Stay with Master Of Finance

July 17th, 2015 | Ian Carnaby's Racing News

I seldom have much to say on the effect of the draw. In sprint races we know where we need to be at most courses and I have little time for all the pontificating when it comes to contests over two miles plus.

Even so, there is no doubt that low numbers were favoured in the John Smith’s Cup over ten furlongs at York last Saturday, where the first two home came from stalls 1 and 2. My fancy for that valuable handicap, Master Of Finance, had no chance from his outside number, especially as he is a horse that likes to dominate. I think Silvestre de Sousa likes to call the shots, too, so all he could do was bounce Master Of Finance out, try to keep him up with the leaders and hope for the best.

Well, you can’t win like that. Master of Finance was punched along, went after the leader with three furlongs to travel and then found it all too much about a furlong later. The form book makes no allowances for the problems he faced and I do not agree with its summary at all. In the hope that he is not asked to race again between now and Glorious Goodwood, I can see him running a mighty race from in front in one of the middle-distance handicaps and we should stay with him.

Making excuses for beaten horses can be expensive, of course, but I am happy enough with this assessment. I also think Muthmir should be forgiven his unplaced effort in the July Cup. Hamdan Al Maktoum won the race anyway with Muhaarar and Paul Hanagan chose correctly, but Muthmir was never going at all and I just wonder if Newmarket’s undulations suited him. I’m fairly confident he is better at six furlongs than five and he may well bounce back in the Haydock Park Sprint.

A lean run on the telephone line came to an end when Hit The Lights won at Chepstow on Thursday, though we needed to be out and about early, looking for a price. He was too big at 9/2 in the Racing Post and too short at 5/2 on the off. As far as the 6/4 with the Tote is concerned, the least said the better. The returns about horses between evens and 5/1 are quite dreadful and looking for money back when it comes to the place part saving the bet is simply pointless.

This was a race Hit The Lights had to win and he did it well enough; the form with Captain Ryan at Bath worked out well and sometimes you can make these modest lines pay for a while. Incidentally, Bath had a programme made up mainly of sprints the other day and Josephine Gordon again took the eye with a classy display on a 10/1 winner. That followed another fine effort on the very moderate Reginald Claude at Windsor the night before. She is very good indeed and must be followed while the 7lb allowance is still available.

I am looking forward to Goodwood and there may not be many investments before then. The Weatherbys Super Sprint at Newbury is pretty impenetrable and Richard Hannon is not the only trainer sending out a cluster of runners because Richard Fahey and Tim Easterby also have several chances. I like lightly-raced Easterby horses in this and suggest small investments on Excessable and Quick N Quirky.

On a very quiet day punting-wise, there seem to be quite a few in the seven-furlong conditions race at Haydock who are not the force of old and it may be worth giving another chance to Russian Realm in the hands of Graham Lee.