Thursday, 30 April 2015

Sedgefield - Oasis quenches thirst

Good to firm ground and a very end-of-season feel to the card but some good fields and not bad action at all. They had clearly put plenty of water down as it didn't look to ride at all quick. Although the weather was wintry it was good to be back among the jumpers after a diet of flat action lately.

The opener however looked a match whichever way you came at the race, although I was drawn in by the growing looks of third-in Ballalough, even though he'll clearly need further and probably softer ground in time.

Prince Khurram and Larmor looked closely matched in more ways than one - neither ever having found much for pressure - and yet although the former had clearly registered better form the other was favoured in the market.

It wasn't a race to be over-confident about and you could have bet them both in-running at some stage but again it was Larmor who found little off the bridle despite more exaggerated waiting tactics, and he's not one to have on your side. The rest have really shown very little.

Bertie Moon had taken a step forward at Perth and was sent here in the wake of a future 10lb hike. A repeat of that form was suffice to take a weak handicap although several presented well with Morning With Ivan, Grand Vintage and Dynamic Drive all looking fit and well.

The price on the favourite had (rightfully) disintegrated by post time and while Morning With Ivan looked overpriced there was really only ever one winner.

Abricot De L'Oasis was backed to supplement Carlisle win
The first handicap chase on the card was intriguing with Abricot De L'Oasis heading the market despite a 10lb rise for his Carlisle win, which on the face of it looked harsh.

But that was his first outing over the big obstacles in Britain and he seemed well at home, and after overlooking this progressive sort last time I wasn't about to repeat the mistake.

I wanted to be against Classinaglass who doesn't look that comfortable when let down and struggled to put an easy race to bed last time. while Claragh Native was very weak in the market and Auldthunder looked rather lean and has had enough for the season.

The Kirby runner Indalo Return was of mild interest, turned out looking well, but it's a long time since he's shown decent form. It really pointed to the McCain horse, who once again looked full of himself in the prelims.

The sad postscript was that Tahiti Pearl collapsed and died returning to unsaddle, a heartbreaking end for a horse who has done his owners proud.

The two miler was trappy but I was very keen on Sleep In First, who was 3lb below previous chase winning form and had a record of 5/12 over fences.

With the trainer in form and the horse looking really well after a break he was primed for a massive run, although market weakness was a worry I ignored it and ploughed in regardless.

I had envisioned the improved D Irving getting a nice tow from the heavily backed Hotgrove Boy but for some reason he chose to serve it up to the Coltherd horse from flag-fall, effectively running his race by halfway. It gets my goat when they do that, and once they've lost the battle for the lead there's no escape route on the exchange.

That said, I've never been impressed with the finishing effort of the favourite and he was worth a lay in running with Grey Life breathing down his neck from the second last. I felt the Jefferson horse was handicapped to the hilt and in a more competitive race that may prove the case, but he was able to get to the front runner and nail him after the last.

Down on the day it didn't look like there was a way out - the handicap hurdle giving Danceintothelight a chance to snap a long losing sequence under the strong claimer Jamie Bargary, who has done well for Micky Hammond this season.

J Bargary: Massive value for the claim
It was a weak affair with nothing really finishing the race off bar the grey, who had run well last time and with Bargary clearly making a difference returned a big-looking 9/2.

I nearly did get out in the stayers chase when I favoured the old rogue Bennys Well at remarkably generous odds. While not willing to lay Debt To Society despite his obvious quirks, I was happy to oppose him and with Generous Chief looking to just need the run after a four month absence I was on pretty good terms with myself.

But I hadn't accounted for Beau Dandy, who had won a couple of weak affairs at Musselburgh in the winter having previously looked a right old dodgepot. However, they've been fiddling with different types of headgear and he's clearly turned the corner, knuckling down between the last two fences to get the better of the punt. Hard lines.

The bumper looked tricky both on previous form and paddock inspection with favourite John Dory a worthy jolly. However, his early fatal demise left it wide open and it probably came as no surprise to many that M Jefferson bagged another flat winner this spring with Petapenko, despite the four-year-old still looking a bit big and backward.

Episode has filled out and should make his mark over timber, while Mr Witmore looks a thorough stayer who plugged on well late on.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Hexham - Coulda, Shoulda, Woulda

I guess the dog days of winter are behind us but the burning embers of the National Hunt season are still burning and we were set for an enjoyable day at Hexham with the warm sun beating down on a healthy crowd.

