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Racing Insights, 12th February 2021

Friday's feature of the day is the Horses for Courses report , whilst the free racecards will cover the following...

  • 7.15 Chelmsford
  • 7.30 Dundalk
  • 7.45 Chelmsford

Once again, it's an all-weather only day, as the cold spell continues to wreak havoc with the racing programme, so let's take a look at the two qualifiers from my Horses for Courses settings of 30% win and 50% place off at least 10 course handicap runs...

We start with Luscifer in the 3.45 Southwell...

Luscifer has finished 11265 in his last five runs, all here at Southwell. He won back to back Class 6 handicaps over a mile off marks of 51 and 57 in November/December of last year. He was then raised to a mark of 62, resulting in a near-two length defeat in another C6, 1m hcp on 20th December.

He struggled in January though, firstly beaten by 22.5 lengths over a mile at Class 4 off 63 and then beaten by just over 10 lengths at Class 5 over this 7f course and distance last time out, also off 63. He now drops back to Class 6, but is only eased 1lb and is still some 5lbs higher than that last win.

With regards to his suitability for today's contest, Instant Expert tells us that he has achieved the following...

He's 0/4 on Std-Slow going, as all his best A/W form on been on Standard, where he is 4 from 16 (25%), he has done well in this grade and at this track, of course. He's more of a 1m horse in my opinion, where he has 2 wins and 2 places from 7 efforts,  What the above doesn't tell you is that he is 3 from 9 after 16-30 days rest and 1 from 3 over course and distance.

He's drawn in stall 5, which is neither here nor there, based on eight recent contests...

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...and here's how that draw translates into running styles...

When we overlay Luscifer's last four runs, it's not really a favourable picture

...but if he was to ditch the hold-up tactics employed in the two recent heavy defeats and revert back to his previous prominent running style, I think that would suit him better.

*

And now to Nonios in the 6.45 Chelmsford...

Nonios was a winner over 1m on a Class 3 at Lingfield and was subsequently a decent third over 1m0.5f at Wolverhampton stepped up to Class 2, but has lost his way of late, finishing 770006 in six runs since. He was beaten by nearly nine lengths her at Chelmsford over a mile at Class 3 and now drops in class, weight (down 5lbs). He's stepping back up to what I think is his best trip and he's now some 8lbs lower than his last winning mark. Some of these details are replicated in Instant Expert below...

...and for a horse likely to be a fairly long price, those numbers are good. And if he's a decent price, then an E/W bet might come into play. It's worth adding to the above stats that he has made the frame in exactly half of his 22 runs on Polytrack, winning six times and he has 4 wins and 3 places from a dozen runs over course and distance.

With the E/W bet a current possibility, here's his numbers from the place element of Instant Expert...

...and they make excellent reading. He's not got the best of draws out in box 8, but stalls 5 to 7 get the fair share of winners, so he's not entirely out of it and I'm always wary of one stall having freakishly low returns compared with all the others...

Being drawn high, we ideally need Nonios to run prominently or in mid-division. Trying to lead or being held-up will harm his chances according to the pace/draw heatmap...

Sadly, Nonios has been held up in each of his last four runs documented by our pace tab. In fact, that's pretty much how he always runs, so there's not much scope/hope for change here, but it's tough to win from being held up off a high draw here....

...and this is backed up by the graphic above, showing the extent to which hold-up horses have struggled.

Summary

Two horses with good course records, but I don't see either of them winning to be honest.

Luscifer has finished 6th of 8 and 5th of 6 in his last two runs and if he's any better than 6th of 7 here, he'll have exceeded my expectations. He's out of sorts right now, as is his yard (1 from 41 in the last fortnight), he's too high in the weights for me, he probably needs quicker ground and he's better off over a mile. Other than all that, he's fine.

Currently priced as 9/1 sixth favourite of seven, the bookies probably have it right and Luscifer is to be avoided. Palazzo probably wins here, but at 5/1 Iva Reflection is interesting.

As for Nonios, there's no doubting his place credentials, but he's not winning this race in my eyes : I quite like Baystom Hill & My Target at 5/1 and 7/1 respectively here, but I disagree with the 18/1 offered about Nonios by Bet365. I've got in equal fourth on my own notes and wouldn't have to perform much better than I'm anticipating for him to grab a place. It's a bit of a punt, but at 18/1, I think the potential reward justifies the risk for a small E/W flutter.

 

Racing Insights, 7th December 2020

We were right not to get involved with Saturday's two highlighted runners, as both faded out of contention late on. Both had started well, racing prominently but both ran out of steam in the closing stages, getting beat by around four lengths in each case.

Monday heralds the start of the new week and "feature of the day"is access to the pace tab for all races, whilst the full free racecards are available for the following...

  • 12.45 Musselburgh
  • 1.00 Plumpton
  • 2.05 Plumpton
  • 5.25 Chelmsford

And it's the last of those four that I'm going to focus upon today, the 5.25 Chelmsford : a 10-runner, Class 6, A/W handicap fpr 3yo+ over 1m6f on Polytrack worth £3,040...

