Our resident tipster Tony Calvin gives his thoughts on the 2000 Guineas before revealing his main bets for televised races at Newmarket and Newcastle...
"She could blow these away if reproducing those Newbury and Ascot efforts, so I am happy to take my chances at 3/1+."
The worst trap you can fall into as a punter is having a bet in a race just for the sake of it, and that is doubly true when you are confronted by a major race.
And that was my immediate thought when looking at Newmarket's 2000 Guineas at 15:35.
Do you really need to have a bet in the race?
My instinct says no, and I am going with it, for all the temptation, both professional and personal, to have a "view" in a Classic is overwhelming.
No strong views means no need to bet
Now, I am never in a rush to back any horse at odds-on, and that certainly is true with Pinatubo. We don't have any real idea of how he has wintered, or whether the pack has caught up with him over the winter and into spring, and how he will enjoy (probably) the quickest ground he has ever faced.
And, drawn in midfield in a 15-runner Guineas, I imagine there will be a very large target on William Buick's back - team tactics anyone? - even if he has two (very good) "minders" in his owner's camp.
In fact, the Godolphin Autumn Stakes 1-2 of Military March and Al Suhail are arguably the overpriced horses in the field, along with Royal Lodge winner Royal Dornoch.
I have listed the negatives for Pinatubo above but, in truth, on form he is more of a 2/5 chance than an evens poke.
So he is isn't really lay potential.
He overcame a tricky passage to win a Dewhurst in commanding style in the final analysis - he did momentarily look in a bit of trouble on the outside 2f out - and his earlier 9-length defeat of Armory and Arizona in Ireland was off the charts.
If he turns up in the same form, then he wins - you will hear that about 10,000 times in the next 24 hours - but he is simply not my kind of bet, backing or laying.
And don't let anyone tell you that there is any shame or discredit in not having a view, big race or not. If you don't have one, you don't have one, end of story, so make no apologies.
Anyway, good luck if you are getting involved in the big one - okay, if you really need a steer then Military March and Royal Dornoch each-way, and the Betfair Sportsbook are giving you four places - but I will aiming my punting sights lower on Saturday.
Queen could easily Power her way to victory
Bets are pretty hard to find actually, not least because Far Above is unfortunately a bit shorter than I was hoping for in the Palace House Stakes at 13:50.
It looks a below-par renewal to me - there is no Marsha or Mabs Cross in here, and the top-rated horse is Judicial on 109 - so that leaves the door open to a young improver, and the 4yo Far Above definitely fits that bill in what we saw last season. I don't go in for gossip but apparently he is the subject of very good reports.
However, the layers seem very alert to that, so I have to pass I am afraid. If he drifts to 6/1 or above, then I will play though, probably each-way,
I don't like to tip short but on a quiet day I think Queen Power is worth a small bet at 4.3100/30 or bigger in the Dahlia Stakes at 14:25.
Sir Michael Stoute seems to have his team pretty well forward and, on the face of it, his filly bids to bounce back from a disappointing run the last time we saw her, when she finished fourth of five at 11/8 at Windsor.
The market clearly expected more of her but it wasn't a bad performance, and I think she has a lot more going for her in this line-up than her price - and I know it isn't too flashy, anyway - suggests.
The reason why some people thought the Windsor run was so underwhelming was because of the abundant promise of her earlier performances.
Her Newbury defeat of subsequent Group winners Lavender's Blue and Star Catcher was red-hot form - that form worked out brilliantly, even further down the field - and her non-staying fourth to the aforementioned Star Catcher in the Ribblesdale (she led 2f out) also hinted as plenty more to come.
She could blow these away if reproducing those Newbury and Ascot efforts, so I am happy to take my chances at 3/1+.
Waldgeist's half-brother Waldkonig blew everyone away when winning at Wolverhampton in December but he has been priced up very defensively in the 15:00.
That is probably justified though, even if the Newmarket rumour mill has been throwing out Al Aasy as a serious threat.
But nine-runner Listed races full of unexposed sorts making their reappearances - sorry for sounding like a stuck record - simply don't do it for me.
Gloves could be off for first run for Wigham
ITV Racing are also showing three races from Newcastle, so let's shoot over there for a possible punt.
Regular readers will know I cannot resist a price so I am going to with a bit of a punt with Gloves Lynch at 33/1 each-way, four places, in the 14:05.
It is a guess as he makes his debut for Michael Wigham, having left Gordon Elliott.
He didn't show much for the Irish handler last season but he was rated 98 after finishing third in a Listed race in France in 2018, and is now down to a mark of 91.
I would normally avoid a horse of this profile but the price is enticing and the first time hood suggests the trainer could mean business first time up (Wigham is two from nine with this headgear angle in recent years) and Franny Norton has a good strike rate for the yard.
There is no shame in having a quiet punting Saturday but I did have a look at the other Racing TV races at Newmarket for another bet.
However, I came up blank.
If it isn't there, don't force it, regardless of the day. Some columns elsewhere stipulate that their tipsters have to put up three horses, but thankfully I am given a free rein.
Check out Betfair's video guide to Newmarket, in association with Timeform...
Want top tips on reading the race card? Check out Betfair's video guide, in association with Timeform
Back Gloves Lynch at 33/1 each-way, four places, in the 14:05 at Newcastle
Back Queen Power at 4.3100/30 or bigger in 14:25 at Newmarket