Racing Insights

Racing Insights, Tuesday 09/01/24

The Shortlist is Tuesday's free Geegeez GOLD feature and it's a simple (usually brief) report highlighting those horses with a largely ‘green’ profile in the Instant Expert Report each day and it covers win or place stats for both the current and the next day'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.

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N.B. Shortlist selections are unlikely to make a profit, at SP at least, to blind backing. Our recommendation 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.

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Here are my qualifiers on Tuesday's Shortlist...

...where Autumn Return is of obvious immediate interest. I suspect he'll be a fairly warm favourite in a 6-runner contest, so I'm grateful that as ever, the daily feature is complemented by a selection of fully functional racecards opened up to all readers and for Tuesday they cover...

  • 12.55 Exeter
  • 1.55 Exeter
  • 2.10 Market Rasen

The abandonment of Exeter has left us a bit thin on the ground and the free race at Market Rasen is only a 5-runner Class 3 affair, so we'll head to the relative safety of the A/W for the day's highest-rated race, the 7.00 Southwell, a 13-runner, Class 2, 4yo+ A/W handicap over a left-handed 7f on standard tapeta...

Doctor Khan Junior is our sole LTO winner and he has won four of his last six. Intervention was a runner-up on his last outing after four consecutive victories, whilst Greatgadian, Zip, Chuzzlewit, Follow Your Heart, Gulliver and Starshiba have all won at least one of their last seven.

Stone Soldier, the fast-finishing Gulliver and Stashiba are all up one class here, whilst the in-form duo of Intervention & Doctor Khan Junior both step up two levels for a race that sees the out of sorts Trumble make a second debut for David Loughnane, after two runs away in Ireland for Claire O'Connell.

Only Excel Power and Greatgadian have yet to win over 7f, whilst Lord of the Lodge, Stone Soldier, Intervention and Zip have all scored over course and distance. Gulliver's 7f wins have been at Lingfield (A/W) and at York on the Flat, but he's 2 from 2 here over 6f and this is shown on the stats created by our Instant Expert...

...that also highlights his lack of wins at this grade and trip on the A/W. Misty Grey makes a course debut here under what looks like favourable conditions if he gets this track first time up. In fact, most of these have decent enough records under the current conditions, although Zip has struggled to win at Class 2.

The draw stats from previous 7f races on the tapeta here have favoured those drawn lower than halfway...

...which isn't the best duo for our in-form duo of Intervention & Doctor Khan Junior, who both have to race from the widest stalls as well as step up two classes. Gulliver and Misty grey seem to have the best of the draw from stalls 1 and 2, but they look set to approach this contest in very different ways. If we look back over this field's last three runs, we see that Gulliver is a confirmed hold-up horses and that Misty Grey had led once and raced prominently once in his last three...

...and that Lord of the Lodge, Excel Power and Intervention look like the main pace-setters here. If we refer back to those 50+ races we used to assume that a low draw was better than a high one, we can see that those horses willing to get on with it early have enjoyed the greatest success...

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The three main pace-setters are actually drawn in stalls 8, 11 and 13 and it's unusual to have many leaders from wide draws here. Those attempting it have done well, though, as shown by our pace/draw heat map...

...which does seem to suggest that the draw might not necessarily mean that Intervention can't go well here.


Doctor Khan Junior is in great form and can overcome a high draw if getting a tow into the race by Intervention just on his inside and I fancy both of these to continue their fine form and make the frame (4 places here), whilst at the other end of the scales, Misty Grey looks to also have a great chance. I'd take all three to make the frame here and if pushed for a fourth runner to join them, Id' probably be looking at the likes of Lord of the Lodge to try and hang in at the front for as long as he can.

Of the four I like Intervention the most and 15/2 looks an interesting price, whilst a longer priced horse who might outrun his odds could be the 16/1 Gulliver.

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