Monday, 9 December 2019

Charlie Appleby: Another Exceptional Season...

Newmarket trainer Charlie Appleby has had another exceptional season with his 2-year-olds. 

This is the first part of his season review plus a couple of horses worth keeping an eye out for in the future. 

One horse stands out of course but I will get to him soon enough. Charlie started this season with a bang having five winners out of his first ten 2-year-old runners. 

Well Of Wisdom was his first win of the season at Newmarket. The Oasis Dream colt looked to be the second string of the Godolphin pair as they also had Full Verse in the race but Well Of Wisdom stayed on well to win on his debut. Well Of Wisdoms highlight of the season was winning the Listed Prix Roland De Chambure at Longchamp and gaining some black type to go with the 26,786 euro prize money. 

Pinatubo superstar horse for Newmarket horse trainer Charlie Appleby

Charlie Appleby's next winner looked every bit a superstar and he’s a horse that got everybody talking. Pinatubo was born on the 11th March 2017. The Shamardal colt was made 3/1 second-favorite for his debut race at Wolverhampton's evening meeting back in May. Little did we know at this stage that he would be mentioned in the same breath as the great Frankel in months to come. It was a professional and easy victory for his first race of the season and his second race was just as easy when winning the Woodcote at Epsom, but could he produce the same effort when he moved up another level? Well, we found out when Pinatubo demolished a decent field in the Chesham Stakes at Ascot. After another easy win in the Group 2 Vintage Stakes at Goodwood I wrote a post about promising Pinatubo and the mighty Frankel: Can Pinatubo Match the Might of Frankel? 

I don’t think we will ever see another Frankel but at the time Pinatubo looked unbeatable and so it proved for the rest of the season when adding the National Stakes and Dewhurst Stakes to what was already an impressive first season. 

Can Pinatubo be as well next season? 

I really hope so and can't wait to see him out again. Saying that he still has to keep that level up to be in the same league as Frankel. 

That leads me on to my first two Charlie Appleby horses to follow. 

The first is the well-thought-of EASTERN WORLD. The Dubawi colt was given a Group 2 Champagne Stakes entry back in August but didn’t run and it’s interesting he has early entries for the Irish 2000 Guineas and the Irish Derby next season. He was declared to run on Wednesday at Kempton in what looks a decent field with some big yards in the mix.

Another 2-year-old who made a favorable impression on me is the Dubawi filly DECLARING LOVE.

It's been a while since we saw the Godolphin homebred in fact the Dubawi filly has not run since making her debut in a hot Novice race at Newmarket in May. 

That was a nice introduction without pushing Declaring Love, she was only beaten by the impressive Group winners Raffle Prize and Daahyea and the fact she was given plenty of significant entries since that race and also has early entries for the Irish Oaks and the Irish 1000 Guineas next season means she could be horse not to take lightly in 2020. 

Thanks for reading and look out for my next Charlie Appleby season review plus a couple more horses to follow.

Saturday, 7 December 2019

George Scott: Stepping Up to the Next Level

Having spent four flourishing years at Saffron House Stables, George Scott has recently moved just a few hundred yards to Eve Lodge Stables Newmarket. This is a sign in itself that George is stepping up to the next level. 

I have no doubt he will after yet another consistent season in 2019. 

George, how long have you been involved in horse racing? 

Since I left School in 2008 I went straight to work for Paul Nicholls and then progressed through from Mark Tompkins to Michael Bell then did a stint in America then worked for Lady Cecil at Warren Place and then started training horses four years ago. 

If you weren't a trainer what would you have done?

I quite enjoy the idea of working in the city, a couple of my best mates work as traders and the excitement and energy they put in look fun although the reality is I would hate it. My father is a farmer, again it would be a nice idea to go farming but there's no competitiveness being a farmer and that's what we enjoy most, tough question but would probably go to the city.

Do you feel a lot of pressure training horses or is it a relaxed career that you enjoy all the time? 

Definitely, feel pressure when the horses are running badly and the bills are a bit tight but generally really enjoy it, overall it's a fantastic life but really only when the horses are running well and the owners are happy. 

If you could train any horse in history who would it be and why? 

