Racing Insights

Racing Insights, Thursday 02/06/22

Thursday's free feature, the INSTANT EXPERT Report is by far the most popular tab in the geegeez racecards.

The reason? Its ability to condense the entire form profile of every runner in the race into a single, easily digestible, view. The report covers the form in terms of wins (or places), runs, and win (or place) percentage for each of going, class, course, distance, and field size. It also compares today’s official rating with the horse’s last winning official rating. The display is colour coded: green for a higher percentage rate, amber for a middling percentage, and red for a low percentage. Horses with no form under a certain condition have grey figures.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Where a horse has no UK/Irish form – i.e. it is having its first run in Britain or Ireland under Rules – it will not show up on Instant Expert at all.

We make this freely available every Thursday for every race, including our 'free' races of the day...

  • 2.01 Hamilton
  • 4.25 Leicester
  • 5.15 Redcar
  • 5.50 Ffos Las
  • 6.50 Leopardstown
  • 7.20 Leopardstown

And I think we'll take a quick look at the 5.15 Redcar, a 9-runner, Class 4, 4yo+, flat handicap over a left-handed 1m2f on good ground...

So, King's Commander is the only LTO winner in the field, but he's also the only one without a run in the last five weeks having been off track for some 305 days and now makes a handicap debut. He's also one of just two, along with Qaasid, yet to win at this trip. Enfranchise, Thunderclap, Fairmac and Vanity Affair all drop down a class here and it's interesting that a couple of them were placed LTO. Not much to discuss re: trainer form/stats, but we've a couple of in-form jockeys and Danny Tudhope rides Redcar well.

ENFRANCHISE
She's fared better on the A/W than the Flat so far, but was only just over three lengths off the pace at a higher grade at Doncaster just over a fortnight ago and is now a class and one pound lower, which should put her right in the mix.

KING'S COMMANDER
Won a Class 4 novice contest over a mile at Thirsk ten months ago on his third/last start. Representing the O'Meara/Tudhope partnership, you know he'll have been well prepared, but he has been off a long time, steps up in trip and an opening mark of 85 leaves little room for error.

THUNDERCLAP
Three wins and a place in a five-race spell from August to October progressed him quickly from a rating of 64 to 84 but he laboured off that mark at Kempton recently. Down in trip (2f) and back on turf, we might see an improvement, so I'm not discounting him yet.

STRAWMAN
Won 3 on the bounce in July/August last year and was a narrowly beaten runner-up next time out, but has been last of 5 and last of 14 in two starts this year and makes little appeal on form having gone down by 14 lengths LTO

FAIRMAC
Hasn't won any of his last eight, but ran well enough to finish third of eight in a higher grade last time out with the rest of the field a fair way back. A drop in class and off the same mark should give him a chance of returning to the winners' enclosure.

JEAN BAPTISTE
Had struggled for a while at Class 2/3 for a while, but took advantage of a falling handicap mark and the drop to this Class 4 level to finish second of eight, beaten by just half a length at 16/1 over this trip at Newcastle last time out. He's up a pound, but a similar run puts him in contention here.

VANITY AFFAIR
Had a good first half to 2021 finishing 21113 before a ten-month break from which he returned at Chelmsford at the end of April. He looked like he needed the run and came home fourth of five. having had that run and now dropping in class, we should see a better performance, but I'm sure he's quite up to the level of some of the others here.

MYRISTICA
Had a decent Autumn to end her 2021 season 12333, but after 202 day break she has been 14th of 15 and 5th of 9 in this grade and a 2lb drop in weight probably isn't enough to get her on the premises here.

QAASID
Hasn't won any of five races since a 2yo success in November 2020 on Kempton's polytrack and has finished 11th of 13 in each of his last two runs, both at York in October and May either side of a 215 day absence. probably the weakest here.

Feature of the day Instant Expert...

...tells us that that Myristica has struggled on good ground and at class 4, Jean Baptiste hasn't won any of 11 at this grade and hasn't done that well at this trip either. Two of Fairmac's three career wins have been around this distance, but he has been expensive to follow. Thunderclap and Vanity Affair are much higher in the weights than their last win, which isn't helpful.

Draw/Pace...

When taken in isolation, the lower the draw, the better, which is good news for the likes of King's Commander, Fairmac and Enfranchise, whilst the pace data says that those setting the pace do very well indeed and then there'd a gradual deterioration in results the further down the field you go, which based on their last four outings is more good news for Mark Johnston's pair of entrants...

And if low draws are better and setting the pace is better, then this heatmap showing the success of low drawn leaders should come as no surprise to you...

Summary

Enfranchise, Thunderclap, Fairmac, Vanity Affair all drop in class.
Enfranchise, King's Commander, Thunderclap, Vanity Affair looked best on Instant Expert.
King's Commander, Fairmac and Enfranchise seem to have the best draw.
Enfranchise, Fairmac and Jean Baptiste head the pace scores.
Enfranchise and Fairmac seem best suited by the pace draw heatmap.

Enfranchise ticks most boxes, so she'd be my pick at 9/2 with stablemate Fairmac next best at 7/1. As for one other to complete the frame, you can make a case for King's Commander, Thunderclap and Vanity Affair. I don't have much between them to be honest, but with some firms paying four places, Vanity Affair might not be a bad E/W punt at 9's

Quick Note :  I'm off to Scotland on Thursday morning to Sunday evening, so this column will appear later than usual on Thurs/Fri/Sun evenings.

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