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SPORTS BETTING: Pin all your hopes on Tom & Boy.

Byline: NEIL FULLERTON

GET comfy on your favourite armchair, pour a glass of your most vintage Chardonnay and polish your sharpest pin.

Now you're ready to pick the winner of today's Goodwood showpiece, the Vodafone Stewards' Cup, an annual cavalry charge for the highest-rated six furlong horses.

Of course, you could decide to study form and attempt to unravel the miles and miles of stats for each of the 30 horses in the race - and that's where the armchair and alcohol come into play.

The armchair's for you to relax and save your backside from going numb as you try and workout the pros and cons of each entry.

While the alcohol will make your thinking time much more pleasurable and enable you to either drown your sorrows or celebrate a marvellous victory around a minute and 12 seconds after the stall gates open.

Then there's the pin.

Instructions for its use are easy. Aim and plunge. Wherever it lands, that's your winner - or loser if my pin sticking days are anything to go by.

Just for the record two horses may help me avoid having to look for a drawing pin later this afternoon - Tom Tun and Bond Boy.

I might even have broken into my five-month-old son's piggy bank if the rain had arrived in time for James Given's hope Tom Tun.

So my fancy for Tom Tun will boil down to conditions.

Brian Smart's Bond Boy, should go off at around 16-1 and will not mind the going at all after going close on good to firm at Goodwood in the trial.

That's my advice. You can take it or you can take the plunge.

CAPTION(S):

BRIAN SMART: Bond Boy trainer; TOM TUN: Needs rain
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Aug 3, 2002
Words:289
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