I would probably train American Pharoah in America to win the Triple Crown, I thought he was an incredible horse, and I was at Belmont when he won the third leg of his Triple Crown which was really amazing and it was an amazing event, he looks like he's going to be a fantastic stallion as well. 

Do you have a favourite horse in the yard? 

My favourite horse in the yard would probably be Moll Davis who is a filly we are looking forward to seeing next year and she's definitely one of my favourites and we have an old lead horse called Phosphorescence who has been with us since day one and he would be another one of my favourites for different reasons. 

What's been the highlight of your career so far? 

Definitely running in the Breeders Cup. It was a fantastic occasion even though we didn't get much luck in running but James Garfield overall has been my career highlight - him winning the Mill Reef but ending up in the Breeders Cup was pretty exciting. 

A typical day in the life of George Scott? 

Get up at 5.50 a.m. I get into work as the first lot pulls out at 7.00 a.m. We have four lots in the morning and finish at 12.30. Then I go home have lunch, generally, have a sleep, come back for evening stables or go racing. 

I finish work at 6 or go racing. Then there's a lot of time on the phone in between sending messages to owners or talking to owners or sending pictures, then looking at form, so it's pretty busy inside and outside the yard. 

If you could win any race before you retired, what would it be and why? 

Definitely be the Derby, it's an iconic race not only in this country but around the world. I don't think any race in this country gets near to the significance and prestige of the Derby, so I would love to win the Derby. 

How is James Garfield? 

He's good, he got a nice amount of mares in his first cover around 85, and they are very happy with him he's very fertile, and we are looking forward to training some of his progeny. 

See, James Garfield's racecourse results

[Craig] I love watching the 2-year-olds progress over the year. 

It's early days but do you have a nice bunch for next season and hopefully another James Garfield? 

Yes, we have a really nice bunch of yearlings this year we have got our biggest number of yearlings, I think we have about 35 and we spent some good money at the sales. I have also been sent some nice homebred so am really optimistic about this bunch, its really early days I don't really have a stand out horse at the moment but there is a horse called Punta Arenas by Quality Road that's been given a Derby entry and is a quality animal, the sire is absolutely flying in America and he's out of a mare called Absolute Crackers who was in his low 90s for Jessica Harrington, he's got a nice pedigree and I like that. 

What do you do to relax when you get the time? 

I like to go and have lunch or dinner with friends and my wife and love all sports so watch a lot of sports, football, rugby, cricket anything. 

Any nice horses for next season or on the all-weather over the winter that my readers can follow?

Earth And Sky has been pretty consistent and has already won a couple of races this year and can continue to progress and Lyndon B is going to Dubai and is really well after giving him a break after winning at Sandown I think he could be a really competitive horse. 

Thanks to George Scott for his time and good luck for the future.

Visit George Scott's website.

Twitter: @georgeoscott

Facebook Page


1) George Scott Breeders' Cup 2017 
2) Jame Garfield

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Charlie Hills: 5 Horses to Follow in 2020

This season was always going to be a hard act to follow for Charlie Hills with his 2-year-old horses because 2-year-olds like Phoenix Of Spain don’t come around very often. 

Phoenix Of Spain had a special year in 2018 winning the Group 3 Acomb Stakes then finishing second in the Group 2 Champagne Stakes and the Group 1 Futurity Stakes at Doncaster. 

As a three-year-old Phoenix Of Spain won the Irish 2000 Guineas at 16/1 on his reappearance. 

This season has seen a couple of nice 2-year-olds come from the Hills stable in Lambourne.

Flippa The Strippa made her debut in a Nottingham Stakes race at the end of April. It was a nice introduction by the Outstrip filly who stayed on nicely to finish third despite not being fancied in the betting. 

Flippa The Strippa went onto win her next race at Chepstow then contested the Listed National Stakes at Sandown. Even though it wasn’t the strongest field Flippa The Strippa won well and picked up some nice prize money too. Not bad considering she cost just £10,000 at the yearling sales. 

Persuasion was bought for 155,000 gns by Peter & Ross Doyle Bloodstock as a foal and sold on to owner Susan Roy for 220,000 gns in 2018. 

