Punchestown Day 2 & Alan Potts Blog uploaded - Punchestown Festival Day 1 uploaded - Weekend Race Previews uploaded - World Snooker Preview in General Sport, Mark Ball Blog & Premier League Darts (Thurs) uploaded - Scottish National in Ante-Post Focus uploaded
It’s a busy week ahead culminating with Irish Champions Weekend from Leopardstown and The Curragh which I’ll be covering within Race Previews.
On the racing front before then I’ll be back for Ante-Post Focus on Wednesday and Horses to Follow on Thursday which is now 25 points up for the season to level stakes after a profitable York Ebor Festival for that column. I have also been preparing ahead of the St Leger Meeting (for which I’ll be covering the last three days) so later this week I will upload the leading dozen races for Doncaster in Big Race Trends.
You know that the Jumps Season isn’t too far away when we hit September and quotes from trainers’ open days begin to emerge and it’s even looking like we’ll see Coneygree in the Kerry National next week. I’d love to then see him in the Ladbrokes Trophy (formerly the Hennessy). One of my former guest contributors, Paul Ferguson, has his Jumpers to Follow book for sale, indeed it is already published, so if you fancy getting in the mood early then that’s a good pre-season read.
Of course the Jumps Season is the main thrust of pauljoneshorseracing.com and a reminder that the weekly previews will restart for the Cheltenham November Meeting so it will be in around three-four weeks’ time when I send renewal emails to those whose 12 months’ subscription starts in the autumn.
Having cleared my mind of the jumps over the summer, I had my first look at the Cheltenham ante-post markets this morning. The three biggest surprises were that (1) eight firms are already betting on the Cross Country and Four Miler (I’d have Cause Of Causes nearer 9/2 fav than 9/1) as it’s unusual to get more than three bookmakers pricing up those races even in December, (2) given that Douvan was supposedly the best horse in the history of horseracing that he is suddenly available at 100/30 for the Champion Chase (not that I’d back him) and (3) SunBets have Neon Wolf as favourite for the Arkle following his unfortunate death a couple of weeks back. Obviously that is not good and does zero for their credibility if they want to be taken seriously having got themselves on the oddschecker grid.
We’ve reached the half-way stage of the Golf (the Dell Technologies Championship has a Monday finish this week which has its advantages as there are no Premier League games tomorrow night) with Joh Rahm leading the way and two of Ciaran Meagher’s four each-way recommendations at 66/1 and 33/1 are very much in the hunt sitting in the top 15. His 10pts recommendation on Paul Casey to be Top English player currently leads that section by two strokes. Ciaran will be back to cover the BMW Championship next week.
In other sport we’re covering, the NFL returns this weekend and Andy Richmond will be our captain this season starting on Tuesday with his outright preview and then weekly on Saturdays throughout the season. We’re now into the second week of the US Open Tennis so from tomorrow Carl Redden’s previews go daily and in Football, Premier League Picks returns on Friday following the international break and I’ll also give my views on the Champions League outright market next weekend ahead of the first round of matches on September 12th where Barcelona v Juventus is the tasty tie. Just watch it be a thriller this time after I attended the 0-0 they played out in the quarter final back in April!!!