TV Tips Saturday 10th February 2018

We come into today trailing a deficit to a £1 stake of £12.37 on TV bets. It’s a good day’s racing so let’s see if we can dent the debt.

Post-racing update: A fine day’s entertainment, although the bank is further depleted. Altior the sole winner: one 2nd at 7/1 one at 11/2, and another at 11/4, with a 3rd at 25/1

We are now behind to the tune of £19.76



Good to see Barter’s Hill back, though he’ll face a proper test in his first attempt at 3m2f and I wonder if his trainer might not have found him something over shorter for his first run in 456 days. Lough Derg Farmer didn’t last long as a chaser and should do better back over hurdles here. But the one I like is King Uther who seems a real character. A big, raw, awkward looking galloper and jumper who seems to do quite a bit wrong but is still in there fighting at the end. He’s very likeable and thoroughly game and he must have a decent engine to have pulled out the extra needed last time at Warwick.

Richard Johnson takes the mount here – a wizard from the front – I take him to make all and outbattle late challengers.

King Uther 11/2



Native River has a history of looking quite laborious on his seasonal debut; he has yet to win first time out. Saphir Du Rheu won once on his seasonal debut. He’s a horse I like and I backed him in the Gold Cup where he ran well. He might want farther than this these days and his trainer says he’ll improve for the run.

The remaining runner will not lack fitness after three good performances this season. I don’t think he was outstayed last time, just beaten by a horse much better suited to the conditions in Definitly Red, who went on to win The Cotswold.  Cloudy Dream gets the vote here.

Cloudy Dream 5/2



Altior should win with the minimum of fuss.

Altior 8/13



This is the old Schweppes Trophy, a cracking race and one that all tipsters like to nail. If we had any brains, we’d waste no time on it and look for a winner in a more sensible race. But fortune supposedly favours the brave, and there are three horses in this who look over-priced to me. The first is Spiritofthegames who is an improving young horse who’s been running over longer trips.  He’s looked a bit wayward in the finish but it might just be inexperience and the first time cheekpieces should help as will his rider’s 3lb claim.

Next is Divin Bere who’s being talked down by trainer Nicholls mostly on account of the ground. But this is Divin Bere’s first UK outing on soft and his sire’s stock has a better strike rate on soft than on good or good to soft. Divin Bere has won on very soft ground in France. The horse is much better than he showed last time on his yard debut, having moved from Henderson, and he looks too big in the betting by quite some way.

The same can be said of a horse who finished a neck behind him in the Fred Winter last season – Nietzsche. His jockey reported last time that he felt the horse had gone to sleep a bit in his usual hood and the trainer has left it off this time. Nietzsche has won in this ground and I think this sort of race and track will suit.

Whatever you are backing, it might be worth noting that the last horse older than 6 to win this was Geos in 2004.

Spiritofthegames 25/1

Divin Bere 40/1

Nietzsche 40/1





Followers of the blog might remember that Jester Jet is a mare I like, and I won’t desert her in this. Normally very consistent, she ran uncharacteristically poorly last time and I’m hoping she’ll bounce back here.

Jester Jet 7/1



Another old friend I’m standing by is North Hill Harvey, despite him having to concede half a stone to the very talented newcomer Saint Calvados who is going for his hat trick. The ex-French horse has won many plaudits for his jumping and it’s expected to be an asset at this very tricky chase track. But I’m not yet convinced he’s a top notch fencer. He’s looked fast and fluent in both wins but to my eye he doesn’t flex much and looks rather stiff-backed. So long as he’s not leaving his backend in the fence -which, to be fair, he has not done with any regularity so far – such a style can be very effective. But getting just one badly wrong can cost you a race, and the five fences down the back here take some jumping.

Touch wood, I’m confident about North Hill Harvey in the fencing department. He’s the only horse to beat Sceau Royal this season though that one trounced him at Sandown last time where North Hill Harvey needlessly got himself in a battle for the lead. A more sensible ride here back at a left handed track should see him close to his best.