Mizen Master won two starts ago at Wolverhampton before going down by just over two lengths at the same venue having been raised 2lbs for the win. He's back down by a pound for this run today. he'll be partnered by Luke Morris who hasn't been on the best of form lately, but did break a long losing run on Saturday. Fingers crossed for him that it's the start of an upturn.

Archippos' recent form shows a couple of runner-up finishes, but the reality is that he hasn't won any of his last 25 outings in a run stretching back to March 2018 and although his yard have a decent record at this track, they too are woefully out of form with just 1 winner from 55 over the last four months. I'll pass on this one immediately.

Aldrich Bay ran well on handicap debut last time out, finishing second of ten and well clear of the pack. It was a good effort after more than 15 months off the track and provided there are no ill effects, she should come on for the run. A 5lb weight for age allowance allied to a 5lb jockey claim means she's effectively well in at the weight and she'll be fancied to add to her yard recent good form both generally (5 from 18 in the last month) and at this track (3 wins and a second from the last four sent here).

Heron is a former C&D winner (20 months ago) but has disappointed since his last win back in May 2019, losing a dozen contests since. Showed some signs of a return to form last time out when fifth of 13 in another C6 handicap over C&D 39 days ago, where he was going well late on, but had been waited with a little too long.

Fulbeck Girl will be looking to step up to the winners' enclosure after going down by three quarters of a length over C&D here 25 days ago and then third (by a neck twice) over this trip at Wolverhampton a week ago. She's knocking on the door of a first win and she too will be aided by a 5lb weight for age allowance here. Jockey Jason Hart is riding well, winning four of his last ten races and has also won 10 of 35 at this track this calendar year, whilst trainer Ian Williams' horses are 28 from 146 (19.2% SR) here since 2015.

Cinzento was a Class 6 A/W handicap winner over 1m4f last time out, but that was 294 days ago at Kempton and we'll have to take his fitness on trust here. Prior to that, he was fourth of fourteen over course and distance here on his first start for trainer Roger Teal who has three winners and a place from his last eight runners and despite not coming here often, is 4 from 16 at Chelmsford over the last two years. We should also note that his partnership with jockey Jack Mitchell stands at 13 from 51 (25.5% SR) over that same period including 3 from 7 here.

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Fool To Cry won a 2m4.5f handicap hurdle two starts ago, but hasn't raced on the A/W for almost a year. She was second of twelve in a maiden at Wolverhampton on A/W debut back in August 2015, but has failed to make the frame in seven subsequent efforts and has been beaten by a collective 81 lengths in her last four A/W runs. She won't be carrying my money and she's out of my considerations here.

Dolphin Village's strike rate on the Flat is double his A/W ratio, but he did win here over course and distance four starts ago. Sadly he's unreliable and goes on long losing streaks. he hasn't been sent off shorter than 18/1 in any of his last ten outings and although the market does get things wrong, they're not consistently wide of the mark. He's getting crossed off my list here.

Murat Asset is lightly raced and makes just  sixth start today and will need to improve dramatically upon his handicap debut when he failed to see out 1m4f at Wolverhampton, so I'm not sure why he's stepping up in trip here. Hasn't looked like winning any of his previous five starts, hasn't made the frame either at at expected odds of 25/1 and bigger, I'm not interested.

And finally, Star of St Louis, who might appeal to the Chinese (they consider 7 to be a lucky number) but a recent form line of 7777 won't endear him to many punters, I'd have thought. A closer look at him shows he's had plenty of opportunities to go out and prove himself, but no wins from nineteen and just two third place finishes doesn't scream "back me", does it? If it's screaming that, I'm not hearing it and I'm not backing him.

So, after a fairly brutal scything, I've reduced the 10runner field to a more waorkable five, which includes the geegeez speed ratings top three. Let's see how their past efforts measure up against today's conditions on the Instant Expert tab...

...dreadfully, I'd say! A little bit of amber and Heron's win off a mark of 60 are the highlights here. Hopefully the place tab will provide me with some more encouragement...

Mizen Master and Fulbeck Girl's A/W records are appealing as are the latter's numbers (albeit from small samples) over both course and distance. Heron's numbers look good, but we should remember that those course and distance figures aren't all that recent (Aug '19 for track & May '19 for distance), but plenty of amber around. Cinzento is better than the red line would suggest.

Other than Aldrich Bay drawn in stall 9, out other four occupy the low draws 1 to 4. To see if that would have any bearing on the outcome we need to check the Draw & Pace tabs and the draw would suggest that the low draw is more beneficial than the high draw...

The blue line drops off dramatically just off after the mid-draw point, which isn't great news for Aldrich Bay, whilst the pace tab...

