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Templegate cruises to May naps victory

After suffering a short-head defeat in April, Templegate bounced back to claim May’s crown with an emphatic victory. More than 38 points separated the Sun’s senior tipster and the second placed Glendale (The Scotsman) – one of the largest winning margins in Napchecker history.

May’s 40.6-point yield also propelled Templegate to the top of the 2021 table, replacing the Mirror’s Newsboy, who was unable to replicate April’s table-topping effort. In fact, Newsboy was not alone in finding May’s test a stern one: only the top two tipsters posted profits. (In April that figure was nine, in March six).

Templegate’s first two winning naps last month owed everything to inspirational rides by Frankie Dettori. The first came in the 1,000 Guineas aboard 10/1 Mother Earth (2 May) and the second, five days later, on Falcon Eight (15/2) in the Chester Cup.

Templegate’s knack of finding value naps in the big races continued to plunder profits with River Nymph (11/1, Victoria Cup, Ascot, 8 May) and Lismore (14/1, Henry II Stakes, Sandown) both obliging.

After eight days of action, Templegate were 24.5 points up and already well ahead of the field. That lead was never seriously compromised, as the winners continued to come. In all, nine of the month’s 28 selections came home in front (32% strike-rate).

Second-placed Glendale actually boasted a superior strike-rate to the runaway winner (35%), but prices tended to be cramped. Nevertheless, given the difficulties experienced elsewhere, a 2.5-point yield was not to be sniffed at. Best of the month’s nine winners was the 28 May Brighton scorer, Bolton Abbey (11/2).

Last year’s nap’s king, Kevin Walsh of Irish Post, finished third in May’s listing. His posting was a 2-point loss, but his winners did include a 16/1 strike, Captain Ryan (Wolverhampton, 24 May). As is Walsh’s way, many of his naps were speculative punts. Offerings included one at 66/1 and others at 20/1 and 33/1. None hit the mark, but it only takes a couple for Walsh to reignite his challenge.

Garry Owen of the Daily Record also came close to a May profit. A last day reversal meant a small loss of 2.3 points and fourth spot in May’s table. Like Templegate, Garry Owen napped the 15/2 Chester Cup winner, Falcon Eight (7 May).

One of the great advantages of Napchecker is to be able to analyse a race from a tipping perspective in moments. This is particularly valuable in identifying outsiders that carry the support of more than one newspaper tipster. One such example in May was Captain Ryan, the 16/1 winner at Wolverhampton (24 May). Not only was the Geoffrey Deacon-trained ten-year-old Kevin Walsh’s nap, but Scout of the Express was also keen on the gelding’s chances. And what about Ascension at Newbury on 15 May? Despite finishing last of ten at Chester eight days earlier, and with an unpromising 14/1 price-tag, three newspaper tipsters, Scout, Captain Keen of the Irish Independent and the Telegraph’s Marlborough, all gave Roger Varian’s charge the thumbs up. The result was a two-length victory and knowing looks in certain quarters; as ever, it pays to do a bit of homework!

Date Published: 03/06/2021