Not a great day on Wednesday for yours truly as I.T. Issues created all sorts of problems with Wi-Fi, 3G, and even bog standard texting failing to work properly for me or anyone else I ran in to. Those with laptops in the media centre were laughing thanks to hard wiring, whilst the rest of her us were pulling our hair out!
Tweeting became an impossibility and while Ron seemed convinced I was singing rugby songs in a bar somewhere, technical issues were the sad reality.
Back to the horses and I had a good day, though it could have been so much better! An each way bet on Montiridge in the opener paid off despite fears he would fail to handle the quicker going (I think he actually improved on it!), though being beaten a head despite being hampered badly didn’t make me smile, with dreams of what a win bet would have done to my wallet.
Conflicting information reached me about the Duke Of Cambridge Stakes next with the Newmarket boys telling me Dank was absolutely flying at home for Sir Michael Stoute, and the Irish lads insisting Duntle was the bet of the day. Naturally I backed both but, to be fair, I had more on the third than the Irish winner and although I should have been happy enough, as a punter I felt I had got it all wrong as they flashed past the line!
As a writer I should be more aware than most that words mean precious little without some substance to back them up and I wonder if Camelot’s place at the head of the market for the Prince of Wales’, based on the “best I have ever trained” soundbites that emanated from Camp Ballydoyle?
I spent most of the morning telling everyone and anyone that would listen I could see no logical reason why he should turn around Curragh form with Al Kazeem and for once I got it spot on. Returned at 11/4 (we grabbed a chunk of 3/1!), Roger Charlton’s stable star saw off Mukhadram with a well timed late burst and with the favourite soundly beaten back in fourth – and better still my colleagues decided that I deserved a drink for my efforts as they had backed the winner big time, so a win, win scenario!
As you will probably realise by now, a 28 runner handicap is far more Ron’s territory than mine (unless I have heard something), but the silence was deafening so I relied on fate for my bets. Having spent part of the afternoon chatting to the chauffeur of Lady Rothschild (get well soon), Trade Commissioner was my main bet (with a saver on Fury), though both are still running a day later (or so it seems), with Belgian Bill taking the spoils though I have to confess, I doubt I would pick him to win the replay!
His previous fifteenth of twenty-five at Newbury, beaten sixteen lengths and with no obvious excuses, was not the sort of form I would have been looking for and unlike some in the press room, I was not so wise after the event.
Two races to go and those with long memories may remember “Statto” aka Angus Loughran, stats and betting expert who used to be a regular on our television screens. He told me to back Rizeena (cheers Angus), in the 5.00pm and she won with a ton in hand proving he is a better judge than I am! Winnings banked (how I wish I had gone in with a bit of a bigger punt), we were left with a nightmare to end with and I punted accordingly, to very small stakes.
My each way bet was on Frankie Dettori and The Gold Cheongsam, so if anyone has spotted them do let know because they were never mentioned during the race that I heard?! Sadly, even enhanced place terms apparently don’t pay out on fifteenth but overall a profitable day, and back to fight the bookmaker tooth and nail again tomorrow!