...tells us that in similar contests, hold-up horses have won 13 of 31 races (41.9%) which would normally be good news for the likes of Heron and Aldrich Bay, BUT... the pace prediction is of a possible falsely run contest and why's that, you might ask? Well, there are no obvious front runners or even prominent runners amongst our five, so who knows what will happen.

They could well stay closely grouped and it develop into a short distance sprint OR one of my five discards might set the pace for them. I'll tackle the latter situation by showing you the full pace/draw heatmap for all ten runners...

...which I think muddies the waters further.

At this point, I need to get myself to a shortlist of three, so Aldrich Bay's draw stats and the possbility of after effects from last time count her out here and I'll also remove Heron, purely for his unpredictability/unreliability. Both could very well win here, but I wouldn't be happy backing them today.

Summary

I'm happy with my three Fulbeck Girl, Mizen Master and Cinzento and I'd probably have them in that order. I'm happy that the winner should come from those three, but I'm unhappy when I look at the market to see that my three are numbers 1,2 and 4 in the market (Aldrich is 3rd fav).

I'm unhappy, because I've not found something the market isn't aware of, so there might be no angle/value for us here. I'm not sure how I'll play this one now after seeing the odds, but I'm sticking with those three to include the winner.

 

 

Racing Insights, 26th November 2020

Well, today's race went very well for us as we highlighted a 4/1 winner sent off at 13/8 and got the 6 runners in the right order including a near 13/1 trifecta for those brave enough to play the exotics.

Hopefully, we can find something of note for Thursday, where "free feature of the day" is the Instant Expert tab on all races, not just the free ones which are...

  • 12.25 Thurles
  • 12.50 Southwell
  • 1.03 Lingfield
  • 5.00 Chelmsford

...and in the spirit of trying to tackle competitive-looking contests, we'll try to unravel the last of that quartet : the 5.00 Chelmsford : a 7 runner, Class 2, A/W handicap for 3yo+ over 7f on Polytrack worth a more than useful £11,828 to the winner and as ever, we'll start with the racecard itself, which I've organised purely on alphabetical order...

I'll work through the card from left to right making notes on the pros and cons of each column, something like...

FORM
Positive : Ghalyoon, Firmament & Lincoln Park
Negative : Intuitive & Mohareb

CLASS
Positive : N/A, no class droppers
Negative : Intuitive & Mohareb are both up 1 class after finishing unplaced LTO, whilst Lincoln Park is up two grades.

COURSE/DISTANCE
Three horses (Firmament, Intuitive & Mohareb) have won at this course and over this distance, but NOT over course and distance, whilst both Ghalyoon & Lincoln Park have won over today's 7f trip.

TRAINER FORM
Team Crisford (Intuitive) have a 42% strike rate over the last month and are 25 from 133 (18.8% SR) over the last five years here at Chelmsford, but have gone more than a year and 18 attempts since their last success. John Ryan (Pistoletto) is 0 from 24 over the last five weeks and has a poor record here at Chelmsford with just 8 winners from 118 (6.8% SR) since the start of 2017

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JOCKEY FORM
Positive : James Doyle (Firmament) & William Buick (Huraiz) are in good form, whilst both have decent records at this venue, as do Jim Crowley (Ghalyyon) and Richard Kingscote (Lincoln Park)
Negative : Ali Rawlinson (Mohareb) has struggled for winners of late, whilst Daragh Keenan (Pistoletto) has just one win from his last 41 rides on this track.

GEEGEEZ RATINGS
Positive : Firmament & Intuitive
Negative : Huraiz & Pistoletto

From the above, I don't fancy Pistoletto at all, so he's the first for the chop ahead of us visiting the Instant Expert tab...

 

...where all bar Firmament have plenty of green on the place setting. In his defence, his amber numbers show real consistency across the board, particualrly from so many runs at this grade.

The win side of Instant Expert doesn't really give us too many positive pointers, but here it is anyway...

At Chelmsford, the draw, the pace make-up of the race and they way the two mix can easily make or break a horse's chances and in such contests as this one, I'd say you want to be drawn in stalls 1 to 5, as demonstrated below...

...whilst the pace/draw heatmap looks like this...

and when we overlay with the running styles of our competitors here...

...it looks good for Lincoln Park, who might well try to make all from what has been an unlucky stall 3 with Firmament also looking well placed on the rail to maybe pick the leader off late on.

So, where does this leave us? Well, theoretically, we've still six runners in play, but I'm only really interested in three now. Mohareb is out of form and his jockey has a poor record here, Huraiz was last of nine off today's mark in a similar contest last time out and Intuitive's pair of duck eggs this season (10th of 10 and 11th of 11 at Meydan) don't fill me with confidence ahead of a first UK run in almost 13 months.

Now, we're down to the three I'm interested in : Firmament, Ghalyoon and Lincoln Park...

Firmament was only headed very late on last time out going down by just a nose in a big-field contest at Doncaster. That was another £12k Class 2 contest, but on soft ground. He hung badly right that day conceding plenty of ground, so it is hoped that cheek pieces will help here. Aside from the cross-track drift, he was every bit a winner and a similar effort here could well be enough, provided he doesn't let Lincoln Park get too far clear.

