This really should prove a ‘Tantastic’ bet!

Tantastic is a very long time winning but a gilt-edged opportunity presents itself in the eight-runner Novice Median Auction Stakes over five furlongs of Wolverhampton tapeta today; it will be impossible for Brian Ellison’s charge to gain ‘winning brackets’ if this tenth attempt fails. One of my favourite sayings is, ‘you can’t beat experience!’

That particular theory has been turned on its head with Tantastic, a vexing 67-rated Mayson gelding which, ironically, achieved his best time-handicap mark under top-weight in a fiercely-competitive handicap on ‘soft’ Haydock twelve days ago.

Harry Russell rode Tacitus and they replicated a previous effort twenty-three days earlier over this course and distance; back in October this talented 5lbs apprentice also got a tune out of Brian Ellison’s charge over the minimum distance on Newcastle tapeta!

Talk about all boxes ticked, and every signal in place, Tacitus has a gift-wrapped chance and I’ll bet he takes it at the expense of weak opposition.

I’ll refrain from even thinking about a ‘penalty-kick’ because Tacitus has missed too many but this should be fascinating viewing for readers/punters who, hopefully, will be playing winnings into consistent, hitherto luckless Water Iris, one of thirteen ‘decs’ for a thirteen-runner Maiden Stakes over a mile of ‘good to firm’ Ayr tonight.

Water Iris ran a shocker on her fourth outing at Beverley last month when beaten NINETEEN LENGTHS!

Ground conditions were nigh unraceable and Jason Hart virtually pulled up the 73-rated David O’Meara-trained Pivotal filly which finished third, clear of other suffering thoroughbreds.

Water Iris hails from a stable in good form, is advantaged by a 5lbs allowance and will be ridden by experienced Danny Tudhope whose strike rate over the past two seasons has been impressive; a real ‘favourite’ is the much-chronicled ‘kick-boxer!’

Awesomedude, a flat-race ‘winning machine’ when trained by James Ferguson, finished last of five on hurdling debut for Martin Pipe’s yard around Market Rasen last month, beaten only three lengths; against a clutch of moderates expect this five-year-old to score in a Maiden Hurdle at Southwell, again ridden by Tom Scudamore. He’ll have cost a tidy sum!

Later this week the European Football Championships are sceduled to begin and I’m looking forward to laying those juicy short-priced favourites; hopefully a ‘politicalt/racist’ problem with ‘The Knee’ doesn’t result in England being banned. Last night signified difficulties, in a ‘friendly!’

Selections, Southwell, 2.35 Awesomedude (e.w); Wolverhampton, 3.30 Tantastic (e.w); Ayr, 5.15 Water Iris (e.w).

 Jeffrey Ross, horse-racing correspondent for WMN since 1983 when winning the most prestigious racing journalist award, Sporting Life Naps Table, before winning it a record number of six times collectively in the Racing Post, the current ‘trade’ paper, including 2019