It looked a difficult card but it turned out to be one of those days where we couldn't do a thing wrong - which of course happens when you decide to keeps the stakes small.

The opener looked a penalty kick for the chasing type Captain Hox, who was put in his place by the mighty Cyrus Darius here last time. He didn't exactly hose up but did what he had to for odds-on backers.

I had already decided to make the maiden hurdle the race to get stuck into after watching the vids of the last two runs of Definite Soldier, who looked primed to go in under B Hughes.

Jolly Alto Des Mottes was very much one to oppose but I wasn't able to secure much of a price on the eventual winner, as the market eventually brought them together. I really favoured the Irish-trained horse and should have made it banker material, but on inspection there was a live runner further down in Chanceofa Lifetime.

Now, let's be honest we're not going to get rich following the V Thompson horses over a cliff, but this looks to be the best he's got and looked the real McCoy beforehand. It was noted in dispatches at Sedge last time behind the decent Major Ivan and this step up was all in his favour.

He ran a mighty race under Miss Todd, without getting to the front two. He'll go over fences before long and may be one to look out for, but sadly the cat may now be out the bag as he's run to 105 at least here.

There weren't as many runners as I originally thought as Boston Blue looked unfit while Court Of Law and The Last Leg are not ones to be getting excited about.

Slightly frustrated, we moved on to the handicap chase and after some deliberation whittled it down to Civil Unrest and Persian Herald.

Civil Unrest: Looked fit. No bet. Go figure
With neither horse carrying much baggage from the winter months I felt they would be able to be involved despite the promise of company up front. However, it was a muddling market in which there was little support for the Ewart-trainer Civil Unrest, who looked a picture of health beforehand.

I decided to see how things developed in running and it was soon clear I had been on the right path...the new odds making it difficult to play, especially with the puzzlingly punted Troubled soon showing the effects of his run at Carlisle.

The hod should have been full to the brim and there was even more cause for regret in the next when the outstanding Central Flame landed the hat-trick under Cath Walton.

Much has been made of the lady amateurs on this page and the girl Walton is one of the weakest there is, merely a passenger when this one hosed up at Carlisle two run back. I was massively concerned she would get outpaced down the back and find herself with too much to do.

Again I waited for the in-running market to develop and began to nibble away when the field got away from the eventual winner. Tekthelot, the well-backed favourite on the back of beating trees last time, looked all over the winner but like every other race on the day things just fell into place.

We managed to take the cash this time but nowhere as much we liked. A small punt went west on Morning Royalty, who looked well up for it beforehand and has become a well-handicapped animal. But he ran no sort of race and is one to put a line through for now.

Resolute Reformer was the standout in the stayers chase in which every plodder in the north showed up for. I kept going down the list but there was nothing to put against it, and although I was happy to sit it out the market got it spot on. Ordinary northern form at best with the second and third providing the benchmarks.

I skipped the hunters as they looked much of a muchness - it was slightly disappointing that Ganbei looked unfit and was surprised when they backed into a very short 7/4. It looked a real slowcoach.

The bumpers promised to be informative and this is one part of the game that has proved surprisingly fruitful this term. When Dad used to take me racing we'd always get a flyer before the finale and I tended to carry on this trait in later years.

Cloudy Dream: Payback time for the Sedge defeat
However, we've had a great time in the flat races and Cloudy Dream is the latest winner to go on the board. I wanted to be against Australasia, who I knew to be a big sturdy sort and pretty one paced at that.

I've just searched on the blog and I remember that Jefferson's was strongly fancied at Sedge earlier in the year, but the horse threw in a stinker on bad ground when the yard was very quiet. This was a different kettle of fish and looked a pretty solid bet, although there were one or two runners.

The Hamiltons' Nuts Well is a half to Runswick Royal and looks sure to be alright - a nice sort still backward at this stage - while Jaslamour and Ange Des Malberaux also looked okay.

With that behind us the second division was harder to sort out although the jolly Bengo was another one to oppose having looked a big, slow baby of a horse at Donny. He didn't look any different here and was soon on the back foot.

Betancourt was the course whisper and they backed it from 10s into 4s. He looked primed, a nice well made sort, although in the race it seemed Scu was overconfident about the horse's ability. Ewart's Limos was really nice and pretty forward, while Jefferson's Ryedale Racer is another likeable type although backward right now.

