The Instant Expert tab on the race cards has the unique ability to condense the entire form profile of every runner in the race into a single, easily digestible, view covering 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 feature freely available to ALL readers EVERY Thursday for ALL races, including, naturally, our selection of 'free' races as follows...
- 2.50 Yarmouth
- 5.45 Leopardstown
- 6.15 Leopardstown
- 6.55 Haydock
- 7.45 Leopardstown
And I think I'll head back to Haydock once more for the 6.55 race, a 9-runner, Class 5, 3yo handicap over a straight 5f on soft ground...
We have extreme ground now at Haydock and with Instant Expert being the daily feature, I want to head there first...
...but sadly this field are only 7 from 74 combined, so I think we'll need to focus upon the place stats too!
We see that May Blossom is 1 from 2 on Soft and Proclivity made the frame on his only effort, but we've no real positive soft ground form to speak of, but we do immediately have doubts about Fabiosa and Miss Calculation based on the above. Fabiosa has a whole line of red on the place stats and hasn't made the frame in three soft ground outings, whilst Miss Calculation has just one placed finish from five. So, I'm using Instant Expert as a way of weeding out the undesirables today.
Next port of call is the draw, where on the basis of draw sectors, it looks like the higher the better...
...but stall by stall analysis isn't kind to those drawn higher than seven here, so that's not good news for Gabriella's Spirit or Silky Wilkie, before we even consider the pace angle. It's Haydock, so upfront is best, surely? Especially over 5f on soft ground where it'll be hard to peg a leader back?
Yes, it certainly looks that way and based on recent performances...
...that's going to hurt the chances of Proclivity and May Blossom at the foot of the pace table.
Now, I've quickly whizzed through the toolkit without even looking at the card itself and here's why. it's a pretty poor race and we really shouldn't be spending long on poor races before moving to the next one. I already don't want to back 6 of these 9 and I might not want to back any of the other three and that's perfectly fine, we never advocate betting on every race or betting for the sake of it.
So with that in mind, what of Mr Beaufort, So Smart and Pepper Streak?
Made the frame in both starts as a 2yo (only beaten by a short head second time out) and then won on his first outing of 2022, landing a Wolverhampton 5f maiden also by a short head in late March despite a 159 day break. In his only run since then he was 4th of 11 beaten by 2 lengths on handicap debut, but could have fared much better but for being hampered/squashed on the rail. Sir Henry Cotton was 2 lengths further back that day and he has since dropped in class to win, so could Mr Beaufort do the same?
Yard isn't in the best of form right now, but has done well here at Haydock in the past and jockey has been amongst the winners.
His last four runs have been for three different trainers, but has made the frame in both starts for David Evans, which is good considering he had 0 wins and just 1 place from 6 runs prior to joining David's string. He was only headed in the final few yards at Salisbury last time out and a 2lb rise isn't going to help. He's also not been seen on anything slower than good ground, so that could be a worry.
Was placed twice from five races in Ireland before moving to Adrian Nicholls last winter and she managed to score on her yard debut, landing a Class 6, 5f maiden at Newcastle, but has been beaten by 5L, 4.5L and 5.5L in three handicap runs since off marks of 74, 74 and 72, but a further 3lb cut to 69 might just revive her fortunes and see her back in the frame. Jockey and yard have been working well together recently, so perhaps?
I pretty swiftly decided against backing six of the nine runners, had a quick look at the remaining three and I don't really fancy So Smart here either, so I'm down to two. I prefer Mr Beaufort to Pepper Streak and I think the former could actually win this, whilst the latter has a real chance of making the frame, so we'd better consult the market.
Mr Beaufort is currently (5pm) the 10/3 joint favourite and that's probably about right, I thought he's be in the 3/1 to 7/2 ball park, so whilst there's not loads of value in his rice, it's definitely fair, whilst Pepper Steak is 12/1 with Bet365 and could be a nice E/W option.