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This salary cap then..
at 10:04 9 Aug 2020

Finally the straw that breaks Evans back?

I’ve been thinking about it since the announcement and I’m not even that angry anymore. It’s just laughable. And then I see Evans statement on the website. Remarkable lack of awareness. He’s put us in this league. Granted with some help from Hurst and Lambert. But predominantly we are where we are because Evans is a failure as the owner of our club. It’s that simple. And decisions such as keeping Lambert on just shows he’s learnt nothing in his years at the club and is totally incompetent.

I just wonder if there’s any chance he would call it a day in the next couple of years when we once again fail to leave this poxy league. And with the cap in play, even if we did make it up one year, we’d be coming straight back down you’d think anyway. Best thing that could happen to us is if he walked. 5 years ago I was probably in a minority of 1 in 50 who was anti-Evans. I suspect it’s a high majority now that. He’s just about killed the club hasn’t he?

I know there are more important things going on in the world but I couldn’t help but see the statement and feel like posting something about it. And it may as well be back on here. Evans Out.
FAO Westover
at 06:17 8 Apr 2020

Decided to get back into Greyhound ownership! Did plenty of responsible things with alot of my Cheltenham festival winnings but was also going to spend a couple of grand of it on a holiday but the Coronavirus has meant my plans have changed with that.

Instead, I’ve now bought part-ownership of a brother and sister out of Derby winner Dorotas Wildcat and the highly promising stayer Bubbly Firebird. The bitch was one I followed before her injury two and a bit years ago and if they’d have managed to step her up in trip to the marathon races, she’d have absolutely cleaned up around the country in those one off marathon opens. Must’ve been terribly frustrating for connections for her to go lame and being forced into retirement with her. Obviously the Wildcat needs no introduction. Superstar with searing early and middle pace. If I get lucky, with the breeding being as good as it is, I could have at least one of these be open race quality.

They cost a whole bit more than my first greyhound I spoke about on here Gable El Toro and are bred to be much much better than him. Cowdog got up to A3 grade at his peak which isn’t useless either to be fair to the boy. I no longer own any of GET as there was a falling out between trainer and the syndicate leader (I’m no longer apart of that syndicate anyway) but my dog was good fun for a first greyhound. Gave me a great betting opportunity once which I messaged a few on here (J2 for one) when we expected him to win at 3/1 to which he obliged. As I say, good fun.

As for my two young pups, they’re only three months old so won’t be running for a year ish yet. Whenever the restrictions on the virus are lifted, they’re coming over from Ireland at the first opportunity. Paul Young will train them both and they are to be called Young Wildcat and Young Firebird. They’ll obviously start off at Romford and (fingers crossed) progress from there if good enough to be open standard.
Bill Withers RIP
at 15:22 3 Apr 2020

Had some bangers him
Stay safe out there folks
at 05:28 24 Mar 2020

Crazy times. Online learning for me now for uni.

Can only count myself lucky that it should be no more than an inconvenience rather than a big life changer like a business collapse or a job loss that some will inevitably be having to deal with because of this. Horrible stuff.

Can only fear it’ll get worse for another week or two yet before the measures start to kick in. All we can do is watch on through the tele on the news and hope for the best. Look after yourselves lads
Rishi Sunak - next prime minster
at 17:28 20 Mar 2020

London is empty
at 13:34 20 Mar 2020

Never seen Marylebone or the tube like it. Barely anyone around and everyone’s making a conscious effort to stay at least 2m away from each other.

Loads of people wearing masks and latex style gloves.

Very weird atmosphere this.
Romford’s racing preview - Cheltenham Day 4
at 09:59 13 Mar 2020

No actual preview today because I was out celebrating last night.

An incredible last 48 hours on the betting front. Thousands up. What a feeling. Need Delta Work in the gold cup for another 2k on another £5.50 yankee placed months (26 September according to my spreadsheet). The handicap good thing in Simply the Betts p1ssed in too. Had £50 at 9s a fortnight ago.

