No fire to the smoke of four-horse gamble

John Butler: trains two of the four horses to have been well supported

John Butler: out of luck with hsi two horses in the “yankee” gamble

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

A MORNING gamble on four horses that saw their outsider status replaced by near favouritism ended up a damp squib as the first three sank without trace.

Giant Sequoia, oldest in the gamble at the age of 13, did best in plugging on for sixth after a troubled run in the 1m5f handicap (3.10) at Lingfield. He had been 16-1 first thing but was 13-8 by lunchtime and returned shortest of the first three at 3-1.

Next up was My Boy Geoffrey (6 from 50 in the morning gamble) but he was beaten over 40 lengths in sixth in the Huntingdon bumper at 4.30, sent off 16-1.

Back at Lingfield 20 minutes later it got worse for those who jumped on the bandwagon as Genuine Approval (6 from 33) finished ninth at 20-1.

Finally rewarded in the last

Those who kept the faith for the fourth leg were rewarded with a winner when Menelik ran his rivals ragged at Chelmsford in the 6f handicap (8.0).

Des Donovan’s sprinter was sent off 6-1, having been shortened to 2-1 at lunchtime playing his part in the publicised punt.

Menelik drifted in the face of another mindboggling plunge in the race on Broughtons Fancy, who went from 10-1 to evens before racing.

The Gary Moore-trained runner never threatened before finishing fourth as the 11-10 favourite.


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