It looked pretty damp up at Goodwood, but I’m sure the guys had all the right clobber to keep themselves dry…
Mind you, we did enjoy a wet Wednesday a few years back. That night we had bank notes on radiators all over the house trying to dry them out. We had time to wait though, Kyle decided that as we were laundering money we’d better stay in and that he’d cook.
Let’s just say that after a very long wait with Kyle at the oven, he demonstrated that he was a great bookie. Thank Gordon’s Michelle had brought on provisions that year, by the time our belated and quite crisp dinner was dished up we were all past caring. All great memories.
1:50 – Coral Handicap (Class 2) (3YO only) 1m 4f
Across the firm, the office was described as ‘lively’ but there’d been only one bet of any interest at Glorious Goodwood, £6500 – £1000 Decoration in the 4.45. Things had also been quiet over the betting shop estate, nothing doing before the first. By the time I got through to the guys on course today they’d already had the second richest race of the day, the £226,840 Arab.
The two pitches took £197 on it between them and kept it after the original favourite bolted in. Lofty sticks it up the rags in Arab races and is so far yet to catch a cold so why change a winning system.
Hannah was on the firm today and sent over some nice photos of wet people. The team in Tatts were Steve, Hannah and Ethan. Lofty, Tony and Lewis were on the rail, Kyle a non-runner preferring to risk gig going in Bristol than the elements up at Goodwood, good judge. I feel a bit guilty as I type for not being there either, only a bit though.
Steve Brewer, head of on course told me: ‘It’s flippin’ awful, wet and windy. Lofty saved the joint from going over before the first thankfully’. Good old Lofty, I don’t care what everyone else says about him, I think he’s alright.
Poor old Hannah was going to get photos of the teams, but it was so windy she felt it was prudent to stay on the joint as ballast to stop it from taking off. Unsurprisingly, business wasn’t overly brisk, though Steve’s team did manage to get a £2500 – £1000 Amleto in the bag.
That proved very handy after The Goat won at 25/1 for Andrew Balding under Jason Watson. The Tatts booked copped £1800, mainly thanks to that bet. Just as well as Lofty, Lewis ( hitherto referred to as Little Lofty ) and Tony lost £100 on the race on the rails pitch. ‘Everyone drawing said they only went for the name’ was Lofty’s explanation.
💬 Winning trainer Andrew Balding said: “The Goat stands for ‘the greatest of all time’ – the greatest in this race, anyway. He loved the ground and he’s a horse who just had a tough spring and took a couple of runs to hit his form at home. He was very good – I thought he might be in a bit of trouble, but I am very happy with the way he pulled clear. He will love the autumn ground and there might be something for him.”
💬 Winning jockey Jason Watson said: “We won too far really. Andrew said The Goat just keeps galloping away so try going as smoothly as you can through the race. We had a nice pace to aim at on this sort of ground and he just loved conditions, but we’ve probably won a bit too far.”
2:25 – Whispering Angel Oak Tree Stakes (Fillies’ & Mares’ Group 3) (Class 1) (3YO plus) 7f
Next up and another terrific bookie-friendly result, Magical Sunset won at 18/1 for Richard Hannon and Kevin Stott.
The trouble is, whilst the extreme weather may have had a hand in the hard-to-find winners, punters were hard to find too.
Both pitches won though, Steve’s team fielded £1200 and won a carpet. Lofty’s team levelled things up with a hod that held a grand but kept £850 of it.
They were winning after two races proper though, so far so good.
The office won again too but with a caveat, they told me, ‘Everyone’s looking for the mud lovers and looks like the doubts are effecting large stakes but the winner who has form on heavy was overlooked by most and another good result for us’.
The biggest bet seen in the betting shops for the race was just one wager of £1000 – £300 Fast Response though they did report a £4000 lump on Paddington at 4/9 in the feature. They also had a bit of excitement with a small stake treble from a punter who’d found the first two winners going onto Purosangue in the next.
💬 The winning trainer, Richard Hannon said: “I think Magical Sunset would have been unlucky had she been beaten. She is much better on this ground – she won the Radley Stakes at Newbury very well on it, and that’s helped her today. She looked the best turning in at Sandown the other day and it looked to me like she didn’t get home, so we came back to seven furlongs today and I’m delighted; she won very well. The owner rang me and was actually pleased, that’s very rare.
Group races are very hard to win. My God, there’s a massive bottle of Whispering Angel over there, he’s not getting that, that’s what you call tax!’’
3:00 – Jaeger-Lecoultre Molecomb Stakes (Group 3) (Class 1) (2YO only) 5f
Big Evs stopped the rot for the punters by winning the third, the 9/4 ‘top of the head’ joint-favourite. The other joint-jolly Kylian was back in third, separated by the runner-up Purosangue. You have to feel sorry for the small stakes Star Sports betting shop punter looking for his treble, Purosangue came with every chance to go past but couldn’t wear down the winner.
It wasn’t a great result for the on-course team, Steve laid £2700 – £1200 for the winner and lost £2000 on the race. Lofty laid Kylian so was almost straight across on the race losing a score.
Big Evs wasn’t too good for the betting shops either, he was the 9/4 first leg of an £840 double going onto Paddington at 4/9 in the next. The shop estate had also laid another £400 on Paddington at bottle-on 1/2.
