Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Double Handful

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Double Handful

Article excerpt

Byline: John Shaw's racing betting column in association with

THE totescoop6 Victoria Cup is the feature race at Ascot today and it looks extremely competitive, which is another way of saying anything could win.

Looking through the first 15 in the betting it seems impossible to categorically rule anything out and when that happens it's usually time to stop looking.

GAMBLING WISDOM No presidential should visit without condemning organized - Ralph But I kept coming back to study the form and eventually managed to narrow down my selections to 14.

Given the huge fields it's somewhat surprising to note that this hasn't been that bad a race for favourites. Iffraaj was victorious at 11-4 in 2005 and Zaahid won at 5-1 in 2008.

There's no way I want to be backing anything under 10-1 here, not even the winner.

Dream Spirit will go off the likely favourite today partly because he is trained by William Haggas, partly because he is lightly raced and partly because he beat Thursday's Huxley Stakes winner Maverick Wave by half a length last season.

But in a race of 29 runners you are likely to need more experience. Dream Spirit has run only four times in his career and that more than partly puts me off. The two I like against the field at juicy odds are Redvers and PROFESSOR.

You can never go too far wrong with a dual course-and-distance winner, which is what Redvers brings to the stalls.

candidate Las Vegas GAMBLING Nader The Ed Vaughan-trained charge has a nice draw, goes well fresh and will benefit from the experience of Kieren Fallon in the saddle.

However, I slightly prefer Professor, who like every other horse will need a lot of luck in running.

Michael Attwater's stable star could be just the progressive sort to benefit from a winter break in Dubai. He finished second in a Wokingham for previous connections and put in a solid performance in a competitive handicap at Haydock last month. …

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