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GI MAC
23 Dec 13 08:18
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Date Joined: 23 Sep 04
| Topic/replies: 3,403 | Blogger: GI MAC's blog
A bit early to start analysing this race, but I thought it would be interesting to see what difference (if any) the new conditions will make to this conundrum and keep a note of qualifiers. Prior to this season, all that was required to qualify your horse for the final was to run in one of the 18 qualifying races held throughout the season, even declaring your horse for an abandoned qualifier was good enough, which was the case with 2009 winner Kayf Aramis if memory serves me.

Previous Winners
2013    Holywell                   2nd in qualifier
2012    Cape Tribulation    4th in qualifier
2011    Buena Vista        7th in qualifier
2010    Buena Vista        8th in qualifier
2009    Kayf Aramis        Entered in an abandoned qualifier
2008    Ballyfitz            1st in qualifier
2007    Oscar Park        2nd in qualifier
2006    Kadoun            11th in qualifier
2005    Oulart            11th in qualifier
2004    Creon            8th in qualifier

The main change for this season is your horse needs to finish in the first 8 of a qualifier to make it to the final. Looking back at the previous 10 renewals, three winners would not have qualified under this new rule; the aforementioned Kayf Aramis, Kadoun and Oulart. From the 30 placed horses 10 would not have qualified. Basically, around one third of win and placed horses would not have qualified under this new condition.

This is reasonably significant I guess, but the majority of these “non-qualifiers” were back when there weren’t as many qualifying races; there were only 8 in 2009/10, last season there were 18. The 5 French qualifiers which have been added over the years are pointless from a punting perspective, I am not aware of any runners in the final that qualified via one of these.

Another change is the increase in the number of qualifying races, up from 18 to 20 this season. For the first time the series visits Scotland and Wales, with qualifiers at Musselburgh and Chepstow added to those held in England, Ireland and France. Realistically the number has risen from 13 to 15 when removing the French ones.

This increase in qualifiers offsets the new “first 8” rule. Apart from the odd blemish like Kayf Aramis, I just don’t see what effect these changes will have on the final of the series. It will still be relatively easy to qualify; three qualifiers already run this season have had 9 or less runners. A trainer can still run his horse early and get his mark dropped before the festival, like 5 of the last 10 winners, if that’s what needed.

Alas, it’s still going to be a nightmare finding the winner in a race which carries an average SP of 24/1 and only one winning favourite from the past 10 years!

Below is a list of qualifying races and qualifiers so far, I’ll keep adding to the list as the season progresses. I have made the assumption that Marlin Bay hasn’t qualified, he PU up in the 7 runner Aintree qualifier, if I’m wrong here let me know.

Qualifying Races & Qualifiers

Cheltenham - Friday, October 18
Trackmate, Benbane Head, So Fine, On The Bridge, Up For An Oscar, Act Of Kalanisi, Rare Bob, Cross Kennon

Aintree - Sunday, October 27
Ely Brown, Gauvain, Lovcen, Orsippus, Burton Port, First Fandango, (Marlin Bay PU in a 7 runner field – does he qualify?)

Auteuil - Sunday, November 3
Seabreeze, D'Ho Portos, Marzio Astigos, Karnat, Saphina De Kerser, Anik De Maspie, Tsar Des Bieffes, Fabuleux Farceur.

Kempton Park - Monday, November 4
God’s Own, Like Minded, Pateese, Seventh Sign, Grand Crus, The Crafty Butcher.

Newbury - Friday, November 29
Mickie, Pateese, Red Not Blue, Twelve Roses, Kilmurvy, Western Warhorse, Invicta Lake, Minella For Stake.

Sandown Park - Saturday, December 7
Saphir Du Rhea, Home Run, Whisper, Upswing, Utopie Des Bordes, Drum Valley, Oscar Magic, Bourne.

Carlisle - Sunday, December 15
Kaki De La Pree, Pineau De Re, Trustan Times, Our Joey, Neptune Equester, Lie Forrit, Rock Relief

Cagnes sur Mer - Monday, December 16
Wincanton - Thursday, December 26
Leopardstown - Sunday, December 29
Cagnes sur Mer - Sunday, January 9
Warwick - Saturday, January 11
Pau - Sunday, January 16
Huntingdon - Friday, January 24
Punchestown - Sunday January 26
Musselburgh - Sunday, February 2
Pau - Sunday, February 2
Exeter - Sunday February 9
Haydock Park - Saturday, February 15
Chepstow - Saturday, February 22

NOTES
Four time winner Jonjo has a couple of interesting qualifiers to date: Burton Port, whose hurdle mark has now dropped to 135, and Minella For Steak who luckily finished bang on the money in 8th! The Crafty Butcher was another notable qualifier, sent over by Michael Hourigan and finished last of 6 runners in the Kempton race, his mark has since dropped 4lbs from 139 to 134, Grand Crus also qualified in this race.
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Report sageform December 23, 2013 8:04 PM GMT
It will be interesting to see if the new standards make a difference to the weight range. The cut off has been around 135 in most years. Anything rated less than that has been balloted out.
Report alleged22 December 23, 2013 10:56 PM GMT
Buena vista Love
Report GI MAC December 30, 2013 7:51 AM GMT
Qualifying Races & Qualifiers

Cheltenham - Friday, October 18
Trackmate, Benbane Head, So Fine, On The Bridge, Up For An Oscar, Act Of Kalanisi, Rare Bob, Cross Kennon.

Aintree - Sunday, October 27
Ely Brown, Gauvain, Lovcen, Orsippus, Burton Port, First Fandango, (Marlin Bay PU in a 7 runner field assumed  he does not  qualify).

Auteuil - Sunday, November 3
Seabreeze, D'Ho Portos, Marzio Astigos, Karnat, Saphina De Kerser, Anik De Maspie, Tsar Des Bieffes, Fabuleux Farceur.

Kempton Park - Monday, November 4
God’s Own, Like Minded, Pateese, Seventh Sign, Grand Crus, The Crafty Butcher.

