Sportsman Racing: Dettori Defies Draw

In this regular Monday segment, racing expert Scott Armstrong rounds up all the action of note from this weekend’s racing for SBC Blog readers.

This week, Scott casts his eye over what was a bumper weekend for the bookies, with plenty of big priced winners, leaving many a punter left scratching their head. None more so than, in the Cesarewitch where Frankie Dettori defied the high draw to inspire the Jamie Osbourne trained Never Can Tell to a 25/1 shock victory.

The Cesarewitch was won by Never Can Tell under an inspired ride by the inimitable Frankie Dettori. Defying the draw of stall 36, Dettori ploughed a lone furrow in the middle of the track. Never Can Tell looked the winner from some way out and so it proved. Prior to the race trainer Jamie Osborne had been bullish telling a colleague “I think Never Can Tell is overpriced. He will stay the trip and is in great shape at home. We will negate the draw by attempting to get near the front and bowl along. With Frankie in the plate I think we have every chance of being placed”. A great raid for all connections.

Strong Suit’s wind operation has worked a treat and he quickened to shoot clear of some decent opponents in the Challenge Stakes winning by 4 1/2 lengths. The Breeders Cup looks to be his next target and at odds of 5-1 he holds every chance, possessing the speed required to win the race in America. Strong Suit is ideally suited to seven furlongs though the rock hard surface should ensure he gets the extra furlong.

Parish Hall was another big priced winner at Newmarket landing the Dewhurst Stakes at odds of 20-1. Denying Aidan O’Briens Power this was trainer Jim Bolger’s fourth Dewhurst triumph in the last seven years and earned Parish Hall quotes of 25-1 for the 2000 Guineas. Those prices can be ignored as Parish Hall doesn’t look to have the speed to win the 2000 Guineas.

On an awful day for punters, Crusade was another big priced winner of the Middle Park Stakes at 25-1. Frankie Dettori was 7th on West Leake Diman but may have taken his race position for Never Can Tell from Crusade’s victory here as he raced to victory from near the centre of the track.

Jumps fans were given a taste of the wonderful action to come when Cue Card made a return to the track facing Micheal Flips and Silviniaco Conti. Cue Card won in impressive fashion on his chase debut settling into a lovely rhythm despite getting in too close to a few fences. Cue Card’s Cheltenham target is undecided though the Arkle looks likely. The Arkle promises to be one of the best races at Cheltenham next season with Peddlers Cross, Sprinter Sacre, Menorah and Al Ferof all possible contenders.

Horses to make note of from the weekend’s racing include Sirius Prospect who came from last to first to win the the Class 2 Sprint Trophy at York. Sirius Prospect won going away and looks capable of winning at Group level with handler Dean Ivory stating he is the best horse he has ever trained. Tom Dascombe’s Brockwell finished unplaced on debut in a class 3 maiden. Slowly out the gates Brockwell and in last place the two-year old colt covered a lot of ground to pass seven horses to finish fourth. He can win next time out.

Horses To Follow

Aiken – Back next time out. Green last time out but ran well and sure to improve.
Balducci – Back in Listed race. Deserves another chance in Listed company.
Brockwell – Back next time out. Slow from stalls, ran on well, winner in waiting.
Bronterre – Back next time out. Lost race in preliminaries last time and ran green. Deserves another chance.
Deacon Blues – Back in British Champion Sprint Stakes. Big chance.
Fencing – Back next time out. Ran green on last outing, big future anticipated.
Nawwaar – Back next time out. Well regarded.
Rave – Back in Listed/Group 3 company. Best three-year old in John Hills yard.
Rex Imperator – Back next time out. Missed break on latest start, ran on well.
Sirius Prospect – Back in Group company. Major prospect, capable of landing a Group race.


Scott’s service is one of the many racing and sporting tipsters that we monitor and recommend at the Smart Betting Club. You can read more from Scott via his racing blog at the Smart Betting Club every Monday and Friday. (