By News Team
3rd August 2022
I’m looking forward to the second edition of the Racing League which William Hill are the official bookmaking partners of. It looks to be a stronger concept this time around and will offer up big fields of decent horses and plentiful punting opportunities for ITV viewers.
But everyone wants a piece of the action with the prize money on offer, so this certainly won’t be a walk in the park. That hasn’t stopped me trying, however, so I’ve had a good dig into the first leg at Donny on Thursday evening for four shots with very different levels of market expectation.
The Solid Forward Defensive
X J RASCAL (6.40pm) has surely dropped on a lovely opportunity to atone for his Goodwood defeat. He was undone at the start the other day, but for which he almost certainly would have won. This remains a very well handicapped horse and, provided that hasn’t taken the edge off, should be very hard to beat having only his second start at this trip and is a solid favourite.
The Wild Swing for the Fences
SPIRITED GUEST (7.10pm) will be a pretty big price, and hasn’t shown a great deal his last couple of starts. Neither is he particularly straightforward. Against all that, he is now racing off a few pounds lower than when an excellent third to Mr Wagyu at Epsom, has most of his good recent form over six furlongs and gets Hayley Turner, always a plus in these events.
The Expansive Cover Drive
GEREMIA (8.10pm) is a horse I really like as a strong each-way bet in the 12 furlong handicap. There’s a decent bit of pace on in this, and – although Jim Goldie has been messing about with his trip in typical style – Geremia looks as though a drop back to this distance in a well-run race can bring about an optimal effort, as evidenced by his excellent performance at York two back.
The Quick Single
GOOD BIRTHDAY (8.40pm) is not exactly the easiest horse to fall in love with, but he’ll feel like he’s coasting around against this opposition. He hardly ever gets a break from a really tough race, and he’ll not be fazed by a big field and searching tempo. Ground, trip and track are all ideal for him, and a repeat of his better efforts this year must see him right there at the finish.