Man of Harlech can have them singing in the valleys

September 26th, 2015 | Ian Carnaby's Racing News

I was quite pleased with the way things worked out last week, although it was a pity George Bowen could not quite get past stable-companion Tatlisu in the Ayr Silver Cup. We have made the point several times that it’s important to be out and about, or on the telephone, making sure of the best price early on Saturdays. There was plenty of 7/1, even some 8/1, about George Bowen but he closed in to just over half the price.

It is good to have Ryan Moore back and his wins at Newmarket on Friday gave us successful selections Time Test in the new fortnightly advice sheet and Cannock Chase on the line. Cannock Chase is a very good horse indeed and showed the kind of form he was producing last year until a setback left him on the sidelines for a few months. He stayed a mile and a half with ease and it was surprising to see a few pundits expressing doubts on Friday morning. Quite frankly, Sir Michael Stoute does not make mistakes when it comes to ten furlongs or twelve and I thought the 9/4 SP perfectly fair; indeed, there was some early 11/4 on course.

I went to Goodwood on Wednesday but the ground was too soft to make meaningful notes and there were several non-runners in any case. I thought Hors De Combat had a very fair chance in the Listed event but it was sensible of James Fanshawe to take him out. The first two finished a long way clear, with Wannabe Yours’ game second suggesting that Hors De Combat would not have been far away. They have sometimes finished close together in the past. Fanshawe is in good form now and I hope Hors De Combat finds a suitable opportunity on a better surface.
Rashash was another non-runner in the five-furlong handicap at Pontefract on Thursday. A vet’s certificate was produced, though my guess is that Roger Varian or his representative thought the ground was too soft. Rashash hated the heavy at Epsom the time before and is capable of regaining winning form when conditions dry out. He was the only improver in that Pontefract field and it looked a very tempting opportunity.

This Saturday sees a fascinating renewal of the Betfred Cambridgeshire at Newmarket. The remarkable Bronze Angel will be trying to win it for the third time and has a very fair each-way chance, running off 108. He was rated 99 a year ago but went on to win off 104 at Ascot. He loves Newmarket and those looking for each-way terms on the first five or six should make a profit. He is back in top form and must surely feature in the finish.

The other two I quite like are Portage, who races off the same mark after finishing a good second in the Irish equivalent of this big handicap, and MAN OF HARLECH, who defied a big weight at Ffos Las to make sure of getting in and then ran Bronze Angel to a length and a half at Doncaster. He has much the same sort of chance as his old rival but will be a bigger price and is worth each-way support.

Otherwise it will be a quiet weekend for me with only some very minor each-way fancies. MALJAA is a bonny sprinter and may just defy ten stones in the valuable 3.55 at Haydock, while Arctic Feeling and Sammy Jo Bell will be there or thereabouts in the feature at Ripon, which is a very similar handicap. There is little point in rummaging through all of Fast Shot’s form because he often drops away but is the type to poke people in the eye when they forget all about him and it may be worth saving a few coins for his appearance in the 3.20 at Haydock.