Cheer on McCoy, and 'Suit' yourself at Lingfield
SO will the Moneyglass native, Anthony Peter McCoy, finally win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award tomorrow night? He's the hot favourite in the betting at 10/11, but a quick flick through the list of previous award winners, shows that the equine world is largely forgotten in this competition.
It seems ludicrous that a man who has won the jockeys' championship every year since the 1995-96 season, has not yet been recognised, but anyone who watches X-Factor will tell you that talent isn't everything when it comes to the public vote.
One of the problems (if you could call it a problem) is McCoy's sheer modesty and he rarely, if ever, sings his own praises. In fact, he usually plays down his achievements and just isn't the type of person to row in behind a 'Vote AP' Facebook campaign.
Even though the final blank box on his CV (the Grand National) has been ticked this year, it still doesn't mean he'll get a massive public vote. And let's be honest, the majority of racing fans are men over the age of 30 -- which is probably the group least likely to get dialling.
A few friends of mine have backed McCoy this week, thinking he's a dead-cert and I really hope they are right, but these type of events have become less about talent and more about how well your voting campaign is organised. So, my advice would be to cheer him on with your money safely tucked away in your wallet. Fingers crossed he gets it though, as no one deserves it more than McCoy.
Back to the racing itself, and I've decided to stick with the all-weather today with some doubt hanging over the jumps fixtures. The one that catches the eye most is Suits ME, which runs in the Listed Inside Track Racing Club Quebec Stakes at Lingfield (1.55) priced around 11/4. He's been the runner-up in this contest for the past two years and was done on the line by Tranquil Tiger in the 2009 renewal; but this field looks a little weaker, so he's definitely in with a decent chance.
He's a polytrack specialist, so there are no worries about the surface, but I hope he gets a good break as he likes to be up near the front of the field setting the pace. Akhmatova is getting weight all-round and is certainly a danger, but this is a fair step up in class and he may find himself struggling in the final stages.
Earlier on at the same venue, Golden Shine looks overpriced at 9/2 in the Bet On Totescoop6 at Totesport.com Claiming Stakes (11.50). I'm always a little concerned when I see a first-time visor, but she did look a little distracted last time on the all-weather at Kempton, so in this case, it may help to keep her focused. She's been dropping down in the ratings lately, but I think she's a better horse than her mark of 67 suggests.
This week's each-way bet isn't a massive price, but Seek The Fair Land has been knocking on the door lately in some decent handicaps and is taken to land his sixth victory today in the Totepool A Better Way To Bet Handicap (2.40 Southwell). His latest outing at Kempton proved he's as good as ever when he was just chinned on the line having traded as low as 7/100 in-running, and early odds of 4/1 make him a great each-way 'bet to nothing' today.
11.50 Lingfield: Golden Shine
1.20 Lingfield: Mia's Boy
1.55 Lingfield: Suits Me
2.40 Southwell: Seek The Fair Land (e/w)