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  • So now we know. Finally. Arsene Wenger has announced his 22 year reign at Arsenal will come to an end this season. I am no Arsenal fan but I for one hope he can go out on a high and win the Europa League next month.

    Perhaps this weekend Arsenal supporters will award him the standing ovation his decades of work deserves, Yes, he's stayed longer than he should have. But any Arsenal fan who says he has not improved the state of the club as a whole is plain wrong.

    I was there at the press conference when . . .

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    By on 20th April 2018
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  • Racing Tips April 20

    By on 19th April 2018

    Thursday was a day of surprises, sadness and disappointments.

    If punters were disappointed by the performances from the likes of Roaring Lion, Music Society and Le Brivido, imagine how the trainers and owners felt.

    But, as I have said more than once, that is the downside to the very early days of the new flat turf season. Some horses simply need the run to blow away their winter cobwebs, others are racing for the first time and will have a much better idea of what is expected from them second time out.

    And in a sign of the changing weather . . .

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  • Racing Tips April 19

    By on 18th April 2018

    How good it was to see the sun shining down on Newmarket and Cheltenham on Wednesday. Have we seen the end of soft and heavy ground racing for the time being?

    The Craven meeting at Newmarket heralds the beginning of the flat turf season proper. At least to my mind.

    As predicted, there were tales of the unexpected. A 25/1 outside of the field winning a race containing much more fancied horses. Run that race again in June and you'd get a very different outcome.

    In a race I swerved for fear of something unpredictable happening, Forest Ranger . . .

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  • Racing Tips April 18

    By on 17th April 2018

    Well that went rather well. The Grand National.

    On April 8th, I sent members of VG Tips my ante-post selections for the feature race at Aintree.

    Tiger Roll was one at odds of 12/1.

    The winner of the Cross Country Chase at Cheltenham had looked comfortable that day. Connections expressed their concern that the heavy ground at Aintree would be too testing for Tiger Roll. I didn't fall for that Irish blarney on April 8th. A week later, with the weather and the ground just getting worse, I began to wonder if they might have a point . . .

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  • Tiger Roll – a third successive Grand National winner for members of VG Tips

    By on 15th April 2018

    I don’t believe it! We’ve done it again. For the third year running, I and my lovely, loyal members...

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  • Racing Tips April 14 – NON Grand National

    By on 13th April 2018

    The crowds will be vast at Aintree on Saturday and the Grand National is the most watched race in the world of racing.

    But there are other races before the big one. Some of those attending may actually watch the racing, rather than spend the day in the bars and restaurants.

    It is the final day of what has been a decent three day meeting in Liverpool, despite the weather turning conditions very testing.

    We still have some good jumps racing to look forward to. The Scottish Grand National on Saturday week and the excellent meeting that begins at Punchestown . . .

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  • Grand National Racing Analysis and Tips April 14th, 2018

    By on 13th April 2018

    It's time.

    Time to see if I can select the winner of the Grand National at Aintree for the third successive year. I'll pass out should I do so.

    What do we know about this race?

    It's not as tough to win as it was 51 years ago when Foinavon took advantage of a pile up and won at 100/1. The fences are safer and therefore not as demanding as they were even ten years ago. But that is fine by me. My first choice for the National is the same every year - please let all . . .

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  • Racing Tips April 13

    By on 12th April 2018

    Well that was a testing first day of racing on Thursday. We came out of it with two winners, Might Bite at 5/6 and Balnaslow at 11/2, and some each way placed returns via 14/1 third place finisher Clan Des Obeaux and 10/1 shot Gino's Trail, which also finished third.

    But it was more testing for the horses. Particularly those that raced four weeks ago at the Cheltenham Festival in March. Might Bite came out of that just fine, and beat inferior opponents today with something to spare, but others that had hard races at . . .

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  • Just when you thought the Champions League was predictable and boring, it turns more into what the European Cup used to be in what my generation would call "the good old days."

    Then Roma turnaround a 3-0 first leg deficit against a Barcelona side that was, under instructions from their manager, too defensive in Italy. Barca players were urging their boss to let them be more expansive, even when they were 2-0 down on the night but still ahead on aggregate. But he would not let them. Foolish man.

    The next night, Real Madrid have an English referee . . .

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    By on 12th April 2018
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  • Racing Tips April 12

    By on 11th April 2018

    Courtesy of an early Easter, it's four weeks this year between the high class Cheltenham Festival and this meeting, which has grown on me over the years.

    The racing on the Thursday and Friday of the so called Aintree festival has just got better and better over recent years and provides an excellent build up to the big race on Saturday, the Grand National (for which members of VG Tips were sent my early thoughts a few days ago).

    Inevitably some top class horses have been withdrawn from Aintree late in the day, most of them trained by Nicky . . .

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