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Friday, 24 June 2011

Showdown at 'Noon'

Sometimes as punters we like to complicate things - trying to find something to beat an odds on shot or searching for potential handicap blots. However there are other times when the best approach to finding value (and finding value is always the key) is simply to find a selection that is much better than the opposition. That is exactly what we can find at the Curragh on Saturday in the filly Midday in the Pretty Polly stakes at 3.35.

Midday is the best middle distance filly around and 1 mile 2 furlongs on rain softened ground should see her in her best light - odds of 8/11 are more than generous and she should give little worry to backers.

The only realistic challenger to Midday's supremacy in the division is Snow Fairy and is in opposition today. Snow Fairy received weight and a beating by Midday in last year's Yorkshire Oaks and although undertaking a successful foreign Winter campaign (won in Japan and the Hong Kong Cup) she hasn't been seen since December and this is a tough ask off level weights.

Sunday sees the Irish Derby and Carlton House should prove popular in the betting, the Queen's horse went off 5/2 favourite for the English equivalent and had a somewhat troubled passage yet still finished a creditable 3rd. Aiden O'Brien's Treasure beach finished a place in front that day under a good ride and could do the same again.

However rather than picking a winner I'd rather lay Carlton House at short odds of anything 11/8 (2.4) and shorter on Betfair. The colt doesn't appear to have a turn of foot quite good enough to get out of trouble and there is potential for plenty of that on Sunday even though there are only 8 runners. Of the 8, four are saddled by O'Brien in assorted Coolmore colours, all have realistic chances and I can't see a jockey politely allowing Ryan Moore & Carlton House out to have a run if they happen to have him boxed in against the rail. Even with a clear run there is little reason to suggest 'the House' should be such a short price, Treasure Beach's run at Epsom was no fluke and the galloping track at the Curragh should suit the Galileo colt's running style.

In the preceding race our Royal Ascot selection for the King's Stand runs and may be able to recoup our losses. Arctic is up against the in form Inxile and if odds of 6/1 or bigger are available take them - Arctic should strip fitter for the Ascot run and will appreciate any ease in the ground.


Saturday 3.35 Curragh - Back Midday at 8/11
Sunday 3.50 Curragh - Lay Carlton House at 11/8 (2.4) & shorter
Sunday 3.10 Curragh - Back Arctic at 6/1+


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