Ghalyoon is likely to go off as favourite, thanks to some eyecatching runs, a big price tag and plenty of winners in his family. Sadly, he does seem to tend to find at least one too good for him, possibly down to the hold-up tactics generally employed. On paper, he should be the best in the field, but normal tactics will mean he has lots of ground to make up late on and the fact that he has lost his three runs this season by a neck twice and by half a length says he doesn't get going quick enough. He has has gone up a pound each time he has run, so he's getting penalised for not winning!

Lincoln Park will probably try to get out and stay out and that's probably his best chance of winning here, as he has gone a long time between drinks. That said, he has just produced two really good efforts in horrible conditions at Haydock and Nottingham. He has been eased a pound in the official ratings and receives weight all round, carrying just 8 stone 8lbs. He fares well on our Speed ratings and could spring a surprise if holding on.

Summary

I expect Lincoln Park to attempt to win the race from the front, but I'd hope Firmament doesn't give him too much slack. LP has tended to fade late on over 7f and Firmament should catch him. Whether LP finishes second or third will depend on the tactics employed by Ghalyoon. If he is held back fr as long as he has been so far this season, he finishes third. If he sets off earlier, he overhauls Lincoln Park, but I don't think he'll beat Firmament.

So, it's Firmament for me for me at 4/1, whilst you can get 6's about Lincoln Park a rather skinny-looking 7/4 for Ghalyoon.

Racing Insights, 19th November 2020

I wasn't surprised to see Exploiteur land the spoils at Ffos Las earlier, but his task was made considerably easier by Sirop de Menthe falling 2 out when "giving it a right good go" as they say up here in Lancashire. SdM was running a big race as indeed I hoped he would before coming down.

On now to Thursday where the feature of the day is the informative Instant Expert, whilst our free racecards cover...

  • 12.10 Wincanton
  • 12.50 Thurles
  • 1.50 Newcastle
  • 2.20 Newcastle
  • 3.50 Newcastle

None of those races really float my boat, but a quick flick through Instant Expert alerted me to the 5.30 Chelmsford, a 10-runner, Class 2 A/W Handicap for 3yo+ over 6f worth £12,291 to the winner. My interest was aroused by the possibility of a short priced favourite making only his second appearance on the A/W and his first on Polytrack, despite having raced 16 times on the flat and I wondered if others might be better suited here.

It was the place section of Instant Expert that I looked at first...

...where all bar the likely favourite Aberama Gold and the debutant Lipsink have a least one block of green. Tropics has fared consistently well on the A/W , especially at this venue, whilst Merhoob is another regular placer on the A/W, at this grade and over this trip, whilst both of these runners are now rated 9lbs lower than their last win.

Speaking of wins, here's the win section of the same Instant Expert settings...

...where we have fewer stand-outs, but Tawny Port, Spirit of May and Nigel Nott instantly catch they eye, whilst Tropics' 7 placed finishes from 12 here at Chelmsford actually includes 5 wins.

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Pace and draw are often key in these contests, so that's where we'll go next. Draw is easier to show/explain, so we'll look at that first...

...and there doesn't appear to be any discernible draw bias at play for us here, so what about the pace of the race?

Well, none of them really seem aided or hindered by their own running styles/draw other than you'd preferably be on one of the first four listed., so that's not telling us much other than the leaders are likely to come from stalls 2-4. As yet, I've no hard and fast evidence to back or dismiss the likely favourite, nor am I yet in a position who might be best placed to land a blow at a decent price.

This means I need more information, so we now head to the main racecard itself in descending Speed Rating Order...

Firstly, we should ignore the lack of rating for Lipsink, who makes a UK debut and we shouldn't read too much in to the favourite's rating of 35. Aberama Gold's only previous run on the A/W was on tapeta and he was well beaten. Mind you, it was a Group 3 race and he was coming back off a seven-month absence.

Form-wise, Aberama, Poets Dance and Lipsink lead the way and we've five course and distance winners and one with a win at course and also at this trip. Nothing to write home about re: trainer and jockey form other than Robert Cowell sending out a few winners recently, so let's take brief look at each in turn...

Poets Dance has improved in each of her last three runs and although she's up in class here, her mark is only a pound higher than last month's runner-up finish whe beaten by just half a length despite not getting a clear run. Newscaster was three places and two lengths further back that day, but she has since won. If PD continues her improvement, she should be there or thereabouts today.

Rathbone is on a long losing run and aside from 2 wins from 13 at this trip, there's little else to suggest he'll go well here. He's still too high in the weights for my liking and his only hope has to be that he really takes to the Polytrack on debut.

Spirit of May looked good on Instant Expert, but since ending 2019 with back to back course and distance wins here, he has struggled this autumn finishing 6868. A return to Chelmsford where he is 3111 over course and distance might just be the spark he needs, having been eased 5lbs by the assessor. He'll need things to fall right for him, but if he tracks the favourite, that could work.