Today’s bets:
1:30 - Allmankind antepost. Smaller bet Aspire Tower. Don’t fancy the favourite at all. Will lay if it goes 7/4 on the exchange.

2:10 - Latest Exhibition 9/1 antepost. Thyme Hill 14s antepost.

2:50 - Not sure yet. Waiting on the ground with a couple. Will update later.

3:30 - Need Delta antepost. Am also on Lostintranslation and CDO antepost at nice prices.

4:10 - Hazel Hill 10/1 antepost

4:50 - Greaneteen 8/1 antepost. Really like this one.

5:30 - Column of Fire 20/1 antepost. This lads a weapon. Plotted for the race.
Romford's racing preview - Cheltenham Festival 2020 - Day 3
at 09:06 12 Mar 2020

11th March 2020. A day I won’t be forgetting in a hurry. For months, anybody who asked was told the same answer to the question ‘what is your best bet for Cheltenham?’ – ‘Envoi Allen. I’m on at 10s’. The closer we got, the more nervous I was but what a performance. What a boyo. What a weapon. The way he picked up to close the gap in the ten seconds before they jumped the last was astonishing. The roar as he flew the last and the scenes unfolding across 70,000 delirious punters was a genuine wow moment that will live with me forever. To have had 10/1 on him and then Champ for the RSA straight after was a wonderful hour. I have plenty of good bets tomorrow although a Samcro win for a couple of free bet multiples would be absolute scenes. We shall see..

1:30 – Marsh Novice Chase (Grade 1)
Samcro coming here was a pleasant surprise to the antepost books but I would still be surprised if he was good enough to win against some quality novices. His ability to travel into a race is huge but to win at Cheltenham, he will need to start producing more off the bridle than he has of late if wanting to reproduce that Ballymore win of 2018. Faugheen will be popular with the punters but a 12 year old, even one as brilliant as Faugheen, winning a Grade 1 novice chase at the festival is not something that sounds at all likely and goes against every trend there is you would think. That isn’t to say he can’t win though and I will be utilising the offers available to get a couple in the book as savers to the Samcro multiple. Another of those, Mister Fisher is the other one I have antepost and he has a good chance if improving again on his latest win over course and distance. Nicky Henderson has had a fine festival so far and if turning in contention, can utilise his turn of foot to perfection up the hill. The selection however is for Grade 1 winner ITCHY FEET (9/2). He oozed class in the Scilly Isles and came back on the bridle even after blundering two out in the style of a good horse. To the kick on up the Sandown hill how he did suggested to me that Cheltenham would be his bag. When you consider how he finished in last year’s Supreme, he should relish this test and the ground will suit. At 9/2, I make him a really solid bet to kick off proceedings for Cheltenham 2020 – day three.

2:10 – Pertemps Final
Sire Du Berlais landed a gamble last year to win this despite being off the bridle at the top of the hill and carries top weight this year in his bid for the double. Gordon Elliott also saddles THE STORYTELLER (11/2) who snuck into this with an eyecatching Davy Russell ride in 6th in his qualifier. I took 15/1 immediately after that race and make him the clear one to beat. He has won previously at this meeting over fences and must go close. Dingo Dollar and Unowhatimeanharry are both 50/1 but have had big days previously with the latter lumbering 11st 10lb. Skandiburg won well last time over course and distance but was only narrowly ahead of RAPPER (25/1) who can reverse the form. He is still unexposed as a stayer and can dictate of the front by Richard Johnson. My last bet in a wide open renewal is RELEGATE (7/1) who won the Champion Bumper but has struggled for fitness since. She should be spot on for this based on her reappearance and is the final one of my three against the field.

