Today's Follow The Money comes from Worcester and Carlisle.
"Lord Of The Dance has done all his winning between April and July so this is his time of year and he runs off an official mark of 80 having won a decent contest at Ascot off 81 last year."
We start off with our lay of the day in the first race at Worcester, a 2m4f Novice Chase due off at 14:20. It comes in the form of It's A Gimme and the market drift from 1.331/3 out to 1.635/8 certainly suggests that this will not be a gimme. If you bear in mind that the seven-year-old is trained by Jonjo O'Neill, owned by J P McManus and ridden by A P McCoy you would have expected market confidence but it has been very much the opposite with over 80% of the market being taken on this horse and pushing the price out. There are a number of question marks around It's A Gimme including the trip and his temperament, which you don't particularly want when backing an odds-on shot. He has won over 2m4f over hurdles but scrambled home that day and then followed up with a poor run over the same trip and 2m looks his best trip. He has been known to travel well and then pack it all in very quickly which explains why he has traded at 2.01/1 or under in the run six times in defeat. Despite the drift he is still a very layable price so we think he is worth taking on at 1.635/8.
Heading over to Carlisle for our first back selection in the 15:35 1m Handicap (the Carlisle Bell consolation race), where there has been a move for Alan Swinbank's Eutropius who has been supported from 14.013/1 into 8.615/2. The trainer's horses have been running well and punters have delved into his form and realised that despite his recent win coming on heavy going he has a good record on good-to-firm, having run on this ground five times, winning twice and being place twice. Although punters may think that the handicapper has Eutropius in his grasp his run last time out suggests not, finishing second behind Bartack who got first run on him and showing he is still in cracking form. This is obviously a very tight handicap with nine horses rated within 3lbs of each other on the Timeform adjusted ratings, including Eutropius. With Camerooney and Spin Artist in the race to take them along we expect him to track the pace and respond well in the finish.
Our second back is again at Carlisle and comes in the course's showcase race, the Carlisle Bell which goes off at 16:10, a 1m handicap where there has been a move this morning for Lord Of The Dance from 15.014/1 into 9.08/1. This move is all about the going as this son of Indian Haven loves rattling fast ground having won four times in eight runs over seven or eight furlongs. He has done all his winning between April and July so this is his time of year and he runs off an official mark of 80 having won a decent contest at Ascot off 81 last year. Lord Of The Dance likes to come off a strong pace and with Talent Scout, Party Royal and Circuitous as confirmed front runners and plenty of other prominent runners the race should be run to suit. We think we could be doing a Clive Brittain jig later this afternoon if Lord Of The Dance wins the Carlisle Bell.
Lay It's A Gimme @ 1.664/6 in the 14:20 at Worcester
Back Eutropius @ 8.615/2 in the 15:35 at Carlisle
Back Lord Of The Dance @ 9.08/1 in the 16:10 at Carlisle