Racing Insights

Racing Insights, Thursday 03/02/22

The Shortlist is your free Geegeez Gold feature every Thursday and it's a simple (usually brief) report that highlights horses with a largely ‘green’ profile in the Instant Expert Report each day. It covers win or place stats, can be viewed for both the current and the next day's racing and is, in true Geegeez style, colour coded for simplicity where...

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, as it always has 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 the market might imply.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

We also have our selection of 'free' racecards too, and they are as follows...

  • 2.00 Southwell
  • 2.40 Wincanton
  • 3.40 Wincanton
  • 4.20 Kelso

...but Thursday's Shortlist is headed by a couple that are worth looking at...

...so today's piece will focus on the two Princes from The Shortlist.

We'll start with Capricorn Prince (could be me 😉 ) who is down to contest the 4.00 Southwell, which is the 9-runner, first division of a lowly Class 6, 4yo+ A/W handicap over a left handed 1m4f on standard to slow tapeta...

...and he comes here on a hat-trick after back to back wins at this class/trip at Lingfield then Kempton last month. Both came off a mark of 50 (so he's +6lbs here) under today's jockey, 3lb claimer Rhys Clutterbuck. Those wins took his A/W record to a decent (for Class 6 anyway) 5 wins and a place from 14 efforts all at Class 6, of which he is...

  • 5/13 in blinkers
  • 3/9 left-handed
  • 5/6 over today's trip
  • 3/7 in fields of 8-11 runners
  • 3/6 on std to slow
  • 3/5 in handicaps
  • 2/3 under today's jockey
  • 2/3 at 16-30 days rest
  • 2/2 this year
  • 1/1 in February

He has never raced here at Southwell before on either of the track's artificial surfaces, but he did have one run on tapeta at Wolverhampton, but found 1m6f too far last April.

Many of these details are documented for you in Instant Expert...

...and he's certainly the standout horse on Instant Expert for this race. He's drawn slap bang in the middle of the stalls in 5 of 9 and it's still very early days to assess the stats at this track, but over longer distances the horses drawn 5 and upwards have seemed to make the frame more often than those drawn lowest, so stall 5 shouldn't be an issue. That said, most of you are aware of my doubts about the draw over such a long distance. I firmly believe that the draw in a 9-runner race can't ruin your chances over a mile and a half and that it's mainly about race tactics/pace and it's probably safe/fair to assume a mid-division positioning for him here based on recent runs...

...but he might well need to drop back or step forward here, although again it's a another small sample size...

To be fair, we're having to rely quite a bit on form and horse stats here, as we've not really anywhere near enough track data to lean on, but based on his record, you'd have to give Capricorn Prince a chance assuming he handles the surface. I'm not too concerned about the 6lb rise in weight, he won off 2lbs higher than this over today's trip at Lingfield last July three weeks after scoring over 1m5f off 55 at Bath.

*

Dark Side Prince then takes his place 2.5 hours later in the 6.30 Chelmsford, a 10-runner, Class 3, 4yo+ A/W Handicap over a left handed 5f on Standard polytrack...

...and he's bottom weight on a mark of 72 and comes here is really good nick, having won each of his last three runs of 2021 and only beaten by half a length on his sole start this year. He's up two classes here, having never raced at a higher level than Class 5. The middle run of those three wins was here over course and distance, but he's 9lbs higher than that run as he bids to improve an impressive A/W handicap career of 6 wins, 4 places from 11, all over this minimum trip and including...

    • 4/5 going left handed
    • 3/4 under jockey Thore Hansen
    • 2/2 on polytrack
    • 2/2 over C&D here at Chelmsford and again his numbers are listed on Instant Expert...

He's not ideally drawn out in nine of ten as the lower half of the draw is the best place to be...

...but he's in good nick and is sure to give it his all, as he rarely runs a bad race. He's likely to either leading or up with the pace, which is often the key to success over 5f here at Chelmsford...

And like Capricorn Prince earlier, Dark Side Prince has conditions set to suit. my concern is that he's stepping up to Class 3 for the first, having not even raced at Class 4 before, he's not drawn particularly well and he's as high in the weights as he's ever been, so food for thought there.

Summary

My two Princes should both enjoy conditions for most of the races and I feel both have solid chances of making the frame. Capricorn Prince actually has a good chance of winning in my book, but we're not getting rich at odds of 9/4 at best and I'm loathe to take that about a horse I rate at 10/3 or even 7/2 to win. He really does have a good chance here, but he's too short for me with the likes of Donya around who does look a bit long at 3's. Reverse forecasts are a possibility.

As for Dark Side Prince, there's just too many little things going on ie the draw, his mark and the double step up in class for me to back him to win, but when you see him available at 8/1, then that's a different story and I'll have a small E/W flutter about a horse I thought would be around the 5/1 mark. If pushed for a winner here, the 4/1 fav Lihou is as good as any and 9/1 shot Lucky Ava might not be a bad E/W bet, especially with Skybet paying four places.

 

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