2:50 – Ryanair Chase (Grade 1)
I have some nice prices about MIN (11/4) here with him being set for this almost as soon as he completed last year at Aintree. He will have the tactical pace when things start heating up and ought to be shorter in my view. A Plus Tard dotted up in the Novice Handicap last season and beat Chacun Pour Soi earlier this year. That form makes him favourite. Frodon delivered a popular result last season in the race but hasn’t been as good this season as last year whilst Riders On the Storm has won all three start this season and is seemingly still improving. Aso may be the best of the rest in a competitive renewal.

3:30 – Stayers Hurdle (Grade 1)
As an Emitom fan with a 50/1 each way bet, I go into the race with just hope rather than confidence. He did look good at Haydock last time though and can put it up to the imperious PAISLEY PARK (4/6). The defending champ has proven himself superior to all of these and 4/6 isn’t the worst price in my view. He probably ought to be at least ½ for this since he has beaten the majority already this year over course and distance and hasn’t lost a race in two seasons. City Island is the only other one worth mentioning in a race that ought to be a formality really. Emitom at 22/1 in the ‘without Paisley Park market is the best value of the day for me antepost...

4:10 – Brown Plate
One of the best bets of the card in my view now with SIMPLY THE BETTS (7/2) tasked with landing a plunge that many of us are on. Imperial Aura franked the form on Tuesday with a win with a battle between the pair over here in November looking red-hot. On that form line, he is now into 7/2 best price and the punters might just keep coming for him. Deyrann de Carjac has had the late money whilst Ben Dundee rarely runs a bad race. Oldgrangewood is an improver this season but this is a tougher task. Mister Whitaker was poor last time and Happy Diva needs to prove herself with carrying 11st 4lb. Siruh Du Lac goes in search of back to back wins but isn’t in the same vein of form that won the race last year. The clear bet for me is Simply The Betts who I think might just be too good for his mark.

4:50 – Mares Novice
FLORESSA (7/1) ran a good race last time but was outclassed by Lady Buttons. She ought to improve again back against novices and holds every chance. Her turn of foot is decisive and she is taken to beat Minella Melody up the hill. Willie Mullins has won every renewal of this race and saddles four here with Dolcita likely his best chance in my view with Concertista a placed horse in this last year too. The money has come for the latter with her shortening from 10/1 into 9/2 at the time of writing. Colreevy and Ard Abhainn aren’t ruled out with many in with chances in a race that will require plenty of luck in running.

5:30 – Kim Muir Handicap
Kilfilum Cross was the subject of a huge gamble in this last year when finishing second off 1lb more so ought to run well again. Champagne Platinum has been disssapointing over fences but has always been highly regarded by connections. If they can get him right, he would probably have too much class for them here carrying 11st 5lb. LE BREUIL (7/1) was given a masterful ride by today’s pilot Jamie Codd to win at this meeting last year and is a huge positive in these amateur jockey races. If getting back to his best, he’d have to go close. PLAN OF ATTACK (11/1) is my other main dart in the race and has been kept fresh since running third in the Paddy Power at Christmas for this and has to go close. I have 25/1 on Fitzhenry for this from ages ago and he will get his head in front in a race like this soon and has Patrick Mullins on his back which is a help to his chances. FLYING ANGEL (40/1) is a small each way play as his consistency is respected for a race of this nature and could place again.
Romford's racing preview - Cheltenham Festival 2020 - Day 2
at 05:15 11 Mar 2020

Oh Benie! Two years in a row how you’ve hurt me! Honeysuckle’s peach of a ride from Rachael Blackmore proved decisive as the race turned into a sprint to stop superstar mare Benie exacting her revenge in the race she infamously fell in last year. With three seconds in the opening five races, I did begin to wonder if the week would start on a sour note with a horrific Tuesday. However, not long after wondering what an earth Robbie Power and Paul Townsend were doing on the Mullins mares, Imperial Aura popped up to get me off the mark. When the brilliant Jamie Codd managed to get Ravenhill up the hill, the day somehow went from a shambles into more than adequate on the betting front. How funny how things can change so quickly in the world of gambling. On to day two where it looks like being a very punter friendly card with the perfect betting opportunities combined with some fantastic racing.

