Epsom’s first meeting of the new season was heaving with people and punters having it on, top marks to the racecourse for reportedly running an evidently hugely successfully advertising campaign to get the locals in. Let’s hope they loved it, and why wouldn’t they, and will be back for the rest of the season.
There were plenty of bookies turned up too, a very healthy rail in Members plus a row and a bit in Tattersalls. They soon had plenty to do too. The opening Investec Asset Finance Handicap saw a move for Roudee backed from 15/8 into 7/4 though some punters did themselves by betting at the low of 13/8 to the tune of £1300-£800 and £650-£400. That slight bounce was due to sustained support for Robert Cowell’s Normal Equilibrium from 5/1 into 4/1 with bets of £3500-£700 and a brace of £1800-£400 noted. As it turned out, that was the clever money the rouf (4/1) chance a length too good for the jolly at the line.
There was novelty value as well as clues to the Derby in the second heat, the Investec Derby Trial. Cricketing legends, and in the case of the former latter day King Of The Jungle, Phil Tufnell and Graeme Swann took over commentating duties from Simon Holt. Prior to the actual race there was spirited betting on the race. To be more accurate one horse, they all wanted to be on Claudio Monteverdi with bets of £2200 -£2000, £2000-£2000 and lesser lumps eventually forcing the price into 5/6. One well-known punting face who has a penchant for wearing tracksuits was seen veritably scampering down to the rail, though we know not if it was for a bet but one can only assume. If it was let’s hope it wasn’t for the jolly as it was only fourth behind 3/1 second-in So Di Mar. Curiously there had been a couple of decent bets struck at 9/4 the winner early doors, a second case of punters getting the wrong prices a winner. The novice commentators did an excellent job of calling the race, though it probably wasn’t music to favourite-backers’ ears. Just a thought, maybe Holt, Hoiles et all might be looking over their should as Phil Tufnell approaches the big ‘Bullseye’ birthday at the end of the month, maybe looking for a career change?!
The 12-runner Investec Corporate Banking Great Metropolitan Handicap looked wide open and so it proved with at least four ‘monkey’ (£500) bets seen for different horses. None of those bets were on 16/1 winner Bawick though. The bookies allowed themselves a little smile even though it had been nibbled at 20/1. The race before the penultimate the Investec City And Suburban Handicap was an equally competitive affair so layers were over the moon when 12/1 shot Dark Red won the race. Well most of them were, not so much the rails firm that laid the £5000-£400 gelding. That’s 12/1 with the fractions, come racing and get the ‘bits’ – if you don’t understand fraction betting on course, click Here and learn how to bag them.
Only five went to post for the Investec Specialist Cash Products Maiden Stakes in which Silca Star and Yensir both attracted decent bets at 9/4 into 15/8 and a steady 4/1 respectively. Those bets stayed with the bookies who got a dream result when 9/1 shot Finelcity won the race. The punter who was screaming ‘Come on Frankie’ at the top of his voice for seven of the eight furlongs either had the wrong horse or was very wishful thinking. Let’s think positive and hope that he was on ‘Frankie’s’ mount, runner-up Najd each way at 11/1.
9/2 joint second-in Medburn Dream won the concluding Investec Private Banking Handicap by an impressive 4+ lengths, it wouldn’t have been a lot of cop for the ring but wouldn’t have ruined any days either. I’d hazard a guess that given the results this afternoon the sponsors might have some new bookmaking clientèle for the race’s product. Oh hang on, they are probably all customers already.
Aye Aye, who says the game’s gone, or that’s not the right way to spell ‘Aye Aye’!
(c) Simon Nott
I have have just published Vol 1 of what I hope will be an annual ‘Simon Nott’s Betting Tales’. This covers the 2013 season in the betting ring. All the blogs I wrote in that period brought together in an e-book for about the cost of a pint of Guinness at the Cheltenham Festival. It is on Kindle only but can be read on pretty much any device if you download their free reader. If you were an avid reader of my blogs (if you were, thank you) in 2013 you will have read them all. However if you only dipped in or missed them altogether I think you might enjoy them in this format. Here’s to link to buy
My book Skint Mob is still available on Kindle and various other e-book formats and also in paperback via Amazon or direct from me on this page. £9.99 plus postage. Many thanks for reading this, and my blogs.