After the stunning success of AURORAS ENCORE at Haydock on Saturday I was really looking to stick with the National Hunt game for today’s ‘under the radar’ eye-catcher. However, there really was very little, outwith the obvious, from the jumping stuff that went in my notebook from the weekends racing and one thing I’ve learned through the years is you can’t force things in this game. It would have been very easy for me to pluck a ‘down the field’ runner just for the sake of the Blog post but that’s not my style, this blog is about providing valuable and worthwhile information to the NTF readership. So with that in mind I’m flipping to the flat side for today’s ‘one to follow‘.
Take a squint at my solitary ‘under the radar’ eye-catcher from the weekend –
EXCEL BOLT (B Smart) – Saturday – 2.45 Musselburgh – 3rd in the 5f Class 2 Conditions Stakes
Last season really did not go to plan for the Exceed And Excel gelding. He finished lame on his comeback run at Hamilton and then spend most of the season recuperating before returning at Doncaster in a competitive handicap when he possibly still wasn’t 100% right. This run at Musselburgh on Saturday was much more like it and he looked likely to throw down a challenge before wilting slightly inside the final furlong. He may well have needed that run after his troubles last term and I would expect him to come on markedly for this run where he looked much more like his 2yo self. This was only his 6th career start and it’s safe to assume there is still plenty left in the locker. The Good to Soft underfoot conditions probably wont have been ideal for him and a return to Good to Firm ground should see him perform to his optimum (his own figures and the sires stats of Exceed and Excel back this up). So far he has run exclusively at 5 furlongs but I think his stamina should stretch up to 6 furlongs and possibly even 7f given the correct conditions (Good to Firm possibly being the most crucial aspect). We must remember this horse was good enough to finish 3rd in the 2010 Norfolk Stakes and on this evidence the ability still seems intact.
Ideal conditions: Still relatively early days but should prove best on Good to Firm over 5 or 6 furlongs
Whilst I’m talking about an Exceed And Excel kid take a look at this mini angle I unearthed for his flat runners –
Exceed And Excel offspring – Good to Firm or better – 5f to 7f – May to Aug – Days since last run 15 days or more
50/261 | 19% S/R | +£205.17 BFLSP (+£106.00 ISP) – Win & Place 98/261 | 38% S/R
Figures from 2008 to present | Sourced from the excellent PROFORM database
The P&L figure is enhanced greatly by one big priced winner but even removing him from the equation leaves a handy little profit of around 40 points over the period analysed.
NTF Aintree Grand National Festival Guide
I will be closing the doors on the Aintree offer on Wednesday. If you would like to join NTF for Aintree week please sign-up at the following link –