1:30 – Ballymore Novice Hurdle (Grade 1)
Day two kicks off with the Irish banker ENVOI ALLEN (4/6) the obvious one to beat. He won last year’s Champion Bumper and is unbeaten across all forms. His form in his bumper year was franked frequently with his hurdles form top notch. It is safe to assume that he is a bit special. I am fortunate enough to be on for a decent amount at 10/1 from many months ago and I can do no more but hope. He might just be a good thing. His main dangers come from this side of the Irish sea in unbeaten improvers Sporting John and The Big Breakaway. The former was imperious last time at Ascot whilst the latter has always been held in high regard by the Tizzards. The Big Getaway has talent but has lacked the consistency of those above him in the market and Son Of Camas, Longhouse Poet and Easywork all come here on the back of defeats last time. Can Envoi get the punters off to a flyer in the opener?

2:10 – RSA Novices Chase (Grade 1)
Frankly, I can’t help but feel I have this race by the proverbials antepost! Of my five antepost horses in my portfolio on the race (many of which are free bets), they range from favourite to fifth favourite. It is arguably the best position of the week with some huge prices including Champ at 10s, COPPERHEAD (9/2) at 7s and Battleoverdoyen at 37/1. Providing there is no upset here, it should be an excellent race for me. Ignoring my own bets, I would fancy Copperhead most here. He’s improved with every start this season and this galloping test should suit Colin Tizzard’s exuberant jumper. Allaho rarely runs a bad race and is popular in the Mullins camp with this in mind and should put up a bold display. Champ has been favourite for this all season but fell last time and his jumping frailties will be tested here whilst Battleoverdoyen seemingly hated Cheltenham’s undulations in the Ballymore last year. Minella Indo represents Henry De Bromhead and bids for back to back festival wins after his excellent win in the Albert Bartlett last season ahead of Allaho. However, his runs this season have seemed somewhat laboured though and I’d be happy to take him on at his current price. Slate House isn’t out of place as a Grade 1 winner on Boxing Day whilst Easy Game deserves to take his place in the lineup after pushing the brilliant Faugheen all the way at the Dublin Festival. Pym has good form this season in patches but jumped poorly last time behind Copperhead and will need to improve on that to feature. Aye Right and Castlebawn West complete the lineup as the outsiders in a vintage renewal of the RSA.

2:50 – Coral Cup
Traditionally the hardest puzzle of the week now with the 26 runner cavalry charge something for punters to get their teeth into. I’ve gone through the race tonight with the extra places on offer for each way betting purposes and I’m hopeful that I’ve solved it. I’ve had three bets and a saver on the favourite. The first of my three and my strongest fancy is BLACK TEARS (18/1 E/W) who has Cheltenham handicap specialist Davy Russell doing the steering and has some nice snippets of form behind classy mares such as Stormy Ireland, Honeysuckle and Elfile. As an each way proposition, I would actually make her one of the best bets of the entire day at that price and with that many places available. Another I like for this is the newly-owned ALFA MIX (10/1 E/W) who ran top weight Kilfenora close last tie with the pair 18 lengths clear of the third at Navan. He should be spot on for this and can go well. Lastly, I cannot let TRAFFIC FLUIDE (28/1 E/W) go off at that price even if this is potentially just a Grand National prep run. He would’ve won a grade 2 over fences had he not fell at the last on his latest start and even though this is his first hurdle start in three years, I am hopeful for a decent run. He will relish the hill and could run on for a place. He is said to be working well. Willie Mullins trains seven in the race with Franco De Port the choice of Paul Townend despite Canardier travelling through the race like the winner last year only to find little when asked. Protektorat looks made for this race whilst the market leader Dame De Compagnie will need to overcome a record of just one winner in ten years under 12/1 and no winning favourite for 16 years which highlights the openness of the race every year and the need for luck in running. She is up 8lb but is classy and deservedly heads the market. Stratum and Cracking Smart are the best of the rest.

