17 Jun 2017

William Hill Scottish Sprint Cup Handicap (Class 2)

The Scottish Sprint Cup is a race the market often reads wrong. Taking all renewals at Musselburgh since 2003, put £1 on every runner and you’d almost break even (- £3.75). Any race where that happens is heaven-sent for value players.

The way to play them is to forget about picking winners, instead think carefully about horses that have a believable frame chance at a big price - over time some of those frame chances will covert to winners, so initially make your target wide.

This is a sprint where weight tends to matters more than class. You can tell that by the number of claiming riders who win or run well. In some races that wouldn't be the case at all, but here, despite what the market thinks, it's weight that's king - much more so than draw:

Riders without a claim: 8 wins from 148 runners for -42.75 level stakes profit (LSP).

Riders with a claim: 5 wins from 66 runners for +39.00 LSP
You can boost this further by sticking purely to runners officially rated no more than 7lbs above their most recent win. Just adding this logical filter improves things to:

5 wins from 47 runners for +58 LSP; or each way 9 win and placed for +61.12 LSP.

In 2017, this criteria of a claiming rider on fairly treated horses, gives a short-list of; Kimberella, Mirza, Orions Bow and Jack Dexter. However, I am not interested in well-fancied horses - we are scanning for EW value 14/1+ (the higher the better).

The one that interests me most is JACK DEXTER from the wily Jim Goldie. How sweet it would be for Jim to win the Scottish Sprint Cup with the horse named after two of his grandchildren. I think he's having a real rip at this, Goldie even laying the seeds of his excuse by reporting that Jack Dexter had a problem in the spring but is healthy again now.

Jack Dexter lines up 9lbs lower than when a close up 4th last July in a £62k handicap at Ascot, over 5fl on gd-fm. This is a horse who was 2nd in the Gr2 Temple Stakes the year before on good ground, when rated 108. He runs here off 92 and claims 5lbs. The draw is decent and there were quiet signs of revival on his recent prep run. This looks tee'd up to a nicety.

The only question is going and undoubtedly they would prefer it softer - but he is absolutely proven on decent ground over 5fl and there's no doubt in my mind if they want to try, and they definitely are, then good ground is good enough. With luck in running I suspect he's got a knocking frame chance at a big price. If it does get too quick for him, then he's one for the tracker.

Good luck,

Jack Dexter, 1pt EW 25/1 various, 4x1/4

Herbie is one of the resident pro-gamblers in ENIGMA:


** Feedback: Couldn't find a way through for his trademark late run, snatched up and finished full of running. One to follow, goes very well at Ascot so that could be his next stop ** n.b. Jack Dexter duly won a few weeks later at Ascot 5/1 [ed]

Jack Dexter looks under the radar for Jim Goldie in the Scottish Sprint Cup

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