The Acclamation bay colt won first timeout at 16/1 and showed the potential that Charlie Hills had seen on the gallops. Persuasion was given some fancy entries this season and ran a great race to finish second in the Group 3 Tattersalls Stakes at Newmarket when beaten by Wichita which was no disgrace. 

Persuasion has only had three races and will look to be challenging the big guns next season. 

One horse that has been pretty frustrating this season is DULAS who am pretty sure has ability but also has a few issues. The Raven’s Pass colt was bought for 60,000 gns at the 2018 October Yearling Sale and is owned by Julie Martin & David R Martin & Partn. A big price on debut at Newmarket in a pretty hot race, Dulas was far to green to make any impact and finished down the field. He was entered in the Convivial Stakes at York but was unruly before the start and withdrawn. 

After a long lay off I was pretty sure Dulas would be spot on but again ran to free and blew his chance but having said that the winner that day Highest Ground could be a bit special and has an early entry for the Irish 2000 Guineas next season. Dulas did look to be getting the hang of things late on and I won’t be giving up on the bay colt just yet. 

One more Charlie Hills 2-year-old that looks to be held in high regard is the Mr. Hamdan Al Maktoum filly SHURAFFA. The Shamardal filly was also keen on debut at Salisbury in a Class 2 race. Charlie had given Shuraffa two significant entries before her debut and hopefully, she will improve next season and break her maiden tag. 

Thanks for reading and look out for my next horses to follow.

Saturday, 30 November 2019

Roger Varian: It's Been an Exceptional Season

Roger Varian: It's Been an Exceptional Season
It’s been an exceptional season for Newmarket trainer Roger Varian and his 2-year-old team. Let’s rewind back to the start of the season. On the 18th May at Newmarket racecourse Roger Varian introduced a lovely looking Bated Breath filly in the name of Daahyeh. Born 29 January 2017 and sold for £75,000 at the 2018 Goffs yearling sales. 

The money was down as Daahyeh opened up 4s but that soon went, and she was sent off 3/1 joint-favourite for her racecourse debut. The result was never in doubt as Daahyeh beat the Mark Johnston filly Raffle Prize. That was an impressive performance considering we didn’t know Raffle Prize would turn out to be a 113 rated filly. 

As for Daahyeh her next start would see her win the Group 3 Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot and go on to finish second in the Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes and the Moyglare Stakes before adding the Group 2 Shadwell Rockfel Stakes to an impressive first season. Daahyeh wasn’t finished as Roger Varian gave her the chance to finish the season in style as Daahyeh traveled across the pond to take on the best in the Breeders Cup Juvenile fillies Grade 1 turf race at Santa Anita. It was a valiant effort by Daayeh who ran a fantastic race to finish second to the American filly Sharing in what was a brilliant debut season and I can’t wait to see her back out as a 3-year-old next year. 

The following Friday another Roger Varian 2-year-old superstar was about to be unleashed at Haydock Park. Bought for 140,000 Guineas at the 2018 October Yearling Sales by Roger Varian for owner Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum. 

Roger Varian horse trainer at Newmarket
Pierre Lapin must have been setting the gallops alight as the Cappella Sansevero colt was sent off even-money favourite for his debut. Pierre Lapin quickened clear in the final furlong showing why he was such short odds on debut. 

A string of significant entries followed but no sign of the Varian colt turning up. Finally 120 days later when Roger Varian was happy with Pierre Lapin he lined up for the Group 2 Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury where his half brother Harry Angel was victorious in 2016. Another easy victory here as Pierre Lapin showed his class and won again at odds of 9/4. The futures bright and I can see him being a real star next season when he fills out and learns to settle. 

My first Roger Varian 2-year-old to follow also comes with a big reputation and a touching story. DELTA’S ROYALTY has a lot to live up to being the only foal produced by the sadly departed American superstar Royal Delta. 

Owner Mr Benjamin Leon Jr bought Royal Delta for $8.5 Million at the Keeneland sales in 2011, and she went on to win six Grade one races in America. As for Pedigrees, they don’t come much bigger than Delta’s Royalty after the mare Royal Delta was bred to the brilliant Galileo, but it came at a price as on the 1st February 2017 Royal Delta gave birth to Delta’s Royalty only to die due to complications which must have been heartbreaking for owner and connections. 