Nigel Nott was a course and distance winner here two starts ago, but didn't see out an extra furlong last time out. He's now back to a more favoured trip and down a pound in the ratings and I'd expect him to be in contention again here.

Tawny Port is a bit of an enigma really. He's proven on the A/W, at this track, in this grade, over this trip etc etc, but he's unreliable and I think he's a 5f (5.5f) horse personally. If you look at this record, he can run really well followed by a poor effort and then back to going well. It might sound stupid, but on his day he could win this with plenty in hand, but he could also come home last. Too many variables for me, so it's a no here.

Katheefa is probably going to come home last (if Tawny Port doesn't, of course) and has been poor in two runs since returning from a long break. 11th of 11 was followed by 11th of 12, both at Class 3 and beaten by a combined 20 lengths, it's hard to see how a step up to Class 2 would bring about a win, even if he is 7 from 36 over 6f on the A/W. The truth is that he's better suited to Fibresand.

Merhoob is another who looked half decent further up the page, but is struggling for form. Seven losses since winning in mid-January and he's still on too high a mark for me. He's 6 from 25 over this trip on the A/W and he's 2 from 9 here overall (2/7 over C&D). It wouldn't actually take too much improvement for him to get into the places, but others appeal more today.

Tropics is the old man of the race at 12 yrs old and has a great career record of 14 wins from 69 (20.3% SR), but the reality is that he's not the force he was. He has beaten in each of his lest eleven runs and is 2 from 26 over the last 29 months, but both wins did come here at Chelmsford where he is 5/12, but better known as a 5f sprinter. The sentimental side of me would love him to win here and then retire, but I can't see the former happening.

And finally we have the two who might be falsely placed on the Geegeez speed ratings, starting with likely favourite Aberama Gold. He's the form horse, the class horse and the horse to beat here in my opinion. He won a Class 2 handicap over 6f on soft ground at Doncaster in October and followed it up by finishing as runner-up just three quarters of a length behind the excellent Dakota Gold in a Listed contest 12 days ago (also 6f, soft, Doncaster). Untouchable on form by these rivals, the only doubt is the fact that he has only one A/W ruin to his name and nine on Polytrack.

Lastly we have French import, Lipsink. No UK form to analyse, but he was 2 from 3 over 6.5f on the A/W at Chantilly & Deauville and is an interesting addition to a yard best known for their sprinters.

Summary

Aberama Gold clearly sets the standard here, but I'm not keen on backing runners at 13/8 or so with no prior experience of conditions. I dare say he'll go on to win, but I can't put money on him at that kind of price. Of the remainder, I'm interested in Nigel Nott, Poets Dance and possibly Spirit of May. At current odds of 9/2, 13/2 ad 13/2, it's hardly conducive for E/W betting, so I'd have to leave that alone.

It's not going to be a big betting race for me, but if I was to have a couple of quid for interest, I might just side with Poets Dance at 13/2 and if you wanted a double digit E/W punt, you can get 16/1 about which version of Tawny Port shows up!

 

Racing Insights, 5th November 2020

Thursday's feature of the day is the Instant Expert tab on the racecards, often a very quick way of assessing a runner's suitability for the task ahead, whilst our free racecards cover the following half dozen contests...

  • 12.40 Sedgefield
  • 2.00 Newbury
  • 2.15 Sedgefield
  • 4.45 Chelmsford
  • 6.45 Chelmsford
  • 8.30 Kempton

...and I've decided to tackle the 6.45 Chelmsford : a 10-runner, Class 2, A/W handicap for 3yo+ over 1m2f on polytrack with the winner receiving £11,972, so let's take a look at the racecard in descending Geegeez Speed Rating Order...

...where we see lots of positive green icons, a few red ones and some good speed ratings at the top of the list. Visinari is a lightly raced 3 yr old with no A/W experience, hence no rating.

At this first elimination stage, I'm going to discount just Data Protection so far. He has looked out of sorts lately (a mark of 89 is possibly beyond him) and jockey Nicola Currie is also struggling for form and hasn't performed particularly well here recently either.

The next step is the feature of the day, the Instant Expert tab, which looks like this for our nine runners...

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As with most things here at Geegeez, the above is pretty self explanatory and based on the naked data above, I'm now going to exclude Home Before Dusk (too much red), What's The Story (no green at all) and Morisco/Visinari for a lack of data to work with.

I should at this point make it clear that I'm aware that I might have eradicated the winner already. I'm merely whittling down to see who stands at the end and then I'll decide if I want to back them.

That leaves the IE tab looking like this...

Next up is pace/draw and we have runners drawn in stalls 2,4,6,9 and 10...

...and the draw data tells us that you don't want a high draw in this type of contest, which isn't great news for Assimilation or The Gill Brothers in stalls 9 and 10, but the picture may change when we overlay our horses' running styles onto that draw data in our unique pace/draw heatmap...

