Racing Insights

Racing Insights, Friday 04/03/22

Friday's free Gold feature in the Horses for Courses (H4C) report, which does pretty much what you'd expect and shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that 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. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

You can, of course, set the parameters to suit you, but here's how my H4C report looks for Friday...

Plus, along with a couple of specific horses to look at above, I've also got the following 'free' racecards to take aim at...

  • 2.00 Doncaster
  • 2.10 Lingfield
  • 4.35 Newbury
  • 4.55 Dundalk

Buniann has 5 wins and 5 further places from 12 over course and distance, but looks up against it on Friday in a Class 4 contest, as virtually all his best form is a class lower. I've als0 little/no interest in racing at the Dundalk track, but the last of the three 'free' UK races is another competitive small field, soft ground handicap contest, so my focus falls upon the 4.35 Newbury. Six runners aged 8-11 are set to go to post prior to tackling 13 fences over a left handed 2m½f...

No spectacular recent form, but Casa Tall and Somekindofstar have at least put together some fairly consistent results according to the formline. Commis D'Office, on the other hand, would appear to be the one to follow from a trainer/jockey form angle. Paddy's Poem and Chic Name both drop down from Class 2, but the latter is (a) the only one of the six not to win at a similar trip tot his one and (b) running for the first time in a week shy of two years. He is, however, the only previous course winner of the six.

PADDY'S POEM
Ran consistently well during a 15-race over a 39-month period from Dec'17 to Mar'21, only finishing outside the first three once whilst winning four times, a four-time runner-up and eight third place runs despite breaks of 212, 222 and 393 days in the sequence. Struggled in a Grade 3 at the '21 Cheltfest and was pulled up at Sandown last time out. Lots to prove now.

MONSIEUR LECOQ
A decent enough hurdler who made the frame on 8 of 15 starts, winning three times, but hasn't yet transferred that form to the bigger obstacles, although he was unlucky not to land a Listed chase at Ascot back in October where he led before last. He was clear when he then idled badly up front and got caught in the final strides. Since then it hasn't gone well in four starts finishing 6th of 7, last of 7, pulled up before 3 out and 2nd of 3 off this mark,

CHIC NAME
Was the runner-up in the Edinburgh National just over two years ago, but hasn't raced since pulling up in the Glenfaclas Cross Country Chase at Cheltenham's 2020 festival six weeks later. 16 of his last 18 runs over the past five years have been at 2m7½f of further, so this is a huge drop in trip for this stayer's reappearance, suggesting that's just a pipe-opener for another race elsewhere.

CASA TALL
Has three wins and two places from his last six outings and was a winner off just 2lbs higher than here when scoring at Exeter three starts ago. Looked like he needed the run after a nine-week break when only 5th of 9 (31L) here over course and distance last time out, but has to be considered based on prior form.

SOMEKINDOFSTAR
Has been a far better chaser than a hurdler and although a bit hit and miss over fences, has managed 3 wins and 2 places from 9, yet his four runs out of the frame include defeats of 20, 47, 20 and 26 lengths, so it's a case of which version turns up here and the one we saw at Sandown a fortnight ago wasn't good.

COMMIS D'OFFICE
Yard's in form, jockey's in form, jockey rides well for the yard, tick tick tick. Bottom weight, so receives all round and ended last season with a win at Southwell over this trip. A step up to Class 3 racing this winter hasn't yet borne fruit, with him last of 6 (19L) at Doncaster in December and a 19-length 4th of 7 at Sedgefield last time out. All this has dropped him back to his last winning mark and on a track where yard and rider seem to have thrived, he could get back in the game here.

My initial thoughts after looking at past relevant form via Instant Expert...

...were that I'm not keen on Chic Name or Commis D'Office on soft ground, nor did I like the latter at Class 3. Monsieur Lecoq looks well weighted here at +10 from his last win, but the other stats look a bit sketchy, whilst the other three were also interesting. I think I should check the place stats to see if either of Chic Name or Commis D'Office have just been unlucky...

...where the answer seems to be "probably not". Neither have good place records on soft ground either and Commis seems to have toiled in this grade, even if he has won off today's mark previously. His approach to this race is likely to be "get away sharpish and see if you can hang on" based on the field's past four runs...

...which also suggest that Casa Tall is the likely back marker and whilst those who have led have done pretty much as well as you'd expect (IV 0.96). those waited with have done best of all...

...giving best chance to the likes of Monsieur Lecoq and Casa Tall.

Summary

I think I want to be with runners biding their time here and that takes me almost immediately to Monsieur Lecoq and Casa Tall. The former has seemed out of sorts of late and his Instant Expert numbers aren't great, but a mark of 138 is 10lbs lower than his last win and if today's the day he gets it back together, he could make this a procession.

Casa Tall, however, has been running consistently well of late aside from LTO when he probably needed the run. In addition to a good pace profile for this race, he's proven at this grade and I fancy him to finish ahead of Monsieur Lecoq. Of the rest, Commis D'Office will be popular due to the bottom weight and the Trainer/Jockey Combo. Chic Name will surely need the run, Somekindofstar is only consistent in his inconsistency, whilst Paddy's Poem is also out of form and tough to like right now.

So, for me it's Casa Tall at a fairly attractive 4/1 with Hills (the only one currently showing odds!) with the 5/2 fav Monsieur Lecoq fancied to be the danger.

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