Monday blues for punters after string of short-priced favourites blow out
Punters hoping to start the week with a bang were left licking their wounds on Monday after four odds-on favourites suffered defeat in the opening five races of the afternoon.
Passing Call, sent off at 1-2, was the first to blow out when finishing second in the first division of the 2m maiden hurdle at Huntingdon and the second division proved equally troublesome when Mahari (8-11) was pulled up with a circuit to run.
In between those shock reverses, 10-11 favourite First Drift lost out narrowly in the opener at Market Rasen, while it was a similar story at Taunton where Mount Rushmoore (4-6) finished out of the frame.
It took until the seventh race of the day, the 2m3f handicap hurdle at Taunton, before a favourite obliged when Smart Boy (2-1) just held on by neck from the fast-finishing Zen Master.
The results were a hangover from last week when a number of favourites were turned over, none more spectacularly than at Ludlow on Thursday when 1-20 shot Tree Of Liberty became the shortest-priced loser over jumps since 1909.
That colossal shock came within a 30-minute spell on Thursday when four odds-on chances were beaten in Britain and Ireland.
The previous day at Haydock, Midnight Shadow started 1-4 favourite for the four-runner novice hurdle but unseated his rider as he followed wayward leader Keyboard Gangster, who tried to run out on the bend after the third flight.
Tree Of Liberty's trainer Kerry Lee was one of those on the receiving end of the Monday upsets with Mahari, who was later reported by the veterinary officer to have bled from the nose.
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