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Mark Your Card rediscover form of old


Mark Your Card rediscover form of old

After a testing summer, Isiris’ Mark Your Card bounced back to form in August with a table-topping 34.9-point yield. The overall 2017 Besttipping Challenge leaders, Daily Bargain, finished second with a late rally turning a modest gain into another impressive haul of 28 points.

Isiris were in good shape, boasting a 13.3-point gain, while Probets and First Favourite also ended the month in the black, while Personal Info and their Saturday-Only service failed by narrow margins to register profits.

Mark Your Card joined Besttipping midway through 2014. They soon made up for lost time and in six months racked up a vast 804.70-point profit, storming to a wide-margin victory in that year’s challenge. They repeated that feat the following year setting a new record profit of 934 points in the process. A third title duly followed last year, and by April, Mark Your Card was well-placed in pursuit of a fourth successive crown. But a combination of lower returns and the unstoppable summer form of Steve Jones’ Daily Bargain saw a dramatic turnaround; by the end of July, Daily Bargain had a commanding sixty-point lead and appeared odds-on to add to their previous title, secured in 2012.

With a steady succession of winning bets, many with eye-catching prices, Mark Your Card quickly built up their August bank, helped along the way by three 16/1 strikes – Desert Law (Doncaster, 19 August), Flying Jack (Hexham, 21 August) and Rosy Ryan (Ripon, 29 August). There were also two 14/1 successes, four at 12s and one at 10/1. It all rounded up to a 34.9-point tally – MYC’s best return since May – and a third monthly title of 2017.

Meanwhile, Daily Bargain made some progress as 14/1 Sheikspear (Kempton, 9 August) and 10/1 Le Manege Enchante (Thirsk, 15 August) helping the cause, but it required a stunning three-day blitz between 27 and 29 August to make sure that Mark Your Card’s progress did not inflict too much damage. The wins of 7/1 Rinaria (Beverley), 8/1 C’Est No Mour (Epsom Downs) and 14/1 Manatee Bay (Carlisle) took Daily Bargain’s 2017 profit passed the 150-point barrier. It also means that with four months action to come, the difference between the two front-runners is 54.7 points, down from 61.6 points last month.

Isiris followed July’s 8.8-point yield with a return of 13.3 points. Winners included York’s Juddmonte International Stakes winner, Ulysses (4/1, 23 August), Tiberian, a similar priced winner at Deauville (27 August) and 9/4 Gifted Master (Doncaster, 5 August).

With a 33% strike-rate – 10 winners from 30 selections – August was another bumper month for Probets, the second Steve Jones service. With 7/1 Case Key (Newmarket, 19 August) leading the way, Probets returned an 8.6-point yield which ensured their steady climb up the table continues. At the end of June, Probets languished in sixth place, but now they are up to third, behind stablemate Daily Profit and Mark Your Card.

First Favourite were also back in profit-making mode in August, ending a frustrating period of narrow reversals. This time it was Personal Info and Personal Info Saturday-Only were suffered the agony of missing out on a profitable month by the outcome of just one race. The fates are sometimes cruel, but both Personal Info services showed that good times beckon.