The winner was interesting. Emperor Sakhee had run well in a decent contest on debut before losing the plot prior to his next outing at Donny, where he got very wound up and ran no race.

He was much calmer in the prelims here with a hood on and it worked a charm, doing little wrong in the race and staying on pleasingly. Although he didn't carry my money, at least we got another jolly beat.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Carlisle - An Oscar winner

I don't think this is breaking news but Henry Oliver is a young trainer who seems to know his onions and he landed major touch with Tiger O'Toole on Carlisle's penultimate jumps card.

The 10-year-old grey hadn't been seen for a year, when trained by Evan Williams, but after the early prices were taken it was no surprise to see the horse looking big and well in the prelims.

It's surprising the layers haven't cottoned on to Oliver's talents - he produced Beatabout The Bush in the same ownership to win at rewarding odds at Wetherby earlier this year on its first run for the yard - and that was by no means the first time the stable had landed a punt.

It was a weak enough heat and I was more than happy to ride the gravy train. Bryden Boy is quite small and backward, and thus his strong finish suggests he could be quite nice given more time to mature.

Prince Of Pirates again showed little despite market support while Tmorrow's Legend once again hinted at ability and he will come into his own over fences, as will Treliver Manor, who doesn't pay any respect to timber but it is a nice looking individual.

Courtown Oscar had been noted in dispatches
We were already on reasonable terms with ourselves after finding the winner of the opener at 16/1 in Courtown Oscar. Punters seem to have lost faith in trainer P Kirby but although it's been a trying year for the lad, he has some nice young horses of which this is one.

Up markedly in trip and with J Reveley booked, this lovely big chasing type looked poised for a big run with question marks about the front three in the market. Old friend Purple Harry was opposable with another weak jockey booked, while I had also backed Isaacstown Lad who although looked well was rather a disappointment.

My Friend George looked in great heart and duly proved the danger and he was probably just beaten by one better handicapped. I was worried about the winner's finishing effort but needn't have been. He's a big baby and still has some growing up to do, but this was a nice effort.

A couple of uncompetitive races followed but I was quite taken by Gingili in what looked a match against Bobs Lord Tara. McCain's horse looked big and strong, really well well for this hurdles introduction.

I went with his speed against the stamina of the other one, with the inner course knowhere near as testing as the outer here. In the end it was a bit of a gimme as the favourite went lame at midway, although the winner looked very green and novicey and I'm not sure he would have won had the other stayed sound.

Tambour Major again caught the eye both in the paddock and in the race, and this lovely ex-pointer will surely get a nice mark for when he goes chasing next year. He's one to note.

Gingili certainly looked the part
I was looking forward to three nice handicap chases but didn't take anywhere nearly enough of an aggressive stance and disappointingly lost on the races.

I didn't like the way Trust Thomas looked at Wetherby but he run well there and similarly in defeat at Newcastle, and again did not take the eye here. He was very opposable and I was reluctant to row in with Vasco Dycy after he hit the post last time. So why I didn't back the progressive Bearly Legal I don't really know, he was a worthy favourite, a nice looking horse, and won as he liked.

Solway Dornal looked really fit for his return and he will surely pay his way again this summer for his clearly capable handler, but the others weren't worthy of a mention.

I seemed to have got married to the idea that Our Boy Ben is waiting to strike and he travelled like a horse way better than his mark, but again his finishing effort was tame and once again the cash was left behind. The family is not straightforward and perhaps he's one to have reservations about.

Whiskey Chaser was market leader but he's a very heavy set horse and this better ground was by no means certain to suit. He was worth opposing and it was surprising that he wasn't given a more positive ride given the circumstances. If we get some soft ground in the next month or so he can win again.

Resolute Performer had been noted on a couple of occasions and he has slowly come to himself this term, although it was still a stretch to see him involved today. Staying seemed to be his forte and at at six he can only continue to improve.

It was another weak affair though with the Irish Colms Dream by no means a chaser on looks - very small and lean - while Simon Templar is an out and out mudlark who is still to convince over fences.

The second division of the race saw the strongest looking horse come out on top in Abricot De L'Oasis. The McCain horse had been noted in running at Wetherby and he looked to have the best form in the race, with improvement very likely forthcoming over the larger obstacles.

There were quite a few imponderables amongst the others - Emkae looked well although is only just big enough for fences - he ran a bit in snatches but not without promise - while The Gunner Brady doesn't have an condition at all and could not be expected to take a step forward.

