Racing Insights

Racing Insights, 2nd November 2021

The Shortlist report is Tuesday's free GOLD feature and this simple and usually brief report highlights those horses with a largely ‘green’ profile in the Instant Expert Report each day. It covers win or place stats, and can be viewed for both today’s and tomorrow’s racing.

GREEN is good (33% or better win rate) – worth 3 points
AMBER is quite good (16-32% win rate) – worth 1 point
RED is not so good (0-15% win rate) – worth -1 points
GREY means there is no available data for that factor - worth 0 points

The final column, ‘Score’, is the sum of the previous five ‘colour’ columns, with 15 being an all green profile, and 9 being the lowest score appearing on this report.

HINT: The best bets are not necessarily the highest scores. Rather, they are often the biggest difference between a Shortlist horse and the ‘best of the rest’ in that race.

N.B. Shortlist selections are unlikely to make a profit, at SP at least, to blind backing. Our recommendation is – and has always been – that The Shortlist should be a starting point rather than an end in itself. That said, it continues to highlight horses whose chance is better than recent form - and its odds - imply.

We also have our usual array of 'free' races and for this Tuesday, they are...

  • 12.30 Lingfield
  • 12.55 Exeter
  • 2.25 Exeter
  • 2.40 Redcar
  • 3.00 Newcastle

...whilst The Shortlist for Tuesday looks like this...

The two that are of obvious interest to me are the two Exeter runners, who both have four greens from a possible five. Greaneteen misses on on class, but still has a 16-32% win strike rate, just as Just A Sting does on field size, so both are worth a second glance if nothing else, starting with Greaneteen, who goes in the 1.55 Exeter, the Haldon Gold Cup, a 6-runner, Grade 2, 4yo+ handicap chase over 2m1½f on Good to Soft (soft in places and rain expected) ground. The race is worth £40,411 and our runner, Greaneteen actually won it last year. Here he is on the racecard with some relevant stats...

Greaneteen was a decent enough hurdler back in early 2019, winning two of four starts before embarking on a very successful chasing career that has seen him win five of nine wirth two further placed finishes including landing this race last season and a win at Grade 1 by the best part of four lengths last time out when he put the likes of Altior and Sceau Royal to the sword with ease.

He 'gets' further than this and likes soft/heavy ground and travels strongly as races progress. Instant Expert, below shows some of his chasing stats...

His score on The Shortlist shows all his runs, but when we focus on chasing, he now has a perfect line of green, as his 5 wins, 2 places from 9 over fences include...

  • 4 wins and a place from 5 going right handed
  • 3 wins and a place from 5 in fields of 2-7 runners
  • 2 wins and a place from 5 races at Grade 1/2
  • 3 wins and a place from 4 handicap chases
  • 3 from 3 over 2m1f/2m1½f
  • 2 wins and a place from 3 on soft/heavy ground
  • 2 wins and a place from 3 in November/December
  • 2 from 2 under today's jockey Bryony Frost (inc that Gr 1 LTO)
  • 1/1 here at Exeter (this race last year over C&D)

So, you'd definitely say that he had optimum conditions in front of him, not withstanding that off a mark of 168, he's going to need a career-best and he's conceding at least 17lbs to the field. He's a strong traveller, who likes to be up in the thick of the action and in most of his starts over fences, he has either led or raced quite prominently and either of those running styles would be a good fit here again today...

So, all told, I think we can expect another bold run from Greaneteen, even if he is carrying some extra weight in comparison to his rivals.

*

An hour later, the 9 yr old Just A Sting probably faces a tough challenge in the 2.55 Exeter, a 13-runner Class 3, 4yo+ handicap chase over 3m½f on Good to Soft (soft in places and rain expected) ground. The race is worth £6,535 and here's Just A Sting's racecard entry...

...which doesn't exactly fill me with much hope. Don't get me wrong, he has been decent enough over fences in the past, but since winning at Kempton on 27th December 2019, he has only raced six times and has failed to complete four of them. The two he did complete saw him finish 8th of 10 in a bumper and 6th of 7, beaten by 45 lengths over fences back in March, so it's fair to say that his best form was some time ago and his 5 from 19 career record is somewhat bloated by his 2 wins from 3 in bumpers. His full record is highlighted here...

and just in handicap chases...

...but over the last two years...

...which backs up my assertion that not only has he not raced much of late, his form has been poor. He did enjoy coming to Exeter, winning twice and placing once from three visits, but hasn't been here for almost three years and despite now being some 11lbs lower than his last winning mark, it's hard to have much confidence in him based on form and/or stats.

Over fences, he has mainly tended to race in mid-division or further back and I think that will also put him at a major disadvantage here, based on how previous similar races have gone...

...where if you don't lead, you're likely to lose!

Summary

Harry Cobden rode Greaneteen to success in this race last year and he now rides the 11/8 favourite Hitman, but I'm not convinced that those odds nor the 7/2 available about Greaneteen are correct and I'd have them closer together. Hitman is no mug, of course and yes, he's getting a chunk of weight from Greaneteen, but I've got them much more closely matched. They're definitely each other's biggest threat, but the value (and my money) is with our featured runner Greaneteen here.

As for Just A Sting, he's probably 25/1 12th favourite of 13 for a reason and whilst he might not be the second worst in the race, I don't see him getting anywhere near the frame, never mind actually winning. It's not a race I'm particularly invested in, but 6/1 shot Pilbara is probably the one I'd side with if pushed, whilst Enqarde might be of E/W interest at 178/2 especially if your bookie pays four places.

 

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