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Stat of the Day: 13th May 2012
SotD turned out to be the bridesmaid yet again yesterday with another second place finish. Our selection Firebeam ran well and looked to have every chance in the final furlong, but was held off in the end by Red Jazz who prevailed by a neck. Overall William Haggas had one winner and two runner-up places from his three entries yesterday: clearly a yard in form.
The lack of UK flat racing sends SotD back hurdling today, as we head to the Pitchcroft for a 2.5 mile Class 4 Maiden Hurdle: the going is Good to Soft and eleven runners are set to line up for the…
It’s all too easy sometimes to just pick a runner from one of the top yards and we try not to do that too often at SotD, but today’s stats tend to lead us back to one of jump racing’s luminaries in the form of Paul Nicholls. Mr Nicholls tends to have decent strike rate at most tracks, but his record at Worcester is particularly eye-catching especially over the hurdles course. He doesn’t actually send too many hurdlers to Worcester: just 54 in his entire career. Yet, of those horses, 18 have gone on to win with a further 12 making the first three home. Obviously, we cant’ rely on his hurdling prowess from as far back as 2000, so we’d need to inspect his more recent record.
Over the past 2 years, seven of his horses have competed in non-handicap hurdles and five of them have returned as winners: these are clearly events he targets. He’s actually got three runners out at Worcester today, but only one features in a non-handicap hurdle and by default becomes our SotD selection today. This horse is Vrai Vert, as he’s still a maiden, there’s no great form to talk about, but is a point to point winner and won on his bumper debut over heavy ground just before Christmas. He has finished fifth in two more bumper since then, but has gone well on both occasions, looking like he needed further than the 2m 1f on offer in those events.
Vrai Vert should be suited by the step up in distance today (+3 furlongs) and he’ll relish a bit of cut in the ground. This may be his hurdling debut, but he is well-regarded by the yard and is related to Captain Chris: a none-too-shabby hurdler himself!
There were no early prices available as I wrote this, other than 4.3 on Betfair and I’d be happy to take that. I’d expect him to be available at around 3/1 BOG on the early shows , but you can (and should!) always…