Stat of the Day, 12th May 2013
For the second day on a row, we managed to be on a horse that got caught late on. The Dark Wizard wasn't as close to winning as Friday's selection, but led inside the final furlong before being overhauled by a couple of runners to finish third. It was a decent / respectable performance, but not one that helps our cause. It hasn't been the best of weeks, littered with near misses and I'm hoping to at least end the week on a high.
This quest takes me to look at a Class 5 Handicap Chase over 2m 7f on good ground where a grand total of sixteen runners are expected to contest the...
Certain trainers pop up with regularity on SotD, but the name Michael Gates is possibly a new one to many of you. Indeed, with a record of just six winners from 107 races, you might be wondering where I'm going.
However of those six wins, five have come from just twenty-eight chase events in the last two years and his record here at Worcester in chases is three wins from just seven attempts for 22pts profit at SP and 25.1pts at Betfair SP.
So, from a pretty nondescript career record, we can see that chasing is his forté and that his horses are well suited to this track. He has two horses running here today: Full Ov Beans won a chase here back in October, but is switched back to hurdles today, where he runs off a much lower mark. That said, he's going to be well up against it and the current 14/1 price reflects the difficulty of his task.
The opposite, however, can be said of Michael's other runner here and our selection for the day: Handsome Buddy, who will highly likely go off as favourite, but I feel that would be justified.
He comes in great form, having landed a similar contest over course and distance just 12 days ago, but that was a Class 4 affair and he drops back into Class 5 company today, so although he has a 9lb penalty for that recent win, today's task looks considerably easier, on paper at least! He won by some 8 lengths that day and he was still pulling away at the end of the race, looking like he had plenty in reserve. If he approaches this race in the same manner, then the 9lbs shouldn't be enough to stop him.
The manner of that win here at the end of last month coupled with the drop in class has unfortunately been reflected in the price available on the opening show, but I'm confident that he'll land this one, so I've placed a 1pt win bet on Handsome Buddy at 100/30 BOG with William Hill, but as always I strongly recommend that you...