...which very quickly leads me to just two of interest here : Red October in stall 2 and Solid Stone in stall 6, so let's dig a little deeper to see if either, both or none are worth backing, starting with Red October, whose form this year of 1010 reeks of inconsistency, but the two defeats were in big-field (18/19 runners) turf handicaps and his overall A/W record is excellent at 211. he is 2 from 2 here at Chelmsford including a win over course and distance the last time he visited (just over 10 weeks ago).

He has finished 3101 at today's trip, he's 2 from 4 going left handed and 2 from 4 in cheekpieces and has won once from two under today's jockey. He does go well in these smaller fields, but has no Class 2 win to date, that said his only previous run in this grade was on turf back in July. An interesting (to me, anyway) stat about him is that since the start of 2016, his trainer, Hugo Palmer is 11 from 40 (27.5% SR & A/E of 1.22) in Class 2-5 handicaps over 7 to 14 furlongs here at Chelmsford with horses sent off in the evens to 9/1 price range. Those winners have generated 17.5pts profit at Industry SP at an ROI of 43.8%.

And now to Solid Stone : an in-form ( 7 top 3 finish in his last 8 starts) 4 yr old gelding who was a winner here over C&D two starts ago and only found one too good for him when dropped back to a mile in the Balmoral handicap at Ascot last time out. That run at Ascot was arguably better than the C&D win the time before and he seems to be still on the up.

He is 4 from 14 (28.6%) to date and that includes 4 wins and 2 places from the six occasions he has been sent off as favourite (as I suspect he might be today), he has 2 wins and a place from 5 over this 1m2f trip, 2 wins and a place from 3 in Class 2 races worth less than £20k and he's 2 from 3 on the All-Weather. His only previous visit to Chelmsford was that C&D success here two starts ago.

He is trained by the evergreen Sir Michael Stoute, who has a fantastic record here since 2015 with his handicappers sent off at 6/1 or shorter winning 24 of 69 (34.8% SR, A/E 1.12) for 11.65pts (+16.9% ROI) profit at ISP and they include (10/21 (47.6%) over this 1m2f C&D, 8/22 (36.4%) at Class 2 and 3/6 (50%) in Class 2 contests at C&D.

Summary

Quite simply, I like them both. I fancy Solid Stone to go on and win, whilst Red October is more than capable of at least making the frame. A quick glance at the market tells me that they're available at 9/4 and 9/1 respectively. Personally I would have liked a little more juice at 5/2 and 10/1, so I suppose it's a case of whether you're OK with taking a 10% cut in expected prices or not.

Racing Insights, 24th October 2020

Galvin was a worthy favourite at Cheltenham on Friday, with my two initial possibles finishing second and third. At an SP of 10/1, the runner-up would have been a great pick, but as you know, I ended up swerving the race. Nothing risked, nothing lost.

And now to my final piece of the week, where the feature of the day is the generally excellent Trainer / Jockey combo report, whilst our free races of the day are....

  • 2.47 Galway
  • 3.15 Cheltenham
  • 3.50 Cheltenham
  • 3.57 Galway
  • 5.07 Galway
  • 7.15 Chelmsford

...and I've decided to base today's piece on the Trainer / Jockey, Course 5 year stats from the following report...

Here, my win & place strike criteria are set at 25% & 50% respectively with A/E & IV at 1.25 and 1.50. I've chosen to look at the Quinn/Hart/Chelmsford combo, purely because they're the highest on the strike rate list with more than one runner for Saturday and I'll hope to assess each of their chances in turn, starting with Indian Pursuit in 5.15 Chelmsford, which I've sorted in Geegeez Speed Rating order...

...which tells us that our interest here sits at the top of those ratings and unsurprisingly, both trainer and jockey have the C1 and C5 icons by their names, instantly highlighting their course success.

Next up is Instant Expert...

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...which is actually largely inconclusive/uninspiring, but Indian Pursuit does at least have some amber in a sea of red.

Here at Chelmsford over 5f, pace positioning seems to have more bearing on the result than the draw, but you still wouldn't want to be left behind and a quick look at the Pace/Draw heatmap suggests...

...runners in stalls 2,3, 6, 7 & 10 seem most likely to race prominently with Rocketeer in #2 looking like trying to make all as he always does and invariably gets caught, hence a formline of 988626, which could leave the door open for Indian Pursuit, provided Rocketeer isn't allowed to get too far ahead, of course.

As for Indian Pursuit himself, he was a very creditable 5th here a fortnight over six furlongs on his first all-weather run for seventeen months and now with the benefit of having had that run he drops down to 5f off the same mark as LTO.

He's a former course winner, all eight career wins have been a 5-6f at Class 6, five of which have seen him ridden by Jason Hart. He has six wins in 8-11 runner contests, six wins going left handed and four in a visor which is reapplied here.

In what looks a pretty average race, Indian Pursuit's consistency might well be enough here.

