I have decided to take a break from jumps racing for just one week to look at the flat and, in particular, last weekend’s Breeders Cup and the upcoming Melbourne Cup. There’s no horse for the tracker this week, but I have provided a Melbourne Cup selection and a Monday stat.
There’s no better jockey for the big occasion than Frankie Dettori, is there? Once again, his big race riding skills were in evidence at Churchill Downs on Saturday. A Breeders Cup double for the genius of a jockey, as he piloted Expert Eye and Enable to victories in the Turf Mile and Turf respectively.
The Churchill Downs Turf track looked more like a ploughed field, and I didn’t think the ground would suit the Sir Michael Stoute trained Expert Eye. So, I went for the Chad Brown trained AnalyzeIt, each way. The colt was soon in the lead, and when his jockey quickened two furlongs out, it looked a race-winning move. Sadly, he was headed in the final few yards by the eventual runners who were then headed by Expert Eye. Frankie produced Expert Eye with a well-timed run to get up on the line. It’s was a great ride from Dettori, on a horse who wouldn’t have enjoyed underfoot conditions
Recent Arc winner Enable was the star turn on the evening, and she duly obliged her supporters by winning the 1m 4f Turf. The filly was caught out five wide coming into the straight she galloped on too strong for her twelve rivals. Once taking the lead two out, no horse really looked like passing her, although Magical did throw down a big challenge between the final two furlongs. She never really looked like she would catch the winner though, and had to settle for second, beaten ¾ of a length.
Enable is one hell of racehorse that’s for sure. She overcome her wide trip to not only win the Turf, but become the first horse to do the Arc & Breeders Cup Turf double in the same season.
I will end this on a more controversial note. I don’t like dirt racing, and the latest running of the Breeders Cup Classic just confirmed my dislike even more. Yet another dirt race where they go off like 6f sprinters, and then roll around like legless drunks in the straight. It’s boring and monotonous.
My viewing of the race was further tarnished by the ‘thrashing’ that Thunder Snow endured from his jockey in the final few furlongs. Yeah, I know the whips are soft but you could hear the whips cracking during the commentary on the race. It didn’t make for good viewing or listening in any way.
Thankfully, we will never see scenes like that in British horseracing ever again. I can’t remember who won the race, and I don’t care either.
Expect Fireworks from Finche…
It’s “The Race That Stops A Nation” in the early hours of Tuesday morning UK time. Yes, it’s the Melbourne Cup.
I won’t go through all the runners, but I do like the chance of the ex-french trained Finche. The 4-year-old wasn’t over raced when trained by Andre Fabre, having just the 8 starts and winning three of them, including a Group 2 at Maisons-Laffitte, last year and a Group 3 on his final start in France at Deauville back in August. That win came over an extended 1m 4f, although the son of Frankel has had to prove his stamina for 2m.
Finche showed he had acclimatised to his new surroundings with an excellent 3rd placed effort in the Geelong Cup, just beaten by two race-fit rivals. He remains open to further improvement and, if he stays, he can get into the places at the very least.
He still runs in the Prince Khalid Abdullah silks, and could easily provide an incredible few days for the owner after Enable’s and Expert Eyes’ wins at the Breeders Cup.
Finche is still available to back at 25/1 and looks worth an each-way play.
November Handicap Bring Curtain Down
Betfred November Handicap Cl2 (3yo+) – 1m4f
The final rites of the 2018 flat season are administered at Doncaster on Saturday. It’s also the latest renewal of the November Handicap. Looking at the ten-year trends we have had 10 winners from 218 runners with 39 placed.
Here are some interesting trends for you to digest:
Odds SP: 20/1 & under
Best In Three Runs: 1st or 2nd
Stall: Not First Quarter
Weight: Top weight or within 13lb
Horses with the above three traits have produced 9 winners from48 runners with 14 placed. That’s 90% of the winners from 20% of the total number of runners.
Last week, I highlighted the claims of the Marcus Tregoningtrained Landue (2/1) who won for us on Monday at Chelmsford.
Let’s hope for some more success today:
Trainer Jonathan Portman & jockey Richard Kingscotehave teamed up very successfully in the past year in particular in handicap races: –6 winners from 19 runners 32% + 23.85 A/E 1.70, 10 placed 53%.
They team up with recent C&D winner Golden Iris. The 3-year-old looks a much better horse on the synthetics than the turf. Both her career wins have come on the all-weather, and her form figures on the surface are 121. Up 4lb for that last win, she looks capable of going close again.
Good luck with this week’s punting.
Until next week.
All the best,
for The Race Advisor