#8PointstoPlay is now is now four weeks in and every Saturday for the National Season, our Champ.ie columnists and podcast regulars will go head to head with their racing tips.
Above shows the current leaderboard and it was Alan Doyle (The Aldorithm) who landed big last weekend when Capeland scored at Ascot for Champion Trainer Paul Nicholls.
Best of luck to everyone this weekend and let’s hope we can find some juicy winners.
Alan Doyle’s #8PointstoPlay – Rolling P&L: 32 Pts
15:00 Newbury – Elegant Escape (11/1) 4pt ew
Knowing what we know now, Kemboy wins last year’s Ladbrokes Trophy had he been able to travel over. Seems Kemboy gets no luck these days either! As he didn’t travel, we ended up with a Colin Tizzard 1-2 in Sizing Tennessee and Elegant Escape. That was a soft ground affair which suited Elegant Escape but with only 12 runners in the race there was no significant pace for those in behind to capitalise on.
Conditions should suit Elegant Escape again this time around with a 24 runner field on soft(ish) ground, so there is bound to be competition for the lead. He is the only entry that ran in the 2019 gold cup and wasn’t disgraced in 6th, 15L being Clan Des Obeaux. And don’t forget he is only a 7yo so should be able to improve another few pounds this season.
I honestly can’t see Elegant Escape out of the place money so I’ll put him up with 4pts each way.
Colm Finlay’s #8PointstoPlay – Rolling P&L: Level Pts
1:15 Newbury – Divine Spear (14/1) 1pt ew
Willing to write off last season and put my faith in the wind op making a big difference because if he gets back someway towards his 143 best he will be well in here off 135. Having NJ Henderson beside his name does no harm either. Two double-digit Nicky Horses & Nico horses in #8PointstoPlay. Maybe I should do the double?
2:05 Newcastle – Cornerstone Lad (25/1) 2pt ew
A shameless each way play here looking for 2nd behind the odds on favorite in Buvair D’Air at ¼ the odds a place. There are question marks about Silver Streak on the official going of “Heavy” whereas this guy is all about the mud. The worse it is the better for him. Really think he’s got a great chance at 2nd for an easy 6 ¼ points. Alan Doyle needs to be rained in here and I’m taking the no-nonsense each way play here to try and reel him in. Also, you just never know if something were to happen to the Fav I could sneak into the winner’s enclosure here and get my name back up at the top of the leaderboard where it belongs. PLEASE, NO NON RUNNERS! Or else I’m looking at a win only market and I’m screwed then.
3:00 Newbury – On The Blind Side (9/1) 2pt win
On the blind side 10/1 ran a good race going the long way around behind Vinndication at Ascot. No horse passed more horses over the last 3-4 furlongs that day than him suggesting the extra 2F of this race should be right on the money. Will be all the better for that run I hope. He’s gone been kept at the same mark for this. 20 mins down the A34 for the horsebox which I like for some reason so he’ll be able to have the extra roll in the hay in the morning.
Ronan Groome’s #8PointstoPlay – Rolling P&L: -10 Pts
Newbury 2:25 – Elvis Mail (6/1) 2pt win
Seriously progressive 5yo showed he was still on the up when winning off a long break latest. Race fit now and likely to progress again.
Newbury 3:00 – Daklondike (28/1) 1pt ew
Lightly raced David Pipe horse has won four of six completions over fences. Also a course and distance winner and warmed up for this with nice run over hurdles at this course.
Newbury 3:00 – The Conditional (20/1) 1pt ew
Significant improvement in form since moving to Britain and too good for West Approach latest. That horse boosted the form since and that bodes well for The Conditional who won’t mind at all by running on soft ground over this distance.
Newbury 3:20 – Kilfilum Cross (3/1) 2pt win
Clear sign of progress when runner-up latest but still won and that was seasonal debut so should come on over fences.
Barry Doyle’s #8PointstoPlay – Rolling P&L: – 0.6 Pts
2.25 Newbury – Crook’s Peak (6/1) – 2 Pt win
Strong travelling son of Arcadio who was well touted for last year’s County Hurdle having only racked 4 starts over hurdles. Find it fascinating they’ve delayed plans to go chasing to come here. On an attractive mark.
3.00 Newbury – The Rasher Counter (11/1) – 1 Pt ew
Progressive Novice chaser last term that ticks plenty off boxes for a race like the Hennessy. This race has been the plan ever since Uttoxeter in March. He jumps nice and has won around Newbury before. I’d be expecting a big run here off 149 with Ben Jones taking off 5Ibs.
12:05 Newbury – Jeremy’s Flame (11/2) – 2 Pt ew
The Irish raider looks a cracking each way bet here (taking a chance all eight go to post). A fine big mare, Jeremy’s Flame has some nice bumper form behind Santa Rosa & Midnight Run last season.
She seemed to improve for each run last season and she can step forward once again from her cracking second behind Daylight Katie at Down Royal last month. Likely to be dropped in by man in form Robbie Power. Undoubtedly talented and Newbury will suit.
Thomas Coyle’s #8PointstoPlay – Rolling P&L: – 5.9 Pts
3:00 Newbury – The Conditional (20/1) 1pt ew
Had some really nice Irish form for a small yard in Martin Hassett with his last run in Gowran behind the classy Duc De Genievres, Tower Bridge and C’est Jersey. He’s gone across the water and built on his stable debut run which was third to win a competitive handicap in Cheltenham. I think off this light weight of 10st 3lbs he won’t be far away. Most bookies are paying first 5/6.
3:20 Newcastle – Captain Chaos (5/1) 2pt win
Second in this race last year off a pound lighter after a lacklustre start to last season and with that being the same scenario this year, I’m hoping the application of the first time cheek pieces might bring out a bit of improvement from the Dan Skelton in mate. His 6th in the Kim Muir at the festival last year is good enough form to win this renewal and he’s 14lbs better off with last years winner Lake View Lad.
12.25 Fairyhouse – Moskovite (3/1) 2pt win
Dennis Hogan’s horses are in great form at the minute and this mare started back her campaign with a win in a chase in Sligo. She can be forgiven the last day, although it was a small field, she met some trouble in running and is now 7lbs better off with the favourite in this race ( The Caddy Rose).
3.15 Fairyhouse – Port Stanley (10/3) 2pt win
Has followed home horses like Abracadabras and Envoi Allen in the past. Another performance should see Jessica Harrington’s son of papal bull go close again.
Andrew Blair White’s #8PointstoPlay – Rolling P&L: – 14.05 Pts
3.20 Newcastle – Top Ville Ben (4/1) – 2 Pts Win
A high class novice chaser last year who mixed it in some of the better races last year. His return to action was satisfactory and has always looked like a big handicap win like this was within his grasp.
3.00 Newbury – Cabaret Queen (8/1) – 1 Pt Win
A runaway winner of the Munster National last time out, she holds very similar credentials to Total Recall, who did the same double for WP a few years ago. Still low in the weights and is fancied to put up a big run for connections.
1.15 Newbury – Larry (9/1) – 1 Pt Win
Another horse with a decent Novice Chase season under his belt last year. His reappearance run was lackluster but I think he will come on loads for that and could be ready to run a massive race. Well regarded by connections.
Completely forgotten in the betting despite a taking debut at Wexford last month. It’s a stronger race here but he should continue to progress with racing.
3.15 Fairyhouse – Port Stanley (10/3) – 3 Pts Win
This horse has by far the best form of those with rules form. If able to replicate his run at this meeting last year behind Envoi Allen, he will take this at a hack canter. A big absence to overcome is the only worry. If he’s tuned up, he wins.