3:30 – Champion Chase (Grade 1)
The absence of Altior means just six go to post for the 2020 Champion Chase with it set to be a head to head between Chacun Pour Soi and DEFI DU SEUIL (6/5). The former beat yard flagbearer Min last time in decisive fashion and did beat Defi last season. However, that run came after Defi had a long hard season and he’s been unbeatable since then, rattling off two Grade 1s in recent months. He swept aside the recently retired Un De Sceaux at Ascot previously and has proven himself up the hill with two festival wins to his name. Expect the tactic to be similar to his win in last year’s Marsh Chase where he stalks the leaders before being delivered late to power up the hill after the last. Whilst a Chacun win would be the ideal result for me (I took the 9/1 for this with him last April), I have had to take some 13/8 for Defi when the Altior non-runner news came through. Dynamite Dollars will improve for his run last time. Bun Doran lacks the class to challenge the principles and Politologue and Sceua Royal were second and third last year but will need more here.

4:10 – Cross Country
Dual Grand-national hero TIGER ROLL (10/11) goes in search of a festival five-timer and a hat-trick with him set to go off odds on. His versatility is astounding and he is undoubtedly the best horse in the race. Keith O’Donoghue credits the horse for saving his career and kept it simple in this last year to will easily. A repeat of that tactic will be in order but Easyslands will put up a big fight for the French. The Cross Country specialist has been unstoppable in the last year and won the trial for this over course and distance last time. He was purchased by JP McManus after that run and could give Tiger Roll a race if jumping round. He has been known to make jumping mistakes – albeit as a six-year old is a relatively young horse for this discipline and will learn from experience. Might Bite isn’t the force of old but is a fascinating entry nonetheless and similar can be said of Yanworth. Josies Orders is a standing dish in this race and could offer some each way value at a huge price. Urgent De Gregaine is consistent but has shown to be beaten by one or two whenever he runs.

4:50 – Boodles Handicap
The race formely known as the Fred Winter is the penultimate race on day two with Aramax a warm favourite for Gordon Elliott who saddles five. His best hope in the market may be Naas scorer Aramax but I believe that TRONADOR (9/1 E/W) has the best profile for this tough handicap. He is a strong stayer who should relish the stiff finish. Mick Pastor is two from three but can be keen whilst Palladium has gone up 13lb for beating an older rival. Repetitio is consistent but may bump into one better handicapped such as SAINT D’OROUX (20/1 E/W) who bolted in by 24 lengths last time. His performance that day gave the impression there was more to come and he can outrun his odds at a nice price.

5:30 – Champion Bumper
A weak looking renewal of the Champion Bumper now with plenty of them being beaten already which is rare for a race with tendency to have unbeaten runners taking each other on. Jamie Codd rides Queens Brook which is sure to be popular after Ravenhill’s win for that trainer and jockey combination. Panic Attack was bought after winning impressively at Market Rasen on debut but this is a completely different scenario. Ferny Hollow looks like a chaser and can be taken on. Selection instead goes for APPRECIATE IT (15/8) who looked special last time. His price is short for this race but it looks weaker than usual so is understandable in the market for a trainer who has a great record in it. At a price, THE GLANCING QUEEN (20/1 E/W) returns here after finishing fifth last season in this contest. She hasn’t run in a while though but at 20/1, it was just about big enough to tempt me in for an each way flier.
Romford's racing preview - Cheltenham Festival 2020 - Day 1
at 05:32 10 Mar 2020

Coronavirus 0-1 Cheltenham! The will they, won’t they question we’ve all been asking in the last few weeks has been answered – Cheltenham 2020 goes ahead! The countdown is over and it is upon us. I’m once again fortunate to be there for the week with a good mate of mine and feel very pleased to be sitting in plenty of good positions antepost. For many of us who go big antepost across the season for this second week in March, we have all been lucky on the betting front with seemingly less late setbacks and switches than in other seasons. Whether you see this through twitter, friends, family, TWTD or the FatJockey Forum, sit back for four more daily previews of the Cheltenham Festival 2020 where hopefully we can find plenty of winners for the best week in world sport. Good luck to everyone who gets involved and let’s hope all horses and jockeys come back safe and sound.

