Carlisle Wednesday 22nd June

NORTHERN - Carlisle Bell Handicap 2.55 - Class 4 - 1 mile - 15 run - Good to Firm
 
One of the toughest Courses in the UK up a steep hill that rewards stamina and a strong heart and on Good to Firm you are really looking for horses who are happy to run through the pain on that type of going as it can sting..
 
Plenty are in with chances and it's very competitive.
 
At the business end of the market Makeen carries an 8lb penalty for a win at Musselburgh (a completely different track) but has Course winning form here at 7 furlongs and has won at a mile. With the penalty and up this hill I just can't be tempted in. Pisanello was runner up last time at York when we tipped it, its a win mark of 77 and placed off 81 and 83, major danger coming from this yard / jockey partnership and is a bit unexposed off 82 but I just fancied a couple a little bit more but this is the one I think they all have to beat!
 
Cassy O won last time out off 81 at Redcar, was a Course and Distance runner up last year off 83, runs off 86 for Tim Easterby and David Allen who are often my "go to" pairing but the burden of 10 stones just puts me off today. Invincibility for the in form Burke yard rates another big dangera Distance winner off a mark of 79, I'm not totally convinced though that this hill plays to its strengths. Tilsitt loves Good to Firm, is in form and not discounted lightly but another who I think may be suited to less of an end to end stamina test. Garden Oasis at a big price was 5th in this last year off a mark of 81 during an excellent overall season, it hasn;t fired yet in 2022 and off a mark of 84 may need to drop down another 3 or 4lbs - one for your TRACKER though as it'll be winning races when the handicapper relents.
 
I was left with 3 against the field.
 
ARRANMORE won twice over Course and Distance in 2021, wnt from marks of 64 to 74 in the process, slow to hand so far but is now fully tuned up and I have a hunch  its aimed for this and I narrowly preferred to stablemate Pisanello with a good 5lbs Claimer up bringing  it back to its last winning mark with the Claim!
 
GLOBAL SPIRIT is too big a price when you look at its past form. Runner up in this race in 2021 on Good to Firm off a mark of 82. A recent win off 77 proves its in good nick again and it runs here off a mark of 78 and likely to race prominently. A draw in stall 15 makes life a bit trickier but as they fan out off the bend and face the hill I'm sure that this one will be moving forwards.
 
END ZONE for Roger Fell also with Ben Curtis up gets a 5lbs penalty for a Course and Distance win off 71 last time out and also has a Course win at 6 fulongs so clearly likes the hill and has laten speed, off a mark of 76 I think it's an in form horse who can improve again in optimum conditions.
 
TIP - Arranmore / Tracker - Global Spirit / shrapnel - End Zone
 
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NORTHERN - Carlisle 3.25 Cumberland Plate - Handicap - Class 4 - 1 mile 3 furlongs - 14 run - Good to Firm
 
Another competitive and tricky puzzle to try to solve.
 
At the head of the market I can't see the value in either Innse Gall nor Strawman, although Strawman holds very strong claims and will be tough to beat.
 
Emeraty Hero is solid, consistent, deserves a win but not that well handicapped due to that consistency. Detective has amazing Course form with 4 wins and 6 times a runner up, mad to take it on but another that I think the handicapper knows what he's doing with. El Picador won last time off 79, gets a 5lbs penalty and that puts me off today. My Little Queens is another in form with lower grade wins off 61 and 64 for Fahey and I'm not sure it can win this off 68. Shake A Leg has a decent chance with wins at 12 furlongs at Doncaster and Ripon, its up to a mark of 80 though and I think another that might just be a few pounds wrong with the handicapper. Grand Canal for Jim Goldie is similarly penalised and in form and as a result I think just out of it today. All of those would be genuine dangers if improving though.
 
My final 3 are -: CROESO CYMRAEG who was runner up in this last year, that was off a mark of 80 and it won off 77 at Ripon last time out so we know its in form and ready to go, a 4lb penalty means 1lb more than last year but I just fancy this is trained for this and will be ready to go. HIGHWAYGREY could just be running in to some form and I'm not concerned therefore that it ran just a few days ago. It's 10lbs below its last win mark and loves Good to Firm. CARRIGILLIHY has a win at 10 furlongs and 12 furlongs and a best win mark of 71, it runs here off 72 and for my favourite Tim Easterby / David Allen combo seems to have snuck in under the radar and at a silly price.
 
(IF Highwaygrey is a non runner make Carrigillihy a Tracker bet)
 
TIP - Croeso Cymraeg / Tracker - Highwaygrey / shrapnel - Carrigillihy