But what of stablemate Mr Wagyu's chances an hour later in the 6.15 Chelmsford? Well to start, it's back to the racecard in speed rating order, the Instant Expert and the pace/draw details, as follows...

...ninth of fourteen doesn't initially fill me with confidence, but one set of data should never make or break a bet for you, so let's move on to IE, shall we?

Once again, Mr Wagyu doesn't really scream "back me!" here, does he and there are at least four on that report who would look  better option, so what about the pace/draw, where over the 6f trip here at Chelmsford, you don't want to be drawn centrally...

Sadly, our boy is drawn right in the middle and if he goes off quickly with Rock Sound and My Kinda Day doing the same either side of him, there's a worry those two will overhaul him late on.

As for past performances, he has no previous run on Polytrack, so that's a concern although Messrs Quinn & Hart did team with a winning Polytrack debutant here a fortnight ago. He has, however, won eight times on the Flat, all over this 6f trip including 6 in a visor, 4 under Jason Hart, 4 at Class 4 or better, 4 off marks in the 70's and twice this year.

All of the above show he has ability and the potential to go on and upset the odds to win here, but I do have that nagging doubt about him needing a run on a non-Tapeta A/W surface (he's also 0 from 2 on the Tapeta, having finished 11th of 11th and 4th of 13).

Summary

Messrs Quinn and Hart team up with two runners here, one with clearly better chances than the other. I do like Indian Pursuit's chances here and I'd be happy to back him at 3/1, which is probably just about the right price, I'd not want to be taking much less that that.

Mr Wagyu on the other hand is a strange one, the racecard and associated data suggest he's a bit of a no hoper, but with the obvious caveat of being inexperienced on the A/W, his career stats suggest he could do better than expected. He's currently priced at 12/1 and if you could get that kind of price or bigger from a bookie paying four places, then you might just have a squeak with a small E/W punt, if he takes to the surface, especially as many of his rivals are equally out of form.

Racing Insights, 15th October 2020

Thursday's "free to all users" racecards are as follows...

  • 2.05 Curragh
  • 3.36 Carlisle
  • 5.35 Wincanton
  • 6.15 Southwell
  • 6.30 Chelmsford
  • 7.30 Chelmsford

...whilst free feature of the day is Instant Expert.

I'm going to focus on the latest of the free races for today's piece...

This is now a 9-runner contest where eight of them have won over today's 1m trip, six of them have won here at Chelmsford, four of them have won over course and distance, two of them are stepped up two classes and two others are moved up one grade.

Johan and Lord Neidin are the form horses with the former hailing from an in-form (30) yard. All of Pactolus, Home Before Dusk, Johan and Pinnata's yards have a good five-year record at this venue (C5), whilst of the jockeys, those on Assimilation and Lord Neidin look in best form (30 & 14 respectively) with both jockeys riding this track well (C1 & C5), as do the pilots of  Pactolus, Gallipoli and Auchterader, who heads the Speed ratings.

As today's free feature is Instant Expert, it would be rude not to have a look at it immediately after considering the Shortlist report which is often seen as "IE Light".

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Again Lord Neidin & Johan feature prominently, but the stand out here is Assimilation with a whole bank of green. Other highlights from the above table include War Glory's record at this track at 4 wins from 10, plus another 4 placed efforts for a place strike rate of 80%, whilst Pinnata has made the frame in 13 of 19 starts at this trip, winning six times.

Next up, we need to consider the draw, as in 9-runners contests here at Chelmsford, you ideally want to be drawn in the lowest third of the field, as this provides 43.6% of all the winners (24 of 55), so that's a tick in the box for Pactolus, Assimilation and Lord Neidin.

And then we need to see how running style is reflected in this type of race via the pace heatmap...

...which is actually more informative when you overlay it with the horse silks and the draw as follows...

...where Auchterarder looks easily best placed, despite coming from a wider draw than you'd initially think was ideal. Basically, you want to be drawn low and ridden just off the pace or held up completely, but from a middle draw, you've a good chance if you for it from the off. There's a distinct possibility that those drawn in 1,2 and 3 will shift towards prominent racing if Auchterarder looks like nicking a soft lead and if any of the three do follow him, it should enhance their chances.

And that's pretty much how I'd normally mentally whizz through a race to see if one or two names keep cropping up. The process is done far quicker than it has taken me to put it together visually and it's done far quicker than the time taken to read it, but it is a really quick and often very effective way of scanning for possible bets.

If you do this and nothing stands out, leave it and move on. If something does stand out, jot the name down on a daily shortlist of possibles and then move on.

Summary

Racecard positives : Assimilation, Aucterarder, Johan, Lord Neidin

Speed Rating Positives : Auchterarder, Home Before Dusk, Lord Neidin

Shortlist/Instant Expert positives : Assimilation, Johan, Lord Neidin

Draw Positives : Assimilation, Lord Neidin, Pactolus

Pace/Draw Positives : Assimilation, Aucterarder, Lord Neidin, Pactolus

Lord Neidin ticks all five boxes above with Asssimilation only falling down is the speed ratings, whilst Auchterarder would make up my potential three to consider.

