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Monday horse racing tips: Three best bets for Catterick

By Tom Thurgood@tdthurgood
Sun 14 Aug 2022

Tom Thurgood of racingtv.com assumes tipping duties on Monday and would be grateful for a winner. Enjoy all the action from Catterick, Dundalk and Roscommon live on Racing TV.

It’s fair to say we have something of a low-key start to a brilliant week on Racing TV with the four-day Sky Bet Ebor Festival getting under way on Wednesday.

There are still winners to try and find before then however and I’ve focused on some course specialists at Catterick. Surely even the most dedicated of sunseekers wouldn’t be averse to a small drop of rain at the current time, but I’m hoping the potential thundery shower forecast for later in the afternoon can hold off towards the end of the card.

1.50 Catterick: The Dancing Poet

He won this race last year and is fancied to go close in his repeat bid.

The Dancing Poet caught the eye on his return at Carlisle last time, positioned towards the back of the field and racing keenly early on before staying on nicely all the way up the straight under tentative handling from his inexperienced rider. That Carlisle run could prove a very nice prep for this under the experienced Simon Walker in a race confined to amateur riders.

The Dancing Poet has to shoulder top-weight here, but he’s been dropped 2lb for his return effort and is now 2lb below his last winning mark. A strong stayer over a mile and a half, stepping up a furlong should aid his cause further while early market rivals Irv and Sameem may be better over a shorter ten-furlong trip.

The Dancing Poet goes well at Catterick – three wins from five starts, including two from three over class 5 handicaps at this trip – and he can go close to further enhancing his course strike-rate.

2.50 Catterick: Quercus

Quercus will try to break quickly and make all once again and after looking the winner inside the final furlong on his two most recent starts – both over course and distance – he can gain reward this time.

The soft ground on his most recent run counted against him, while he looked to cover more ground than his rivals by coming right over to the stands-side rail. He edged towards the middle of the track in the closing stages – twice - and was only just denied by the re-opposing Rain Cap, who is currently favourite to confirm the form.

Quercus has a more favourable draw down the middle in 6 now (Rain Cap towards the outside in stall 11 of 12) and sticking to the far-side rail - which they should do on this quicker ground - should prevent him from edging out to his left this time.

While he’s only won twice from 22 starts in his career, Quercus has form figures over six furlongs at Catterick which read 61123822 and he looks a tad underestimated at early quotes of 4-1.

While small samples, you could argue that the Ann Duffield yard is going slightly better than a few weeks ago too. The stable had six win-and-placed horses from 32 runners last month (45% of rivals beaten), while this month the yard has had eight win-and-placed horses from 16 runners (59% of rivals beaten).

3.55 Catterick: Obee Jo

Obee Jo shaped better than the result might superficially suggest last time and can go well at a track where he’s run well previously.

Drawn 13 of 13 at Ayr on his latest run, he had to eventually tuck in towards mid-division and made quite a big move to get towards the head of affairs in the straight, travelling strongly down the outside three furlongs out. Indeed, the Coursetrack sectionals show he posted the fastest split at that point in the race, while that sectional was significantly quicker than the comparative ones posted by the horses that fought out the finish.

Now 3lb below his last winning mark, Obee Jo has two wins and a neck defeat from seven starts at the track while he’s never contested class 6 level here before, which could eke out a bit more. Indeed, he’s not run in a class 6 race over seven furlongs and his last run in this grade – at Carlisle in July last year – resulted in victory.

His draw in stall 6 should see him to much better effect than his wide outside berth last time, while he has form on ground with ease in the event the rains arrive.

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