Racing Insights

Racing Insights, Tuesday 08/03/22

Tuesday's free offering from the Geegeez Gold Toolkit is The Shortlist, a simple and usually brief report highlighting those horses with a largely ‘green’ profile in the Instant Expert Report each day, covering win or place stats, and can be viewed for both today’s and tomorrow’s racing.

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. The Shortlist selections are unlikely to make a profit, at SP at least, to blind backing. Our recommendation is (and has always 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 its odds might imply.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

Here's how The Shortlist looks this Tuesday...

We complement the daily free feature with a selection of fully functional free racecards and for Tuesday, they are...

  • 1.00 Newcastle
  • 4.05 Sandown
  • 7.00 Wolverhampton

Bavington Bob takes on The Ferry Master in a battle of the 15's up at Newcastle and this could have been an interesting race to look at, but there are only four runners set to go to post and Bavington is likely to be a warm odds-on favourite, so I'm reluctantly bypassing that one and heading to the highest rated of the freebies, the 4.05 Sandown, where 7 runners are set to tackle 9 flights of hurdles in this Class 3, soft ground, 4yo+ handicap contest over a right handed 2m4f...

Both top-weight West To the Bridge and possibly under-rated by the assessor Git Maker come here seeking hat-tricks, whilst Kamaxos has been in the frame for each of his last three outings and he drops down a class in a bid to make that step up into the winner's enclosure. Fifty Ball is down two classes, but unbeaten under Rules Git Maker steps up from Class 4 for his handicap debut. Runrized also makes a handicap debut on his first outing for his new handler and it's possible that he might need the run after 225 days off track, whilst the other six have all raced at least once in the last ten weeks. West To The Bridge has won over this trip and also over 2m3½f before and Fifty Ball has also won over the latter distance, as well as winning here over 2m. The other course winner is Benson whose track success was also over 2m.

WEST TO THE BRIDGE
Was a winner at Carlisle (C2, hvy, 2m4f) at the start of November 2020 off a mark of 133, but then suffered 11 defeats in a row prior to winning at Chepstow off 122 in mid-January and he followed that up with another win at Carlisle a fortnight ago despite an 8lb rise. Now top weight up another 3lbs, but still only back to that November '20 winning mark and should be in good heart here.

RUNRIZED
Made the frame just once in nine starts for Willie Mullins when winning on his sixth outing and his last of the last winter season. Three poor (6th of 9, last of 5 and 16th of 19) summer runs followed and has since been shipped out. Not sure what he's done to get an opening mark of 130 for handicap debut, that looks punitive.

BENSON
Landed a hat-trick of wins over 2m/2m½f in Oct/Nov/Dec 2020, the last of which was a Listed race here at Sandown, which moved his mark from 127 to 137 and he's struggled under the extra weight since, failing to make the frame in five starts. Not only is he still higher than his last win, I feel the trip is too much for him, as all his form is around the 2m distance.

FIFTY BALL
Had a really good start to his hurdling career from debut is Sept '20 finishing 32112 in his first five, culminating in a 3 length defeat as runner-up in the 23-runner Grade 3 Betfair Hurdle at Newbury just over a year ago. He toiled at Cheltenham in his season finale four weeks later, though. He returned to action 233 days later with a creditable third here over fences at this trip, but was 4th of 5 and last of 5 in two further efforts over fences. He then reverted to hurdling for another crack at the Betfair Hurdle last month, but was only 12th of 14 and although this is easier, it's hard to fancy him right now.

GIT MAKER
Finished 2231 in four Irish PTP contests showing jumping ability and stamina before coming to the UK, where he is now 2 from 2 under Rules having won at 2m and 2m1f in Class 4 hurdles. This is a step up in class and a 3f rise in trip, but a mark of 124 on handicap debut looks very generous, especially when Runrized goes off 130. This should be a much stiffer task than his two previous runs, but he's got some help from the assessor.

KAMAXOS
Still a maiden after five starts, but after finishing 24223, he's knocking on the door. Ran really well when stepped up in trip and class for handicap debut last time out, when only 3 lengths adrift in 3rd of 11 over 2m5f on soft ground in a Class 2 affair at Newbury just after Christmas. He's down in class here and the runner-up from LTO has gone on to be a runner-up at Grade 3 since. He might not win this, but that first success can't be far away.

TERRESITA
Won at Fakenham over 2m on debut back in November and won there again over 3m on New Year's Day. She backed that 3m win up by only failing by a head at Ludlow over the same trip 19 days later, but ran really poorly next/last time out, when 8th of 9, beaten by 82 lengths at Doncaster. That run aside, she'd have every chance down in trip, but something wasn't right four weeks ago and we've no way of knowing what.

As ever, Instant Expert has the full lowdown on relevant past win and place form under the forecasted conditions...

All bar Runrized have shown some aptitude for soft ground, but West To The Bridge is the one with most experience in the mud and he has done rather well at it and his four Class 3 successes speak for themselves. All things considered, he's the one to beat from Instant Expert, if he approaches the race in the right way. He has got back to winning ways by reverting to front running tactics in his last two outings...

...whilst the other hat-trick seeker Git Maker has also been kept up with the pace and we throw Terresita into the mix, we could have some lively action up top, which is exactly what's needed here at Sandown, where hold-up horses have toiled somewhat...

Summary

It's hard to veer away from the two hat-trick seekers, West To The Bridge and Git Maker. The former was the pick on Instant Expert, is proven on soft ground and at this class and trip, but would have to concede 9lbs to the seemingly leniently treated Git Maker had Harry Skelton not been replaced by a 7lb claimer. Git Maker has only two runs behind him  and both at two miles, but he'll "get " the ground here and has won over 3m at PTP level, so the step up in trip shouldn't be an issue.

I like West To The Bridge here and had Harry Skelton kept the ride, he's have been my pick, I think a top jockey is worth 7lb in a tough race, but with no disrespect intended to Tristan Durrell, I have to agree with the bookies and go with Git Maker ahead of West to the Bridge. My heart says it's the other way around, but we should bet with our heads!

2/1 plays 10/3 here and whilst we won't get rich, I'd hope we'll have the forecast, one way or another. Only two places in a 7-runner race and whilst I expect the usual valiant effort in defeat from Kamaxos, a small 14/1 E/W play on bottom weight Terresita might be interesting if one of the principals slips up.

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