No joy for Alan Dudman yesterday with his two selections, but he is hoping for a winner or two with a lay at Newcastle and a best bet at Doncaster...
"Rocklander finished third in last season's Close Brothers from 142 at the Cheltenham Festival, and any replication of that will make him hard to beat."
Target a low price lay in the North East
14:00 Newcastle - Lay Desert Ruler @ 1.3030/100
This is a fairly spicy 0-85 handicap with three last-time-out winners and plenty of placed form with the others.
One horse that strikes me as a potential back-to-lay bet here is Desert Ruler. He returned to action following a 130-day break last time to finish third over course and distance.
He travelled superbly in that and was matched in-play at 1.101/10, and it could be worth lining up a similar sort of lay bet here as he does seem to enjoy Newcastle and he has travelled well at the track before.
There's no doubt he should improve for that comeback run, and there was a bit of support for him on the Sportsbook last night into 9/2. But we struck with a short price lay last week, and this horse looks an ideal type to try and target again.
Rocklander a decent price to bounce back to form
16:00 Doncaster - Back Rocklander @ 6.205/1
I was more than surprised by the price of 6.205/1 last night on Tom George's Rocklander - and he is nominated as a bet in the Veterans' Chase.
It could be a good bit of placing here by the trainer, because he hasn't really got the profile of an old-stager. He may be a 10yo, but he's fairly lightly-raced over the fences. A handicap rating of 140 is certainly a tick in the box considering he was rated 140 over hurdles.
He holds winning form on heavy but better ground isn't a problem either. The Donny surface looks as though it will be on the quick side.
Rocklander finished third in last season's Close Brothers from 142 at the Cheltenham Festival, and any replication of that will make him hard to beat. He's been out of sorts and unlucky since then, and the bad trot continued with a fall at the first in the Tommy Whittle. However, his jumping was pretty good at Newbury when winning as a novice, and those fences are the stiffest in the land.
The selection is best when dominating and building a rhythm, and he's my bet of the day at the price.
Alan's Bets of the Day - P/L
This week so far: -1.30
Previous week: +5.00
2018 P&L: + 44.91
Lay Desert Ruler 0.5pt @ 1.3030/100 in the 14:00 at Newcastle
Back Rocklander 1pt @ 6.205/1 in the 16:00 Doncaster