Clear, concise, comprehensive horseracing analysis and insight from Paul Jones, former author of the Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide, concentrating on jump racing in addition to the best of the Flat and leading Sports events.
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The Cracksman Conundrum


The four-day St Leger Meeting is the main focus this week and I’ll be previewing the last three days that are covered on ITV Racing.

Day 1 focusses on the Legends Race and the Scarbrough Stakes (Listed) which is not sufficient to include it as part of the 30 leading days on the Flat I am covering (not being shown on terrestrial television), though the Scarbrough is amongst the leading 12 races of the meeting included in the Big Race Trends section. Four of the last six Scarbrough winners went on to win a Nunthorpe, another was placed in a Nunthorpe, and last year’s winner, Priceless, went on to win the Temple Stakes so it would be nice to think that this year’s winner can go on to much better things.

Irish Champions Weekend didn’t really hit the spot with me as a spectacle this year. Perhaps it was due to a below-par Irish Champion Stakes and the favourites for the National Stakes and Moyglare being withdrawn on the day, or too many surprise winners of the big races or maybe it was just the weather(!) but it lacked something and it didn’t come across as having a great atmosphere on television unlike for the major Irish jumps festivals. If you had told me beforehand that my two nicest winners over the two days came in the handicaps I would have laughed in your face!

As for the Arc Trials, from a pure, selfish, monetary perspective I hope that Cracksman doesn’t run in the Arc as he looks the main threat to Enable and his absence would enhance the prospects of the recommended ante-post position. As a racing fan though I have very mixed feelings as the day that the best 3yo colt in Europe over 1m4f (or any distance in his case this season) doesn’t partake in the most important, all-aged 1m4f race in Europe with a primary reason being that they won’t have the jockey they want (Dettori will be aboard the favourite), is a very sad day for racing. As for this week's Ante-Post Focus ​,I’m not sure yet what race I’ll cover in this Wednesday’s copy as I can’t see any real edge in the St Leger.

With regards to the sport that we’re covering in the next week, Ciaran Meagher returns tomorrow to preview the third of the four FedEx Cup events, the BMW Championship, in which Dustin Johnson is favourite to defend his title, it’s a big Sunday in the PL with Chelsea v Arsenal and Man Utd v Everton, which will be covered in Premier League Picks on Friday and Andy Richmond will return on Sunday with his NFL Week 2 preview. Week 1 was covered in two parts but it makes sense to keep it altogether so the plan going forward is for his copy to go live on Sunday mornings.

The Champions League starts tomorrow with a couple of cracking games and I gave my pre-tournament view yesterday with four recommendations to keep us going throughout the group stages, though no outright selection as yet. Like last year I’ll wait for the knockout stages as that policy worked well last season with a 5/1 winner. Looking further ahead, the next darts tournament we’re covering is the World Grand Prix in Dublin starting on October 1st.

Resubscription emails to members who joined last autumn will be sent out in two weeks' time.


1.     In joining Paul Jones you will have private access to the views of a trusted, reliable, profitable-to-follow analyst and author of 33 horseracing books in an absorbing and entertaining, easy-to-follow, practical format written with purpose and authority.

2.     Access to the regular Ante-Post Focus articles whch have made members huge profits since we launched in November 2015 including Rule The World at 50/1 for the Grand National and Wings Of Eagles (SP 40/1) for the Derby amongst many other big-priced winners.

3.     Access to weekend previews throughout the bulk of the Jumps Season (averaging 12 races analysed per weekly column), every race at the Cheltenham, Aintree and Punchestown Festivals and the leading 30 days of the Flat Season.

4.     Access to an 18 weeks’ build up to the Cheltenham Festival (approx. 8000 words every Monday) with ante-post recommendations (level stakes profit of 44 points to date) to assist in building a long-range portfolio and a 6 weeks’ build up to Royal Ascot (7 winners from 17 ante-post recommendations in 2016).

5.     We also have all the major sporting events covered including the very profitable Football service (Premier League Picks made a level stakes profit of 31 points in 2016/17 following on from a 45 level stakes profit on the World Cup and Euro 2016) and we also have superb analysts in the fields of Golf, (Ciaran Meagher) Tennis (Carl Redden), Cricket (Paul Smith), Darts (Mike Henderson), NFL (Andy Richmond) and Politics (Adam Hewson). Click on ‘View Example Copy’ in the right-hand menu on the Home Page if you don’t believe us!

6.     If you are familiar with Paul from his industry-respected trends-related Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide which he wrote for 16 years, you can now access his unique Race Trends for approximately 110 racesthroughout the year including all races at Cheltenham Festival, Aintree Grand National Meeting and Royal Ascot.

7.     Access to weekly Horses to Follow throughout the Flat Season and horseracing guest contributions from Alan Potts, the author of the revered Against The Crowd and The Inside Track, Andy Richmond of RacingUK and Mark Ball, formerly of Let's Live Racing.

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