Dinner with Sam Hoskins and other chums last night, at another pub that has decided that C19 is an excuse not a reason to try harder. Sam is down to support his KVT members and their runner SIR BUSKER today. We have an engaging conversation, but close by, a man keeps trying to catch Sam’s eye, while patently disinterested in me. I do not take this as a slight, because while I bear the characteristics of sagacity and a zen-like calm, (when sober), Hoskins is more…. what’s the word?… young. All becomes clear when the man orders a large Calvados in the manner of an Irish Coffee. Were Bunny down for Goodwood and staying at his cottage with his young friends, I know he would have disapproved. Sam and I departed before further interest could manifest itself, and I tell Sam that I suspect his ordering of two scoops of Coconut Ice Cream with a Cornet, must have been some kind of West Sussex euphemism.
The day went well earlier and regardless of Wednesday’s crash, we must surely be in the black on the tipping front this week. If that sounds understated, I had promised various fellow-travellers that I would not mention 50/1 winners again. Today I have put an interesting crazy bet at the end, but otherwise we fancy….
13:10 TDN Australia Handicap (Class 3) (3yo 0-90)
AL QAQAA from Willie Haggas yard, gets better every time he appears and was impressive LTO when beating MOOMBA. I’m not sure his mark will anchor him in his handicap debut, but 2/1 is skinny. Haggas looks as though he is beginning to pick up the pace in results terms. BERKSHIRE SAVVY carried his head awkwardly LTO and doesn’t look straightforward, but he won under hands and heels so is shortlisted together with MAFIA POWER. He hails from Richard Hannon’s yard and caught the eye LTO winning a 16 runner handicap at Haydock by 4.5l. At around 9/2 he offers better value I think.
MAFIA POWER win BERKSHIRE SAVVY e/w
13:45 Saint Clair Oak Tree Stakes (Fillies’ And Mares’ Group 3) 20 Runners, Class 1, 7f
ONE MASTER is not penalised for his G1 Prix de la Foret win in 2019, and this is a definite drop in class She should win this but I can’t make up my mind if she’s a poor 6f performer or needs 7f in a lower class. Poor importantly I’m not sure her hold-up style will favour her today. The ground won’t suit WASMYA, while ALTHIQA looks open to further improvement. INVITATIONAL also has ability and she’ll get the distance. Like so many of these she has met Nazeef in various races, and I have bamboozled myself with pounds in hand etc. The best I can say is she’s the wrong price. The draw is OK, she’s can win at 7f and in a tricky race, where i think the favourite will be tupped, she’ll do. I’m also going to have a tiny punt on Eve Johnson-Houghton’s GRACEFUL MAGIC, a grey filly with ability.
INVITATIONAL e/w – GRACEFUL MAGIC (6 places at 35/1 with Bet365)
14:15 Bonhams Thoroughbred Stakes (Group 3) 12 Runners, Class 1, 1m
This is the beginning of KHALOOSY’s Pattern journey, and the manner of his victory in The Britannia, suggests that he is every inch a Pattern-class performer. He beat 21 other rivals that day and the first nine home have all gone on to win. If there is one to beat him it might be TILSIT who appears to be a progressive horse with more to come. I might just have him for forecast purposes.
KHALOOSY wins – TILSIT forecast
14:45 Unibet Golden Mile Handicap 38 Runners, Class 2, 1m
The ground will, please God , have some juice from watering, but as I write it is too hot to sit outside six miles from the course. William Knight is very keen for SIR BUSKER to run, and Sam Hoskins, the Kennet Valley Thoroughbreds manager, is quietly confident of a podium – which is where he is priced. Sir B started the season in sparkling form winning at Royal Ascot and then 2nd in the Bunbury Cup over a distance I believe too short. If he is kept covered up, (he idles in front), he has a good chance of making it three wins from four this season. CLIFFS OF CAPRI earned his best RPR when second to Blue Mist LTO in the International stakes. He’s got the same OR this time – but is due to go up 2lbs so is in fact, well in here. I keep waiting for VALE OF KENT to come good again, and now that he’s back at Goodwood (3-2-1-4-2) and with a better draw than last year, when he was second, he could be in Folkestone before they all wake up. First time blinkers for AFAAK who is now back at his last winning mark, makes 25/1 look the wrong price, and CARDSHARP went into the notebook last weekend finishing 3rd in the International Handicap at Ascot. He’s got a good draw, he’s 6lbs lower than his last winning mark, and Johnston has won this plenty of times before.
In Order of Preference: CARDSHARP win – SIR BUSKER win – VALE OF KENT e/w – CLIFFS OF CAPRI – AFAAK e/w
15:15 King George Qatar Stakes (Group 2) 9 Runners, Class 1, 5f
I’d be horrified if BATTAASH can’t capture this for the 4th time and with only 7-runners I can’t see any e/w value.
15:45 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Glorious Stakes (Group 3) 10 Runners, Class 1, 1m 3f 218y
I think it entirely plausible that DESERT ENCOUNTER will win this race for a second year running.
DESERT ENCOUNTER wins
16:20 New Unibet Instant Roulette Nursery 30 Runners, Class 2, 6f
JULIE JOHNSTON can keep improving and overcome her 6lb penalty for her 3 1/2 length win LTO – but she is still 3lb better in than her revised rating!
JULIE JOHNSTON wins
16:55 British E.B.F. EBF Maiden Fillies’ Stakes (Plus 10/GBB Race) 21 Runners, Class 4, 6f
With Hannon’s runner out, (the ground has gone firm in places), there is nothing I fancy here.
CRAZY BET: All six of William Haggas runners today in doubles, trebles and an e/w accumulator for 37 bets with total odds of 12000/1. The opportunity also exists with most bookmakers to take a profit early if the first two or three come in. Just a thought.