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Hedley tops table after bold August show

The Irish Post’s Karl Hedley was August’s napping king. After a month of plunder, Hedley finished well ahead of the field. His 19-point yield – the second best of 2023 – was more than nine points better than Marlborough, who squandered a commanding lead with a run of 16 consecutive losers. The Duke took third with a 7-point profit and the month’s best strike-rate – 33%. The Guardian was fourth with 1.9 points.

Hedley, who finished top in April, had six August winners, all priced at 7/2 or above. Indian Creek (13/2, 7 August) and Fullforward (9/1, 14 August) both obliged at Windsor, while Leiantos (8/1, Newton Abbot, 22 August), Summerghand (11/2, York, 26 August) and Billy Mill (15/2, Newcastle, 31 August) all helped to keep the pot boiling.

Hedley’s knack of finding a decent priced winner when needed, was in stark contrast to Marlborough, who began the month in devastating fashion with five wins from ten, including 25/1 Lillie Langtry Stakes winner, Sumo Sam (Goodwood, 5 August), before that miserable winner famine. It took a couple of short-priced choices to regain the victory thread late-on.

Although missing out on a monthly crown, Marlborough does at least hold top spot in the 2023 table, with a small loss of 1.6 points. Marlborough, with four, also has the most profitable returns this year, one ahead of Hedley, the Guardian, Farringdon, Robin Goodfellow and Racing Post Ratings.

An eight-day losing sequence marred what was an otherwise impressive display by the Duke. Executive Decision (9/1, Goodwood, 1 August) and Marhaba The Champ (8/1, York, 25 August) were the best-priced among the month’s ten winners and that one-in-three win-ratio was four-points ahead of the Guardian, next best in the strike-rate category.

The Guardian just climbed into the profit zone thanks to the Musselburgh winner Baez (11/4, 30 August). Two Tribes, victorious at Sandown Park at 7/1 (20 August) helped to offset two seven-day losing runs.

Garry Owen who began with a nine-day losing streak followed by three wins on the run, just missed out on an August profit. Despite two 8/1 winners, Lord Riddiford (Goodwood, 1 August) and Angelic Appeal (Curragh, 13 August), Farringdon also fell short. This was due entirely to a miserable run of one win from 17 from 14 August onward.

Harvester again finished ahead of everyone else in the all-tips table, but this time a loss of 25.2 points was the reward. It was a month to go with value selections with Captain John showing a 35-point yield and a 17% strike-rate on all selections priced between 5 and 10/1. Captain Keen also flourished with a 16.5-point profit (16%) on all such selections.

There were also 20-point yields for the Guardian, the Irish Sun and Racing Post Ratings on all selections priced at 10/1 and better, while the Irish Sun also showed a 31-point profit on 20/1+ selections, a yield entirely down to 40/1 Galway winner Last Ammo (2 August).

Perhaps worth knowing: Marlborough has a good recent record when selecting runners from Roger Varian’s Newmarket yard. In August Marlborough racked up a 22-point profit with nine wins from 18. Garry Owen also showed a 13.2-point yield with Varian’s runners, while six of the Star’s nine selections from the same yard were correct calls, earning a 9.3-point return in the process.

Date Published: 02/09/2023