Racing Insights

Racing Insights, 20th August 2021

Friday is almost upon us and the free feature is the Horses for Courses (H4C) report, which shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion. As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting.

In addition to the H4C report, we also have a selection of full free racecards and they will be...

  • 1.30 Kempton
  • 3.00 York
  • 5.00 Killarney
  • 5.23 Salisbury
  • 5.45 Kilbeggan
  • 8.15 Kilbeggan

My fairly tight parameters for the H4C report have yielded no qualifiers for Friday, so I'm going to take a look at the 3.00 York aka the Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes. It's a 6f dash for 2 yr old colts on good ground and one of these eleven runners will take home £85,065...

What I want to here is a brisk elimination process to hopefully give me two or three runners to make a final choice from. Ideally you should be able to analyse a race in just a few minutes, enabling you to decide if there's a bet or not, before moving on to the next race.

So, my first decision is to exclude American Star, Last Crusader and Spitting Feathers, as a Class 4 run isn't the right preparation for a Group 2 race. In fact, since the start of 2019 in Group 2 Flat races, horses who ran at Class 4 LTO are just 3 from 91 at a strike rate of 3.3% at an A/E of 0.39.

This then takes me to Instant Expert...

...where I think Eldrickjones, Twilight Jet and Vintage Clarets look weakest and I'm happy to discard them at this point, leaving my racecard looking like this in draw order...

...giving us runners in stalls 4, 5, 7, 8 and 11.

The draw stats for 10-12 runner contests over 6f here at York are...

...giving the edge to stall 7 over 11 then 4/8 and finally 5., whilst the pace stats say...

...you should race as far forward as you can and based on these runners' past races, this is how they have raced...

and when we combine pace and draw...

Gis a Sub looks to have the perfect pace/draw scenario here and with possibly only Vintage Clarets in stall 2 looking likely to challenge for the early running, he might well be afforded a soft/easy lead. He was unlucky in the Richmond last time out getting carried right leading to him being run out of it late on. Lusail will chase him, for sure and is the one likeliest to catch/pass him too. He was a course and distance winner here on debut and a winner of the Gr2 July Stakes last time out, he's actually probably the one to beat here.

I did for a while think it'd be A course and distance winner here on debut and a winner of the Gr2 July Stakes last time out, he's actually probably the one to beat here. I did for a while think it'd be Berkshire Shadow that I'd lean towards, but I'm concerned that the early pace might give him too much catching up to do, but he's certainly no mug after winning the Coventry and not missing out by far last time around.

Orazio is firmly in the red for pace, draw and subsequently pace/draw and although he was third in a Listed contest last time out, the form from that race hasn't been franked yet and it looks like it might have been a weak affair. Which leaves us with Fearby to consider. He was a comfortable winner of a 5f Listed contest at the start of July and then a runner-up in the 5f Gr3 Molecomb at the end of the month, but in truth he never looked like winning and he's probably not going to win this either, up in trip.

Summary

Of my final five, Orazio looks weakest on pace/draw/form, whilst Lusail looks strongest ticking all the boxes. Berkshire Shadow would have a real chance if racing more prominently, but could still make the frame. That said, I'd not be too surprised if one or both of Gis A Sub (if allowed to lead) or Fearby made the frame too.

The market has Lusail as 9/4 favourite generally (5/2 in places) and he's probably the one to back, but the price is a bit on the skinny side for my liking. Berkshire is 3/1 and Fearby 6/1, so I'm not interested in either as E/W or place only bets, but Gis A Sub is 16/1 and well worth a couple of quid E/W, especially as his yard have won this race three times in the last nine years.

Another option could be a back to lay on Gis A Sub, backing him at 16/1 and bigger on the exchanges and quickly laying as his price shortens, assuming he gets the lead, of course. Not something I'd be doing, but I know plenty of you do.

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