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Byline: John Shaw's racing betting column in association with

IF the first law of travel is, 'it always takes longer to get there than to get back,' then the first law of age is, 'the older you get, the quicker the years pass.' I can't quite believe the first Classic of the season is upon us already with today's 2,000 Guineas looking particularly wide open in the absence of Too Darn Hot.

GAMBLING WISDOM Aidan O'Brien usually has a say in these big races.

"There pleasures that of that - French In fact, what he usually says is, "I've won again," with three victories in the last four years.

The master of Ballydoyle saddles two runners, the unbeaten Ten Sovereigns and Magna Grecia, which admittedly sounds more like a men's hair colouring product than a racehorse.

Ten Sovereigns has raced three times as a two-year-old and has won on each occasion, including the Group 1 Middle Park last time out.

It's difficult to pick holes in that form, however those three victories all came over six furlongs he's unproven over a mile. He looks a real speed merchant to me and drawn in stall five it's hard to see him hitting the front and staying there.

Ordinarily, I'd rather pin my money to the mast of the horse who has proven form over the trip and the course.

two great in GAMBLING; and losing."

Proverb The one who fits the bill has to be Magna Grecia, who has bags of stamina as he showed when winning the Group 1 Vertem Futurity Trophy at Doncaster last October. He was only beaten a neck by Persian King at Newmarket earlier that month so the course should hold no concerns.

Another horse with strong form and at a bigger price ISADVERTISE.

He was second in the Coventry to Calyx, won the July Stakes and Phoenix Stakes and was second to Too Darn Hot in the Dewhurst.

He has to be worth an each-way punt.

BET OF THE DAY 15/2 ADVERTISE 3.35 NEWMARKET EACH-WAY FAMOUS FIVE The 2,000 Guineas is the premier Classic race for three-year-old colts over a mile. Here are five fun facts about the famous race..

1 The longest-priced winner was 1961 hero Rockavon, who was returned at 66-1 2 The shortest-priced winner was the 12-100 laid on St Frusquin in 1896 3 Frankel is the shortest-priced winner in the past 53 years, 1-2 favourite in 2011 4 11 of the last 17 2,000 Guineas winners came from the top three in the betting 5 Henrythenavigator in 2008 was the first British Classic winner to score by a nose SPARE a thought for US jockey Mike Smith, who proved picking the wrong horse is not a choice exclusively made by punters.

Smith, Hall of Fame jockey and winner of the Triple Crown last year, had chosen to ride favourite Omaha Beach in today's $3 million Kentucky Derby over another fancied contender, Bob Baffert's Roadster.

But Omaha Beach was scratched from the race on Wednesday after developing a respiratory condition and now Smith finds himself without a mount in the big race.

A religious man, Smith said he never prays to win, only for safety something he definitely doesn't have in common with punters.

Baffert, who is seeking a recordtying sixth Kentucky Derby victory, trains the first three horses in the betting, Game Winner, Roadster and Improbable. It looks highly improbable he won't be celebrating his sixth Derby victory this weekend.

the first upon stall five it's the Vertem Doncaster GAMBLING WISDOM "There are two great pleasures in gambling; that of winning and that of losing." - French Proverb
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:May 4, 2019
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