Racing Insights

Racing Insights, 9th August 2021

The four I felt had the best chance on Saturday finished 1st, 3rd and 4th with a non-runner, so I'm pretty pleased at where the tools took me. I didn't back the 9/2 winner, sadly, as I wanted more than 8/1, so I could back it E/W whilst the one I did back finished 4th. I did, however take 9/1 E/W about the third placed horse, so it wasn't a bad race for me in the end.

And now to Monday, where help comes in the form of open access to the pace tab to all users for all races, including these "races of the day"...

  • 4.35 Ayr
  • 6.55 Ripon
  • 7.15 Ballinrobe
  • 7.45 Ballinrobe

Just two UK races to choose between (big-field Irish hurdle races aren't my cup of tea) and although it's a small field, the 6.55 Ripon is the one I'm going to look at. Just thee five runners here, but one was a non-runner from Saturday's feature, so that's interesting. The trip is a mile and a half on good to soft ground for this Class 4, 3yo, flat handicap worth £4,347 and here are the contenders...

On form, Chase the Dollar is the only one without a recent win whilst Chalk Stream is the only LTO winner. We've three class movers as Grantley steps up one level whilst Barn Owl and Chase The Dollar drop one and two grades respectively.  Chalk Stream has already won over this trip, whilst Barn Owl and Grantley are former Ripon winners whereas Carrigilihy has actually scored over course and distance.

All five have been rested for over a week, yet all have raced in the past three weeks. Bottom weight Carrigillihy receives 12lbs from top weight Chalk Stream. Barn Owl, Chalk Stream and Grantley all come from in-form yards, with the latter pair having good Ripon records, as does the rider aboard Carrigillihy, whilst the form jocks are on likely market leaders Chalk Stream and Barn Owl with the latter being the one that should have run in my Saturday race.

Chalk Stream has two wins and a runner-up finish from his last four outings and he arrives here on the back of his best run yet, as he made all to win by 2.25 lengths at York 16 days ago. He's up 4lbs here, but that shouldn't be an issue, nor should the ground as he won on good to soft four starts ago and was a soft ground runner-up 11 days later. Definite contender here.

Barn Owl won here just over two months ago, claiming a Class 5, 1m3f Novice race by a nose. Since then, he has made his handicap debut as a solid runner-up (beaten by 3.75 lengths) of eight over 1m2f at Sandown. He's sure to come on for that, but does step up to 1m4f for the first time.

Chase The Dollar is a solid Class 4/5 runner who aside from one win by a neck (C5) always seems to find one or two just a bit too strong for him and that's probably the case here. He was well beaten (30L) when 12th of 13 in first time cheekpieces at Goodwood LTO, but that was on soft ground two classes higher. I expect him to give a better showing today, but I doubt it'll be enough, even with first-time blinkers.

Grantley won here (C3, 1m) back in April and has reasonably well without winning any of four races since, all off a mark of 77. This is his first effort beyond 1m2½f and I've doubts about him getting a mile and a half and a 1lb drop in weight isn't offering much help to him. Others look better suited.

Carrigillihy is interesting, getting weight from the rest of the field and he won here over course and distance two starts ago on similarly good to soft ground, albeit one class lower. He was a little unlucky LTO aiming for a hat-trick as things didn't go his way at nearby Thirsk, but although he was only fifth of seven, he was actually beaten by just three lengths. With just four rivals, he should get a clearer run here and he could go well.

Form under expected conditions courtesy of Instant Expert...

...shows Chalk Stream and Carrigillihy in the best light with Chase The Dollar not looking too good so far. I'm particularly interested in form on good to soft and over the trip.

There haven't been many small-field good o soft contests here at Ripon recently, but in the few they've had, there's not a huge advantage to be gained from the draw, although stalls 1 and 2 have done slightly better for winners and even more so for the placers...

...which again favours Chalk Stream and Carrigillihy. With regard to pace, again we're dealing with a small sample size, but those who race prominently or even lead are the ones who do best here...

...and if we look at how our runners have raced in their last few races...

...you'd have to favour those in the top three stalls here. The composite pace/draw heatmap doesn't actually rule any of them out here...

...but Barn Owl looks worst off, whilst again it's Chalk Stream and Carrigillihy looking best placed.

Summary

You probably already know where I'm at here. Everywhere we've looked, we've got the same two names crop up and they're also the 1-2 on the Geegeez SR figures, so somewhat unsurprisingly my 1-2 here is Chalk Stream to beat Carrigillihy.

Chalk Stream is the current 9/4 favourite and that's probably fair, I thought he might even be a bit shorter than 2's based on the evidence above and Carrigillihy is the 10/3 third fav so far. Too short for an E/W bet, of course, but of interest for the (reverse) forecast/exacta bettors.

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