The Weekend Bulletin (Sat 24th June’17)
Royal Ascot has provided plenty of excitement mixed in with a few shocks such as the Aiden O’Brien hotpots Churchill and Order of St George getting turned over. Betting Insiders members have access to Big Race Guru Nick Hardman’s selections and at the time of penning this they are plenty of points ahead after the first 3 days.
Fair to say that it has been a tough meeting to fathom but given the quality of the runners in every single race that has to be expected. Nick’s picks have delivered a mix of big priced placers to keep things ticking over and also landed a very handy 25/1 winner with Zhui Feng in Wednesday’s Royal Hunt Cup!
For the current Members Report Nick contributed a comprehensive piece covering the key trends for a number of the feature races at the Royal meeting and each day he uses these as the start point for his deliberations. Below is the summary behind his selections for the aforementioned Royal Hunt Cup:-
Weds – Ascot 5.00pm
One from the Insiders Report and the trends qualifiers are Fastnet Tempest, Cote D’Azur and GK Chesterton. I will also throw in Zhui Feng who only falls down on one stat and has often run well in these big field handicaps. A few bookies go 6 places
You can find out more about his Big Race method via this interesting video.
Saturday sees the conclusion of this year’s Royal Ascot and the penultimate race of the meeting is the 6f cavalry charge known as the Wokingham Stakes and the following are Nick’s key trends.
The Wokingham Stakes (6f handicap for 3yo+)
Like many of the handicap races at the Royal Meeting, it usually attracts a bumper field, close to 30 runners. John Berry trained the winner twice with Selhurstpark Flyer in 1998 and 1999 but since then no one has repeated that feat. One interesting fact about this race is that there was a dead heat in 2003 when Fayr Jag and Ratio both passed the line together.
All bar one of the winners since 1999 finished in the top six last time out. Those that did not are 1-178. Sixteen of the last twenty finished first or second on their last start, so look for a horse in form.
Favourites have done quite well with four successful jollies in the last fifteen years, most recently Laddies Poker Two in 2010. Those to the fore in the betting do produce the majority of winners with 17 of the last 20 winners coming from the top 8 in the market.
We do get some big priced winners in this race so again do not be afraid of taking one at fairly large odds. Dandy Boy returned an SP of 33/1 in 2012, Big Timer won at 20/1 in 2008 and Dark Missile was victorious at 22/1 in 2007).
It might also pay to look at those at the head of the handicap. The last 5 winners were all rated 100+ and since the turn of the millennium we have had just two winners rated below 95. 4yo and 5yo runners dominate with all bar 2 of the last 18 winners coming from those two age groups.
Two horses have won this on their seasonal reappearance from just 20 that have tried. Horses having had a busy campaign have the worst record and those with more than 4 runs in the season are 0-68 and that might just help strike a line through a few in the field.
Finally, look for a horse that has already won over 6f as these types have been successful in 16 of the last 20 renewals. Interestingly, 12 of the 20 winners since 1997 had also won over further at either 7f or 1 mile.
They do not come much tougher than this race but the trends did pinpoint 2014 winner Baccarat and let’s hope for more of the same this year.
• Top 6 finish LTO (preferably 1st or 2nd LTO)
• Top 8 in the betting
• Aged 4yo or 5yo
• Rated 95+
• No more than 4 runs in the current season
• Won over 6f (preferably over further too)
• Carrying 8st 11lbs or more
Click here to read on and find Nick’s Wokingham Stakes picks.
Nick Hardman’s Big Race Selections – Sat 24th June’17
One from the Insiders Report and the trends point to Projection. Danzeno has run 16 times over 6f and only finished out of the places on four occasions. His form on his second start back from a break reads 12312 and he looks well treated if coming back to his best. Also interesting is Donjuan Triumphant who has a victory over Signs Of A Blessing on his CV when trained by Richard Fahey. He is another that could go well if back to form. Intisaab has twice run well here and appears to still be in form. He has also won over further which is a feature of quite a few previous winners.
Donjuan Triumphant @40/1 e/w (1/4 odds, 5 places, BFsb)
Danzeno @22/1 e/w (1/4 odds, 5 places)
Intisaab @28/1 e/w (1/4 odds, 5 places)
Together We Can Win
Darren & Steve