Racing: Favourites fail the faith

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The Independent Online
A GAMBLER who believes in certainties lost at least pounds 40,000 at Catterick yesterday. He put his money on two horses which, according to the form book, could not be beaten. Both were.

The Newcastle-based punter was burned past the elbows as first Jizyah (starting price 10-1 on) and then Carbon Steel (17-2 on) were turned over. Bookmakers raised cheers worthy of a Grand National winner each time as both favourites looked losers some way from the winning post.

The heavy backer's bet on Jizyah was pounds 15,000 in the hope of collecting winnings of pounds 1,500. The Jockey Cap Maiden Stakes was only a two-horse race, but Jizyah still managed to be beaten five lengths by the 7-1 outsider, Miss Whittingham.

Undaunted, the punter went in head down just before the three-runner Hurgill Lodge Stakes. A bet of pounds 18,000 to win pounds 3,000 was noted among his wagers on Carbon Steel.

But the hot favourite was unable to even reach the runner-up spot, and Carbon Steel eventually trailed in third and last, beaten by the 10-1 outsiders Willshe Gan and Spice And Sugar.

The meeting did produce two odds-on successes in other races, but neither were at the near-prohibitive odds the punter specialises in.

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