I’ll be travelling much of Wednesday so thought it best to post my Aintree day one selections now.
My favourite horse of the season La Bague Au Roi looks like she runs in the first as opposed to waiting until Friday and, with the defection of Defi Du Seuil, it’s hard to see anything offering her a serious challenge. I’ll hold until Wednesday’s decs just in case she steps on a stone or something but 2/1 looks fine value.
I see no value in anything in the Betway Bowl. Clan Des Obeaux disappointed me at Cheltenham and set me wondering if he might just be better going right handed. Regular readers will know my feelings about Bristol De Mai and how he is trained. The horse needs a long rest between races, something his trainer has himself stated at least twice this season. I’ll be amazed if he runs to form in this. Kemboy might well win it but is much too short to risk, in my view. It should be too sharp for Elegant Escape and not soft enough, even if Tizzard does bounce back to form.
I’m hoping the track misses any rain in the next 48 hours as I fancy Verdana Blue to run a big race in the Aintree Hurdle. The better the ground the better her chance. On soft, I’d probably leave her alone, but on good to soft I’d take the chance, and on good she’d be a confident EW bet. This 20f trip should suit her very well and the track will too.
The best value bet of the day is Theinval in the Close Bros Red Rum Chase. This is his time of year. His top six Racing Post Ratings have been in April. Trainer Henderson spends the other 11 months getting his handicap mark back down after April. This has been blatantly obvious this season when he has not been put in the race at any stage in all three outings. Rather than capitulate to a top trainer the handicapper should just ignore these runs, but he doesn’t; Theinval has been dropped 4lbs and is just 2lbs higher than his last winning mark.
Anyway, we might as well take advantage of it. He has run at this meeting in each of the past 4 years:
1st of 21 – 7/1
9 of 22 (20/1 reflecting little stable confidence in 2016)
2 of 14 – 15/2
2 of 16 – 5/1
He’s another who’d prefer better ground but good to soft will be fine and his 2nd last year was on soft. You can back him EW at 10/1 though again I’d wait until the declarations are made at around noon on Wednesday.
I’m hoping to post Friday’s picks late on Thursday. Good luck