Skip to main content

Saturday athletics previews

I'll add to these throughout the day, so check back later for updates.

Women's High Jump

This event has lost its sparkle without Vlasic (injured) and Friedrich (DNQ, out of form this year) so it may not take an outstanding height ti claim gold. Chicherova sets the standard - current world champion and bronze medallist from Beijing. Her only blip outdoors was at the Crystal Palace Diamond League event which I'm prepared to forgive with the horrible weather that weekend. She has the two best outdoor jumps of the season (2.03 and 2.02) and recorded several 2m jumps during the indoor season as well (including 2.06m).

American Chaunte Lowe is the main danger, the market see this as a real two-horse race. Lowe has picked off four Diamond League events this season but has only cleared two metres sporadically - 3/10 competitions outdoors, 1/8 indoors in 2012 compared to Chicherova's 3/5 outdoors and 5/6 under a roof.

If there's one competitor to set a new personal best and pick up a medal, it might be Brigetta Barrett. The 21yo recently cracked 2m for the first time, the excitement of her first Olympics might put more spring in her step.

Can't see the favourite being beaten but in high jump, they should never be too short a price.

1pt Chicherova 1.8 BetVictor, BlueSq, Coral… (bet down to 1.75)

Men's Javelin

The odds-on favourite Vitezslav Vesely looks very tough to beat after throwing this year's longest throw, 88.34, with his only attempt in qualifying. Nobody else in the field has thrown within two metres of that in 2012. However, that is his PB surpassing a throw of 88.11 two months ago in Oslo. Apart from that, he is back in the mid-80m range. Can he be relied upon to do it again? History is full of athletes who hit great heights in qualifying but then come up short when the pressure is on.

Thorkildsen is the star of this event, he's going for three Olympic golds in a row, but he has had a string of injury problems this year. His second throw in qualifying was just off his best for the season. He's a big time thrower with numerous 90m+ throws - can he pull one out in the heat of the final?

The other interesting 'runner' for me is Pyatnytsya - seven of his top eight throws are this season, taking a couple of Diamond League wins along the way. Bet365 have him at 21 with other bookies as short as 9.

Not overly keen to get involved here, favourite not quite short enough to lay.

Men's 5000m

No real opinion on this, to top the Games off I'd like to see Mo Farah complete the double. It would leave the home nation with a real buzz.

Women's 800m

The conundrum which is Caster Semenya. The world champion of 2009 is in the red here against a quality field, is it all just down to the preliminary races? Her semi-final was fastest because the Kenyan Jepkosgei went out hard, almost three seconds faster than Jelimo's heat. It's not as if Semenya was running like Rudisha - set the pace and dominate. If the race is tactical, then anyone can win it.

Jelimo has beaten the South African hermaphrodite both times they have met this season. She hasn't been setting blistering times, preferring to do what she needed to do to reach the final. Savinova is the reigning world champion and won her semi-final comfortably as well.

Lay the favourite or back Jelimo? At 5.5 or even 6, I'll go with the Kenyan but I want to be against the favourite here - way too short.

1pt Jelimo 6 Sportingbet (bet down to 5)

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

lay the field - my favourite racing strategy

Dabbling with laying the field in-running at various prices today, not just one price, but several in the same race. Got several matched in the previous race at Brighton, then this race came along at Nottingham. Such a long straight at Nottingham makes punters often over-react and think the finish line is closer than it actually is. As you can see by the number of bets matched, there was plenty of volatility in this in-play market. It's rare you'll get a complete wipe-out with one horse getting matched at all levels, but it can happen, so don't give yourself too much risk...

The Melbourne Cup preview 2019

We're back again for the greatest race on turf, the world's richest staying race and the only race in the world which creates a public holiday for millions of locals.




Once again a fine international field has been assembled and it's worth a deep look at the race. So get a cuppa and find a comfortable seat to plough your way through my preview!

--------------------------------

The Lexus Melbourne Cup
Group 1, Handicap, 3200m
AUD 7,750,000
Flemington 1500 local, 0400 GMT
Broadcasters - Network 10 (AUS), Racing.com (worldwide), SkySportsRacing (UK)


1. Cross Counter
Trainer - Charlie Appleby (one previous Cup win)
Jockey - William Buick
Breeding - Teofilo - Waitress
Drawn 5, Weight 57.5kg

Last year's impressive winner who doesn't get the 3yo weight advantage this time. Won first up at Meydan in March but has run fourth, third, fourth in the big set weights staying races in England and Ireland, never quite making it as the next big staying star. While running close behind Stradivar…

Westow Stakes - York 16/5/19

The sun was out for a glorious opening day of the meeting, and races down the straight appeared to have no concerns about draw bias. Thursday's card has a few higher profile races but this 3yo sprint is worth watching closely, tomorrow and for future form.



British Stallion Studs EBF Westow Stakes
£50k, Listed & Class 1, 3yo, 5f
York 1605

Soldier's Call - flying machine, winning four of six starts in Britain last season, running third in the Prix L'Abbaye, beaten a neck at WFA then finished sixth as joint favourite in the BC Juvenile Turf Sprint. Has plenty on these on ratings, but life's rarely that simple with unexposed 3yos early in the season.

Broken Spear - more exposed than most of these and well beaten by Garrus first up. Missed Chester last week, probably due to the rain (or a poor draw). Pass.

Charming Kid - won at this meeting last season but has been a little erratic ever since. Well beaten on AW Championships Day, appears to be a few lengths off these.

Garrus -…