Be A Dreamer was surprisingly seen out again despite losing condition over the season, and confirmed the Smith horses to be over the top. Simmply Sam is another who may struggle over fences while Solway Legend was also very fit from his break and this was a big step forward over fences.

The bumper was a very competitive with the three with form setting a decent standard for the newcomers, several of which were quietly fancied. The easiest on the eye was the Jefferson-trained High Hopper, a lovely three mile chaser in the making if ever there was one.

Friday, 10 April 2015

Aintree - No place for faint hearts

As we headed across the M62 under cloudless skies it was hard to recall such warmer start to the the National meeting, and despite the watering the ground looked sure to be near enough to good.

After a rather tiring ride over and a somewhat dubious method of entry to the course the first port of call was to seek out some decent grub, and after much pondering plumped for old hog roast in a baguette with lashings of crackling. I was so hungry I didn't even notice the £7.40 slip from my grasp.

It's a shame I didn't have the same appetite for the racing as I was certain I had the opening novice chase sorted, but didn't go in half hard enough.

Conti was hard to oppose on this day
I really wanted to be against the front two in the market and probably should have laid the pair, instead settling on getting against Vibrato Valtat who has had a long old season and wasn't sure to get home.

I will always find it hard to be against Josses Hill, magnificent creature that he is, but he really has been a disappointment this term.

I was also against Three Kingdoms, who was in such superb nick at Newcastle in the depths of winter I couldn't believe he would be in the same form here. He wasn't. In fact he would prove to be the biggest negative on the day as he was soon sweating freely in the paddock.

He was a very solid lay in the place market at less than 4 and I'm only disappointed I didn't go in harder, as he was beaten after jumping the first. The other play was on the very interesting Val De Law, a fine specimen whom the trainer rates rather highly.

He had plenty to find on the books but with the principals likely to underperform he was worth a poke at big odds, while a nibble in the three-to-place market also proved to be a good move.

With a solid if not spectacular start in the ledger it was tempting to smash into the overbacked Hargam in the juvenile. A shrewder member of the press gang suggested a place lay at 1.2 if I thought it was going to get beat, but eventually bottled it and didn't play the race.

They looked a decent bunch, particularly the third Bristol De Mai who is very much a chaser in the making and I'm sure Twister will waste no time in going over the larger obstacles with him.

Silviniaco Conti looked magnificent in the big one and couldn't find anything to oppose it with back on suitable terrain. By this time the withering heat was taking its toll and some shade was sought.

The big hurdle race did not appeal much from a punting perspective although Volnay De Thaix stood out beforehand and was well worth a small poke at big odds. What a marvellous chaser he will make and it was pleasing to see D Bass bid to set out and make all.

However, that soon turned to despair as Fehily put it up to him on Rock On Ruby and the pair started racing much too far from the finish. I'm certain there's a big race in Volnay in the future and he's one I can't wait to see next term.

I gave a bit more back in the Foxhunter as I wanted to be against the jolly even though the money came for it and he looked grand in the prelims. I was against Warne this time as he didn't look fully tuned up here, and it was disappointing he exited at the first as I wanted to know if I was right or not!

I liked the chances of Last Time D'Albain despite the shocking name and he ran okay for the each-way players despite never threatening to win. I suspect the front two have run to a pretty high standard - the runner-up jumped like a bunny.

A rare smile from Hughes - but I was churning inside
With the last race looking impossible I was rallying and wanted to get stuck into the 'Red Rum' as there were plenty I didn't fancy. I liked the form and profile of Darwins Fox so he was high up the list along with Dresden, who really impressed me at Donny.

Bellenos looked really perked up by the blinkers so he was on the list, while Claret Cloak looked fantastic after his break. The short list was growing - Pearls Legend was on there while both Surf And Turf and Baby Mix looked fit after absences.

I threw five in the exactas and not for the first time with the bet this season I hit the bar, getting the second and third at 16/1 but leaving out the double-carpet winner. It would have been a stretch, but was gettable. It was a £700 to a quid payout that got away.

With that simmering away there was no play in the finale. They looked a really good bunch and but I was tempted to throw something at Master Malt, a lovely chasing type who had plenty in hand last time. I decided against such folly and although I was regretting it as he joined issue two out, was kind of glad he lost out close home.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Sedgefield - Fun in the sun

Spring really seems to have sprung this week and with the sun bearing down upon the healthy crowd it looked like the runners were to be faced with drying ground.

