I’m VERY UNHAPPY to read that Gigginstown refuse to pay the fees that Willie Mullins charges to keep their horses at Closutton, but overjoyed that both Henry De Bromhead and Noel Meade will get some new business from the change. These seasoned trainers are two of the nicest fellas I have had the privilege to interview to date and hopefully it works out for them.
I can’t wait for the jumps season to kick off again and will be at Uttoxeter on Sunday where VALUE AT RISK (2.55pm) has apparently schooled brilliantly at home and is ready to break his chasing duck in the chasing ranks.
But of course the big race of the day will be the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (below) where I have more than a passing interest – but let’s get Saturday out of the way first.
The best bet on Saturday’s card in France could be ZARAK in the Prix Dollar at 2.50pm. He has twice made the brilliant Almanzor work hard for his money and this looks the right race for him.
Saturday’s lung-bursting Prix du Cadran at 3.25pm will see Vazirabad go off at restrictive odds, but this is new territory for him and the seven-year-old TRIP TO RHODES could run well at a huge price and in the process get an awful lot closer to last year’s winner Mille Et Mille.
If INGLEBY ANGEL is punted at Redcar 4.25pm – take note.
Ground is all important this weekend at the French track.
If the Japanese raider MAKAHIKI wins the Arc I stand to win a barrow load of dosh. With the ground drying out even further I will be supremely gutted if he doesn’t hit the frame at the very least.
Dangers? Well you would have to be a fool to ignore Postponed who despite his King George win in the slop is a much better horse on top of the ground while I think the Prix Foy winner, Silverwave and outsider Migwar are both worth a second look at double-figure prices. The latter put up a career-best effort last time on his sole run on good ground and I fancy will outrun his huge odds.
Our old mucker COTAI GLORY, a winner a fortnight ago despite the dead ground, will relish the faster surface in Sunday’s Prix de l’Abbaye on the undercard. I shall be saving my stake though on the 2015 hero GOLDREAM who adored the better surface he encountered at Longchamp last year.
Many of you will be napping the speedy Limato in the Prix de la Foret at 5.15pm, but there are plenty of pace influences in this 7f Group One which will suit the strong running style of Prix Du Palais Royal winner ATTENDU and he merits an each-way play.