Ben Morgan has a month where it all turns to gold
Everything Ben Morgan touched last month turned to profit
Punting the week following Royal Ascot often has the feeling of ‘ after the Lord Mayor’s Show’ and it can be quite expensive if you try to use the same methods and mindset as you did the week before.
I really fancied The glasgow warrior up at Carlisle and at 8-1 Jim Goldie’s horse looked a safe each-way bet. Being a hold-up performer though, means he comes with risks attached and as the race developed he got boxed in and I saw my £15 each way bet go up in smoke. He finished 8th as he was nursed home and I thought that might prove to be my silver lined cloud, as next time out he would look an unattractive proposition with an 8 next to his name and could go off a decent price.
I didn’t get involved at Newcastle on Northumberland Plate day and instead waited for Sandown’s two-day Coral Eclipse meeting. I placed a half-hearted £3 trixie which involved Melting Dew, Saroog at Sandown and Our Little Pony at Beverley. I say it was half-hearted because although I fancied Melting Dew and Saroog, I only put Our Little Pony in there because my parents have a 28year-old Shetland pony and it looked to have a favourite’s chance in a weak race.
I put £20 on Saroog as he was my best bet of the three and consequently my saver bet if the trixie went down the pan. Melting Dew (4-1) was first up and you won’t catch me praising Ryan Moore too often, but he was sensation- al on this horse. He was miles off the pace at the start and in running his price probably increased fourfold. That price would have shortened up dramatically mid-race as Moore made a risky move down the outside of the field and ended up sitting second turning for home.
I panicked as he was headed up the straight but Moore didn’t, he continued to scrub away and allow Melting Dew time to find another gear which he did much to my disbelief. In the last half furlong he found more and flew past the leaders to nick an unlikely victory from the jaws of defeat.
Saroog was up next and the 4-1 about him the night before looked huge come the off as he was backed into 13/8 co favourite. Up the straight Moore allowed him to lengthen on his own accord. A furlong out there wasn’t much between him and the second horse but Moore stayed calm and refused to pick his whip up. He really got rolling in the final furlong and had pulled nicely clear by the line which hinted that he is a horse to follow in staying races this summer.
I was happy with my day’s work up until that point but my sentimental selection secured a profit for July just six days into the month. Our Little Pony held on in the finale at Beverley which yielded a huge £400 and on top of the Saroog winnings I made £500 off just £32 which is a whole-hearted return off a half-hearted stake.
A domino effect ensued and I enjoyed windfall after windfall. Coral Eclipse day started with a successful £40 wager on Judicial at 4-1 which immediately paid for the day and by the time Tigre De Terre went in at 13-2 (£10 e/w) I was making serious profit. I got an each-way return on Austrian School at Haydock and a Roaring Lion/England double paid £67.50 off a £10 stake. I also had £50 on the impressive Eclipse winner at 7-4 and by this point I was in dreamland. Everything I touched yielded a return.
I even chucked a tenner on Harry Maguire to score and England to beat Sweden at 18/1 and the next thing you know, the likeable Yorkshireman, rose above the rest and put the majority of his ‘slabhead’ into the back of the ball and it consequently flew into the bottom corner.
Two fantastic days felt like justice for enduring some unfortunate pieces of luck in previous months.
But if justice wasn’t served then, it certainly was just 24 hours later as the enigmatic Wynford, who threw away his past two races while carrying my money, gained a deserved victory at Market Rasen.
Harry Skelton, again, executed a masterclass aboard this tricky type, and smuggled him into the race. He loomed up to the leader’s hind and I whispered “Not today, please not today” which Wynford must have heard as he then started to have a look around. Skelton pulled rank and really went to work on him to which he responded in good style. A cautious £15 each way bet at 9-2 and a £20 win bet at 7-2 yielded £200 but the redemption I gained far outweighed any monetary gain.
Earlier in the day I heard a whisper from the Olly Murphy yard, that Angel Of Harlem was a good thing. At 10-3 he looked a decent price and given Murphy has such a good record with horses having their first run for him I thought it was worth a punt given I was riding the crest of a wave. I piled £40 into the son of Whoopsadaisy, which was exactly what odds compilers up and down the country were saying as he went clear up the straight. The result was in the bag and another £173 hit my ever-growing account.
I was handed a reality check on Day 1 of the July Festival at Newmarket as Loxley, Legends Of War and Raa Atoll all suffered defeat.
A maximum bet of £100 on Elgin went astray as he didn’t give his true running and consequently trailed home last. Day two was saved though as Pretty Pollyanna (£5e/w at 20-1) blitzed the field in the Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes and Piedita (£20 at 4-1) resumed her progress at Chester with a comfort- able win.
Quorto (£30 win) confirmed the promise of his debut win with a second victory in the Superlative Stakeson Day 3. William Buick always looked comfortable aboard and when he did ask the question he got a big response as he powered up the Newmarket hill.
I was about even for the Saturday by the time Theglasgowwarrior lined up at Hamilton. Earlier in this column I had stated how I felt about his chances next time out after a luckless run last time. I was right, as there was plenty of 9-1 about him for most of the day and in a four-runner race I couldn’t believe my luck. I had £20 on and looking back I perhaps should have had more. I was confident and in form but my naturally cautious approach stopped me from piling in. He travelled like a dream and hit the gap on the bridle before powering away up the hill.
With Theglasgowwarrior and Wynford both winning it was a very satisfying month but with the extra £1500+ in my bank account it was also a very profitable one. I righted plenty of wrongs and cleaned up the streets of Punter City. All in a good month’s work.