Racing Insights

Racing Insights, 9th January 2021

Saturday's free feature is the marvellous Trainer/Jockey Combo report, whilst (weather permitting) we have half a dozen full free racecards open to non-Gold subscribers and they are...

  • 11.35 Fairyhouse
  • 12.58 Wincanton
  • 1.10 Kempton
  • 1.25 Chepstow
  • 1.45 Kempton
  • 3.25 Lingfield

And I think we'll have a look at the TJ Combo, based on course form over the last 12 months. My criteria are fairly demanding, but they have generated a couple of horses to consider for Saturday at Lingfield.

David Probert has two rides for Andrew Balding here, but Discomatic runs in a Novice Median Auction Stakes and they hold little/no interest to me, so I'm focusing on Horn of Plenty for the Balding/Probert angle here.

Horn of Plenty is a 4 yr old and will line up against eight rivals in a 1m4f, Class 4, Handicap for 4yo+ on standard to slow polytrack with the aim of bringing home a £5207 prize.

The combo is 5 from 18 here over the last 12 months as shown above and this includes...

  • 4/15 on the A/W, 4/12 were unplaced LTO & 3/8 in handicaps
  • 2/7 in January, 2/6 in races worth £4-8k & 2/5 at odds of 15/2 to 10/1
  • 1/6 with females, 1/2 at Class 4 and 0/2 with 4yr olds

The breakdown isn't totally positive, but it does offer some encouragement and the racecard entry looks like this...

That Geegeez Speed rating of 32 is unfortunately the lowest in the race and the other info we can instantly glean from the card is that this filly was sixth a month (31 days) ago, she has ran three times (inc 1 win) since a wind op, she has won at this trip before and she'll be carrying 9st 7lbs off a mark of 79 for a yard short of recent winners.

She has 1 win and 1 place from 4 starts on the A/W with her sole win coming over this 1m4f trip at Wolverhampton two starts ago in a Class 5 novice contest. She stepped up to Class 4 last time out and although beaten by almost eight lengths over 1m3.5f at Kempton, she did run better than the bare result might suggest. She was in touch and making good headway when denied a clear run, she had to change course and never really recovered. The third placed horse that day has reappeared and won since.

Recently stalls five and higher have been the place to be if you wanted to win a 9-runner 1m4f event here at Lingfield, not withstanding the anomaly of stall 8's poor figures and with stalls 6 and 7 making the frame most often, our girl's draw from box 6 might be a good one.

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Much will also depend on race tactics. Of those 71 races above prominent and held-up horses have won most of the time, but there's not a massive win % difference across all four run styles ie

and we can then also find that leaders from a middle draw fared best, followed by highly-drawn prominent runners tucked in behind them with third best going to high draws dropped in at the back...

...so we could really do with Horn of Plenty being a front runner, but that wouldn't appear to be the case and she was, in fact, held up last time out...

giving her the following heat map...

...which isn't ideal, if I'm honest, but more on her chances shortly, after I've looked at the other possible.

*

Seven pound claimer Rhys Clutterbuck is in the early days of his career and apart from his rides for Gary Moore here at Lingfield, he's just 9 from 109 (8.26% SR), but in contrast is 5 from 15 (33.3%) here for Mr Moore over the last year and now rides the 6 yr old mare, Agent of Fortune in a 13-runner, Class 5, 4yo+ handicap over 7f.

The TJ combo record of 5 from 15 here over the last 12 months can be broken down in respect of today's contest as follows...

  • 5/15 in handicaps, 3/12 on the A/W, 3/5 at Class 5
  • 2/3 at 7-7.5f, 1/10 at odds bigger than 6/1, 1/9 on runners unplaced LTO
  • 1/4 on females, 1/1 on 6 yr olds and 0/1 in January

Class 5 handicaps are good from the above, but not much else to give us confidence other than possibly the trip, so let's look at Agent of Fortune's racecard entry...

So, with a non-runner, she'll be drawn in 9 of 13 and comes here in pretty poor form if truth be told, but it wasn't always that way. 13 months ago she embarked on a 10-race, 11-week, purple patch where she took her official mark from 50 to 81 (she goes off 72 here) by finishing 1114121113 and she's 3 from 8 at this track. She's been off the boil of late, though, finishing no better than seventh in any of her subsequent nine starts and her Geegeez Speed Rating of 48 is just 1pt higher than the two joint lowest scores in this race.

She actually scores quite favourably on Instant Expert...

...as she attempts to land a race where stalls 3 to 9 have seemed to fare best of late...

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Our girl is drawn in 10 which will be 9, so that might work out. Once again pace and race positioning hold the key to this (and most) race and the pace/draw heat map...

...says the preferences are Low drawn leaders, mid drawn leaders and highly drawn prominence. This suggests that we'd need Agent of Fortune to race prominently to maximise her chances, but sadly she's a mid division type at best, as seen below...

...all of which is less ideal than the first horse we looked at.

Summary

I won't be backing either of these and I expect both to be much nearer the back than the front at the end of the race, so I won't bother with doing a deeper analysis of each horse, but this hasn't been a waste of my time and I hope you don't feel you've wasted yours by reading this piece.

The takeway from this is that it's very easy to read online or in a paper or to hear from a friend about how well jockey x rides for trainer y at track z and they've only got one runner there tomorrow, so they can't be going there for nothing, can they? Well, if I had a pound for every time I'd heard similar, I wouldn't need to back horses!

What we do here at Geegeez is give you that bottom line stat as a starting point, not a direction to bet. We give you the tools highlighted above plus the full race form and profiler etc and advise you to pick the stat apart. If the stat still stands up, great, you might still have the chance of a bet, but quite often it's like today and the stat is just another piece of data to file away in your mind for another day.

There's nothing wrong with analysing a race and then walking away from it. We want everyone to get that same mindset to just have a bet when there's one there to be had. Theres' none for me here, so I'll sign off by wishing you a great weekend and I'll be back on Sunday evening.

 

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2 replies
  1. Rambler
    Rambler says:

    Hi Chris – As usual, excellent advice. A twist to your column today but a very important one as all the pieces of the jigsaw need to be there to get one to part with the cash. The odds are heavily loaded towards bookies already, so one needs to be reasonably sure you have a horse which can put on a good show. A good reminder from an expert – Cheers Bob S.

    Reply

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