I am not usually one to criticise jockeys as I have massive respect for the danger they put themselves in every time they get on a horse. However, Dusty Foley didn’t cover himself in glory on Chocolat Noir for us at the weekend at Navan and I believe the horse could have finished a lot closer if given a better ride. He got caught on the inner and he just couldn’t angle the horse out in the final couple of furlongs. Chocolat Noir didn’t have a hard race and he is a winner in waiting off his current mark.
|Cam Hardie has a decent record when riding for Brittain.
Tomorrow I like the look of an 18/1 shot for each way purposes at Wolverhampton, and I think 6f could ultimately prove to be the optimum trip for Joaldo at this point in time. Antony Brittain’s 5yo son of Monsieur Bond is a very lightly raced horse for his age, but he has shown definite signs of ability around here and his last two runs of last season suggested to me that he is more than capable of winning a low grade handicap.
He first caught my eye on his handicap debut here over 5f last March when sent off at 10/1 off a basement mark of 45. He was slowly away and Paddy McDonald had to drop him in and then switch him wide as they turned for home. The horse still looked green and was looking around a bit when he came under pressure, and just as he was mounting his challenge he met trouble and had to switch even wider. When McDonald did give him the office the response was good and he ended up a fast finishing 5th beaten just over 2L, shaping as if further would suit.
He was stepped up to 7f on his next start, again at Wolves, and this time he was again slowly away. This time as they turned for home McDonald tried to go up the inner, and once again there was no room at the inn. He switched him towards the outside and Joaldo kept on pretty well in the final furlong between horses for 5th, this time beaten just over 3L. He didn’t finish as strongly as he had over 5F, and that leads me to believe 6f should be perfect for him.
He made a pleasing enough return to action at Southwell back in April, slowly away over 8f and making up ground late on to finish 5th off 45. He is likely to strip a lot fitter with that run under his belt and better can be expected now he is dropped to 6f and returned to Wolverhampton. His trainer Antony Brittain has his string in good order, and though he hasn’t had a winner since the 20th of May the form figures for his recent runners read 43233376234.
Cam Hardie retains the ride having been on board last time, and he has a good record when riding for Brittain. He has had 57 rides for the yard and they have yielded two winners and 21 top 4 finishes. Another reason for optimism is the fitting of first time cheek-pieces, as this should sharpen up Joaldo’s concentration and keep his mind on the job at hand. He is a pound out of the handicap, but that isn’t a big worry as this looks a desperately weak contest. He will be dropped in from his wide draw, and if he gets more luck in running he could go very close at odds of 18/1.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: 14.50 WOLVERHAMPTON-JOALDO E/W @ 18/1