A superb card from Belle Vue tonight on Sky Sports 3 featuring the finals of the ECC Timber Laurels and Oaks, in which Thinking Big and Droopys Danneel look value at 11/2 and 11/4 respectively to land the spoils.
Here’s my guide and selections for the eight races on Sky – Channel 403:
7.34pm – Trap 2 Calzaghe Mario has taken to the track well and looks overpriced at 5/4 with Hills to follow-up last week’s success. Ted Soppitt’s son of Blackstone Gene could not have been more impressive when cracking out and making all to beat Sidaz Bandit by 8 1/4 lengths and there is no reason why he should not confirm the form with Charlie Lister’s charge. A repeat of his 4.25 sectional that day would be good enough to see him lead at the first and I can’t see anything picking him up if that proves to be the case.
7.49pm – Farloe Warhawk heads the betting for this but has a tough draw in Trap 4 to overcome and looks worth taking on with Trap 5 Greenwell Mentor. The son of Dave’s Mentor is a really pacey sort who looks ideally housed in the orange jacket to ping out and exploit possible crowding on his inside. With the Warhawk sure to be heading for the rails and Trap 1 Gurrane Boy liekly to move off towards the middle there could well be trouble on the cards and the selection looks assured of a clear passage and is taken to lead at first and take advantage. At 3/1 with Hills he looks the value.
8.04pm – Charlie Lister’s Killieford Khali is the class act in the line-up and rates a solid bet at 5/4 with BetVictor and 888sport to land the spoils. The son of Hondo Black made the finals of the St Leger and Essex Vase has winning form at the track and the perfect draw in Trap 6. He looks different gravy to the opposition and should really be odds-on in my book to win this. I can’t see anything like 5/4 on offer come race time and it should be snapped up.
8.19pm – Nothing went right for Trap 5 Jaytee Jules when she got knocked out in the semi-finals of the ECC Timber Oaks but she is strongly fancied at the 2/1 on offer with bet365 and Ladbrokes to gain some compensation in this. Paul Young’s bitch stumbled at the traps and got crowded at the first when finishing fourth in the semis but prior to that had put in a devastating display in the second round when overcoming some trouble in running before powering home to beat Akerview Gem by 2 lengths. If she can turn in a handy position at the first her back straight pace is likely to be too much for her rivals to handle.
8.34pm – ECC Timber Laurels Final – The first big final of the night and Trap 4 Thinking Big looks the value wager at 11/2 with Betfred and 888sport to cause something of an upset. The son of Hondo Black was beaten just a short-head by Shaneboy Spencer in the final of the Henlow Derby and has improved on the clock with every run at this venue. He produced a lightning 4.15 sectional when going down by just 1/2 a length to Eden Star in last week’s semi and looks drawn to turn the tables on that rival. All three dogs on his inside like the rails and he looks to have a great draw in the black jacket to take advantage of any scrimmaging.
8.49pm – Trap 2 Sidaz Jonathan looks worth a punt at 9/2 with Coral and Ladbrokes to beat the favourite Bold Free. Charlie Lister’s dog has made a smooth transition to the six bend trip and put in a decent performance last week when overcoming crowding at the second bend before running on strongly to beat Izhesound. He is entitled to improve further on that, and with the market leader having stamina to prove and also having his first look around the venue looks overpriced at the odds on offer.
9.04pm – Ted Soppit’s Calzaghe Lilly has always struck me as the type that will excel over eight bends and is strongly fancied at the 6/4 on offer with Hills and 888 sport to win this marathon contest. The daughter of Droopys Scolari when winning the Grand Prix at Sunderland where she finished powerfully to force a dead-heat with Hometown Honey. She has also ran well behind the likes of Farloe Tango and has tremendous back straight pace. If turning handy from Trap 4 she can use it to good effect to land the spoils.
9.19pm – ECC Timber Oaks Final – A superb line-up in which Trap 6 Droopys Danneel looks worth a wager at a standout 11/4 with 888sport. Kevin Hutton’s bitch has enjoyed mixed fortunes in the three qualifying rounds, encountering trouble in running when finishing third to Akerview Gem and getting beat in last week’s semi by Greenwell Lark when drawn in Trap 5. However she now has her ideal draw in the stripes and showed what she was capable of in the second round when pinging out and making all to beat the very useful Airforce Diva by 2 1/4 lengths. A similar performance would make her very hard to beat.