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NTF 1 to follow from the weekend: Live long and prosper with Nicholls chaser…

Mr Spock's jockey career failed when they couldn't find a hat to fit over his ears!!

Market Rasen hosted their big race day of the year on Saturday with the highlight on the card being the 2m6f Summer Plate Handicap Chase. The big race lived up to its star billing, producing a scintillation finish between the Lawney Hill trained I HAVE DREAMED and the Peter Bowen trained AL CO. AL CO was previously highlighted as an NTF to follow horse and he came within a short-head of landing the hat-trick, losing out in agonising fashion in a photo-finish. Depending on what the Handicapper does AL CO may well still have more to offer in the handicap sphere, preferably over a slightly longer trip than that of the 2m6f he faced in the Summer Plate.

Despite taking another step forward in his career AL CO is not the main focus of my ‘to follow’ post. That honour, however, does go to one of the other runners in the Summer Plate field.

Here is my NTF 1 to follow from the weekend –

SPOCK (P Nicholls) – Saturday 3.25 Market Rasen – Faller in the 2m6f Summer Plate Handicap Chase

Daryl Jacob was yet to really play his hand on the Paul Nicholls trained  7yo when the gelding came to grief 7 out. He had made my shortlist when I analysed the Summer Plate on the Blog on Saturday but my main worry about him was his record going right-handed compared to his record going left-handed. After this fall his record going right-handed now reads – 7-6-6-5-2-F – compared to his much more favourable record going left-handed – 1-1-R-1-2-1 – very clear indicators that he is one to avoid when racing right-handed; at least until proven otherwise.

He probably isn’t going to be one that has the ability to streak up through the ratings to lofty heights but he can certainly win more races. He looks to have plenty of juice still left in him off his current mark of 129 and connections have indicated that they may target the valuable handicap chase that is run at Newton Abbot at the beginning of September; from our point of view that is great news as Newton Abbot is a left-handed track.

SPOCK is a horse that enjoys hearing his hooves rattle off fast ground so fingers crossed we can now (EVENTUALLY!!) get a sustained period of dry weather  and Nicholls can aim his charge at ground he loves.

SPOCK ideal conditions – Left-Handed track | Good or better ground | Possibly better on a flat track such as Newton Abbot or Worcester

Now it’s your turn –

Who were the runners that caught your attention and went in your own notebook as ones to follow from the weekend?

Drop me a comment below and share your runners to follow from the weekend (Flat or Jumps) with the NTF community.

Happy ‘summer’ Punting!

Ben – (NTF)

5 responses to “NTF 1 to follow from the weekend: Live long and prosper with Nicholls chaser…”

  1. Al Co may need a break now – he was being rousted along from 4 out right up to the finish. A hard ride for his jockey and it must have taken something out of the horse.

    • Possibly but he operates at his best when rested between 16 – 60 days so I would hope for a return within that sort of period. He was being worked quite hard on Saturday but that was possibly down to the distance being a smidge on the short side for him. Hopefully the race won’t have a lasting effect on him and he will be ready to roll soon.

      Cheers – Ben (NTF)

  2. Hi Ben,just wanted to ask you in your opinion, what is the best site for stats like you have mentioned? e.g when you mentioned SPOCK such info as right hand compared to left handed wins?

    p.s I had the winner of the King George on Saturday,as sometimes common sense prevails over stats, my thoughts simply told me not to back against a ARC Winner!!!

    • Hi Lee

      The Proform database has been my analysis tool for some time now although you can simply use the Racing Post and similar sites to find the info, however, it does take slightly longer when you are not using a database.

      There are others such as HorseRaceBase that will also allow you to research the information easily but the majority of my analysis is gained using Proform.

      p.s Great stuff landing the odds on the King George, it was a fantastic race to watch 🙂

      Cheers – Ben (NTF)

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