17:05 Southwell Trainer Ruth Carr can hardly be described as prolific however her runners always demand respect, even at massive prices, because she often springs a handful of shocks throughout the year. She recently sent out Streak Lightning to win at a massive 28/1 at Newcastle earlier in the week and I’m hoping she may strike in quick succession, this time with Katheefa. A former course winner who now resides on a very attractive mark. He produced an encouraging effort when finishing 5th over seven furlongs at this course four starts back. That came in a higher grade and he’s now got 10lbs less weight on his back. What’s also interesting is top all-weather jockey Luke Morris was in the saddle on that occasion and he takes the ride once again tonight. A drop in trip should also be of benefit and in what looks a pretty weak race he could find himself in the money. KATHEEFA (E/W)
The first of three selections from Dundalk tonight comes in an ultra-competitive seven furlong, apprentice, claiming race.
The current market leader is former course and distance winner Inflection Point who’s racked up a couple of runners up places of late and aims to go one better. Has a top amateur and shouldn’t be far away but in what looks a weak contest I’m siding with a horse at a much bigger price.
The likes of Rocky Dreams and Godhead couldn’t be discounted too readily but just like the favourite I’m going for the only other course and distance winner in the line up. When I saw War Hero finish 4th here at Dundalk back in January I was convinced he had a win in him in the not too distant future and after a mixed bag of middling results over varied trips I think tonight is the night he adds to his course and distance tally. He’s shown his best form here over this trip so a return to this distance is certain to suit. With a much better mark to boot it’s true he may find one or two too good but at a current double figure price I’m happy to plump for him as an each way alternative.
WAR HERO (E/W)
The big race on the card at Southwell this evening is a really good looking sprint handicap where a case could easily be made for over half of the field.
If we’re going off the betting alone then the Mick Appleby trained Whittle Le Woods should be the closest come the finish line yet, despite winning two of his last three starts I feel this is perhaps a step too far for the four year old and, although I’m not a big layer of horses, I’m more than happy to take him on.
The big question however is who on earth do I take him on with? Asadjumeirah rarely runs a bad race but at his current price doesn’t make much appeal in the win market.
The two I fear most come from the same ownership of The Wolfpack & Partner and Politics and Dave Dexter look to hold strong claims. Both placed in their most recent performances and look to be on the premises once more.
All that being said however I’m plumping for another at big odds. I thought Astro Jakk would go well at Wolverhampton last time out but I think jockey Sam James gave him a little too much to do. The horse likes to come from behind and I think a course like this may be advantageous to those sorts of tactics. He’s dropped in class and is below his last winning mark. I have to confess unlike my other selections this evening I’m not as confident in a race as competitive as this but once again at big odds he’s worth consideration.
ASTRO JAKK (E/W)
A return to Ireland for the last of my two selections this evening where I hope Well Suited can build upon his recent encouraging effort. He claimed 5th over tonight’s course and distance and although he finished behind some of the same rivals he’s facing here I feel he could reverse the placings. He’s not tasted victory in over a year but in that time has still produced some solid performances albeit in defeat. The race itself doesn’t look any more competitive than those he’s been running in of late and despite the lack of a recent win it’s not enough to put me off him.
Others worth a mention are Coviglia who aims to make it back to back victories, Chevillon who can’t be overlooked despite a 476 day absence and former course and distance winners Capla Knight and Pride Of Pimlico.
WELL SUITED (E/W)
The scene of my last selection is the last race on the seven race Dundalk card where Persian Wolf should go very close despite back to back poor performances. A second placed effort three starts back shows he’s up to winning a race of this nature and if you’re a punter looking to find the winner that’s where my arrow would fire, however this race looks so weak that a big priced winner would hardly come as a major shock. With that in mind I’m going to side step the favourite in favour of hunting down further each way value.
I’m sure as you’re about to read the following sentence you’ll be pulling your hair out and wondering whether or not I’d dusted my Corn Flakes with alcohol instead of milk this morning but never the less here we go. I’m siding with a 20 race maiden! That’s right a horse who’s never been in the winners enclosure in a total of a whopping 20 starts! Needless to say the next thing you’ll have running through your mind as you digest that perceived shocking decision is why? Well although Anjah has never finished with his head in front he hasn’t been far away in a handful of starts. He returned from a near two months away to produce a very encouraging 4th over course and distance last month. With the cobwebs now dusted off and the interesting booking of jockey Shane Foley also peaking my interest could today finally be the day he leaves the opposition behind? I know he’s not the most likely victor but once again he looks a cracking shout for punters looking to find one to place if not, dare I say it, win.
ANJAH (E/W) written by Rory Paddock