By all accounts, Delta’s Royalty has impressed in her work and the fact she had an entry for the Group 1 Fillies Mile this season and has been given an early entry for the Group 1 Irish Oaks next July gives the impression it won’t be long before she gets off the mark. 

Roger Varian likes to wait till he has his horses spot on before they hit the track and even though Delta’s Royalty may not be much of a price I really hope she can give owner Benjamin Leon Jr another brilliant filly like her mother Royal Delta was. 

Thanks for reading and look out for part two of Roger Varian's horses to follow.

Thursday, 28 November 2019

Karl Burke: Do You Love Me (Phoenix Thoroughbred Limited)

Karl Burke will always be known for training the amazing John Dance filly Laurens but he can also train a nice 2-year-old. This season a few have done me a good turn especially when the money comes in. The first was the Dandy Man colt Lord Of The Lodge who won on debut for owner Mrs. Elaine Burke at 4/1 after opening up 9/2 and ridden by the brilliant Ben Curtis. His last race of the season was the Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes at York and another brilliant performance seen him finish second to the class Richard Hannon colt Threat, only beaten just under two lengths. Lord Of The Lodge finished the season with an official rating of 109. Hopefully, Lord Of The Lodge will have another good campaign next season. 

Rayong was another success for Karl Burke and the King Power Racing team after winning on debut at Carlisle in May. The Mayson bay colt then went on to finish third in the Listed Dragon Stakes at Sandown behind Liberty Beach. Rayong finished the season with an official rating of 97 and despite finishing out the places in some decent races Rayong should be winning again next season. 

The filly Living In The Past brought Karl Burke and Clipper Logistics Group success this year. The Bungle Inthejungle filly won the second timeout at Beverley before going on to finish third in the Group 3 Princess Margaret Keeneland Stakes at Ascot. Better was to come as Living In The Past was sent off 12/1 and given a positive ride by jockey Daniel Tudhope in the Group 2 Lowther Stakes at York. Living In The Past made all and went on to beat Liberty Beach by just under a length. Even though unplaced in the Breeders Cup Juvenile race that was a great season and should be in the winner's enclosure again next season. 

I was expecting to see another Karl Burke 2-year-old this season but I imagine she has had a few issues or just needs strengthening up before making her debut. The horse in question is DO YOU LOVE ME. The lovely bred Galileo filly was purchased for an incredible 3.2 million at the Goffs sales by owners Phoenix Thoroughbred Limited and has a big reputation at Spigot Lodge. I have been waiting for a good while for this bay filly to run after she was given a few significant entries this year but it's looking more likely she won't be seen till next year as the 2-year-old races wind down. 

[With the recent press about Phoenix Thoroughbred Limited and allegations regarding the business it will be interesting to see what happens in the coming months.] 

Karl Burke gave an update on her back in July saying she was still a bit backward but she’s a lovely filly. Do You Love Me has been given early entries for the Irish 1000 Guineas and also the Irish Oaks which is interesting? 

After another busy year for Karl Burke and his team, it looks like he will be reducing the number of horses next year which sounds like a good move to me, and he can now concentrate on quality over quantity and hopefully, the 2-year-old horses will still be a money-spinner for me. 

Thanks for reading and look out for my next horse to follow coming soon.

Sunday, 24 November 2019

Noel Williams: As Dedicated as they Come

Noel Williams horse trainer
Based at Churn Stables, Blewbury, Oxon since 2016, Noel Williams is as dedicated as they come. Known for his patience with horses Noel couldn’t have had a better mentor in Alan King overseeing class horses like Voyer Por Ustedes, Katchit and My Way De Solzen before starting his own journey on his own. 

Noel, have you always been involved in horse racing? 

I started off my working life as a 3-day-Event rider, and also produced young horses for that sphere before going into racing where I spent 12 years as Alan King’s Assistant before venturing out on my own. 

If you weren’t a trainer what would you have done? 

If I wasn’t a trainer I would probably be a bloodstock agent as I enjoy working the sales. If it was nothing to do horses or racing I would say probably something to do with criminal psychology as that’s a subject that really fascinates me. 