However, it looked pretty tacky and hard work for some with the times bearing out that theory, and the principles appeared to be struggling late on in the opening novice hurdle.

I couldn't believe they had priced Venue up so short against Apterix with the Ellison horse in receipt of a stone, despite the pair running to a similar level previously.

The odds-compilers forced our hand where Apterix was concerned
It just didn't make any sense, our hands were forced early doors and sure enough the market got it right in the end. I liked the winner when first seeing it at Wetherby but he ran up pretty lean here and got very warm, suggesting he may have done enough for the campaign.

Venue was fine and actually looked the pick - he is improving but I'm still not sure he puts it all in off the bridle. That said he ran a super race giving all that weight away. The fact that Hatton Springs got within 12 lengths suggests the race was not of great quality, although it was good to see the tall and weak Ballalough show some promise late on and he'll be alright in time.

I was very interested in Major Ivan in the next even before Warriors Tale was scratched, and was left to rue not taking the 5/2 when they re-made the market. Black Jack Rover did us a good turn at Catterick in a bumper but he shapes like an out and out stayer and I was sure the Jefferson horse would have his measure, especially when seeing him in the paddock.

He was very well after his absence and is another horse from the yard to prove that early season form all wrong. He'll probably get a mark of around 115 for this but I'm sure they'll find a race or two for him before he goes over fences next season.

The lovely Major Ivan was a good bet
The handicap chase was a proper conundrum with stakes very much at a minimum, and the well-backed My Friend George made it three hotpots in succession to go in for Kenneth Slack. It was very poor fair and the jolly did what he had to do, but will surely find things harder from now on.

Roxyfet has finally found his level and showed there may be a race in him over a bit further, but the rest didn't really show much sparkle.

The mares' race was no easier although I wanted to be against Debdebdeb, whose Catterick win was gifted to her and the handicapper has overreacted markedly. However, I had no idea who would capitalise with Samedi Soir the most likeable type, even though she has yet to fill out. Given a quiet ride, she'll be better next term.

My Friend George beat a motley bunch
I didn't have a clue about the marathon hunters chase although Dica did not take the eye at all, coming home in fourth under what appeared to be a poor ride from his owner/trainer, although some suggested the tack had gone wrong.

Jokers And Rogues has been put up by this column countless times and if ever this disappointing animal was going to produce the goods it would be today, down in trip for the first time. However, Wade's horse clearly has a hole in it and once again found nothing at all off the bridle. I'm afraid this was one blowout to many.

The problem was it was very hard to put one up against it, with Bertie Milan clearly not fancied and Beyondtemptation setting the benchmark. Jebulani was not at all easy to find but the runner-up once again ran to form so it was probably no fluke.

I had been looking forward to seeing Banny's Lad racing under rules after seeing this nice individual 'win' a point-to-point race early this year. I reckoned a repeat of that run would make it hard to beat and although he looked the part he ran no sort of race and it could be that he needs much more of a trip.

Chief market rival Monogram is not the force of old and hung badly right again - it will be a surprise if he is able to get his head in front at this stage of his career.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Haydock - Central perk

It looked a really competitive meeting again at the St Helens track with ground on the soft side greeting the many runners. It looked a trappy punting card and there were only a couple I was really interested in.

The opener had a good shape to it and although I'd priced up Just Cameron as the 7/2 favourite alongside Village Vic, I much preferred the latter rather than the former.

The difference in the weights looked marked and on first sight the Hobbs horse was the one to beat as he looked really well. However, Just Cameron was merely shown the paddock very late on, the reason being he was very on his toes and positively bursting with health.

He didn't look particularly well handicapped after his two victories over Duke Of Navan but at the end of the day he was over-priced and boy was I glad I had a decent saver on him as Village Vic ran no sort of race after going left from the off.

I wouldn't be Colliver's biggest fan and he's best when the horse shows him the way home. But the pair have struck up good a rapport and this strong stayer at two miles was never likely to get caught, especially with Ifandbutwhynot and Ubaltique doing the chasing.
Just Cameron; improving at a rate of knots
Grate Fella plugged on for fourth but looks like he's had enough for the season on appearance although I know connections have been eyeing Aintree next week for some time. I hope they pull the plug on the season with this lovely big horse.

