Saturday Yankee: Honeyball moneyball…

A cosy win for yesterday’s nap Seymour Sox (2/1 early, 6/5 SP), but the rest of the day was a damp squib. Thankfully we have some higher grade fare today during what is the traditional post Christmas quality vacuum.

The Daily Yankee

NAP OF THE DAY: Jepeck, (1500 Sandown), 1pt win, 7/2: 

We don’t fancy many in this valuable veterans chase.  Dark Flame’s 2nd in the void face to Doing Fine looks good now and he should go close.  That said this looks like a long held target for Jepeck.  A useful hunter chaser for Kaley Wollacott, he improved dramatically in his first year for Anthony Honeyball last season including a fine 2nd in a good veterans race at Carlisle.  Has been kept to hurdles so far this year picking up two novice wins, but that has kept his chase rating unchanged ahead of this prize and now it looks like all systems go for his shrewd trainer.

Snugsborough Hall, (1355 Cork), 7/2:  several angles here, with the fancied trio including a Mullins import – but he beat one we owned when he last saw the track and that is definitely nothing special ! There’s the recent solid course form of Morosini in a race that has worked out well and he is the big danger.  But the Irish handicapping system has to be the angle, which accounts for hurdles and chasing as entirely different disciplines hence Snugsborough Hall’s massive improvement chasing has no impact on this 28lb lower hurdles rating.  In the UK there’s a link, not one-for-one, but he’d probably be put up around 20 of those 28lbs.  If the UK is right, then he’s thrown in provided fit enough for this seasonal debut.

Fiddlerontheroof, (1425 Sandown), 2/1:  this Grade 1 novice hurdle always seems to be run on testing going and this will be no different.  Many promising types but Colin Tizzard’s gelding tops the list by far.  He had excellent bumper form in Ireland last year and his three hurdle runs have been solid, including an easy win over this course on deep ground last time.  This is obviously a bigger test, but that proven ability to handle conditions and the back class of his form suggests he will be very hard to beat under the excellent Robbie Power.

Smarty Wild, (1535 Sandown), 7/1:  Gunnery looks well in here but this will be much more testing going and it’s not sure to suit a freewheeling sort, and he’ll have a fight for the lead with Totterdown.  Smarty Wild coped well with these conditions when 4th here last time when arguably unlucky not to go closer.  Off the same mark and with the champion jockey now on board he can do better this time.

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