Newbury - Friday, November 29
Mickie, Pateese, Red Not Blue, Twelve Roses, Kilmurvy, Western Warhorse, Invicta Lake, Minella For Stake.

Sandown Park - Saturday, December 7
Saphir Du Rhea, Home Run, Whisper, Upswing, Utopie Des Bordes, Drum Valley, Oscar Magic, Bourne.

Carlisle - Sunday, December 15
Kaki De La Pree, Pineau De Re, Trustan Times, Our Joey, Neptune Equester, Lie Forrit, Rock Relief (2 pulled up in 9 runner field, assume the last of those two Howizee did not qualify).

Cagnes sur Mer - Monday, December 16
Could not find results, abandoned possibly.

Wincanton - Thursday, December 26
Champagne West, Old Tricks, Southfield Theatre, Oscar Prairie, Seabright, Party Rock, Chesil Beach Boy (Only 8 runners, assuming Upswing did not qualify, fell at last).

Leopardstown - Saturday, December 28
Courage, Seefood, Supreme Carolina, Gold Patrol, Followmeuptocarlow, El Fontan, Sarabad, Vics Canvas.

Cagnes sur Mer - Sunday, January 9
Warwick - Saturday, January 11
Pau - Sunday, January 16
Huntingdon - Friday, January 24
Punchestown - Sunday January 26
Musselburgh - Sunday, February 2
Pau - Sunday, February 2
Exeter - Sunday February 9
Haydock Park - Saturday, February 15
Chepstow - Saturday, February 22
Report sageform December 30, 2013 5:04 PM GMT
The Warwick qualifier is often informative but it is likely to be soft/heavy ground this year.
Report Swardean January 8, 2014 4:50 PM GMT
Grand Vision has an entry in the warwick qualifier and this horses looks a likely type.   Strip a lot fitter than LTO, ground although soft will be better than new years day and if this one qualifies, it would be guaranteed a run on the big day.

Connections havent lost faith and its basically still only an novice and hence improving.  Cheltenham form and coudl go well.
Report sageform January 8, 2014 5:22 PM GMT
I know that Terry Warner was really angry that although he won a qualifier last season he missed the cut and was obliged to run in the novice instead. Surely a winner of a qualifier should be allowed to run in the final? He is nowhere near as well handicapped now.
Report GI MAC January 8, 2014 6:27 PM GMT
Trainer was bigging this one up in his stable tour back in December, mentioned the World Hurdle! Think pertempts would be more realistic, but certainly suggests they haven't lost faith.

JJ has Oscra Fortune entered, will be watching this one, Holywell was second in this race last year before winning final.
Report GI MAC January 8, 2014 6:27 PM GMT
*Oscar
Report GI MAC January 12, 2014 8:48 AM GMT
Qualifying Races & Qualifiers

Cheltenham - Friday, October 18
Trackmate, Benbane Head, So Fine, On The Bridge, Up For An Oscar, Act Of Kalanisi, Rare Bob, Cross Kennon.

Aintree - Sunday, October 27
Ely Brown, Gauvain, Lovcen, Orsippus, Burton Port, First Fandango, (Marlin Bay PU in a 7 runner field assumed  he does not  qualify).

Auteuil - Sunday, November 3
Seabreeze, D'Ho Portos, Marzio Astigos, Karnat, Saphina De Kerser, Anik De Maspie, Tsar Des Bieffes, Fabuleux Farceur.

Kempton Park - Monday, November 4
God’s Own, Like Minded, Pateese, Seventh Sign, Grand Crus, The Crafty Butcher.

Newbury - Friday, November 29
Mickie, Pateese, Red Not Blue, Twelve Roses, Kilmurvy, Western Warhorse, Invicta Lake, Minella For Stake.

Sandown Park - Saturday, December 7
Saphir Du Rhea, Home Run, Whisper, Upswing, Utopie Des Bordes, Drum Valley, Oscar Magic, Bourne.

Carlisle - Sunday, December 15
Kaki De La Pree, Pineau De Re, Trustan Times, Our Joey, Neptune Equester, Lie Forrit, Rock Relief (2 pulled up in 9 runner field, assume the last of those two Howizee did not qualify).

Cagnes sur Mer - Monday, December 16
Could not find results, abandoned possibly.

Wincanton - Thursday, December 26
Champagne West, Old Tricks, Southfield Theatre, Oscar Prairie, Seabright, Party Rock, Chesil Beach Boy (Only 8 runners, assuming Upswing did not qualify, fell at last).

Leopardstown - Saturday, December 28
Courage, Seefood, Supreme Carolina, Gold Patrol, Followmeuptocarlow, El Fontan, Sarabad, Vics Canvas.

Cagnes sur Mer - Sunday, January 9
Can't find results atm

Warwick - Saturday, January 11
Uncle Jimmy, Grand Vision, Drop Out Joe, Bygones Sovereign, Ballyculla, Oscar Fortune, Who Owns Me, Billy Twyford

Pau - Sunday, January 16
Huntingdon - Friday, January 24
Punchestown - Sunday January 26
Musselburgh - Sunday, February 2
Pau - Sunday, February 2
Exeter - Sunday February 9
Haydock Park - Saturday, February 15
Chepstow - Saturday, February 22
Report sageform January 12, 2014 9:24 AM GMT
Very good run by Grand Vision under a big weight. I still think he will struggle in he final unless the rating comes down a bit.
Report HaylingBilly January 12, 2014 10:11 AM GMT
I too have been watching Grand Vision since he came back. Yesterday was much improved over Jan 1st run and now needs a break and maybe one more run before Pertemps. Need to be careful on the rating coz last three years the bottom rating to get in the race was 133, 135 and 137 and the winners have been rated 138, 142 and 140 so not much margin to play with. 140 gets him in and if he is primed and fit he will carry that better than yesterday. Good luck.
Report GI MAC January 22, 2014 10:33 AM GMT
I notice Grand Vision was only raised 2lbs after his last run, to a rating of 142. I watched his race again and he met some trouble in running, so I think it was better than it looked and is bound to come on from the race. Based on his AB 3rd a couple of years ago, 142 could prove a decent mark (Boston Bob and Lovcen both reached a rating of 150 over hurdles); he had smart handicap form before that race also.

