The first race at Kempton tonight was at the twilight time of 3.50 and appeared to be the twilight zone as far as bets being bandied about was concerned too. You’d have thought the punters would have wanted to wade into odds-on ‘good thing’ Time Check in the opening BetBright Mobile App/Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden Fillies’ Stakes but they didn’t. Which begs the next question, when is a 16/1 result for the ring not a result? When they have hardly taken a shilling on the beaten odds-on shot which is second to 16/1 shot Belvoir Diva that’s when.
‘It wasn’t as busy as Newbury on Saturday’ was Rocky on the Rails’ rather stoic summing up of the business. But he did add that Newbury was ‘almost like the old Hennessy days’ so maybe was still basking in the warm glow of that. The Queen owned the favourite Silver Mirage in the next, the BetBright Moneyback Offers Maiden Stakes. Someone had two grand on it at 4/6 and it hosed in. That’s how the mop appears to flop on the all-weather from time to time, nobody moaned, after all, the Queen’s horse won.
The BetBright.com Nursery was more competitive on paper but it still went to the market leader 5/2 chance Thanksgiving Day who Jamie Spencer jockeyed to an unusual for the track pillar to post victory. The ring didn’t really come alive with stonking bets but one firm did run into a £3200 – £200 Prince Of Paris over and above money for any thing else. As also often happens on the all-weather the outsider the money was for ran very well to be runner-up at 12/1. It wouldn’t have been a huge surprise had it won having been victorious here at 33/1 in October and no doubt a more welcome result than the jolly for the majority in the ring. At least it wasn’t each-way.
The betting came to life in the BetBright Casino Handicap (Div 1),’Not a bad betting heat, we’ve laid a few horses but just need a result’ was the word from the rails. Notable money came in for Pahente including a monkey and a carpet at 8/1 from a punter one bookie ‘had never seen before in my life’. There was also strong support for Thomas Blossom from 3/1 into 9/4f. The hods were fuller than they had been earlier in the evening but only for the duration of the race with the two best backed horses finishing first and second. Sadly for the incognito punter on Pahente and the books that laid the 3/1 it was the jolly who came home in front. Sadly the layers a ‘result’ never really looked on the cards.
As an interlude this blog has been entered into the UK Blog Awards if you could vote for me I’d be very grateful http://www.blogawardsuk.co.uk/candidates/Tales-From-The-Betting-Ring-2/
The second division of the race saw an apparent stick-on Keith Dalgleish’s charge, Scottish raider Gios Last. Early birds got on at 5/2, a chap with a monkey at 2/1 and those that joined the bandwagon the SP of 15/8. They all collected, the gelding was 3/4 length too good for them at the line. With the prize money to the winner just £1772 you’d have to hope connections at least won their diesel money back to Carluke, which I’m told is somewhere near Glasgow. I don’t think any of the bookies had come that far, but were now looking into the bottom of empty satchels so were probably hoping they at least had full fuel tanks.
Not for long though, they got one beat in the BetBright Best Odds Guaranteed Handicap (London Middle Distance Series Qualifier) but at the furlong pole it looked as if things were going from bad to worse for the layers. Adam Kirby found another gear and kicked for home on even-money Anglophile and looked all over the winner. At least it did to those I’m reliably informed pushed their in-running buttons as short as 1.06. The final furlong must have seemed a long one as Bancnuanaheireann came do do him under the judge’s nose. OK the winner was only the 15/8 second in, but at least the books got the short-one beaten. There had been a bet of £500-£400 and an even monkey the jolly so some firms got some back at least
The penultimate, a handicap also sponsored by BetBright, saw a move for Ioannou backed at 33/1 including a bet of £4950 – £150 each-way. ‘He didn’t ask for fractions’ the bookie who laid it beamed. If the punter had just said ‘with the fractions’ he’d have had a bet of £5000 – £150 each-way. That’s £50 free from the benevolent bookies, if you don’t ask you don’t get however. If you don’t know about fractions on-course (come racing) please check an explanation here http://wp.me/p1dLbd-4x the trouble is, to benefit the beast needs to win. Sadly for this non-fraction savvy punter his fancy didn’t trouble the judge. Sad too for the bookies, while their eyes were taken off the ball laying the big prices Baltic Prince was being smashed into 15/8 from 11/4 before winning with some ease. The reality that the previous race was only respite for the ring hammered home as it did so.
The lucky last was the only race on the card not sponsored by BetBright, the Auntie VI Memorial Handicap Stakes. It was another open looking event with 12 going to post. The money in an uneventful betting heat was all for Spowarticus from 3/1 into 5/2f. It got beat, by New Rich, it was only 7/2 second-in so hardly got anyone out but small blessings gratefully received by the ring. They’ll all be back tomorrow on a roll.
I won’t, I’m off to Wincanton for some ‘proper racing’, at least that’s what they say down my way!
(c) Simon Nott
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