Racing Insights

Racing Insights, 15th September 2021

Wednesday's free feature is the marvellous Trainer Stats report which is in fact, four reports in one. It contains information on a trainer’s recent form, and their longer term course form. For each of 14 day, 30 day, course one year and course five year, users can filter by runs, wins, places, win profit/loss and each way profit/loss.

We also have a selection of free racecards, which are...

  • 2.35 Beverley
  • 2.55 Sandown
  • 3.30 Sandown
  • 3.45 Sligo
  • 6.30 Kelso

I don't have many qualifiers on my Trainer Stats report today...

...there's a Class 1 race in the free list, so we'll take a look at that. It's the 3.30 Sandown, which is a 10-runner Listed race for horses aged 3 or over. The trip is a mile, we're expecting good to soft ground and these are the runners competing for a first prize of almost £29.5k...

With so many races to consider on a daily basis I aim to quickly work through each in less than a couple of minutes and I approach races in different ways. One of the quicker methods I use is a basic process of elimination, where I just cross runners off as I go along, leaving me with a small number to consider at the end before deciding whether I want to back any or not. Sometimes there's a bet and sometimes there isn't and that's perfectly fine not to have a bet.

So, starting with the card above, I don't like Qaysar here as he's only had the odd good run in a dozen or so over the last 15 months and he's up in class after being well beaten in a lower grade LTO. He's also joint worst off at the weights based on handicap marks. Accidental Agent is another struggling for form and is more of a Class 2/3 handicapper nowadays and steps up in class from a defeat at Class 3 LTO. He's certainly not the horse that won the Queen Anne back in 2018 anyway and with negatives against both trainer and jockey, he's out of my thinking here leaving me with eight to consider going into Instant Expert...

...where the thing I see first is a line of red for Escobar. 0/7 on good to soft and a poor record at trip and class puts him in the firing line for me here. A quick check at his overall recent form tells me that he hasn't won for almost two years despite having 18 outings. He's 0 from 10 this season, of which 8 were at Class 2, so he's out too. Positives from IE are Mostahdaf's small number of runs/wins.

This leaves us with runners in stalls 1-3, 5 and  7-9 and the draw stats would suggest that those in stalls 5 to 8 would be best favoured...

...which is good for Brunch, Mostahdaf and Bell Rock from who I've got left. We talk a lot about pace here at geegeez and how important it is, but I should stress this doesn't necessarily mean we're looking for the fastest runner (although the one completing the race quickest wins!), we're looking for race positioning / tactics ie who has the best race/pace management and in this type of race, we're told that the further forward you race, the more chance you have of making the frame...

...but that leaders often get swallowed up and only 23.5% of placers who lead actually go on to win. Prominent racers win more often than any other racing style and they convert 35.6% of their places into wins. Mid-division runners have an IV of 1.03, meaning they win slightly more often than expected and their place to win conversion rate is a solid 34.5% whilst hold up horses fare poorest of all. Yes, they might win very slightly more often than leaders, but their 29% record for placers is poor.

Ideally you want a horse with an average pace score of 2 to 3 for win purposes or just over 3 for placing and here's how our runners have scored in their last four outings...

The problem we have here is not that none of these fit the bill from a pace/draw perspective, but that too many of them do and there's no natural leader of the pack...

Bullace led (4) four starts ago, but that is the only score of four in the entire field's last four runs, so this race is likely to be falsely run ie some horses will have to run differently to usual : they can't all run in mid-division.


Generally, my rule is that if a race is likely to be falsely run, you walk away from it and that would be my advice. If you still wanted a bet, then recent form, Instant Expert and that unknown 'gut feeling' will play their parts.

For me, it's a no bet race, but if I was to pick one, I think that aside from his last run when well beaten in a much stronger race, Mostahdaf ticks more boxes than any of the others and that's probably why he's the 11/4 fav. Has a great chance here, but won't carry my money. Powder dry for Thursday, I'd suggest.

PS I only know it's a no bet race for me after I typed it all out, I do the piece in real time, you see.

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