Lightly raced, he could have more to come (only 8) and will surely be aimed at this race, trainer mentioned him as a dark horse for the World Hurdle in a recent stable tour, so he’s still highly thought of. Should have no difficulty getting in, and will have a reasonable weight, potentially a lightweight if we get a 150+ horse run, and we know he handles the course.

I have a rule never to bet in the handicaps until decs are out and there’s some NRNB around, but I’m hugely tempted by the 25/1 which is on offer.
Report Swardean January 25, 2014 12:28 AM GMT
Already had a nibble myself GI MAC, cant do too much damage at those prices.

Not much in the qualifier today, winner likely to go the novice route and the others unlikely to get in, unless significant improvement.
Report gutfeeling January 28, 2014 3:36 AM GMT
Gi Mac the French races you can't find weren't abandoned on 16/12/13, I'll get the missus to help me list the results for you on Sunday night/Monday morning if this helps you as am away working atm as she is fluent and i don't know which of the races was a qualifier.
if you translate the language the French horse names obviously also get translated so i get a bit stuck but here's the link to the 16/12/13 results just in case you can do this yourself.
Best wishes.

http://www9.france-galop.com/fgweb/domaines/courses/courses_calendrier.aspx
Report GI MAC January 28, 2014 6:51 AM GMT
Tried the link but couldn't get anywhere. If you could list the qualifiers gutfeeling, that would be much appreciated.

thanks
Report gutfeeling January 29, 2014 10:32 AM GMT
Pm'd you the results GI Mac.
Report GI MAC January 29, 2014 8:08 PM GMT
got them, cheers.
Report Swardean January 29, 2014 8:54 PM GMT
Grand Vision entered up again on Saturday.   Owner did say it would take some getting fit after his absence, but hopefully won't overplay his hand here
Report nocturnal January 30, 2014 11:30 PM GMT
GI
Looks like theres a qualifier this sunday at punchestown?
Just had a peak at last years results as a starting point,have a look at the time comparison with the stayers!
The horse who finnished 3rd last year is entered sunday,be interesting to see if he gets into the top 8,he,s had one go already in a qualifier.
Report onehundredandeighty January 31, 2014 12:06 AM GMT
Which oss? ^
Report Ramruma January 31, 2014 7:29 AM GMT
Which oss? ^

Jetson finished third in the Pertemps Final last year and is entered in the Punchestown qualifier on Sunday. He finished mid-pack (10th of 21) in a Leopaardstown qualifier on 28 December.
Report nocturnal January 31, 2014 5:06 PM GMT
180
Thanks Ramruna, spot on,on a similar mark to last year at the mo.
Report onehundredandeighty January 31, 2014 9:28 PM GMT
Cheers chaps
Report GI MAC February 2, 2014 2:51 PM GMT
Hope you backed him Nocturnal, he'll go up for that, higher than when he was third last year.
Report GI MAC February 2, 2014 3:25 PM GMT
Qualifying Races & Qualifiers

Cheltenham - Friday, October 18
Trackmate, Benbane Head, So Fine, On The Bridge, Up For An Oscar, Act Of Kalanisi, Rare Bob, Cross Kennon.

Aintree - Sunday, October 27
Ely Brown, Gauvain, Lovcen, Orsippus, Burton Port, First Fandango, (Marlin Bay PU in a 7 runner field assumed  he does not  qualify).

Auteuil - Sunday, November 3
Seabreeze, D'Ho Portos, Marzio Astigos, Karnat, Saphina De Kerser, Anik De Maspie, Tsar Des Bieffes, Fabuleux Farceur.

Kempton Park - Monday, November 4
God’s Own, Like Minded, Pateese, Seventh Sign, Grand Crus, The Crafty Butcher.

Newbury - Friday, November 29
Mickie, Pateese, Red Not Blue, Twelve Roses, Kilmurvy, Western Warhorse, Invicta Lake, Minella For Stake.

Sandown Park - Saturday, December 7
Saphir Du Rhea, Home Run, Whisper, Upswing, Utopie Des Bordes, Drum Valley, Oscar Magic, Bourne.

Carlisle - Sunday, December 15
Kaki De La Pree, Pineau De Re, Trustan Times, Our Joey, Neptune Equester, Lie Forrit, Rock Relief (2 pulled up in 9 runner field, assume the last of those two Howizee did not qualify).

Cagnes sur Mer - Monday, December 16
Lunatorio, Bois Du Plesses, Tomtit, Tango Chop, Heure D’Hiver, Venise Jelois, Air Shot, Pops Borget

Wincanton - Thursday, December 26
Champagne West, Old Tricks, Southfield Theatre, Oscar Prairie, Seabright, Party Rock, Chesil Beach Boy (Only 8 runners, assuming Upswing did not qualify, fell at last).

Leopardstown - Saturday, December 28
Courage, Seefood, Supreme Carolina, Gold Patrol, Followmeuptocarlow, El Fontan, Sarabad, Vics Canvas.

Cagnes sur Mer - Sunday, January 5
Catmoves, My Maj, Attikos, Tango Lima, Wanaba, Don Lujan

Warwick - Saturday, January 11
Uncle Jimmy, Grand Vision, Drop Out Joe, Bygones Sovereign, Ballyculla, Oscar Fortune, Who Owns Me, Billy Twyford

Pau - Sunday, January 16
Rocketir, Taupin Rochelais, My Summer, Voiladenuo, Monsamou, Lovely Kiss, Temps Au Temps Ire, Soleil De Vati

Huntingdon - Friday, January 24
Josies Orders, Dawn Twister, San Telm, Cannon Fodder, Milan Bound, Monetary Fund, Seymour Eric, Seven Woods

Punchestown – Sunday, February 2
Jetson, Thunder And Roses, Inis Meain, Festive Felon, Gold Patrol, Clonard Lad, Sadler’s Risk, Questions Answered

Musselburgh - Sunday, February 2
Wyse Hill Teabags, Mister Dillon, Crowning Jewel, Any Given Moment, Attaglance, Pay The King, Capellanus, Golden Plan

Pau - Sunday, February 2
Exeter - Sunday February 9
Haydock Park - Saturday, February 15
Chepstow - Saturday, February 22
Report deepingfox February 2, 2014 7:33 PM GMT
JETSON ran 3rd in the Pertemps Final last year off 137, having got a little too far back, and sprinting past 10 horses up the hill, to be beaten 2 lengths.

