Pinkie Brown can improve on hurdles debut

The Dark Horse previews the opening race on the Market Rasen Saturday card and likes the Nick Williams trained Pinkie Brown in this juvenile hurdle.

Market Rasen 1.40

Advised Bet

2 points win Pinkie Brown at 11/2 with Stan James

2 years ago, Fox Norton finished a very close 2nd in this race. This year, his half brother Pinkie Brown lines up for the same trainer and owner and looks to have a strong chance of success.

As was the case with Fox Norton, he has raced prior to this event. That run came at Fontainebleau over 3000m on ground where they were kicking the top off but it was nothing like the official very soft. He appeared to be squeezed up at the start and ended up towards the back of the field early on. He was ‘big’ over the first 3 hurdles and dropped to last place before running a bit wide on the bend before the 5th hurdle, which he got in close to and made a small error. He made headway into midfield after the 7th hurdle and was only about 3 lengths behind the leader turning into the home straight. After 3 out he moved smoothly into a challenging position and jumped 2 out only a length behind before being pushed along going to the last. He was ¾ length behind in 3rd jumping the last but lost a bit of momentum on landing and couldn’t improve his position on the run in, finishing 3¼ lengths behind the winner in 3rd.

This was a promising debut performance. The winner, Shakapon, finished 2nd next time out at Enghien splitting King’s Socks (finished 2nd to Device at Auteuil in June) and Politikar (won 2 starts later and has finished 2nd to Device on his 2 latest runs). The runner up, Romain De Senam, won next time out at Enghien and has since joined Paul Nicholls. The 5th, Kauto Sirtaki, won next time out at Compiegne.

Given the typical improvement that is made by Nick Williams’s horses from debut to 2nd start, it’s fair to expect that Pinkie Brown can improve in similar fashion and hopefully his jumping will be sharper in the early stages of the race on this occasion. Even a repeat of the performance at Fontainebleau would give him a good chance and with improvement likely to come, he looks to have a strong chance.

The market is currently headed by Leoncavallo who is looking to make it 4 from 4 over hurdles. However, this race looks tougher than his 3 previous starts and he has a double penalty to carry. Cooper won easily at Sedgefield but this will be tougher with a penalty to carry. Duke Street, Cahill and Sikandar all make their hurdling debuts and could be dangerous, particularly the latter.

However, I think Pinkie Brown’s debut being in France has created a big opportunity in this race as the current market looks to have underestimated that performance. If Romain De Senam was lining up in this race for Paul Nicholls, one expects he would be 2-1 or shorter, so the 6-1 currently available with Bet365 about Pinkie Brown winning this race looks on the generous side.

Recap - Advised Bet

2 points win Pinkie Brown at 11/2 with Stan James