Racing Insights

Racing Insights, 26th April 2021

I put up a 4/1 shot and a 14/1 e/w bet for Saturday and whilst the 4/1 runner could only manage 6th place, our 14/1 horse ended up a 12/1 winner which was a nice way to end an up and down week.

Focus now shifts to Monday's racing, where we open up the PACE tab to all readers for all races, including our 'races of the day' which will be...

  • 2.25 Naas
  • 3.30 Naas
  • 5.30 Thirsk
  • 6.50 Windsor
  • 7.50 Windsor

The last of that handful of free races is the one that interests me most. There might only be six runners, but at first glance it seems that competitive that any of them could win, so I'm hoping the Geegeez toolbox will either point us towards the winner or tell us to stay clear of the 7.50 Windsor, which is a 6-runner, Class 4 Flat Handicap for 4yo+ over 1m3½f on Good to Firm ground and the race is worth £4,347 to one of these...

Luigi Vampa won a Class 4 maiden over 1m in August 2019 byt hasn't really kicked on since, failing to win any of six subsequent runs, making the frame just once in a Novice contest. Returning from a 232-day absence, he's likely to need the run here, especially after performing poorly in his last two outings. He's eased 2lbs in the ratings and steps down in class, but he wouldn't be getting my money.

Sweet Celebration is better than her seven length defeat over 1m4f at Wolverhampton LTO would suggest. Closer inspection shows that it was a Class 2 contest off a pound higher than today at a track where she has struggled previously. Prior to that run, she was a runner-up in back to back contests at Classes 3 and 4 and if running to that level again, could well make the frame here.

No Nay Bella has raced nine times since the start of February last year, finishing in the first three home seven times, going on to win three of them. She was only beaten by half a length last time out in this grade over 1m3f, but she is 2lbs higher here at a career top mark of 82, making this tougher.

Goldie Hawk is a smart looking filly who comes here unbeaten in handicaps, having won her last three contests over 1m2f to 1m4f on good to soft ground, tapeta and polytrack, showing versatility. Her first two wins were at Class 6, but she did win in this grade last time out. Based on this, you'd have to think she stands a great chance, but that enthusiasm does need tempering by the fact she's up another 5lbs (now 20lbs higher than her first win) and she hasn't raced since early October.

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City Tour has ability, but is probably better on the A/W than he is on turf and although he was a narrowly beaten runner-up in each of his last two outings on polytrack and is some 4lbs lower here, his turf record isn't great. His sole win from nine attempts came off a mark of 73 and he's struggled beyond that mark and now tackles good to firm ground for the first time in nearly two years since a 7.5 length defeat (4th of 10) at Class 5 off a pound lower than today.

Ranco won both of his last two starts in France (1m2f/1m2.5f) ahead of a switch to David Pipe's yard last August, where he initially struggled over hurdles, being well beaten in all three contests. He was then switched to A/W handicaps where he performed more creditably ahead of a UK turf debut here at Windsor last Monday which saw him win by two lengths over course and distance. 7lb claimer Callum Hutchinson retains the ride from last week and despite a 5lb rise in weight, he's still getting 7 to 16lbs from all his rivals here.

If we look at the field's past performances on the Flat/AW under similar conditions to today, we've a couple of previous good to firm winners and all bar Ranco have won at this grade, but he is the only course winner in the pack whilst all bar Luigi Vampa have won at or around this trip....

If we then filter down to just include runs on turf, Ranco's C&D win last time out stands out a mile, as sadly does City Tour's poor record in this grade...

If we look at the draw stats for 11 previous 6-runner contests over this course and distance here at Windsor, we find the winners are shared around all stalls bar the two extremes ie 1 and 6...

...which wouldn't be great news for the likes of Sweet Celebration or City Tour, but the latter is a confirmed hold-up horse and that might be a blessing here, as hold-up horses have fared best in those previous 11 contests...

Prominent racers and leaders win roughly as often as you'd expect, whilst it's mid-division racers who have suffered, but I should stress that only around a seventh of the runners fall into this category, so the figures might be entirely reliable, as just one winner would move the percentage from zero to ten. That said, we can only work with the available data!

And if we combine pace and draw together, there's a distinct black or white scenario (red & green in our case, of course!) of what's good and what isn't...

We already know that City Tour will sit in the 33.33% box bottom left as a hold-up runner from stall 6, but how would the others fit onto that grid?
Like this...

...which would initially suggest a lack of real pace leading to a falsely run contest. However closer analysis of the running styles of these horses' last four outings suggests that No Nay Bella might well take this on and set the pace...


Any one of the six could win this, but the two I like most are Ranco after last week's C&D win and Goldie Hawk based on her handicap record to date. I don't think there's much between them on a level playing field, but Ranco receives weight and is race sharp, whilst Goldie Hawk has been off the track for some time.

I fancy Goldie Hawk to have a good season and she'll certainly win races if not handicapped out of it, but I think she'll need the run here, so I'd suggest she'll have to be content with playing second fiddle to Ranco on this occasion with Sweet Celebration possibly best of the rest.

The market doesn't agree with my assessment of Sweet Celebration and she's the outsider of the field at 15/2, but they do have my 1-2 as 10/3 jt favs.


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