He had missed the Pertemps Final in 2012, having won the Leopardstown Qualifier but was balloted out as just too low in the weights.

After last year run he was beaten by a horse at Aintree (Battle Group) that was 20lbs well in, and then took him on again at Haydock and was narrowly beaten at closer weights (off 143 rating).

He stalked the leaders in todays qualifier, and won nicely on ground that was softer than ideal.

He is bred from probably the most successful jumping mare in recent times.

He stays very well up the Cheltenham Hill.

He will get in the weights.

He has a 5lb claimer to ride him this time.

His defeats last year, and change of running style (closer to pace) shows lessons learned, and most likely a better chance than last year.

This is MY FESTIVAL BANKER alongside FAUGHEEN in the Neptune.
Report nocturnal February 2, 2014 7:57 PM GMT
Fair to say he scraped in,love to say I waded in GI,however i only had small saver as i thought he might be in handicap protection mode.
Having read the excellent post from Deepingfox above,it makes perfect sense that connections may feel they have unfinnished business re the final.
Will await his new mark with interest,as mentioned earlier the form of last years race bears close inspection.
Report deepingfox February 2, 2014 8:35 PM GMT
Noc,

Gutted he got beat last year, I thought he didn't get ridden close enough, for the pace of the race, and finished like Pegasus (proving the point!).

Backed him again at Aintree, and got beaten by the proverbial "handicap tartar" - Battle Group.

Great to see Jessie Harrington say that the horse is going back for the same three races in England, at Cheltenham, Aintree and Haydock this spring.

Unfinished Business indeed, and I bet they cant believe the quick fall down the weights, c/w the three top performances he put up last spring in England.
Report nocturnal February 2, 2014 10:56 PM GMT
DF.....I did not back him last year,it was only watching the replay last week that his run stood out,on ground probably softer than ideal,he finnished best of the lot.
Even more so was the time,25 secs faster than the stayers ran on the same day/distance,yes they carried less weight,the fourth home though had 11-8.
If there is any good in the going f/c thursday he will be a player.
GL
Report Fabulous February 2, 2014 11:26 PM GMT
Been following him for a couple of seasons now, and pleased to see him going for Pertemps again. He was definitely being run to get his mark down, and I stuck him down as my handicap plot horse on that thread before his last run.

Got him in a good few AP bets, but although I backed him today, I was the same as nocturnal, and thought he'd be in handicap protection mode, so didn't have much on Cry

I'm with you deepingfox, probably my number 1 hope for the Festival. Main dangers at the moment (like there won't be a handful in the race Laugh) are Seefood, and Oscar Fortune.
Report illinois_riki February 3, 2014 4:18 PM GMT
What OR will you need to get into this race now with only first 8 qualifying ? I think the lowest weight last year was 10-13 - will this mean we could have something lurking way down the handicap ?
Report GI MAC February 9, 2014 4:19 PM GMT
Qualifying Races & Qualifiers

Cheltenham - Friday, October 18
Trackmate, Benbane Head, So Fine, On The Bridge, Up For An Oscar, Act Of Kalanisi, Rare Bob, Cross Kennon.

Aintree - Sunday, October 27
Ely Brown, Gauvain, Lovcen, Orsippus, Burton Port, First Fandango, (Marlin Bay PU in a 7 runner field assumed  he does not  qualify).

Auteuil - Sunday, November 3
Seabreeze, D'Ho Portos, Marzio Astigos, Karnat, Saphina De Kerser, Anik De Maspie, Tsar Des Bieffes, Fabuleux Farceur.

Kempton Park - Monday, November 4
God’s Own, Like Minded, Pateese, Seventh Sign, Grand Crus, The Crafty Butcher.

Newbury - Friday, November 29
Mickie, Pateese, Red Not Blue, Twelve Roses, Kilmurvy, Western Warhorse, Invicta Lake, Minella For Stake.

Sandown Park - Saturday, December 7
Saphir Du Rhea, Home Run, Whisper, Upswing, Utopie Des Bordes, Drum Valley, Oscar Magic, Bourne.

Carlisle - Sunday, December 15
Kaki De La Pree, Pineau De Re, Trustan Times, Our Joey, Neptune Equester, Lie Forrit, Rock Relief (2 pulled up in 9 runner field, assume the last of those two Howizee did not qualify).

Cagnes sur Mer - Monday, December 16
Lunatorio, Bois Du Plesses, Tomtit, Tango Chop, Heure D’Hiver, Venise Jelois, Air Shot, Pops Borget

Wincanton - Thursday, December 26
Champagne West, Old Tricks, Southfield Theatre, Oscar Prairie, Seabright, Party Rock, Chesil Beach Boy (Only 8 runners, assuming Upswing did not qualify, fell at last).

Leopardstown - Saturday, December 28
Courage, Seefood, Supreme Carolina, Gold Patrol, Followmeuptocarlow, El Fontan, Sarabad, Vics Canvas.

