Naming a racehorse can be a thing of beauty or a complete car crash and so it is always nice to discover particularly appropriate or clever names given by an owners or breeders to their pride and joy.
Some live long in the memory such as the alliance of Dancing Brave and Shorthouse which yielded Lowawatha or the union of Reform and Seventh Bride christened One Over Parr. The reason for this diversion is that one of the best- named horses in training lines up at Leicester in the 3.55.
On the face of it the name Near Kettering is a puzzling one, but it actually answers the question posed by his dam, Where’s Broughton? Broughton is indeed near Kettering, and he could well add to his Redcar maiden victory on Tuesday.
Good as it would be to see him win he does not feature in Tuesday’s best bet list which starts with:
Wilf Storey has held a licence for a long time but this is the first season in which he has reached double figures on the Flat courtesy of the likes of Mr Sundowner (three wins) and dual scorers Adrakhan and Table Manners (runs in Newcastle’s 8.15). Connections have had to be patient with Betty Grable, who makes her handicap debut off a mark of just 60.
She has qualified for that mark with three runs in quick succession, so has very much been learning on the job and now off a slightly longer break can have had the finishing touches put to her education.
This method of three quick runs then time to regroup before venturing into handicaps is a pattern that I will often look for and is used to great effect by the likes of Jamie Osborne. She has attracted some support but is still available at the time of writing at 13-2.
Stoneboat Bill looks set to put up a bold bid to repeat last year’s victory in the Swan Apprentice Handicap.
His overall strike-rate is certainly nothing to write home about but with the exception of a below par run last time at Nottingham, he has been running consistently enough largely under today’s rider Ger O’Neill, who rode the horse to victory 12 months ago.
Often punters can be put off by a horse under performing last time out, rather than focusing on the horse’s overall record, and the 9-2 generally available looks of interest.
I tipped Rock Warbler in this column a fortnight ago, but he was withdrawn because of soft ground. Connections have lost patience with the weather and have reverted to the Tapeta at Newcastle. While part of the argument last time was the horse looked well treated on turf, there is no doubt he is a better horse on this surface, especially at Newcastle.
Given the fact he was taken out last time because of cut in the ground, it is entirely plausible to believe that to be a legitimate excuse the last time he did run, and can go well back under these more favourable conditions. On Fish & Chip night at Newcastle it can pay to order the Rock!
Connections will find few better opportunities for Joys Delight to get off the mark than this. The form of her last run has worked out really well with the two horses just in front of her that day both winning next time. The Daniel Loughnane yard is also back among the winners after a barren spell and she can readily justify 6-4 favouritism in a very bad race.
Richard Hoiles's Tuesday tips: (Prices correct at 10.30am)
5.55 Leicester: Stoneboat Bill at 9-2 generally available
8.45 Newcastle: Joy’s Delight at 6-4 (generally available)