Both of Alan Dudman's selections obliged yesterday to make a 5.50 point profit. With plenty of racing on Saturday, our man offers a slightly different view away from Ascot...
"Back with Clive Cox, it will be interesting to see what he can do on Saturday. There's every chance he could hate jumping again - but I'm prepared to risk a place bet."
13:40 Catterick - Back Dacoity
Being by Dick Turpin, it's rather a clever bit of naming. But that's not what we want to know is it? Can Dacoity win this average two-year-old maiden? I think he can at 5/2.
On pedigree he is a half-brother to a juvenile winner which offers a little hope. From his two starts to date at Nottingham (6f) and Pontefract (5f), there were enough positives to make him a bet here. His debut in Yorkshire was the better effort, finishing not too far behind the winner having shown a fair amount of immaturity.
His latest run wasn't an improvement, as the gelding was comfortably beaten into third on soft ground at Nottingham, but he still showed something.
He has a good draw here (in two), and can use his experience to gain a good pitch. I wouldn't back any of the newcomers in this race, so this comes down as a match bet between Dacoity and Indian Pursuit. The latter has had two more runs, and really should be beatable if our pick can progress more.
14:35 Ffos Las - Back in-running Tokyo Javilex
With the glittering array of stars on offer at Ascot, I expect you to all boo me or chuck rotten fruit at me for highlighting Tokyo Javilex over at Ffos Las. But you can read about Champions Day elsewhere on the site.
It's pretty simple with him, he's an out-and-out stayer, and took ages to get going at Sedgefield (3m3f) last time. That's a sharper test in terms of the course, but the long straight in Wales should give him about 25 minutes to get organised.
At 7/4 I wouldn't be interested, but he's running well and might outstay this lot and trade higher in the run. He's the perfect recipe for a lay-to-back.
15:30 Stratford - Back Hassle
I admit, I have a soft spot for quirky characters. And any runner christened 'Hassle' gives you an inkling perhaps the horse might be a bit of a thinker - which means I was always going to succumb to this son of Montjeu!
I tipped him up in the Old Borough Cup at Haydock at a massive price and he ran really well, if he had got going sooner he might well have won. But that's been his bag on the flat - big field, late surge, not quite good enough.
He makes his handicap debut over hurdles here - from a mark of 119. Considering he has been running to 97 on the flat and holding his form - he is well treated.
The sexy horse will be John Ferguson's Street Fighter, but Hassle is double the price. The six-year-old had a few runs over the obstacles with Nicky Henderson previously, but it didn't quite happen for him. Now back with Clive Cox, it will be interesting to see what he can do on Saturday. There's every chance he could hate jumping again - but I'm prepared to risk a place bet.
Saturday's Recommended Bets
Back Dacoity @ [3.50] in the 13:40 at Catterick
Lay-to-back Tokyo Javilex from [2.75] lay to [10.0] back in the 14:35 at Ffos Las
Back Hassle in the place market @ [2.80] in the 15:30 at Stratford
Weekly P /L (one point each bet excluding advised in-running trades)
Last week total: + 2.95
This week total: +5.50
Running total: +22.45