1:30 – Supreme Novices Hurdle (Grade 1)
The anticipation, the curtain raiser, the roar! For anyone that doesn’t know, Skybet are doing money back as cash if you lose on this race up to £10 so is obviously worth doing as it is completely risk free. I’ve used it to cover the unraced Mullins horse Berkshire Royal at 25s (he has drifted markedly since) just in case an unraced runner from that yard nabbed one of my three. I wouldn’t have forgiven myself if that was to happen so I have put him in the book. Realistically, I go to war with three live antepost chances, with Berkshire Royal a suitable outside cover bet. It is a horse from that yard that holds my best and most realistic hope though in ASTERION FORLONGE (11/4) who is still my idea of the winner. The 11/4 available looks fair and he is now the correct favourite in a market that had Shishkin top of the pile on the back of two wins in much weaker company. As good as Nicky Henderson’s inmate has looked, this is a big step up and I prefer the horse in the same ownership with solid Irish Grade 1 form for a trainer who has won this on 4 of the last 7 renewals. Another with solid Irish form is Abacadabras who’s win at the top level as well as his second to Envoi Allen (favourite for the Ballymore on Wednesday) is top form. In my view, this race will be going to Ireland with one of those two but along with Shiskin, the main British hopes are Chantry House and Fiddlerontheroof. The latter romped home in the style of an improving horse in the Tolworth at Sandown but will need to step up once again on that. Chantry House is the third of my trio at some big prices but the value on him is surely gone now at 13/2. He looks classy but has not yet run at a proper tempo with all of his races becoming a dash. The Supreme may be at the minimum trip but it is relentless in its nature and there will be no hiding space here. Ability to stay further and maintain the gallop are the two key ingredients to this with Asterion Forlonge take to kick off the week for favourite backers with an end to end victory.

2:10 - Arkle Chase (Grade 1)
I have never been a major NOTEBOOK (10/3) fan like some but his price makes him the clear play here. He’s won both of the main Irish trials for this and arguably should be half his price in the betting. His connections and lack of hurdles form last season perhaps means he’s now a very backable price. Fakir Doudaries is his main market rival but was beaten comfortably over Christmas by Notebook and has even less of a weight pull than that day. I’m surprised to see their prices so close together on that basis. I like Cash Back but he too was beaten by the selection in recent months with Notebook actually hindering his own chance before the start with his antics and yet still managed to win. With the amphitheatre of the Festival, Notebook’s biggest danger could be himself in the minutes before the race. The British challenge is led by Brewinupastorm who ran well here last season in the Ballymore and is two from two over fences. He will need to improve but if the leaders go off too fast (a common occurrence in this race), he will be held up with the intention of picking up the pieces. Esprit Du Large won a Grade 1 last time whilst Maire Banrigh is unbeaten in this sphere. With a host of front runners and Notebook’s temperament issues, this has the feel of an open Arkle but I could see Henry De Bromhead’s market leader winning this well and stamping himself down as a potential top-notcher.

