Roy The Boy's Weekly blog looks at Air Force Blue, Celebrity Bake Off, Frankie Dettori and Time Magazine award, liking the chances of Elon Musk.
O’Brien King of the Fables
My Tweet of the week came from @carvillshill, better known as Irish greyhound vet and all-round sports punter Dennis Beary, who had me laughing shamelessly when commenting about Aidan O’Brien’s post-race remarks following the victory of Air Force Blue in the Dewhurst.
He wrote: “We have never had a better two-year-old” says AP O’Brien – the boy who cried wolf has nothing on this bloke!
Doubtlessly the racehorse, pure-bred American, was an impressive winner of the key 2000 Guineas trial, but is Air Force Blue worthy of his mantle as clear favourite for that classic race which is almost seven months away? 888 Sports are offering top-priced 6/4 incidentally, but if you want a meaningful bet Power’s and Ladbrokes will be your ‘shop’ and they offer 5/4.
Personally I tend to believe American racehorses do not progress that much from the ages of two to three. Undoubtedly they improve rapidly throughout their two-year-old career as underlined by this horse’ two-length defeat at Royal Ascot by Buratino; form which was turned around by over four lengths the next time they met.
Putting O’Brien’s never-ending optimism aside, I’m pretty set on laying the five times raced Air Force Blue throughout the winter. I actually like the Dewhurst runner-up Massaat who reminds me of 2003 Dewhurst third and 2004 2000 Guineas winner Haafhd.
Both horses are/were trained by Barry Hills, both are owned by Hamdan Al Maktoum; both big and unfurnished two-year-olds with loads of scope. Haafhd was a son of the brilliant Al Bahathri but Massaat’s dam was a very moderate performer.
That pedigree is a concern but, nevertheless, Winner.com’s 16/1 about the lightly-raced Massatt has a lot of appeal.
Gutter Press Appeal
Ladbrokes, a company where I now know nobody other than a few Gibraltar-based office boys following the departure of their long-standing greyhound odds compiler Richard Harkness, clearly subscribe to the theory that ‘all news is good news’.
A well-orchestrated PR campaign saw them tip off the Sun newspaper (aka the ‘currant-bun’) that they had taken over 500 bets on one candidate in TV’s Great British Bake-Off and they were set to lose £10,000 due to insiders, who knew the result of the pre-recorded TV show, placing bets with on them.
It’s a story Ladbrokes circulated back in August but, with the hype surrounding the final, they managed to get yet more mileage from it last week.
“They must think we are a bit thick,” a Ladbrokes spokesman told the newspaper mid-way through last week. Umm… not as thick as bookmaking firm who accepted the bets, knew the event had already concluded and had been filmed before a live audience of at least 150 people months beforehand!
With the show attracting over 13 million viewers you can understand why they offer bets on such markets, it is a PR necessity, but what is the once elite company going to do now? Void all bets they accepted on the event and turn it into a total PR catastrophe?
To add stupidity to insanity they have all but broken client confidentiality too; giving the Sun exact details of the positions these ‘rogue punters’ hold within the BBC and the Great British Bake Off production company.
And for what? Some tacky PR and/or the prospect of reneging on 500 winning bets which cost the company less than £20 apiece.
Tesla’s Driving Force in-line for a Time Magazine Accolade?
Power’s are going 16/1 about Elon Musk becoming Time Magazine’s Person of the Year. OK, he may be South African by birth but he’s also got Canadian and American citizenship. Anyway, there is no nationality criteria for this magazine’s front cover so he is a true runner.
Musk has just unveiled his latest electric car, the Tesla X, and he is creating more and more American jobs as well as preserving more and more oxygen. It puts him very much in the public eye at a time when the magazine will be looking at its December ‘Person of the Year’ issue.
Time Magazine’s editors clearly like innovators and technology underlined by their accolade being given to Mark Zuckerberg in 2010.
It probably means Musk should be trading at single digits. Take some of that 16’s with the Irish firm albeit, once again, a better price is available elsewhere – 32Red and 888Sports – with companies that are not inclined to accept more than a few of your loose coins in bets.