Do you feel a lot of pressure training horses or is it a relaxed career that gives you a lot of pleasure? 

I rarely feel pressure training the horses. There is quite a lot of pressure that comes from running the business, however. The financial margins are extremely small in this line of work, which many people wouldn’t realise, so that makes it a hard way to make a living and indeed stay afloat. The vast majority of trainers do it purely because they love training horses and I’m no exception. 

If you could train any horse in history who would it be and why? 

This is a difficult one as there have been so many superstars over the years. The likes of Frankel, Cigar, Makybe Diva, Deep Impact and Zenyatta to name just a few on the flat. However I’m a jumping man and although I could easily choose Kauto Star, Arkle or Istabraq I’ll go with Desert Orchid. Sure there have been higher rated horses who’ve won more money but this swashbuckling grey with his fantastic jumping really captured the imagination of the racing public at the time, as he did mine when I was just a young lad. 

Do you have a favourite horse in the yard?

No I try to never have a favourite, although some do make more of an impression on you than others from their character or the effort they put into the training and racing. 

What's been the highlight of your career so far? 

I’ve won a couple of races at Cheltenham and there’s just something a bit special about having winners there. I’m still working on that first “big” winner though, but I have a feeling it’s not too far away! 

A typical day in the life of Noel Williams 

Quite honestly there isn’t a typical day for me. Apart from getting up and training the horses in the mornings every day can be really quite varied. That’s one of the things I love about the job. 

If you could win any race before you retired, what would it be? 

The Cheltenham Gold Cup. It’s the pinnacle of jump racing. 

How is Another Crick and any plans for him this season? 

 Another Crick is very well but he won’t be running this season. He picked up a slight leg injury in March and we decided to give him all this winter off. All being well he’ll be back and raring to go next Autumn and I’d like to get him ready for a crack at the BetVictor Gold Cup at Cheltenham in November. 

What do you like to do in your spare time? 

If I’m not racing on a Sunday I try to keep the day as free as possible so in the summer I play Cricket at which I’m more enthusiastic than skilled! In the winter when I tend to be busier I try to enjoy any free Sundays with my wife, and sometimes friends, perhaps enjoying a good lunch. 

Any dark horses for my readers to follow this season? 

Sol Plum Creek could be an interesting runner in a bumper in the early spring. 

A huge thanks to Noel Williams for spending time answering questions for my blog and good luck for the rest of the season.

Visit Noel Williams' Website

Saturday, 23 November 2019

2:30 Lingfield Racing Tips (23rd November)

14:30 Lingfield 23 Nov 2019 

Twelve horses go to post here and the favourite looks like being the once-raced William Haggas runner Dancin Inthestreet. This bay came second in a minor event at Newmarket at the beginning of the month on heavy ground. That was a perfectly good run by the well-bred Muhaarar filly who sets the standard here and should come on for that experience. 

We also have a couple of interesting newcomers who could have a hand in the result too.

The Saeed Bin Suroor Dubawi filly *Dubai Quality makes plenty appeal on paper. The dam enjoyed success on the Polytrack. One negative is drawn out wide on debut so will have to be well-clued up first timeout. Bin Suroor does have a 25% winning strike rate with newcomers here at Lingfield but the last one was Team Meeting back in November 2016.

Another interesting newcomer is the Ed Vaughan trained Coto Donana who has a great pedigree. The Kingman filly is owned by Mr A E Oppenheimer (pictured). 

Vaughan has another three horses with owner Anthony Oppenheimer including Little Becky (who won first time out at Kempton in October this year when backed to 11/1). 

Ardiente (also won at Kempton on debut in 2018 and went off at 10/1). 

Also, Dame Malliot (a debut winner at Wolverhampton at 3/1 in 2018 and now has an official rating of a 109 after winning the Group 2 Prix De Pomone in Deauville). 

Interested to see which way Coto Donana goes in the betting here and one for the shortlist. Not sure why Steve Donohoe is not riding as he has ridden the other three horses for Ed. 