I was very keen on Ziga Boy in the marathon chase and I don't really know why he finished weakly after looking the likely winner down the far side.

I wouldn't have found William Money if you'd given me all day, the smallest horse in the field. They weren't the nicest bunch although both the second Buachaill Alainn and Fourovakind looked in good order, as did the disappointing Pinerolo.

Southfield Vic was the least appealing horse on looks ahead of the big money handicap hurdle but he landed the first of three wins on the day for top teen Sean Bowen, who out-rode Sam Drake on the runner-up Raktiman.

This was a really nice bunch, the only one clearly requiring more time being K Bailey's Net Work Rouge, while Special Wells is another of the Smith horses to have seen enough for the season.

Virak was a class apart in the three mile handicap chase, in which Carrigdhoun looked to have improved fitness-wise from his win here last time and duly ran a big race, while the very likeable Algernon Pazham put his poor latest effort behind him and should continue to pay his way.

The 2m 6f chase was another that failed to capture the punting imagination with loads in with a chance, headed by the most attractive Future Gilded with Tenor Nivernais, Comeonginger and Cloudy Bob all looking likely to give good accounts.

However in a real war of attrition it was the grey Hollow Blue Sky who gritted it out for another very promising claimer Jamie Bargary.

Bet of the day however came in the fixed brush race where Carlisle winner Central Flame took on some southern-based talent, and predictably was largely ignored in the betting. The money all day for Hello George was rather baffling - he's clearly quirky and was taken down to post very early.

Central Flame landed a good punt for the Waltons
I've said here before you should never be afraid on one horse and frankly there was nothing else in the race that concerned me. Doctor Phoenix, nice horse that he is, looked meanly handicapped while Ustica walks like he has a problem behind. Royale Django is another nice sort but clearly wasn't fancied while Weststreet is rather unfurnished and Aniknam is very much on the small side.

The Waltons bravely put conditional Jamie Hamilton on Central Flame for the first time and he gave the lovely big chasing type (a three time point winner) a sound ride, always keeping him up to his work and staying on really strongly up the straight. It was a thing of beauty.

The bumper was interesting and physically there was only one horse to be interested in; the favourite Vieux Lille. I found myself upsides the stable lad in the mens room pre-race and he cautioned that the horse is very babyish mentally, so it was a concern when Bowen set a funereal pace on his father's Red Six.

With a staying pedigree the jolly was never likely to have the tactical pace for this and duly never landed a blow. Kingy's Wishing And Hoping was really lean looking and should improve plenty for another summer, while Bleu Et Noir, Wicked Willy and Petapenko were very backward physically. That said I didn't like the winner either, although Bowen's youngster's do carry condition he didn't look ready for this.

Friday, 3 April 2015

New Flat season

The new turf Flat season has rushed upon us and next week it really begins in earnest. I plan to be trackside at as many northern courses as I can get to between now and the end of May, hopefully providing you with an edge.

You can receive pre-race text messages regarding the horses' fitness, greenness and how they move to post, and I'll be looking to provide the final piece in the jigsaw for you whether you are looking to back or lay.

Here is the exact text message I sent to clients prior to the Brocklesby at Doncaster last Saturday; 1 Small, unfurnished. 2 Backward, green. 3 Fit, strong behind. 4 Laid back, nice. 5 Well made, unfurnished. 6 Fair, didn't look fit. 7, 8 9 all looked small.

The result saw the well-backed Ravenhoe (4) beat First Bombardment (4) with General Alexander (2) a running-on third after starting slowly.

Personally, I laid both 2 and 6 in the win market for a fairly straight-forward profit. I don't know how my clients bet the race but I'd like to think my late message gave them a good angle.

If you would like to try this service for yourself I'll be texting messages for free from three meetings next week; Pontefract on Tuesday, Catterick on Wednesday and Newcastle on Saturday. Please email me at or contact me on Twitter @justnormnow and I will add your name and mobile number to the list.

My National Hunt clients have enjoyed the information they have been receiving this winter and we are all looking forward to gaining an edge at the start of the Flat.

PS; I'll be too busy to be blogging about the new season but will still be writing about my trips to the remaining few jumps meetings over the next couple of months.

Roll on Haydock tomorrow, I've had a week off and I'm raring to go. Hopefully Central Flame is a decent price as he could be worth a strong bet after a very lenient 4lb rise for his Carlisle win. Until then...