Friday, April 19, 2013

Week-end football and racing

The Flat season has started its post-Frankel era since a couple of weeks. No doubt that the mega-star of the past few years will be missed, but this is racing; one goes and there is hope that another gem arises, although it will be tough to surpass Frankel. But just a few years ago, everyone seemed to think that we'd never see the likes of Sea The Stars again, yet the son of Galileo appeared and the rest, they say, is history.

Black Caviar surprisingly left for the paddocks as well earlier this week and so racing has lost its 2 brightest stars. Among the juvenile brigade, there are a few that have shown potential and might emerge with promise; Dawn Approach and Toronado are certainly at the fore-fronts of all minds ahead of the coming Guineas. Among the older brigade, Camelot oozes enigma, and expectations will be high on the son of Montjeu to vindicate claims from his trainer that he's the best horse ever to come out of  Ballydoyle.

Then, Sea The Stars has his first 2-year olds running this year. I personally believe he will become a terrific sire; whether as good or better than his half-brother Galileo, it's difficult to pronounce, but he's definitely got the pedigree and breeder support to make a great stallion. We'll have to wait and let his sons and daughters do the talking. Lots to look forward indeed.

On Saturday, Noble Mission, makes his season appearance at Newbury. It looks to be all systems go for the Frankel's half-brother. The distance will suit and he's clearly got the best form from last year, among the runners. He will definitely be in the top 2, but is worth a punt as an outright Win at current odds.

The Group 3 Greenham Stakes at 15.30 looks to be a race between Hannon's Olympic Glory and Botti's Moohajim. Both yards are in good form but I give a small advantage to the Hannon horse at the seven furlong distance. He's a Win selection as well.

In football, I like Norwich as a Win against sorry Reading. This should put the Canaries at ease in the relegation fight. I think Wigan will sneak something out of their trip to West Ham. They showed good spirit in their loss at Man City and they definitely can match the Hammers. Wigan is a draw-no-bet selection.

Win: Noble Mission, Olympic Glory, Norwich
Draw-no-bet: Wigan

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