North Hill Harvey 3/1



Thomas Crapper is 11 and hasn’t run for almost 300 days. But his trainer reports him in rude health at home and he gets plenty of weight from Kylemore Lough, who has a touch of class, but has cost his supporters a small fortune in trying to win better races. He always seems to find a way to get beat.  I suspect this is the last chance saloon for him, with the shafts of a milk float awaiting on Sunday morning.  That might be just enough to scare him to victory here. Getting stuffed by a horse named Crapper would surely mean the end?

Thomas Crapper 13/2


Enjoy the racing and don’t bet more than you can afford to lose with a smile.







7 thoughts on “TV Tips Saturday 10th February 2018

  1. Thanks for the TV write-ups.

    I’m also keen on Divin Bere in the hope that he still has the scope to be better than his current rating.

    I’m not sure about your stats on his sire’s stock; American bred Della Francesca’ off-spring look to have a better record on good ground? That said Divin Bere ran well in France on softer going than he’ll encounter today when a close 2nd to subsequent Grade 1 Chase winner On The Go so I’m hoping he’ll act on it despite his sire. Divin Bere looks to travel well in his races but perhaps lacks a few gears at the business end, I’m hoping today’s going takes the sting out of a few fast finishers. 40/1 with six places looks a decent bet.

    Good luck


  2. Hi Tony,

    Good to hear you’re in the DB camp. I actually fancy your other horse, Spiritofthegames just in front of the other two I mentioned. This could turn into a stamina test and he’d be well served by it.

    The excellent has Della Francesca with these figures (as at midnight last night):

    Good: 14/101 14%

    Soft: 7/47 15%

    This does not include runners in France so you might be right…and it is for all racing, not just jumps.

    Good luck today

    1. I should have heeded Mr Nicholls advice regarding the going and Divin Bere who never got in it, was tailed off and eventually pulled up.

      Spiritofthegames ran a fine race and Altior and Native River head for Cheltenham on the back of impressive seasonal debuts

      1. Trouble is on listening to trainers, you wouldn’t have touched either Kalashnikov or the King horse Talkischeap. If trainers, especially the likes of Nicholls, are convinced a horse won’t act, they ought to take the horse out for the sake of its wellbeing and the integrity of the betting market.

        Altior is different gravy and it was good to see Nico relaxing him throughout on that lovely long rein. He gave himself a hard race in that last year through his exuberance I think, and it might just have taken the sparkle out for Cheltenham.

        Native River, usually sluggish first time, was most impressive. That’s probably the best I’ve seen him jump. Might need a soft ground Gold Cup though and there have been just two of those since 1997, although they were both in the past 5 years. Cloudy Dream seems to be earning himself an unwanted reputation as a quitter. He looks honest to me, and either he has stopped finding altogether off the bridle, or he’s running in races just a touch above his class.

        What’s your take on Saint Calvados?

      2. Saint Calvdos has not really put a foot wrong, against reasonable yardsticks, in his three runs for Harry Whittington, probably ran close to 164 yesterday but he’s not bottomed out yet and my revised rating for him is up to 174. Looks to be settling better in his races and enjoying himself.

        Untested on decent ground, looks sure to improve further when stepped up in trip. I don’t play Ante-Post but I think his preferred Festival entry looks to be the Arkle though I’d be tempted to aim him at the JLT over 2m 4F.

  3. He’s very exciting and I hope he goes right to the top. I’d be concerned slightly about his stiffish back; not the worst I’ve seen by any means but it might give him trouble better ground jumping at festival speed, especially at the third last at Cheltenham. Takes an awful lot out of himself too with his enthusiasm and he gave himself an unnecessarily hard race yesterday. That high knee action does make you wonder about his performance on goodish ground. We shall see. Fingers crossed for another star, especially for this small yard.

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