Another horse with experience is the Clive Cox trained Risk Taker. The Lope De Vega colt cost owners Paul and Clare Rooney 75,000 euros as a yearling and also has a nice pedigree. Well-supported for his debut at Newbury from 10/1 to 17/2 at the off. Risk Taker was smartly away and always up with the pace until tiring in the heavy ground that day. Not sure how good that race was but the drop in trip and well-drawn in stall 2 should see Adam Kirby get Risk Taker in a nice position and try to hold on to the death. 

I did mention a Clive Cox and Paul and Clare Rooney horse last week on my Facebook Page called Irish Acclaim who I had an each-way bet on at 22/1 and finished second which was a fine effort considering time away from the track. 

Conclusion: Potentially nice newcomers on show plus a couple of decent looking horses make their presence felt. I was looking at just backing Risk Taker each way when I started writing this post but the more I read about Coto Donana the more I like the Kingman filly. The stats look pretty decent but the first day at school could bring all kinds of problems. I will do a split stake on both and hopefully, the first two favourites will disappoint.

Thanks for reading and good luck.


Friday, 22 November 2019

Can I Make Money Betting 2YO Outsiders?

We love to hit a bookmaker for six. 

The best way to do just that is to hit them hard in the pocket, just left of the cricketer's box (that's where they keep that mouse-trap wallet). 

I've written a few posts for Craig's Betting Blog. In fact, I've mentioned a few huge priced winners. One my brother nabbed years ago called Puggy. Betting on the exchanges he bet £20 and won £4,000. 

Amazing hey. 

When you hear people getting big priced winners it feels like everyone is doing it. Earlier this year Craig had a bet on a horse called Intimate Moment trained by Philip McBride. This daughter of Mustajeeb ran at Great Yarmouth, cruising home by three lengths. It won like a favourite. 

Guess the odds? 


Take a look at the full result here

Once again, it makes finding these speculative-priced winners a child's play. 

But is that really true?

I want to know the facts...

There is only one way we can quantify the true chance of anything statistical and that is by running a study with data. This blog is dedicated to two-year-old horse racing. So we need to know how many two-year-old races are run over the Flat turf season (2019) which starts with the Brocklesby Stakes (March) and concludes about mid-November at Doncaster. 

In total, we are talking about 1024 races. 

I reviewed the winners starting price (SP) for all these horses. If backing these outsiders is so straightforward then the data should reveal horses winning at odds bigger than 20/1 are common. 

It's at this point you may want to stop for a second or two and consider that statement: 

''Horses winning at odds bigger than 20/1 are quite common''. 

What do you think?

If you had a multiple choice question and the answers were: common, unlikely, rare as hen's teeth. 

What would your answer be? 

This is what I mean about knowing the answer to a question rather than just imagining. You either know something or you don't. 

When I studied psychology I remembered a maxim: ''Without objective testing theories are only guesses however good''.

It's a fact. 

I think if someone had asked me the question of how many two-year-old winners won over the Flat turf season 2019 at odds over 20/1 I would have looked quite stupid. 

Why? Because I would have imagined the number was much higher than it is. 

So can you imagine the number of winners priced over 20/1?

Amazingly, it is just 9 horses, from over 1,000 races. 

It doesn't seem possible. 

But it's true. 

Saturday, 16 November 2019

Horse Trainer: Oliver Greenall

Oliver Greenall horse trainer
Oliver Greenall 

Based at Stockton Hall Farm Oldcastle, Cheshire, Oliver Greenall had a successful career as a point-to-point jockey winning the men's point-to-point Championship in the 2007/8 season. Oliver retired from race riding at the end of the 2014/15 points season and hasn’t looked back since. The up and coming trainer had a great 2018/19 season with 20 winners with the prolific Gamesters Icon among them. 

Oliver, have you always been involved in horse racing? 

Yes, my father rode as an amateur and my mother is a Weatherby. 

If you weren't a trainer what would you have done?

Farmer, I have Aberdeen Angus cows. 

If you could train any horse in history who would it be and why? 

Kauto Star – the ultimate racehorse and so consistent. 

You train horses over the jumps and on the flat, how did that come about? 

I worked for M W Easterby and he did both so I was always keen to and with Chester so close.

Do you have a favourite horse in the yard?

Zalvados always was but he struggled to win over fences.

What's been the highlight of your career so far? 

