The 2012/13 National Hunt season came to an end this Saturday with the usual mixed code jamboree at Sandown. But fear not all you jumping lovers as it kicked straight back into gear yesterday!!
Today’s ‘1 to follow’ horse was highlighted by me on my NTF Facebook page yesterday and will also be featuring in a forthcoming FREE NTF guide that will be available to everyone on the FREE NTF Updates list…
NTF 1 to follow from the weekend: BILLIE MAGERN…
BILLIE MAGERN (N Twiston-Davies) – 3rd in 3m Class 2 Hcp Chase at Huntingdon (5.05) – Sunday 29th April
This Nigel Twiston-Davies 9yo was coming back off a short break yesterday and despite hitting a few fences on the way round (not an unusual trait of his!) he finished with plenty of wind in his sails to only go down by 4 & 1/2 lengths and a neck to the improving TRIOLO D’ ALENE (N Henderson) & the classy and consistent JUNIOR (D Pipe). For Huntingdon standards this was a pretty hot race and they went a fair lick up front, with a number of horses disputing the lead. That wouldn’t have been completely ideal for Billie Magern as he is probably that much better when he can either dictate or help dictate a less frenetic pace. With that in mind his finishing rattle was eye-catching and was a strong indicator he is about to hit form at his favourite time of the year.
Take a look at his monthly splits…
May – Sept (Summer) – 23251111F1111
Oct – Apr (Winter) – 95326PF773502815PP35F9F53
Pretty clear indicators that when the sun shines so does Billie!
He has other strong patterns to his form as well…
All of his wins have come on Good or better ground (Form on Good+ is 9 wins from 23 | Form on G/S or worse is 0/14)
All Chase wins (8 of 9 career wins) have come in single figure fields (Has run OK in 10+ fields so would be considered for E/W purposes)
If we add into all this the fact he is also very well handicapped on old form – is currently running off 125, last win was off 133 and has run well at marks up to 142 – then the signs are that he will be visiting the winners closure in the coming months.
So where to now for Billie Magern?
If you want a summer horse this is your lad! I expect the short break he had between his decent 4th in the Grimthorpe at the start of March and his run at Huntingdon yesterday was a deliberate plan to freshen him up for summer targets. The first target that springs to mind is a tilt at something at Perth, a track he is unbeaten at in 3 starts. The obvious race would be the Perth Gold Cup (yes, I know I’ve already highlighted Problema Tic for the race in this column!) although there would be no guarantee of the single figure field that he seems to enjoy so much. He also has a good record at Stratford (2111) so if they can find something there for him over the summer months you would be hopeful of him striking gold.
The facts about this lad are that he is well handicapped, loves the summer months and, based on yesterdays evidence, he is looking ripe to find the winners enclosure again. Ignore him at your pearl in the coming months…
BILLIE MAGERN ideal conditions – Good or better ground | Fields of 9 or less (E/W consideration in larger fields) | Running between May & September | Possibly a few lbs better on flat tracks
p.s. His record under the following conditions – Good or better ground | Fields of 9 or less | May – September – reads 31111F111
Bet The Horses: Free Guide…
Hopefully plenty of you managed to download the free guide that was on offer from the guys at Bet The Horses? The Marathon Masters guide was in fine form at Ripon on Saturday as it highlighted the front 2 in the big race of the day at the garden course, the forecast paying a rather tasty £25.20.
As far as I’m aware they will be pulling stumps on the guide pretty soon so make sure you hop on over to their site and grab your own copy…
Ben – (NTF).