Our racing expert Ben Linfoot seeks out the value in the bet365 Cambridgeshire and the rest of Newmarket and Haydock on Saturday.
Recommended Bets: Saturday, September 28
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We’re all set for a fantastic day’s racing at Newmarket on Saturday with three top-class juvenile contests kicking off the afternoon before 33 runners do battle in the nine-furlong cavalry charge that is the bet365 Cambridgeshire Handicap.
It’s a belting renewal of the Juddmonte Middle Park with unbeaten horses like Earthlight and Mums Tipple dominating the market after some tremendous wins already this season.
However, their presence means we are getting generous odds about Ger Lyons’ SISKIN who is four from four following some exciting displays of his own this campaign.
He’s worth backing at 5/1 (Ladbrokes, Coral).
His last two victories at the Curragh, where he dispatched Monarch Of Egypt on each occasion, were quality performances rubber-stamped by his trademark cruising speed and rapid turn of foot.
His Group One success in the Phoenix Stakes last time, on ground that wouldn’t have suited, marked him out as a colt out of the very top drawer and it’s his striking turn of pace that could be the potent weapon against a superb field on Saturday.
In the bet365 Cambridgeshire I’ll cut straight to the chase and suggest backing KORCHO for the Cambridgeshire at 22/1 (1/5 1,2,3,4,5,6 General) each-way, even if his odds have already tumbled on Friday afternoon.
I must admit I thought I’d be siding with him at much bigger odds, but plenty of other people must’ve had the same idea and his price has crashed. I almost pulled him out late, but I’ll bite the bullet and side with him at his reduced odds as I really like his claims.
Trainer Hughie Morrison, of course, has a better fancied horse for this race in Le Don De Vie, but in Korcho he has an exciting second string to call on as well.
Like his stablemate, he’s an unexposed three-year-old with good form over further and he looks the type to thrive over a strongly-run nine furlongs considering his ability over 10.
This season he’s won at Windsor off 76 and 81, the latter win by five lengths, and he backed up those victories with good performances at Newmarket and Goodwood off his new mark in the low 90s.
It’s his Newmarket second on the July Course, though, that stands out, as he travelled well that day before finishing second to Walkinthesand, with three Cambridgeshire rivals in behind (Majestic Dawn, Dark Vision and Good Birthday).
The form is strong with Good Birthday and Migration winning on their next starts, but it seems all wrong that the three Cambridgeshire rivals Korcho beat that day are all (still) shorter than him in the betting.
His one subsequent run at Goodwood was a four-length sixth to Forest Of Dean over 10 furlongs and he only weakened late on having been bang in with a chance approaching the final quarter mile, so I wouldn’t dismiss his chance on that run, and there’s every chance he’ll improve for this track and trip.
I don’t think they can go too quick for him here as he stays so well, while his half-brother, Credit Swap, won the Cambridgeshire for Michael Wigham in 2010.
While Korcho is the main fancy I am going to have a smaller each-way bet on Jim Goldie’s NICHOLAS T as well as he looks underestimated at 50/1 (General 1/5 1,2,3,4,5,6).
He’s a seven-year-old and more exposed than most in this field, which helps explains his big odds, but on the plus side he’s been in the form of his life since Ben Robinson started riding him on a regular basis and he’s actually 3lb well in.
The duo clearly get on and they’ve racked up a formidable record at Ayr this season, winning together on three occasions off marks of 81, 85 and 93, while he was a neck second to Certain Lad last time off 96.
His recent good form isn’t restricted to Ayr, though, as he’s run well at Doncaster and Ascot as well, and he shaped nicely when seventh in the Silver Cambridgeshire at this track last season where he was third in his group and he lost a few places late on.
A perennial hold-up horse, he’ll love the hell for leather gallop and who can forget Jim Goldie’s Rowley Mile specialist Nanton, who never won the Cambridgeshire but was second, third, fourth and fifth in the race.
Nicholas T is a similar type of horse and he’s holding his form so well I can’t resist a little go on him.
Over at Haydock it’s heavy ground and getting heavier and at the time of writing they have just abandoned Friday’s card, so there has to be a doubt over whether Saturday’s card will even go ahead.
Still, if it does get the green light I want MAKANAH onside in the Virgin Bet Handicap (3.15) at 9/1 (General).
Julie Camacho’s son of Mayson ran well on soft ground the only time he has encountered such conditions at Thirsk, and while it will be softer on Saturday I’ve a hunch he’ll handle the ground better than most.
With plenty of pace to chase from the likes of Acclaim The Nation, Copper Knight, Hyperfocus and She Can Boogie, Makanah could get a nice tow into this and his last two efforts prove he’s in really good form.
He returned from a mini break with a good close-up fourth behind Dakota Gold in the Sky Bet And Symphony Group Handicap at York’s Ebor Festival and he ran an eye-catching race in the Portland, racing alone on the far side where he hit the front inside the final furlong before the closers got to him.
Back down to five furlongs on testing ground, at a track that’s likely to suit, he looks a good bet at 9/1.
Posted at 1700 BST on 27/09/19
Ben Linfoot's Value Bet aim: The Value Bet is designed to generate long-term profit by searching for overpriced horses in the feature weekend races and at the big Festivals in the UK and Ireland. Running total: +353.39pts to advised stakes/prices (from inception of Value Bet column in January 2010 to current).
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