There isn’t any level skirting round the truth that Cheltenham’s abandonment has taken the shine off the racing on New Year’s Day, however allow us to hope that Musselburgh and Exeter beat the climate and ITV can preserve the present on the highway.
It appears frost is the primary risk to the racing in Scotland however they appear optimistic – well-known final phrases and so forth – and the bottom is presently good to comfortable (comfortable in locations).
It can be an excellent punting card.
Newtown Boy appears a stable proposition
Even if it does trip a contact deeper than good to comfortable – some rain is forecast, in addition to freezing temperatures – will probably be tremendous for Newtown Boy, who’s simply at residence on good as he’s on comfortable.
He additionally comes right here in actually good nick, having received over course and distance, below 12st 2lb, in an excellent time in early December.
He went up 6lb for that 4 1/2-length success (a race through which Clearance, who re-opposes right here, was third) – curiously they left off his normal tongue-tie off there, and achieve this once more right here – however I feel that’s manageable, particularly with extremely succesful 3lb claimer Danny McMenamin lessening the burden.
He has been rated greater than his revised mark of 128 prior to now, too – he completed a good fourth in a robust handicap over 2m on this card final yr off 129 – and that win final time is understanding fairly nicely, too.
The positioned horses haven’t raced since however the fourth received right here subsequent time, so he appears a really stable proposition at 6/1 each-way with the Betfair Sportsbook at 13:20.
Millie’s possibilities look Rosie
The 1m7f127yd handicap hurdle at 13:55 is a really aggressive affair however Rosie And Millie nonetheless appears a pair of factors too massive to me.
I’d be cautious of Proschema, however again her at 8.07/1 or larger. Unfortunately, the Sportsbook’s early 9s did not final.
Her report suggests she might do with Musselburgh getting extra rain, however Timeform known as the bottom good to comfortable when she chased residence Buzz (who many thought ought to have adopted up off an 11lb greater mark subsequent time, and is now 15lb greater) and that was clearly a superb effort, particularly as she was 3 ½ lengths clear of the third (who received subsequent time, albeit because of the first-past-the-post weighing in gentle).
She wasn’t raised for that run and it’s clear she formed far, much better than her overwhelmed distance would counsel final time. She traded at 4.1 within the run when taking a transparent lead going to 2 out, solely for the Sandown hill in heavy floor to say her.
She was eased 1lb within the weights for that run and I can see her making a daring bid to make all from the entrance (it’s all the time a daring bid in these circumstances).
She wasn’t in a position to get the lead at Sandown however there may be no ordinary front-runner in opposition to her right here, for all one or two have gone ahead prior to now.
Romain appears a winner in ready off this mark
Bigmartre has dropped to a really tempting mark within the 15:05 – he’s 16lb decrease than he was in October 2019 – and I did toy with placing him up at 25/1+ as a saver even when his two runs this season have left a good bit to be desired.
But I had an excellent go on Romain De Senam each-way at 20/1 ante-post within the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup at Cheltenham final time, and I’m not about to abandon him now on this weaker handicap.
Sure, he’s round 1 / 4 of the value, however I’m very happy to again him at 6.05/1 or larger right here, even when the final 6/1 within the market on Wednesday disappeared.
He was really very weak within the betting on the day of that Cheltenham race as a result of of the worsening circumstances – he went off at a Betfair SP of 39.94 – however he appears set to get the higher floor he thrives upon right here.
He was introduced down early on at Cheltenham, however hopefully he’ll get pleasure from higher luck in that division.
He had earlier formed very nicely (with out his normal tongue-tie) when fourth over an insufficient 2m at Aintree, and he simply appears a winner ready to occur off a mark of 138.
Trip and floor must be very best, and I hear the Dan Skelton yard isn’t going too badly. The proprietor Chris Giles may even be very comfortable to have a winner on his residence Scottish patch, too.
I feel he stays a guess at 4/1+.
I will not advocate it right here however I could put these three Musselburgh ideas in an each-way treble, as all of them look fairly stable to me.
Shambra value chancing at a value
The class race of the day is clearly the return of the Gold Cup winner Al Boum Photo within the Savills Chase at Tramore at 14:37.
He received this race at 4/7 final yr earlier than happening to Cheltenham – as he did in 2019, too – and he’s a 2/7 probability right here if you wish to attempt to purchase some cash. You won’t ever see that betting discuss right here although, with Epatante’s defeat one other well timed reminder of how costly that route might be.
Exeter has been drafted in to switch Cheltenham’s deserted assembly on ITV as nicely, and fingers crossed it passes the 9.30am inspection on Friday morning.
The three televised handicaps have attracted decent-sized fields starting from seven to 9 runners – so they’re precarious in numbers for each-way punters – and I’ve no points with Pure Bliss heading the market for the nine-strong 2m2f handicap hurdle at 13:40.
However, there are some fairly-handicapped horses ranged in opposition to her, and I deliberated lengthy and laborious – nicely, for about 5 minutes – earlier than deciding to take a stab at Shambra at 21.020/1 or larger.
Now, there are some apparent negatives surrounding her.
Firstly, the shape of the Harry Whittington steady is regarding, with no winners from their final 48 runners.
And Shambra herself took to chasing like a duck to a drought in her two runs this season.
But she returns to hurdles on a really engaging mark, some 2lb decrease than her final successful mark over an prolonged 2m4f at Plumpton within the comfortable final season (and 4lb decrease than when an excellent third at Ascot afterwards), and I feel she is value chancing on the value.
Her confirmed stamina over 3m will are available in very useful in these grueling circumstances and this twin heavy-ground winner will hopefully discover that the first-time tongue-tie aids her possibilities, too.
Good luck, and I hope your house hangover is/was value it, relying on once you learn this. I by no means received out on New Year’s Eve anyway, so it’s enterprise as normal for me.
Enjoy it, as a lot as you possibly can in these grim occasions.