2:50 – Ultima Handicap Chase
This is commonly a graveyard for favourite backers but I really believe that VINNDICATION (7/1 E/W) is the proverbial graded horse in a handicap. Kim Bailey’s charge has always been well thought of with 7 wins from just 9 starts with the two defeats coming at the highest level last season behind Defi Du Seuill. He made hi handicap debut at Ascot in November, being backed into just 2/1 at the off with his comfortable win quickly followed by connections earmarking this race as his target. He goes well fresh and will be spot on for today. It’s hard to be confident in a 24 runner handicap but I really expect him to win this and move on to bigger and better things in the aftermath. He strikes me as a Grand National type in a season or two. The recent money has been for Discorama who could even go off favourite with punters picking up on his excellent efforts at this meeting in the last two years. The Conditional sneaks in off 10st 6lb and did win well in a weaker race here in October. No Comment looks well-handicapped but tends to find a couple too good whilst the versatile Who Dares Wins lacks chasing experience despite running well in both codes previously. Cepage has class but is a doubtful stayer whilst Big River’s jumping rarely holds up to inspection – although he remarkably finished fourth last year in this despite being 25 lengths behind at the bottom of the hill. My second selection in the race is KILDISART (10/1 E/W) who I nabbed last week at 16s. He’s a veteran in these big handicaps and looked like he relished the step up in trip at Aintree last season. His run last time was promising and he has form with Vinndication which makes him a clear danger now dropped to 11st 3lb.

3:30 – Champion Hurdle (Grade 1)
The annual headliner to the opening day now with the lack of a top-notcher given the feel of an open renewal. Epatante heads the market with her win at Christmas perhaps looking better on paper than it actually was with many of the field that day not running their race. She disappointed here last year when struggling up the hill in the Mares Novice and her connections’ reasoning of her recent flu jabs being a hindrance to her on the day seem dubious when they were adamant beforehand she was working well leaves me wanting to take her on. Pentland Hills won the Triumph Hurdle last year in difficult circumstances but has been beaten on both starts this year and is another to swerve in my view. Cilaos Emery was supplemented for Willie Mullins here and looks a threat if producing his best with Ballyandy and Call Me Lord consistent but probably lacking the class of a Champion Hurdler. My angle here is to go for the each way angle with the two opposite pace options – front runner and hold up horse. Of the front runners, NOT SO SLEEPY (28/1 E/W) and PETIT MOUCHOIR (28/1 E/W) are given the nod with four places on offer. The former lost all chance with the shambolic standing start in play in the Betfair Hurdle after routing a decent field of handicappers. If he gets into a rhythm out front, he won’t be stopping. Petit Mouchoir is running as good as ever of late with her price at 28s looking far too big. I do have a small interest on these two at 100/1 and 89.0 and whilst they are likely to be picked up late by something, you can almost guarantee a good run for your money with them both. My final selection is a horse who should be rattling home late if they do go too fast up front in SUPASUNDAE (10/1 E/W). Jessica Harrington and Robbie Power have been bullish about their chances here and his profile is one of arguably the classiest horse in this race. If the headgear works early on and he is able to keep up with the early gallop, he is a big danger. In an open year, I am happy to go for three each way with plenty in with chances in a fascinating race.

4:10 – Mares Hurdle (Grade 1)
For many, this is the clash of the day with the billed head to head between Honeysuckle and BENIE DES DIEUX (8/13). The former is undoubtedly top class and perhaps ought to have had a crack at the Champion Hurdle. She won the Irish Champion Hurdle last time but connections decided this is her optimum trip to set up a clash of the Mares with Willie Mullins superstar Benie Des Dieux. I’m on quite big at 5/4 and I just think she wins. Mullins himself referred to her as ‘perhaps the best Mare I’ve trained’ which is a remarkable statement considering he trained Quevega and Annie Power. Benie won this in 2018 and would’ve romped home but for falling at the last when clear last year – a fall which cost myself a big payout. I expect her to exact revenge on the race and I will be standing near the last hurdle like last year with my fingers firmly crossed as she approaches the last. For those who want to find one at a price for each way purposes, Lady Buttons is much better than a lot of these when at her best and the 28/1 looks overpriced but they’re surely all running for third behind the big two in the market. Roksana beat Stormy Island after Benie’s fall last year but the latter can overturn that form with Elfile closely matched as well. The first of the lumps for the week runs here and I am hoping and expecting Benie Des Dieux to show why I believe she is one of the greatest racehorses in training.