Gamesters Icon winning four in a row. 

A typical day in the life of Oliver Greenall? 

Watching horses on the gallops, dealing with owners and going racing.

If you could win any race before you retired, what would it be? 

Grand National. 

What do you do to relax when you get the time? 

Riding, tennis and cross country skiing. 

Any nice horses for the jumps season that my readers can follow? 

Evander and Midni. 

A big thanks to Oliver Greenall for his time to answer questions for my blog. 

Hollie Doyle: Racehorses All My Life

Hollie Doyle Jockey
Hollie Doyle (picture) 

Hollie Doyle is one of the biggest names in female racing who started her career with David Evans at the age of 17. A broken collarbone in 2017 saw her challenge for the amateur jockey title put on hold after she was leading in May but that didn’t stop her from winning the Upavon Stakes for Richard Hannon onboard Billesdon Bess once she was back in the saddle. Plenty more winners followed and 2019 has seen her ride an incredible 700 plus times. Archie Watson is one trainer who benefits from her great riding skills. 

Hollie, have you always been involved in racing? 

Yes, I’ve always been around racehorse all my life my parents both rode as jockeys also. 

At what age did you become a jockey? 


You have ridden plenty of nice winners over the years do you have a favourite? 

No favourites, in particular, I just appreciate them all. 

If you weren’t riding horses what would you do? 

No idea, something within horses still though! 

If you could ride any horse in history who would it be? 


I love 2-year- old racing and you ride plenty of Archie Watson’s speed machines how exciting has that been? 

This is an exciting time of year as the yearlings are starting to come into training so you're always on the look for a potential star. 

What has been the highlight of your racing career so far? 

Winner at Shergar Cup & riding listed winner in France. 

Thanks to Hollie Doyle for taking time to answer questions for my blog.

Saturday 2-Year-Old Preview (16:45 Wolverhampton 16 Nov 2019)

It’s back! After a week of no flat racing which seemed like forever, by the way, we have what looks like a nice little Novice race to get stuck into. Just on another note as the flat racing will be well and truly over soon this season I will try to find an angle on the Juvenile Hurdlers and the National Hunt Flat races instead of twiddling my thumbs and waiting for the next flat season. I have put a few up on my Facebook page and had two winners so far (beginners luck am sure). 

16:45 Wolverhampton 16 Nov 2019: 

Twelve declared here in what looks a tricky little Novice Stakes race but as we don’t have many 2-year-old races left I will give it a go. 

Godolphin comes here double-handed. First up is the Saeed Bin Suroor Showcasing colt My Vision who cost 88,000gns as a foal and 200,000gns as a yearling. My Vision made his debut here last month and ran a pretty nice race to finish third. Even though the form of that race doesn’t look particularly strong My Vision is entitled to come on plenty for that debut especially as he had a few problems in the stalls beforehand. The fact he was supported from 6s to 4/1 at the off is another positive. 

The second Godolphin runner was the Charlie Appleby Dubawi colt Poet’s Mind who also made a pleasing debut first time out here last month when finishing second to Fashion Royalty. Poet’s Mind was the Godolphin second string that day with the other Appleby runner In The Night going off odds on but only finishing fourth. As for Poet’s Mind who took a drift in the market that day, he had a few problems after being hampered early on then running wide on the bend before just failing to catch Fashion Royalty after finishing strong. I imagine Poet’s Mind will be favourite and another who will come on plenty for his debut and has a good chance to get off the mark here. 

The 125,000,gns yearling FAVOURITE MOON has already had two runs and improved again the last timeout. The William Haggas trained Sea The Moon colt ran in what looked like a pretty hot race last time out at Newbury when finishing fourth to the Hugo Palmer trained Acquitted. The third that day Mishriff has since come out and won easily so the form looks strong and another who could be in with a chance if taking to the Tapata. 

I had an each-way bet on Finely Tuned after getting an early price of 13/2 last time out at Nottingham. The Gleneagles colt was well-supported into 3/1 that day and to be honest, I had given up hope as Finely Tuned looked to get stuck in the mud as the ground at Nottingham was heavy that day. Jack Mitchell didn’t give up and got the Simon Crisford colt going again and ended up just failing to peg back the surprise 50/1 Alan King winner Tremor. My only worry is he could be outpaced again before running on which could be too late by then, we will see. 

Last but not least is the John Gosden Dansili colt CELESTRAN who went off at 12/1 for his debut race at Newmarket 15 days ago. Celestran done a lot wrong that day when starting slowly and running green throughout the race. Celestran looks a big athletic type and despite starting slow the Cheveley Park owned colt got the hang of things late on without threatening the eventual winner Louganini. He stayed on nicely for jockey Nick Mackay and the extra distance should suit, the form didn’t look particularly strong but has potential to improve. 

Conclusion: A tough race here with plenty in with chances and as am in work tonight I have to write this without knowing the betting, plus not much to go on form wise with these later 2-year-old races. Poet’s Mind looks to have a great chance here but not for me at the price. I might do a split stake on Celestran and Favourite Moon if they don’t take a huge drift and the price allows. 

Thanks for reading and good luck.

Wednesday, 13 November 2019

David Egan: Destined to be a Jockey

Born in Kildare, Ireland in 1999, David Egan is one of my favourite Flat racing jockeys. He was destined to be a jockey as racing runs right through his family. His mother Sandra Hughes trained Lieutenant Colonel who won the Christmas Hurdle and Thunder And Roses who won the Irish Grand National in 2015. 

His dad is of course jockey John Egan who won the July Cup with Les Arcs and recently won the Listed Chalice Stakes at Ascot on board the Jane Chapple-Hyam trained Love So Deep. In fact, his Grandfather was the legend himself Dessie Hughes, and then we have his uncle who is Richard Hughes, who himself was a magnificent jockey and is now making a name for himself as a trainer to be reckoned with. 

I think David has a lot to live up to but by the looks of things, he is well up to the task. 

David Egan rode out his claim back on June 2018 onboard Keeper’s Choice at Newbury. Since then David has gone from strength to strength winning some big races including a brilliant ride on the Cheveley Park owned Pilaster who won the Group 2 Lillie Langtry Stakes at Goodwood in August 2018 for Roger Varian and another one for his boss Roger Varian is the impressive Daahyeh who won the Group 2 Albany Stakes at Ascot this year and went on to finish second in the Breeders Cup Juvenile Fillies Group 1 race at Santa Anita ridden by William Buick this time. 

As you may know, I love 2-year-old racing but I really don’t like betting on a first timeout 2-year-old as you never know what will happen when an unraced horse hits the track. One statistic that did interest me about David Egan was the nice first timeout winners he rides for Roger Varian when under 10/1. 

His first unraced 2-year-old since losing his claim was Ideological back in September 2018 at Kempton. David gave the well-supported newcomer a perfect ride by settling her at the rear until she found her feet and won going away in the end. Bayroot was another peach of a ride by David Egan. Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum's Exceed And Excel colt was 8/1 for his debut at Kempton and it was the same again by David. Bayroot was settled in the rear before making headway and staying onto win by a length. 

One owner that likes to use David Egan is Mr Nurlan Bizakov. David rode two nice unraced 2-year-olds for Mr Bizakov back in 2018. The first was Nausha who made her debut at Newbury back in October 2018. The Kingman filly was sent off 11/4 joint-favourite. David again rode the perfect race and won cosy in the end. Nausha went on to win a Group 3 race at York that season. Next up was Lastochka, the Australia filly who funnily enough won the same day and again David held Lastochka up before delivering her with a strong run to win by a neck at the Kempton evening meeting. 

I think I have saved the best unraced Roger Varian horse that promising jockey David Egan rode on debut. Pierre Lapin was purchased for a 140,000gns in October 2018 for owner Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum and made his debut in May this year. Pierre Lapin was sent off the even-money favourite and David Egan did what he does best with unraced 2-year-olds and brought him into the race in his own time before Pierre Lapin quickened clear to win comfortably in what was an impressive run and has since gone on to win the Group 2 Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury.  

Conclusion: As I said it’s a gamble with unraced 2-year-olds but when you see David Egan on a Roger Varian debutant under 10/1 give it a second glance as it could be worth the gamble. 

Thanks for reading and good luck.