It's then only at this point do I even take a first look at the market, as it's too easy to let the odds make your decisions for you. And I expected Lord Neidin to be the favourite, but not at 6/4. I expect he'll go on to win, but there's no value in him at 6/4 for my own risk/reward criteria, so I'd not be getting my money out there.

If I was pushed to place a bet, then Assimilation would be a relatively attractive E/W or place only proposition. If you agree with the way I process the card and you also think Lord Neidin wins, then the bet on Assimilation should be a place only, as not to waste the win side of the stake.

 

Racing Insights, 8th October 2020

We looked at two runners at Sedgefield on Wednesday and we'd hoped Snookered would go well if his jumping was decent. Sadly we never really found out how good/bad he was as he was never in the race. The leader and subsequent winner was allowed to dictate and got home comfortably/unchallenged. As for Snookered's jumping, it was largely decent, but a couple of mistakes late on put paid to any hope of getting near the winner.

I wasn't too bullish about Crackdeloust later on the card and he finished 6th of 11 starters (8 finished) at 12/1.

Next up is...

Thursday 8th October

Feature of the Day is the Instant Expert option for all races, which is free on Thursdays to all registered subscribers. Register here if you need to.

And the free races of the day are as follows...

4.40 Southwell
4.45 Thurles
5.00 Exeter
6.15 Southwell
7.00 Chelmsford
8.30 Chelmsford

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And I think we'll take a look at the 7.00 Chelmsford : a 12-runner, Class 3, A/W handicap for 3yo+ over 5f on the Polytrack, worth £7,439 to the winner which looks very competitive, but let's see if we can find a way in, starting with the racecard...

...which tells us Grandfather Tom's yard is in good nick and he's top of our ratings, whilst Daschas, Jack The Truth and Top Breeze hail from yards with good records at this venue. Jockey-wise, Firepower and Amomentofmadness are ridden by in-form jocks with good course records and the riders on Benny And The Jets and Daschas have also fared well here.

Amomentofmadness and Firepower are the only class droppers here today, whilst seven of their rivals (Nos 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11 & 12) are all stepping up a grade or even two in Moonraker's case.

Feature of the Day is the Instant Expert option, so I've taken a snippet of the Best of Instant Expert report, showing some of the runners from this race...

and here's how it translates to the Instant Expert tab on the card...

...where Lancelot du Lac is a standout. Overall we have six with 30%+ strike rates on the A/W, although ideally you want more than 1 win as proof, whilst Jack the Truth clearly likes coming here and with 3 wins and a place from 7 visits here, he shares an identical course record with Lancelot du Lac with both of them featuring on the Horses for Courses report.

Now I just want to set the data aside for a moment and share where my mind was at before I started cutting bits from the site. An initial glance at the racecard allied with what I've already seen or knew about these runners, I had four in mind (alphabetically Grandfather Tom, Jack The Truth, Lancelot du Lac & Top Breeze). Nothing I've quoted above has put me off any of them and I still think the winner will come from that quartet, so let's have a look at each...

Grandfather Tom won at Yarmouth over this trip last time out, but this is tougher at 5lbs and one class higher. He has won seven times at this trip and 3 times on the A/W, but has no A/W win in over two and a half years and has never scored beyond Class 4. A positive note is that jockey Hollie Doyle rides for the first time and she's 4 from 10 on Robert Cowell's runners over the last year and as a confirmed front runner heading our ratings has to be in the mix from the inside draw.

Jack The Truth comes here seeking a hat-trick of course and distance wins, but has to carry a 5lb penalty for those two wins, the latest of which was a week ago where he looked like 5lbs might not anchor him. His record on the A/W and at sprint trips is very good but he does tend to fare better with a longer rest than that and this might just come too quickly for him after his best ever effort.

Lancelot Du Lac is clearly not the horse he used to be when competing in Group 1 contests and it's some 17 races and almost two and a half years since he last won, but this very likeable 10 yr old ran well a fortnight ago at Kempton considering he'd been off the track for eight months. He has two wins and a runner-up finish from three efforts over this track and trip, he's drawn right next to Grandfather Tom and if encouraged to get on with it could easily make the frame off his lowest mark (OR) in over seven years.

Top Breeze has been a bit up and down since winning a Class 2 handicap over this trip at Lingfield just before lockdown and struggled for consistency finishing 67492. That said, he's an A/W runner in my eyes and four of those five defeats were on turf. He did, however, go well on the concrete at Bath last time out finishing second, 0.75 lengths behind a horse winning back to back contests. Jockey Tyler Heard takes 7lbs off today, effectively putting this one on his lowest ever mark.

Summary

I think the winner of this this competitive handicap comes from Grandfather Tom, Jack The Truth, Lancelot du Lac & