Flat Season Tips

Chris Beek, from Kachina Racing, lives and breathes horse racing and is based in Lambourn. This affords him a great opportunity to visit the gallops in this area of England which is the heartbeat for a number of established trainers.

So, get your little black notebook out, and make note of these 20 flat horses which Chris thinks should run very well this flat season. Over to Chris…

I’ve always found gallop reports a massive edge in my betting. They represent what’s going on at home.

They show you which horses work with which horses at home and also give an indication of well-being in the horse.

Very few horses will win if they are not fit and well, and these reports give us our best guide of how a horse may perform on the track. I never, however, look at it purely as black and white, that horse “A” worked with horse “B”, and “B” won on Wednesday, so “A” must win on Saturday. The best guide in a gallop is using it with form, something I personally believe in.

It is important to remember that, as far as I am concerned, the form book does not lie! So, when you hear that a horse is burning up the gallops, don’t get carried away until you have consulted the form book in tandem with the gallop report!
In the flat season, the form is mainly spearheaded by analysing speed figures, and whilst there are some costly services out there, RPR Ratings with the Racing Post are an accurate tool, but time-consuming all the same. However, taking the time to study these figures can certainly point you in the right direction.

It’s all about finding a happy medium and one that works well for you.

My best bets have always come from watching racing and picking out a few horses which
catch the eye; these could be ones running well in a race too hot for them, or merely an inexperienced horse which overcame its disadvantages to go close to collecting or running on into a decent position.

If you note a number of horses down each week you will soon compile your own horses-to-follow list and then you can use the list to note when these horses next run. Give each horse a criterion, then when it runs and matches your criteria, it should be considered as a bet.

On my website www.kachinaracing.co.uk I offer a free fortnightly newsletter, in which last month I sent out 20 horses to put in your note for the season. Whilst some of those horses have now won, some are yet to run. That said, the list has been working out very well. As I’m sure many of you reading this haven’t seen the list, here they are below:

My 20 flat horses to follow

As a special treat to my readers I’m keen to bring you my views on 20 horses I feel are worth following for the following flat season. I’ve tried to keep away from the obvious horses who everyone has heard of, so the list below is of horses I like from gallops and form, which I personally feel will be profitable, rather than just naming 20 group horses everyone has heard of.

Aviate – Henry Cecil (is a dual winner in 2010, and is now 5/1 for the Oaks).

Useful daughter of Dansili who looked a class act going places when beating subsequent winner Clairvoyance in good style at Kempton on her debut back in November. Has wintered really well since and has impressed in her gallops with Jacqueline Quest who was not disgraced in the Nell Gwyn. Currently 33/1 for the 1000 Guineas and the Oaks, she strikes me as an exciting group class prospect for the season.

Bakongo – Michael Bell (came out and won at Wolverhampton, rated 79 and very well handicapped).

Probably entered a few notebooks after her hugely encouraging debut at Newbury on Friday and she stayed on smartly in the final 2f to be an ever nearer 4th. The well bred daughter of Cape Cross has always shown ability in her work and whilst 12f will suit in time, she would be hard to beat in most 10f fillies’ maidens next time out. She is a very likeable filly and is the type to make up into a decent handicapper this season.

Bourne – Luca Cumani (won the first of many this season with something to spare at Nottingham).  

A horse I’m seriously excited by this season and I expect him to make up into a decent staying handicapper as the year progresses. His work at home with the likes of Forte Dei Marmi and Purple Moon suggests he could be seriously well handicapped off 72 and this relation to the classy Bon Spiel goes down as my main horse to follow this season.

Carioca – Marco Botti (ran well in midweek at York and will continue to pay her way).

A filly whom the Botti yard rate as a Group 1 filly and she won easily at Kempton before going to Italy and skating up in listed company. Likely to be targeted over 8-10f in group company from now on and is expected to win her fair share.

Cheetah – Luca Cumani (yet to run in 2010).

A strong filly that was unlucky to get beat on her debut and then hated soft ground when staying on okay at Doncaster in a warm maiden. Has done well over the winter but has been slow to hand so will need a bit of time before she is back on track. Likely to want 10f this season but should be up to at least listed class.

Dance East – Jeremy Noseda (won at skinny odds in midweek but won’t be crucified by handicapper for it).

Ran better than her form suggested on debut last season and bettered that with a fine 2nd at Newmarket on Thursday to a filly the Stoute yard think is group class. Has been working really well at home and looks easily up to listed level. I think she’ll be a moral for most maidens over 7f–1m and she is an exciting filly to follow this year.

Dosti – Jim Boyle (not ran again yet)

Yard not really known for first-time out winners and this horse overcame greenness to win a fair maiden in good style looking like he would only improve. I personally think he ran well last time despite coming out the back and I think a drop back in trip will certainly bring about a change in his fortunes. I think off 69 he is well handicapped and think 9–10f will prove in time to be his trip.

Enjoyment – Michael Bell (A big touch waiting to happen, but note her for handicaps).

Attractive daughter of Dansili who didn’t show much in two starts last season but has really impressed in her gallops this season suggesting she could be an exciting 7f–1m handicapper, who, if running over 6f on her comeback, could find herself off an attractive mark. She is a nice sort.

Fashion Flow – Henry Cecil (not had her 2nd
run yet).

Didn’t run as well as her work would have suggested when debuting on Friday but you can always forgive a horse what they show on debut and if her excellent work with Principal Role and Whirly Dancer is to be believed then she certainly should be putting the record straight in a mile maiden next time.

High Constable – Roger Charlton (yet to run since article published).

I was hugely encouraged by this horse on Friday at Newbury and a big strong type he looked really well in his coat in the paddock but was certainly carrying condition suggesting that he would certainly improve for the run. He got a shade outpaced when the winner got first run but stayed on nicely and shaped as if a mile would suit. That race has always been one to throw up some decent horses in the past and I think he could be one to keep on side this season.

Hooligan Sean – Henry Candy (not run in 2010)

A horse from a good sprinting family that improve with age, Hooligan Sean ran okay on debut before a really good effort when a solid 2nd beaten narrowly close home at Folkestone in what looked a solid maiden. Sure to have wintered well and no surprise if he won on his seasonal reappearance over 7f which will probably prove to be his trip. He should be a nice handicapper this season.

Krymian – Sir Michael Stoute (now handicapped, look out for him over further).

Real galloping type who came back from his final start very sore. Has wintered nicely and has been working well with a couple of nice 3yos in recent weeks. Looks the type who will want cut in the ground, and should prove effective in handicap company over 8f and further. He is entered in 7f Folkestone maiden on Tuesday but should find that a shade on the sharp side.

Lombok – Michael Bell (shaped okay for a long way on comeback run, better expected next time).

Very well handicapped off 72 and has been working very well with the Oaks winner Sariska at home having looked with plenty of the useful staying handicappers at home. Looks a tough type and will handle any ground, so I really feel that over staying trips he could have a decent season. He works like a 90 horse at home and is very fit at present. He is one to note in the coming weeks.

Padmini – Saeed Bin Suroor (not run in 2010)

I like this filly a lot and her work last season was very classy. She went to Dubai in November and has reportedly wintered well but is only back-steady cantering. Her mum was a group 1 performer and she will be expected to make up into a decent 3yo. She will want 8–10f and should be easily up to group class. The 4th from her maiden ran close to Eldalil this week which highlights what a good maiden she won at Lingfield.

Sahara Kingdom – Saeed Bin Suroor (not run
in 2010).

Two times winner last season who was always a big horse who would want time. He works very impressively and is certainly a group horse in waiting over 8–10f this season. He has just started being stepped up in his work back in Newmarket and looks a very nice horse for this season.

Saptapadi – Sir Michael Stoute (will be a leading player in cup races this season).

Won in a canter last night at Doncaster and looks a group 1 horse in the making to me. A real good staying type his work has been exceptional and he should make up into a cup horse this season. He reminds me a lot of Patkai who was good for these connections last season and this full brother should be up to the task this year.

Sard – Michael Jarvis (won on reappearance, not disgraced yesterday).

Showed little in two starts last season but has really caught the eye on the gallops this spring and she looks a decent 7f type for the year. No surprise if they get her handicapped over sprint trips but not one to be missed when stepping up to 7f.

Scorn – John Gosden (disappointing at Salisbury, but now handicapped).

A good strong filly that ran well on both her starts last season looking as if she would improve for a mile this term. Has been working really well at home and bypassed a decent maiden at Newmarket earlier in the week. Continues to look a listed / group horse on the gallops and should be hard to beat in most 7f–1m maidens in the coming weeks. Unlikely she will take up her Guineas entry but she is one the yard like a lot.

Superstitious – Clive Brittain (yet to run in 2010).

A filly who worked as well as Jira last season and has been impressing in the same said work group this season. Still unraced but thought highly of and only missed Newbury on Friday as connections felt 7f may have been a bit sharp for her. Likely to debut over a mile, and whilst she may not be one to win on debut, she should make her presence felt this season. She shapes as if she could be very useful.

Zigato – John Gosden (not run since article written)

Had been working very well with Senate prior to his debut but didn’t get the best of rides in my opinion, given a very negative ride and never really put in with a chance of winning. Continues to work like an 85+ horse on the gallops and whilst he should prove a decent 12f+ horse, I think he does have a touch of class about him. Entered over 12f at Kempton on Wednesday night and I would be extremely surprised if he were not up to winning that despite the Marcus Tregoning entrant reportedly nice.

That complete my 20 for you to follow and I hope they prove profitable for you during this season.

Editor: My thanks must go to Chris for sharing this information for free with readers of What Really Wins Money. We can have a lie in while he gets out the binoculars, notebook and pen, and traipses to the gallops in all weather!