4:50 – Northern Trust Novices Handicap Chase
Just 7lbs separates the 20 runners here in the handicap with the highly regarded Precious Cargo carrying the top weight. This race tends to have less handicap importance than most races of their kind with the best overall horse usually scoring. That honour may fall to IMPERIAL AURA (11/2) who ran a cracking trial for this behind Simply The Betts (runs Thursday) here last time. I am a big fan of that horse and so on collateral form, Imperial Aura really ought to go well here. Trainwreck will be very popular in the market with his excellent second last time in a good contest whilst better things have been expected for Beakstown in this sphere but he’s been beaten on all three starts by decent sorts. Hold The Note travelled like a good horse last time and connections have a decent record in this race so he ought to go well. Galvin makes his handicap debut here for Gordon Elliott and Davy Russell who will both be hoping for a big week. Their charge here has class and gets his ideal ground. The same can be said for ESPOIR DE GUYE (15/2 E/W) who relished the sodden conditions last time. He’s an improver who can run a good race here with 6 places on offer with Skybet. One at a wild price is De Plotting Shed who, at 66/1, did beat a decent sort (Who Dares Wins – runs in the 2:50) last time and is perhaps a slice of value if putting his experience to good use.

5:30 – National Hunt Chase (Grade 2)
The National Hunt Chase closes the show on Champions Day with CAREFULLY SELECTED (2/1) the rightful favourite. I backed him for this a few months back for the race which looks perfect for him. He stays all day and has a touch of class that might make him slightly too good for this field. He will have 23 obstacles to jump but if his jumping holds up, I would expect him to win this cosily. Upon finding out that Jamie Codd was to ride Ravenhill here rather than the Kim Muir, I took the price for this as a top amateur really does make the difference in these races (see last year’s finish for proof). Codd will try to nurse his ride round and if he’s still in contention as they turn for home, he’d have every chance as he has some class as well as a top jockey. Lord Du Mesnil ran a bold race last time at Haydock but I would be very concerned that the race could have left a mark as it was a tiresome battle and this will be a gruelling stamina test. Forza Milan is the brother of my Grand National winning antepost bet One For Arthur and could improve for the step up in trip on that basis but is held by the favourite. If he completes the course, I would imagine Carefully Selected will win this comfortably as he is undoubtedly the best horse in the race. His jumping is the question mark that makes him available at 2/1 rather than 11/8.
In better news..
at 19:27 7 Mar 2020

Cheltenham next week and I’ll be doing my previews for all four days.

One of my best mates who I live with is coming for the week too.

Should be a belter. Unfortunately I am at Bristol rovers away on the Saturday though after racing ends.
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Off to the Old Bailey today
at 07:11 24 Feb 2020

And no I’m not on trial.

Me and my friend just thought it would be interesting to go and watch a murder case proceedings.

Not really sure what to expect. I know we can’t take phones in and I know I wanna make a few notes when we’re in there (she wants to make some sketches) but asides from that, we’re going in relatively blind. We know which case we want to go to as well (all available online to see which ones are on which courts and at which times).

Should be fun. Something different ain’t it.
We shall not be moved
at 19:02 19 Feb 2020

Pride of anglia 💜
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I actually hate the club
at 22:20 11 Feb 2020

Like seriously it’s just sh*t after sh*t.

Everytime I think something good could happen it just reverts back to being sh*t and then finds a new way to be sh**ter.

I’m gonna now miss my last train to High Wycombe and end up on a poxy bus replacement. Won’t be home til like 2am all for a 0-0 draw in the league with AFC c**ting Wimbledon!

Sack them all. Lambert should be nowhere near our club and Evans is a disgrace.
‘You can piss at half time. Not now’ - Stewards
at 20:40 11 Feb 2020

Sold too many tickets apparently. So said a steward in front of us to a bloke complaining 15 minutes before half-time why he wasn’t being allowed to go for a piss.

Hundreds of our fans are stuck in an area where you can’t see half the pitch.

Shambles. Our club should be putting in a complaint on the way our fans have been treated here. Never been to anything like it.
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