This weekend is very much a transitional one in horse racing as the end of the flat racing season draws near with Flat racing’s final British Group 1 race of the year, the Racing Post Trophy, whilst Aintree stages the first significant national hunt race of the year, the Old Roan Cup. And we’ve got an each-way horse racing tip for both:
The Racing Post Trophy, Doncaster, 3.50pm Saturday
The last 10 winners of this prestigious race have gone on to win four classics, including three Derby’s (Motivator 2004, Authorized 2006 and Camelot 2011) and this year’s St Leger winner Kingston Hill, whilst other greats such as Reference Point, Celtic Swing and High Chapparral have also been successful here over the years.
Trainer Aiden O’Brien has by far the best record in the race, as he’s won it seven times including three times in the last five years, however his two representatives Aloft and Jacobean certainly aren’t as high-profile or as popular in the betting as his previous winners.
The horse with the best form in the book is Andrew Balding’s Em Park who notched a hat-trick of victories by winning the Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes at Newmarket on good to firm ground. Connections will have no worries about the ground either, as he began that hat-trick on soft ground at Newbury, and he’s the worthy favourite at around 7/4 with Andrea Atzeni hoping to claim a Group 1 success for his new boss.
However, I’m going to take a chance on Mark Prescott’s unbeaten Celestial Path as he’s looked impressive in two runs to date, and his trainer is never one to aim his 2-year-olds too high.
2 points each-way Celestial Path @ 5/1
Old Roan Chase, Aintree, 3.00pm Saturday
In its short 10 year history, this race has witnessed some epic battles and some high-class winners. Kauto Star claimed the prize in 2006 before the now retired popular grey Monet’s Garden beat him into second in 2007 before going on to complete a hat-trick in 2009 and 2010. Three times Cheltenham Festival winner Albertas Run also claimed the trophy in 2011.
The last two winners, For Non Stop and Conquisto, haven’t been of that class and this year’s field also lacks a bit of star quality after Dynaste’s late defection. However, there are plenty of old favourites lining up to battle in the shape of Wishfull Thinking, Rolling Aces, Module, and Radjhani Express.
However Steve Gollings, trainer of last year’s winner Conquisto, has managed to get his charge’s mark down to 146; 4lb lower than last year’s winning mark and Conquisto must have every chance of doubling-up as he gets loads of weight from some higher-rated rivals.
Conquisto each-way @ 8/1
1 point each-way Celestial Path & Conquisto