at 9-2, but this 4-y-o could only manage a well-beaten 6th in this race a year ago and the prevailing soft ground is not in his favour.
We prefer an each way bet on Raheen House at 6-1, trusting to Frank to do the biz. The slight drop back in trip for this previous Group winning 3-y-o will be offset by the going and there is every chance he can follow up his Listed win at Ascot at the beginning of the month.
The Horris Hill Stakes for 2-y-os at 2.50 looks at the mercy of Charlie Appleby’s Mythical Magic, who should be backed at 11-4. This race represents a drop in class and a drop back down to his optimum trip, so we can rely on James Doyle to bring him home in style.
Cheltenham hosts the second and final day of their October meeting with two £50,000 added Chases the main events. The first, at 2.00 is cheerfully filed away in the ‘too difficult’ cabinet, but the other, the Randox Health Handicap Chase at 3.10 is do-able.
Dan Skelton’s Cobra de Mai has won three of the four chases it has contested, not the least of which was the Sedgefield Novice Chase on October 3rd, when, despite having a nightmare run avoiding fallers and loose horses, CDM came home in front of a 147 rated ex-hurdler, giving away a stone in weight. While that form probably can’t be taken literally, the handicapper has seen fit to ignore it completely, so the horse competes today off an unchanged mark of 134. With trip and ground ideal, an each way bet at the prevailing 7-1 could pay mega dividends.
It would also be prudent to have a win bet on the Malcolm Jefferson trained, Brian Hughes ridden Double W’s (Their apostrophe, not mine), which is an out-and-out two miler and has been specifically aimed at this race. 5-1 is the top price.
Verbal Dexterity 3.25 Doncaster win @ 7-2 Betway
Raheen House 2.15 Newbury e/w @ 6-1 PaddyPower (4 places)
Mythical Magic 2.50 Newbury win @ 11-4 BetVictor
Cobra de Mai 3.10 Cheltenham e/w @ 7-1 SkyBet (5 places)
Double W’s 3.10 Cheltenham win @ 5-1 SkyBet (5 places)