Rather charitably the office spokesman told me: ‘Finally, one for the punters, we laid bets of £6000 – £3000, £14,000 – £7000 and £7500 – £3000 over the winner. Thankfully we saw similar support for the other joint favourite meaning the damage was limited.’
💬 Mick Appleby said: “Big Evs has done that very well. I don’t think he really liked the ground, but he has toughed it out. He is as tough as anything and very quick. That ground just blunted his speed a bit early on but, because he is so tough, he pulled a bit more out at the end. I think the Nunthorpe is a realistic target. A two-year-old has not won the Nunthorpe since Kingsgate Native. So it is a possibility. We will speak even more when we have all calmed down a bit.”
3:35 – Qatar Sussex Stakes (Group 1) (British Champions Series) (Class 1) (3YO plus) 1m
Next up, the feature race and as you’d expect and there was interest in Paddington, Steve’s team laid a bet of £5000 card transaction at 8/15. Lofty on the other hand said that his customers were just sightseers. Paddington won impressively to the roars of the crowd suddenly oblivious to the inclement weather.
Steve’s team lost £3700 on the race, Lofty and co must have got some of the tourists to part with their money too as he managed to do £800 as well. Paddington was always going to be the one that would be pivotal to making or breaking the day. He broke it alright, what a horse though.
As already highlighted, the betting shops had taken some decent bets on Paddington including the double previously mentioned, those liabilities were topped up with an additional £2000 at SP which was 4/9.
It was the treble up of losing outlets with the office, they told me: ‘We had a one horse book with Paddington including bets of £10,000 and £12,000 at 1/2’
💬 Aidan O’Brien said: “Paddington is a very special horse. We were worried about the ground, even though he had won on heavy ground, not in this class of race. Ryan rode him for speed and held on to him and held on to him, but he was over the moon with him. A lot of people contributed to this and I am so delighted for them. We’re lucky to have him; he’s very special.”
4:10 – British EBF 40th Anniversary Alice Keppel Fillies’ Conditions Stakes (GBB Race) (Class 2) (2YO only) 5f
Lofty wasn’t over enamoured with the fifth.
When asked how he’d fared on the race after Flora Of Bermuda won for Andrew Balding under Oisin Murphy at 5/1 he replied ‘Putrid, we didn’t even field a monkey, before adding but we did win £350’. I didn’t hear from Steve and team as fast as I usually do, so had high hopes that they might have copped. Those hopes were dashed when he told me ‘We lost £1900 there after laying plenty of 5/1, adding, we’re losing £4900 now and am thoroughly soaked’.
If that wasn’t bad enough Lofty chipped in, excuse the pun, that he was losing £70 and ‘hangry’. Trust me, you don’t want to be around Lofty when he’s hangry, though it did make me chuckle when he added ‘And it’s not helping that a horse called Chips and Rice is running here!’
It had turned, the wrong way, for the office too, they told me: ‘That was a poor result, the original favourite was friendless and we laid the winner, including bets of £18,000 – £4000 each-way and £6000 – £1500 each-way.’
4:45 – British European Breeders Fund EBF Fillies’ Handicap (Class 2) (3YO plus) 1m 2f
The lads on course had kept their sense of humour going into the penultimate. Steve messaged to tell me that he’d laid the favourite to the tune of £650 and £400 at 15/8 on La Isla Mujeres whilst Lofty said that he had the jolly for a ‘Pygmy Marmoset’.
No, I’m not all that sure how much that is either, maybe it’s an edible primate, after all, with two races to go and a lad’s hangry, the mind wanders. There’s The Door won the race at 6/1 for David Evans under Richard Kingscote. It was a decent result for Steve who told me his team had copped £440. Lofty, won a tenner, just enough for tonight’s starter, maybe.
It was better news from the office too, there message was ‘ We had a one horse book with the punters getting behind the favourote, including a bet of £14,000 – £8000, thankfully There’s The Door ensured it was a good result for the firm.’
5:20 – World Pool Handicap (Class 3) (3YO plus) 7f
Big Field handicaps aren’t the best last race when you have a financial hill to climb, I suspect the on-course teams had already resigned themselves to losing on the day. The priority would be getting the lucky last over and done with, get packed up and home to dry out. Having said that, there was still a chance of getting a few quid back, as illustrated when Lofty messaged to say that they had laid a monkey each way Isla Kai at 11/2, their first decent bet all day on the rail.
Rhoscolyn won the race the well-backed 2/1 favourite which appeared to land a bit of a gamble for the shrewd ‘Horse Watcher’ connections. Sady for Lofty, Isla Kai finished third, which must have been a bit gutting. He reported they ultimately lost a monkey on the race. Steve’s team took £859 on the race and lost £37 which was a feat considering the jolly won.
They blew £4535 all in while Lofty lost a monkey overall. That totalled a £5000 losing day, but still only a blow, not a catastrophe given yesterday’s good winning start. It’s still all to play for, but I get the impression that the Star Sports’ digs will be reminiscent of Widow Twankey’s tonight as their clobber dries out, feel for the team, soaked to the skin, but at least there won’t be much money to dry, there’s always a bright side!
The final word went to the office, who told me: ‘And the lucky last goes to the customers, however with plenty of support for Isla Kai, the damage was limited and overall small losing day on the Goodwood card’.
We go again tomorrow.
Views of authors do not necessarily represent views of Star Sports Bookmakers.
Simon Nott is author of: Skint Mob! Tales from the Betting Ring
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