No luck with Brando in the Clipper Stakes. He travelled powerfully in the first half of the race before going out like a light. He’s much better than that and you’d think something may have been amiss. ITV showed a good angle of Tom Eaves looking down at the horse after he knew the race was over, and he looked as equally bemused as we were by his run. Anyway, onto Day 2 of the Dante meeting. The soft ground is a real issue as it does make it a lot more unpredictable, so I’ll just be having the one bet again.
3.30 – Betfred Dante Stakes (Group 2) – 1m 2f 56y
The Derby market is just waiting for something to come and establish itself, and we may get that here in what is traditionally the top trial for the Epsom Classic, the Guineas aside. Heading the market is the Frankel colt, Cracksman. Now he’s going to be popular with punters, and despite being a big fan of the Frankels, there’s just something about Cracksman I don’t really like. I think he’s only the price he is for the Derby because of the fact he’s got the same connections as Golden Horn. I think the general 7/1 is a bit ridiculous. I’ll lay anyone 10/1, simply DM me if you want it. His owner even said earlier in the week that he has doubts over whether he’s good enough to even win this Dante. Never mind the Derby! Second in the betting has been subject to a “massive gamble” in the past week for both this race and the Derby, Sir Michael Stoute’s Crystal Ocean. I can’t have him at all. This supposed massive gamble is all bookie PR spin with mugs still jumping on him at his current joke of a price at 14/1 for the Derby. I can understand people throwing a speculative dart at him at 50s or 33s, but 14/1 is ridiculous. Whilst I don’t doubt there has been money around for him, I’m certain that it is not of the seismic proportions that the bookies are telling us. There seems to be one of these gambles on a SMS horse for the Oaks or Derby every year, and this is just the latest in a long line. If you’re backing him at 14/1, you deserve to lose the lot. And his price for this race is just as bad. Now of course, he might win, but how he can he half the price of Rekindling, the Ballysax winner who beat the 3 Ballydoyle horses that were 1-2-3 in the Derrinstown I just have no idea. He’s very easily passed over, and the one I like is the aforementioned Rekindling. Now his 2yo form was nothing special when with David Wachman, but he won that Ballysax well, beating 3 decent horses in Capri, Yucatan and Douglas Macarthur. That was on good to yielding which is basically soft in Ireland, so the underfoot conditions should be no problem, and I think he’ll go well here.
Selection: Rekindling 7/1 EW (Bet365)