It was time to bid Wincanton a fond farewell for the season with this their Ladies Day swansong. They went out in style though, in more ways than one. The fairer sex did them proud turning up in their droves dressed up to the nines to support the meeting in addition to eight races on offer for our punting pleasure. Everyone’s favourite MC Leglock Luke Harvey and bookie Andrew Smith of Festival racing were on hand to the mark cards prior to the first. The former in his standing dish cheeky style and the latter in his best telephone voice. I’m not sure how many winners they tipped but they seemed to be having fun delivering their advices.
Drive On Locky was sent off the 7/4 jolly for the opening Baby Banz Handicap Hurdle (Div 1) but could only manage a poor fifth behind 6/1 winner Highbury High. The bookies chance, 20/1 Stonemadforspeed was tantalisingly close to getting them plenty a neck away in second. Money for Jopaan, backed from 16/1 into 10/1, stayed with the bookmakers finishing well back the field. There had been a very strong word in the second division from Roger Bush of the well-respected Westcountry Racing tipping service for Sheer Poetry advised at 9/4 in the morning. Therefore it was surprising to see the mare drift to 3/1 at the off in the face of sustained support for Colin Tizzard’s Westend prince backed from 7/2 into 5/2. This time the market got it totally wrong with the morning gamble landed eased down. Ideal for those still able to bet BOG (Best Odds Guaranteed) but I imagine most of WCR’s followers are no longer afforded that luxury.
Bookies may not have been waxing lyrical after Sheer Poetry’s win but they were cock-a-hoop after 8/1 outsider of four Ballyknock Lad won the four-runner Montague Inn Handicap Chase. That euphoria didn’t last long though as Moabit landed a 1/2 (£500-£1000 done on the rails, come racing) into 4/11 victory in effortless fashion in the Jockey Club Catering Novices’ Hurdle. That blow may well have been tempered somewhat when 200/1 chance May Court was withdrawn at the start leaving each-way punters suddenly looking for just two places. Galling for those on Lizzie Kelly’s mount 11/2 chance Peruvien Bleu which finished third.
The same tipping firm as previously mentioned also put up Thundering Home in the ApolloBet Cashback If You Finish 2nd Handicap Hurdle to conform the form of its last run when it chinned their tip last week Sir Dylan. This time the market got it right, Sir Dylan was backed from 9/2 into 7/2 to reverse the form and the gelding duly obliged by seven lengths from 3/1 Thundering Home. Hopefully the gelding’s backers were on with the sponsors!
The race before the penultimate, the ApolloBet Cashback Specials Novices’ Chase featured only four runners but was effectively a match with Present Man and Sugar Baron slugging it out in the market at around the evens mark with the other two 25/1 and 80/1. In actuality Present Man was always slightly odds-on after an early even grand on the rails, one firm was really having a go it seemed, hardening to 4/6 at the off. The bookies kept favourite-backers’ money when Sugar Baron proved over four lengths too good.
Mr Satco landed a 9/2 into 3/1 punt in the concluding jumps race the ApolloBet Casino Free 10 Open Hunters’ Chase, 2/1 jolly Lamboro Lad was out of the money back in fourth. There had been support for Tiverton trainer Mary Sanderson’s Blinding Lights including a £2400-£400 but that money was left 14 lengths behind the winner in third.
One bookmaker was the only one to jump in the concluding Yeovil Audi Unleash The Horsepower Standard Open NH Flat Race when a punter put a monkey in his hand and asked for a £3500-£500 Kevin Bishop’s Lets Go Dutchess. The mare ran well enough for that punter to no doubt wish he’d had £250 each-way. She eventually finished third behind Harry Fry’s 4/6 into 8/15 winner Golden Birthday concluding a wonderful season of racing at Wincanton.
See you all again on 14th October. In the meantime, it’s Salisbury and Newbury that beckon this week. Read all about them in the next issue of Racing Ahead Magazine
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.
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