Cagnes sur Mer - Sunday, January 5
Catmoves, My Maj, Attikos, Tango Lima, Wanaba, Don Lujan

Warwick - Saturday, January 11
Uncle Jimmy, Grand Vision, Drop Out Joe, Bygones Sovereign, Ballyculla, Oscar Fortune, Who Owns Me, Billy Twyford

Pau - Sunday, January 16
Rocketir, Taupin Rochelais, My Summer, Voiladenuo, Monsamou, Lovely Kiss, Temps Au Temps Ire, Soleil De Vati

Huntingdon - Friday, January 24
Josies Orders, Dawn Twister, San Telm, Cannon Fodder, Milan Bound, Monetary Fund, Seymour Eric, Seven Woods

Punchestown – Sunday, February 2
Jetson, Thunder And Roses, Inis Meain, Festive Felon, Gold Patrol, Clonard Lad, Sadler’s Risk, Questions Answered

Musselburgh - Sunday, February 2
Wyse Hill Teabags, Mister Dillon, Crowning Jewel, Any Given Moment, Attaglance, Pay The King, Capellanus, Golden Plan

Pau - Sunday, February 2
TBC

Exeter - Sunday February 9
Fingal Bay, If In Doubt, Imperial Leader, Quartz De Thaix, Broadway Buffalo, Old Tricks, Carole's Destrier, Tweedledrum

Haydock Park - Saturday, February 15
Chepstow - Saturday, February 22
Report GI MAC February 9, 2014 4:20 PM GMT
Do you think Hobbs has placed a bet on himself to win this race !!
Report jasey February 9, 2014 4:57 PM GMT
He always has good record in the qualifiers
Report Swardean February 10, 2014 9:10 PM GMT
A very interesting runner in the qualifier on Saturday is Top Wood.   This horse is trained by David Pipe who always likes to plot one up for this race, is extremely lightly raced and likely to have had a issue that has kept it off the track for a year.  However, in its runs so far (as just a 5yo) it was very encouraging and I can expect significant improvement now a little older and also stepped up in trip.  Owned by good connections this could be one to watch on Saturday, especially if a bit of support in the market.

It has an alternate engagement on saturday in a race funded by the yards sponsor, also a qualifier, but once again, obviously considered as having a bit of ability and targeting a longer term race.
Report CVByrne February 10, 2014 9:14 PM GMT
Somebody correct me if I'm wrong but this season you have to run and end in top 6 in a qualifier to qualify for the final yes?
Report duffy February 10, 2014 9:36 PM GMT
OP reckons first 8.
Report CVByrne February 10, 2014 9:42 PM GMT
Used to be first 8, but somehow I have a memory of rules changing to get rid of the abandoned loophole and changed it to top 6 from top 8.
Report GI MAC February 10, 2014 9:46 PM GMT
Top 8 qualify, new rule for this season.
Report CVByrne February 10, 2014 9:46 PM GMT
Yeah it is first 8, not first 6. The abandoned loophole is removed also.
Report gutfeeling February 11, 2014 2:58 PM GMT
Pm sent GI Mac, Pau race result.

Thought Broadway Buffalo ran a interesting race behind Fingal Bay on Sunday.
Report GI MAC February 11, 2014 4:34 PM GMT
Cheers pal, be nice if one of these French types turned up!

Indeed, Broadway Buffalo interesting, should get in easily enough on his current mark.
Report sageform February 11, 2014 7:45 PM GMT
Philip Hobbs has certainly thrown 2 new hats in the ring. Fingal Bay could be hard to beat if he suffers no effects after a lay off while If in Doubt might be the JP. number 1.
Report GI MAC February 16, 2014 7:48 AM GMT
Qualifying Races & Qualifiers

Cheltenham - Friday, October 18
Trackmate, Benbane Head, So Fine, On The Bridge, Up For An Oscar, Act Of Kalanisi, Rare Bob, Cross Kennon.

Aintree - Sunday, October 27
Ely Brown, Gauvain, Lovcen, Orsippus, Burton Port, First Fandango, (Marlin Bay PU in a 7 runner field assumed  he does not  qualify).

Auteuil - Sunday, November 3
Seabreeze, D'Ho Portos, Marzio Astigos, Karnat, Saphina De Kerser, Anik De Maspie, Tsar Des Bieffes, Fabuleux Farceur.

Kempton Park - Monday, November 4
God’s Own, Like Minded, Pateese, Seventh Sign, Grand Crus, The Crafty Butcher.

Newbury - Friday, November 29
Mickie, Pateese, Red Not Blue, Twelve Roses, Kilmurvy, Western Warhorse, Invicta Lake, Minella For Stake.

Sandown Park - Saturday, December 7
Saphir Du Rhea, Home Run, Whisper, Upswing, Utopie Des Bordes, Drum Valley, Oscar Magic, Bourne.

Carlisle - Sunday, December 15
Kaki De La Pree, Pineau De Re, Trustan Times, Our Joey, Neptune Equester, Lie Forrit, Rock Relief (2 pulled up in 9 runner field, assume the last of those two Howizee did not qualify).

Cagnes sur Mer - Monday, December 16
Lunatorio, Bois Du Plesses, Tomtit, Tango Chop, Heure D’Hiver, Venise Jelois, Air Shot, Pops Borget

Wincanton - Thursday, December 26
Champagne West, Old Tricks, Southfield Theatre, Oscar Prairie, Seabright, Party Rock, Chesil Beach Boy (Only 8 runners, assuming Upswing did not qualify, fell at last).

Leopardstown - Saturday, December 28
Courage, Seefood, Supreme Carolina, Gold Patrol, Followmeuptocarlow, El Fontan, Sarabad, Vics Canvas.

Cagnes sur Mer - Sunday, January 5
Catmoves, My Maj, Attikos, Tango Lima, Wanaba, Don Lujan

Warwick - Saturday, January 11
Uncle Jimmy, Grand Vision, Drop Out Joe, Bygones Sovereign, Ballyculla, Oscar Fortune, Who Owns Me, Billy Twyford

Pau - Sunday, January 16
Rocketir, Taupin Rochelais, My Summer, Voiladenuo, Monsamou, Lovely Kiss, Temps Au Temps Ire, Soleil De Vati

Huntingdon - Friday, January 24
Josies Orders, Dawn Twister, San Telm, Cannon Fodder, Milan Bound, Monetary Fund, Seymour Eric, Seven Woods

Punchestown – Sunday, February 2
Jetson, Thunder And Roses, Inis Meain, Festive Felon, Gold Patrol, Clonard Lad, Sadler’s Risk, Questions Answered

Musselburgh - Sunday, February 2
Wyse Hill Teabags, Mister Dillon, Crowning Jewel, Any Given Moment, Attaglance, Pay The King, Capellanus, Golden Plan

Pau - Sunday, February 2
Monsamou, Delrom, Compatriote, Walk Sibo, Lovely Kiss, Rocketir

Exeter - Sunday February 9
Fingal Bay, If In Doubt, Imperial Leader, Quartz De Thaix, Broadway Buffalo, Old Tricks, Carole's Destrier, Tweedledrum

Haydock Park - Saturday, February 15
Top Wood, Astigos, Wolf Shield, Quel Elite, Open Day, San Telm, Chavoy, Extreme Impact.

Chepstow - Saturday, February 22
Report Swardean February 16, 2014 12:14 PM GMT

Feb 10, 2014 -- 9:10PM, Swardean wrote:


A very interesting runner in the qualifier on Saturday is Top Wood.   This horse is trained by David Pipe who always likes to plot one up for this race, is extremely lightly raced and likely to have had a issue that has kept it off the track for a year.  However, in its runs so far (as just a 5yo) it was very encouraging and I can expect significant improvement now a little older and also stepped up in trip.  Owned by good connections this could be one to watch on Saturday, especially if a bit of support in the market.It has an alternate engagement on saturday in a race funded by the yards sponsor, also a qualifier, but once again, obviously considered as having a bit of ability and targeting a longer term race.


Top Wood 25/1 Excited

Report Andymca February 16, 2014 1:04 PM GMT
Where did you get 25s the best I can see is 16s
Report Ramruma February 16, 2014 1:18 PM GMT
Where did you get 25s the best I can see is 16s

Won yesterday's qualifier at 25/1.
Report Andymca February 16, 2014 1:33 PM GMT
DohExcitedBlush
Well done swarden
Report CVByrne February 16, 2014 1:45 PM GMT
Been looking through the horses who qualified and looking for ones on 136 or above as that's what you probably will need to get in. The two I like are Seefood & If in Doubt
Report GI MAC February 16, 2014 3:28 PM GMT
Only one more qualifier to go before the entries come out.  I must admit I do enjoy the race perversely; it’s a tough one to find the winner.

I thought I’d stick down some info/trends on the race which may, or may not assist! I aint no stats man, but I do believe studying the history of a race is extremely useful in predicting the winner, especially at the festival, but it’s important to be flexible.

BREEDING
The last 10 winners have been Irish or GB bred, 5 each. This isn’t much of a surprise given they have made up around 80% of the runners, but given the amount of French breds we see these days, I’m surprised they haven’t registered a win. Good reason to ignore them surely?  I wouldn’t.

A total of 37 have run in the past 10 years with only a handful really fancied; such as favourites Sam Winner, Chartreaux & Miko De Beauchene. The last named came second in 2008, same position that Son Amix finished in 2011, they have mustered a total of 5 places which have all come in the last 6years. They are getting nearer and I wouldn’t be put off backing a French bred.

AGE
9 of the last 10 winners were aged between 6 & 9 years old. Only the mighty 10yo Buena Vista Love ruined this particular stat, and you have to go back to the early eighties and triple winner Willie Wumpkins to find another horse older than 9 to win. I think it’s fair to say these two were race specialists.

A total of 31 horses older than 9 have ran in the last 10 years, yielding 1 winner and 2 places, not a great return; as such I’d concentrate on the younger brigade.

But not a 5yo I hear the stat boys scream; Only one 5yo has won this race in its 39 year history and that was back in 1988 when Pragada won for Josh Gifford (before my time, no idea what he was like). These types of stats always need some context. 

Looking at the past 10 renewals, 22 five yo’s have ran which is around 10% of the runners, and has yielded 5 places in total, the best of which was two 2nd places; Son Amix (2011) and Mioch D’Estruval (2005), you can also add 3 fifth places to this list. They have not been running badly.

This 5yo stat could be a reason why most are relatively un-fancied, the shortest price 5yo was Robin Du Bois who went off 7/JF in 2008 and finished 8th. The price of the placed 5yo’s were 33/1, 16/1, 12/1, 66/1 & 50/1. The 5yo’s who tend not to run well, are ones who carry big weights and/or, are not French bred: It’s a tough race to carry big weights against your elders, especially for the late maturing Irish and GB bred. Stick to French five year olds with a low weight.

WEIGHT & OR
If your fancy is topweight, then he is up against it, they have a woeful record. The best weight carrying performance in the last 10 years was Kadoun in ‘06, he was the second highest rated in the field at 144, his claimer took his weight down to 11.7! Of the 40 win and placed horses, 10 carried more than 11st, (4 of these from last year). Of the 10 winners, 8 carried less than 11stone. The other winner to carry more than 11st was last years winner Holywell who had 11.4.

So on first glance it looks like we should be looking for a horse set to carry less than 11st, which let’s face it, is a big advantage in festival handicaps, especially over 3miles. But what about last years renewal, and Kadoun for that matter?

Last year the highest rated was 148, the lowest rated 135; a difference of 13. This is a compressed handicap for a 24 runner field; only 4 horses actually carried less than 11 stone!  In Kadouns renewal it was 144 to 125; a difference of 19. Not as drastic a difference, but two horses made the frame carrying over 11stone that year. When you look at years with bigger differences between top and bottom like 04, 07 & 10, all horses placed carried less than 11st. This correlation is useful and worth checking out when the decs are made: If it’s a compressed handicap then weight will be less of a factor, but I’d still avoid the topweight regardless.

The race is getting classier; in 04 the bottom rated was 120 and last year it was 135; it is on an upward trend, in 2012 it was 137. The top rated can vary but essentially it is on the increase with more 150+ horses running in recent renewals. If you’re thinking of backing one anti-post, and concerned whether he gets in, I’d only consider those around the 138 mark as a minimum for the time being.

This is one area where the new qualification rules may make a difference.

PRICE
Many people don’t bother much with handicaps at the festival, preferring to concentrate on the graded races to find winners. It’s a fair enough stance, as festival  handicaps are fiercely competitive and difficult to work out the plots, but they do have a habit of throwing up big prices, particularly The Pertemps which has an average SP of 24/1. As such if your horse is a big price don’t worry, in fact put more on is my advice. A big winner in a handicap can make your festival.

More to follow……..
Report ReaseHeath February 16, 2014 3:33 PM GMT
great thread, GI MAC - thank you.
Report duffy February 16, 2014 3:39 PM GMT
Lovcen is one for this race, 2 years but only 5 hurdle races ago this thin was beating Fingal Bay at level weights when that horse was in his pomp...Lovcen is now rated a lowly 135!!!!

He's had a sporadic career since but only raced on his favoured ground once in those 5 hurdle runs...he's qualified, is a thorough stayer and battles.....whether he's an intended runner is up in the air however as he's been sold and no longer with King and I don't know who has him now...he's 33/1 in a few places....very well handicapped horse though
Report CVByrne February 16, 2014 6:08 PM GMT
I had a look at lovecen, won't get in off 135 I don't think and though he may be well handicapped I think he's possibly gone at the game. Tough siding with a horse who's run so poorly for so long
Report Swardean February 16, 2014 10:49 PM GMT
Like GI MAC, I have an unhealthy obsession with this race (and the coral cup).   The fiendishness of this puzzle is a real attraction and something to enjoy throughout the season as the clues come together.   As a Buena Vista man, I have had some great success in this race and having seen all the qualifiers, have a view on the likely types.

Get next week out of the way and the weights and we can really start to form a picture
Report Swardean February 21, 2014 9:25 AM GMT
I see Top Wood has been re-assessed from 130 to 140.  Initially I though this was harsh but I still think there could be some improvement.  It was 30 lengths clear of the 3rd and pulled really hard at the start of the race (could be excepted after so long off).   The second in the Haydock qualifier, Astigos runs today at Exeter.  It has gone up 7lb for that second but can run off its old mark today.   Even with a win today it would be unlikely to get in the pertempts but it may give a marker to the Top Wood form (assuming this run does come to quickly).
Report sageform February 21, 2014 3:36 PM GMT
My 2 best winners of the race were Freetown and Rubhahunish, both from the Shirley Heights and Darshaan line. In those days the race was a furlong farther and that was crucial in bringing extreme stamina into play. The ride that Carl Llewellyn gave Rubha was one of the outstanding rides at the Festival.
Report duffy February 21, 2014 3:46 PM GMT
Remember Inching Closer v Royal Emperor race, what a finish that one was!!
Report The RealDeal February 21, 2014 5:06 PM GMT
Top banana that was!Grin
Report corporal February 21, 2014 9:04 PM GMT
Hobbs has a great hand in this one. I thought the Exeter race was a cracking qualifier, and whilst Fingal Bay ran out a decent winner, I don't think If in Doubt was given an especially tough time. Add in Champagne West and even Uncle Jimmy who won the Warwick qualifier and you have 4 horses who will likely get a run if making the final decs. Winner comes from the Exeter race in my mind.
Report Just So February 22, 2014 12:49 AM GMT
Has Hobbs showntoo much though to win the final? Absolute hats off to him for running his on their merits in these when others are messing about- but I reckon the winner may have been more sparingly campaigned.....Dessie is some man for a target and will go close IMO
Report ffs February 23, 2014 7:05 AM GMT
I like Seefood in this race, back to form over hurdles and progressing very well, will be interesting to see how's he's assessed but around 140 would make him formidable.
Report ffs February 23, 2014 7:06 AM GMT
sorry, even 145.
Report GI MAC February 23, 2014 9:36 AM GMT
Final Qualifers from Chepstow yesterday: Buddy Bolero, Kris Spin, Awaywiththegreys, Viva Steve, Tidal Dance, One In A Milan, Cyrien Star, Tullyesker Hill.

Strange there was a qualifier after the entries came out, from the 8 above only One In A milan was not entered in the final. That makes a total of 142 horse who have qualified, with a total of 70 entered into the race.

36 horses qualified via the French races, but no French trainer has entered any of them, they seem pointless to me. Interestingly, Astigos now trained by Venetia Williams qualified first time round in the Auteuil November qualifier.
Report spothediference February 27, 2014 1:57 PM GMT
any1 know if seefood is an intended runner in this? cheers spot.
Report GI MAC February 27, 2014 8:19 PM GMT
Let’s start with Hobbs who has several qualified after mopping up this season in the qualifiers. I kind of nailed my colours to the mast by stating top weights have a woeful record in this, so that rules out favourite Fingal Bay! I wouldn’t back him at current prices, but I do think he could run very well, especially if the handicap is compressed. How many of this field could beat Simonsig?

He’s an intended runner according to this weeks stable tour, as is Hobbs’ other runner If In Doubt, but I’m not sure this one is well handicapped off 140, others disagree as he’s being backed today. Pateese was 19th in this last year and is on the same mark, Champagne West is heading for the novice hurdles, so forget those two. Uncle Jimmy is interesting, progressing and ran well lto, 20/1 is a good price; he’s the Hobbs runner I like the most. He was 4th in the Cheltenham November qualifier which is the most successful guide to the final.

First Fandango has managed to get in here off a mark 4lbs below last year where he finished 9th with a 7lb claimer on board; I can’t see him winning after watching the race again. Jetson was the one to take out of last years renewal, passed plenty up the hill after being held up too far back. You can understand why a few on here have mentioned him, would surely have been closer with a better ride. I think that was his chance, as this year he is 7lbs higher, would be interesting if Jessie claims off him. Ely Brown also ran well last year but another higher in the weights this time.

Those at the top of the handicap, Attaglance, Southfield Theatre, Sadler’s Risk I don’t think any of them have much in hand to win this. I looked at Trustan Times a few times as he is below his peak mark, but Nah. I shall also oppose those aged in double figures, none of them hold any secrets.

Of those set to carry some weight, Grand Vision is surely the one, rated 141 after his novice hurdling season, which included a good 3rd at the festival, and races here off 142. 20/1 NRNB is available, that’s a solid ew bet.

Nicky Henderson has a couple of interesting entries, in particular Utopie Des Bordes, who ran well at last years festival and his mark of 138 seems fair, will be better on decent ground.

Pipe has Buddy Bolero but I think that one has blown his mark, he also has Top Wood and he was hugely impressive lto but I’d be worried about the bounce factor. Broadway Buffalo, not sure what to make of this one, is there a plot afoot?

Jonjo must be considered in this as a multiple winner, but it’s not certain if his two Joses Orders and Open will get a run, the former looks very progressive but has a big hike in the weights to overcome.

Mickie, On The Bridge, Party Roc and Crowning Jewel I feel all have too high a mark to overcome.

I think the handicapper is trying to foil The Irish challenge (minus a Mullins hotpot I might add!) as Seefood and The Crafty Butcher both of which I like, have been given marks above their Irish ratings, a bit harsh I think. It’s put me off them for the time being. (Spotthedifference, according to Dessie Hughes stable tour on 29/01/14 it was all systems go for the Pertemps)

So my shortlist at the moment is Uncle Jimmy (20/1), Grand Vision (20/1) and Utopie Des Bordes (25/1)
Report gazovic February 27, 2014 9:27 PM GMT
Hobbs owns the handicap.

Johnson will ride FB.

will Tom Cheeseman(10) keep the ride? is this a +ve or lack of experience a factor. didn't hurt Buena Vista.

some fine posts GI. cheers.

*point of order. that November race wasn't a qualifier, but it was a warm heat and I like the hoss plenty.
Report GI MAC February 27, 2014 9:31 PM GMT
*Point noted, cheers.
Report GI MAC March 6, 2014 9:08 PM GMT
Second favourite currently is Inis meain, who is number 40 in the list, rated 132, strong liklihood he doesn't get in. He's followed in the market by Champagne West, and according to the trainer in his most recent stable tour will head for a novice race due to his high rating. A few will drop out tomorrow with the 5day decs, and the market will be shaken up so I think I'll have my first bet.

Of the three I shortlisted I am going to bet Utopie Des Bordes 25/1 NRNB with a couple of layers. Well suited by 3miles and she'll love the drying ground, stable is peaking and has dropped to a good mark. I think the price will shorten once a few cotton on to this one.
Report ReaseHeath March 6, 2014 9:26 PM GMT
good luck, mate - you deserve it after all the work you've done on the race.
Report frankalsoran60 March 6, 2014 10:25 PM GMT
AN WONDERFUL THREAD,WELL DONE GIMACExcitedHappy
Report ffs March 7, 2014 4:01 AM GMT
can't understand all the money for Inish Meain when he's unlikely to get in ...
Report ffs March 7, 2014 4:07 AM GMT
Am I completely missing something here... if you back the BF market, and your horse doesn't make it in the money is gone, right !?

There's a punter here on BF looking for €120 at 20/1 on Clonard Lad (OR 128 ... ) that's just never gonna get in, and even if, he's no 20/1 shot ...
Report ffs March 7, 2014 4:17 AM GMT
damn I see now that the bets are void if the horse is 'balloted out' ... right ?
Report barnesy March 7, 2014 4:28 AM GMT
correct ffs
Report gutfeeling March 7, 2014 1:16 PM GMT
A enjoyable thread so i hope the work pays off for you.

Going with Upswing/Broadway Buffalo myself but will only be small e/w punts.

Best of luck GI Mac & have a great 4 days.
Report GI MAC March 7, 2014 2:03 PM GMT
Thanks for comments fellas. Broadway Buffalo is quite intriguing gutfeeling.

Race beginning to take shape today, looking a lot like last year and a compressed handicap. Josies Hill needs one to come out, thinking I may be overlooking this Jonjo/JP runner!
Report FATTIEWHITEYSLOVEADRINK March 8, 2014 6:24 PM GMT
Got one lined up for this
all I need is for major sunshine and dry wind!
TRACKMATE take world of beating if the hound comes up good!
16/1 be gone pretty quick too !
Report nocturnal March 12, 2014 8:57 PM GMT
GI...Had a good look now we have final decs,have to say Utopia Des Bordes stands out at the weights.The other one I like is Jetson,144 minus the claim is workable, and as mentioned earlier in thread looks to have been the target all season.
As ever should be cracking race,thanks for your input GI.
Report GI MAC March 13, 2014 10:26 AM GMT
aye, happy enough with my bet on UDB nocturnal, a little disapointed not to see Barry sitting on top, probably the reason he's not being backed. Only 13lb between top and bottom weight, it's a tough race to work out. I backed Broadway Buffalo yesterday at 33's a nice price, just think he's a Pipe plot. I will also back another I shortlisted, Uncle Jimmy, progressive type I like. So three to go to was with today.

Good luck all.
Report Swardean March 13, 2014 10:27 AM GMT
Now we get to the final,thanks for the thread GI MAC. Hoping to keep up a good record in this race and sticking to my early picks on this thread who have done me proud so far.

Grand Vision - Still think this horse could be well in of 142.   Unsuited by ground a Ffos Las butt that Welsh Champion run boosted by Whisper yesterday. I think trained with today in mind all year and I think his 3rd in the Albert Barlett a couple of years here reads very well here.   Have backed antepost but think 14/1 ew first 5 today is still decent.

Top Wood - won the Haydock qualifier after long absence and pulling very hard early on.   Has been dismissed today as a soft ground horse, yet in France was campaigned on good so I dont think surface a problem today.  Pipe targets this race and we seen Conor win from the front in this race before.   Perhaps the most unexposed horse in the race and 140 may not enough.  Have some nice prices but 22/1 ew first 5 looks over generous today.

Good luck with your picks.
Report sageform March 13, 2014 2:24 PM GMT
Woohoo! My first really big result of the week-backed twice after he won at Exeter. The Philip Hobbs bet for top trainer looks a bit better now too.
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