The Cotswold Stone Supplies Ltd Silver Trophy Handicap Hurdle – 4.30 Chepstow tomorrow – is the type of race I’d normally avoid because it’s early in the season and fiercely competitive. But I usually have a look at the Hobbs runner(s) in the race as it is one he targets (3 winners and 3 seconds since 2005). He runs Zanza this time, but another one caught my eye, looking about twice the price she should be – Indefatigable.
25/1 is available as I write. The price is to a fair extent, I think, down to her being with a small yard – PR Webber – while quite a few of her rivals are members of the big battalions. On form she shouldn’t be anywhere near 25s. She’s been highly consistent since her debut, building a formline of: 31/712251. That 7th was on last season’s debut in a decent Class 2 Novices Hurdle. Dropped to class 4 next time she won by 15 lengths.
And she improved steadily to run in a Grade 2 at the festival finishing just over 5L behind EGLANTINE DU SEUIL in the Mares’ Novices Hurdle. She returned to Cheltenham a month later over 3 furlongs farther to win a Class 1 Novices Hurdle by 10 lengths. That was her first proper stamina test and it probably contributed to her registering her best Racing Post Rating. It was also on good ground. Her trainer believes she doesn’t want it too soft (good to soft forecast for tomorrow) although her knee action suggests she should have no trouble with deeper going.
She made a hash of a couple of flights in that race but appears to be a good jumper all in all given her relative inexperience. Her racing character seems genuine. I can’t quite work out her head carriage, which seems just a touch high to me. It could be that it displays enthusiasm although she seems tractable and happy to be tucked in. When given a shake up by jockey Sheehan last time she went clear quite quickly, another point in her favour as far as appetite for competition goes. Still, that slight up-tilt of the nose can indicate an underlying breathing problem, although the way she finishes and stays on belies that. We shall see.
This trip is just a touch short of what she won over last time and Chepstow is a demanding track on stamina. This should suit her very well and I have backed her each way to 4 places at a quarter the odds with Bet365 at 25/1. A handful of online bookies offer 5 places at 20/1. Skybet have yet to put up their prices but there’s a fair chance they will pay 6 places. The choice is yours.
I’ll have a saver on the Hobbs runner Zanza. He’s less consistent than Indefatigable but recorded his highest Racing Post Rating, beating his previous best by 8lbs, on his final run of the season in a first time hood. Connections believe the hood made all the difference and he wears it again tomorrow. I’ve backed him win only at 12/1 with Unibet.
Back Indefatigable at 25/1 each way to 4 places
Back Zanza win only at 12/1
Both bets are graded one-star1*
*My usual confidence classification on bets is: worth a bet: I recommend you bet this: I strongly recommend a bet. This season I’ll allocate a star to each of these, three-stars indicating most confidence.
Good luck, and be careful. Don’t bet more than you can afford to lose with a smile, no matter the source of the tip.
All the best.
Indefatigable sat well back off a hot pace, then, halfway down the back straight Sheehan asked her to move up which she did rapidly from about 12th to dispute the lead. Whether he did not expect such a sustained and immediate response from her, I don’t know, but she must have used a fair bit of energy. Turning in she was the only one on the bridle, looking much the best in the race. But she faded from two out. She’d have been much closer but for that strange move a long way from home and, perhaps she needed the race too. One to watch.
Zanza never figured and was pulled up.
Although a few bookies paid on her EW as she finished 5th (Hills went 33/1 5 places about noon) I cannot mark her as a profit in the blog bet record. That’s one of the chances you take betting early the day before. I was happy to take 25/1 to four places as I feared she would shorten much as Us And Them did last Saturday (9/1 to 4/1).
Seasonal bet record: