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Newton Abbot Betting Ring Report 25/06/24


News prior to racing was that Robert aka 'Rabbit' who works for bookmaker George Cooper was taken ill at Bath recently, I'm sure everyone will join me in wishing him a speedy recovery. 

Newton Abbot was at its glorious best today, bathed in sunshine and very busy with local punters and holidaymakers alike. One person on a sort of holiday at the track was pro-punter Neil Channing who was making his first visit for 29 years and quickly chatting to older regulars. It was nice to see Neil other than enjoying the pastries on Luck On Sunday! There wasn't a lot of betting to report in the first couple of races, the opening Racing Partnership TRP Amateur Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle saw morning money for Saddlers Quest and cash on course for Shinji, bets of £900 - £400 and £450 - £200 reported. In general the bookies reported that this holiday crowd were unlikely to emulate Royal Ascot though a few bookies did say they'd laid £100,000 bets, one even printed a ticket, it was good to know that they'd read my Royal Ascot blogs for Star Sports despite them taking the mick. Mind you, after 25/1 chance Parikarma won the first for the Flint yard under Imogen Mathias many of the layers reported skinners so were no doubt wishing a few punters had opened their shoulders more. I only heard of one solitary fiver on the winner.

The punters, at least the ones in the know, got some back from the bookies in the next, the Newton Abbot Juvenile Maiden Hurdle. Evan Williams' Gold Path won the race under Adam Wedge and appeared to land a bit of a touch, the winner bet from 6/1 into 11/4 rewarding her backers. I couldn't find any evidence of huge sums for the winner on course, the only bet of any substance reported to me was £600 - £300 Mill Street which finished runner-up.

By the third race, the The Chris Matthews And His Amigos Novice Hurdle, Neil and Armaloft Alex were enjoying a beer 'doing what old codgers do and reminisce' reminiscing. Meanwhile as Exeter Dogs and Monday night at Windsor were on the agenda with those two, there was drama out on the turf. The betting had revolved around Paul Nicholls' Huelgoat and Emma Lavelle's Ramensky. Punters had come out to play bets over the former included £500 - £500, £300 - £300, £400 - £440, £200 - £220 and £250 - £300. The latter saw bets of £700 - £400 and £550 - £400. Race was effectively a match as far as betting went, then when Huelgoat fell early in the race when clear, it looked as if Ramensky was left to win as it liked but had to fight for its half length win from 40/1 chance Eileen's Milan . Paul Metcalfe betting as Jack Bevan established 1897 was ruing his luck. He'd laid £400 the winner but add that the punter was going to bet a £400 straight forecast, but he'd talked him out of it so he'd just backed the winner straight. 

Next up and the William Hill Handicap Steeple Chase where Icare Grandchamp won at 15/2 for Josh and Gary Moore under an excellent ride from Caoilion Quinn. There was very little action in the ring on the race so thought it would be a good time to stop Armaloft and Neil chinwag for a photo. 

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Next up at the Lisa Tudor Happy 60th Birthday Today Novices' Limited Handicap Hurdle. Before the race I bumped into two of Nigel Hawke's owners Marilyn and Michael who were just on a day out enjoying the facilities. We had a quick chat, it's always lovely to see them, lovely people. Down in the betting ring there was once again very little happening but it was pungent with the smell of factor 50 and slightly singeing skin. There were no burnt fingers in evidence, Konigin Isabella winning for Anthony Honeyball under Sam Twiston-Davies appeared to be a fairly painless victory for the layers. The biggest bet I heard of in the race was £100 each way Our Dylan which finished in third. Another bookmaker came a cropper with a placed horse, he'd laid £150 each-way Sea The Clouds in the penultimate seven-runner Tilly And Seth Wedding Party Handicap Hurdle, (congratulations Tilly and Seth) that's not a bad bet to lay in a seven horse race, unless it wins or finishes runner-up of course, which it did, behind the 5/2 favourite Townhill winning for Tom Lacey under Ben Sutton. It might have been a different story had the cruising Lallygag not run out at the third last. Paul Metcalfe called over to tell me he'd laid that one to the tune of £1100 - £400 then quickly added that he'd still lost on the race, nasty. 

While Neil, Armaloft and I enjoyed an ice cream between races I was reminded of a photo that was in the Newton Abbot race card a decade of so ago, recognise this dubious looking fellow?

image0 - 2024-06-25T170741.764The betting for the lucky last, the St Austell Brewery Handicap Chase opened 2/1 Joe Tizzard's Robinsville. There was precious little of interest in the race as far as the betting ring went. The only bet I was given by the bookmakers was a wager of £250 each-way Debra Hamer's Hold Your Fort at 9/2, he won easily under James Best at 7/2. I suppose the only saving grace for the bookmaker is that punter didn't go all in win only. That may not have been the best result for that layer but I doubt he'd rather have been anywhere else this afternoon, it was glorious.

Next up and I'm at the Greyhound Derby Final on Saturday night reporting for Star Sports.

Simon Nott

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