Aidan O’Brien can continue his march towards Group One record
Tanya Stevenson was red-hot last week and tipped not only Champions Day winners Minding and Almanzor but threw in 12-1 winner Yuften for good measure. See who the Channel 4 presenter is on this week below.
All is well in the world. Not only has Cheltenham started its season but on Sunday Aintree joins the party - it’s like your best friends have returned from a long holiday and having them back on the calendar gives you a sense of warmth.
For now, though, Doncaster is centre of attention for me as it hosts the Group One Racing Post Trophy. Is this to be another one-two for Aidan O’Brien? I hear you shout at me for going big in last week’s QEII, but at least I was right with Minding, even if forecast hope Hit It A Bomb faded tamely.
Obviously there was enormous support for Yucatan across the week - he is an incredibly striking individual and he looks so like Six Perfections, his dam, it’s scary! If he runs as well as he looks then this Group One is in the bag.
You could argue that he was blindsided by stable companion Exemplar in the Beresford Stakes so he couldn’t see the slight advantage Capri had. Much like The Anvil, he is a grinder but I have seen the potent short burst of speed his dam often showed.
The opposition have many question marks of their own. Rivet is certainly talented and another looker, imposing, strong, muscular and stunning. He ran flat at Newmarket in the Dewhurst Stakes after a tough win in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster. The run last time out concerns me.
Salouen ran a blinder on Arc day at Chantilly behind Prix Jean-Luc Lagadere winner National Defense but was never going to win. He has also had a busy season, which may catch up with him at Doncaster.
Sir Dancelot has claims. He came from last to first to win the Rockingham at York but that was over six furlongs and will his strength last out another two furlongs in top company?
The Anvil is still a maiden, after running second in the Royal Lodge I thought he would right that wrong in the Autumn Stakes but never, ever got going. He has run at Doncaster with great effect. He is my forecast with Yucatan.
It’s that time of the year again when I’m part of the judging team of Betting Shop Manager of the Year. It’s down to the final 24. I’ve tried to calculate and I believe I’ve met and chatted to over 400 managers over the years during this process, each time captivated and enlightened. It is also a good way to be kept up to speed with the latest technology, but most importantly I have learned what punters want and would like. If only this crucial and important information could be absorbed by the powers that be in racing.
As I say each year the Betting Shop Managers are the key link to the customers and they are the ones at the coalface watching and observing how the betting landscape is changing hands on.
It has been reported in the The Times newspaper that the CMA (Competition and Markets Authority) are set to put the microscope on various facets like account restrictions, promotions and customers encountering problems withdrawing winnings.
My first thought is that this be a matter of course, as part of regulation, but I suppose it is a matter of resources and the grey area of whose responsibility it is.
The announcement is music to the ears of the Horserace Bettors Forum colleagues, who receive a large amount of correspondence regarding the above.
There are so many instances, not just as punters, where ‘Terms And Conditions’ are part of our life.
The onus is on us when buying or signing up to contracts to read the Ts & Cs meticulously.
Sometimes, however, the clarity leaves much to be desired mainly due to the terminology or there is page, after page, after page to trawl through and the necessity is lost on us and sadly all too often we tick the box to get on with our busy lives. We should be armed with a highlighter and an awareness that a significant and crucial statement is likely to be within the labyrinth of words.
I have always been lived by the saying “when something looks too good to be true it generally is”
Tanya Stevenson's Saturday tips:
3.50 Doncaster: Yucatan/The Anvil rev forecast
4.05 Cheltenham: Top Of The Town at 6-1 generally available
3.50 Aintree Sunday: Gods Own at 7-2 generally available
Tanya Stevenson's Saturday pointers:
3.50 Doncaster - Racing Post Trophy:
Aidan O’Brien has won the race seven times since 1997
Andrea Atzeni is attempting his fourth win on the bounce – Rivet
Seven of the last eight winners had all won over a mile previously (Marcel last year had not)
Seven of the last ten favourites have won
Eight of the last ten winners had finished no worse than third in their career.
Eight of the last ten winners had run no more than three times prior to Doncaster
2.40 Doncaster - sunbets.co.uk Top Price Templegate Tips Handicap:
Seven of the last ten winners were drawn 10 or higher
Andrew Balding is attempting his third win in four years with Dungannon
Only one of the last ten favourites have won
1.45 Newbury - Worthington's Alzheimers Society Stakes:
The favourite has drawn a blank across the last decade.
Richard Hannon Snr won a record-breaking five Horris Hill Stakes, then Richard Hannon started his win collection in 2014
The last eleven winners had finished no worse than third on their previous start
2.20 Newbury - Worthington's OCSL Stakes:
No winner across the last ten years were priced in double figures
Nine of the last ten winners were drawn in a single figure stall
Saeed Bin Suroor is attempting a third win in the race in ten years with Memorial Day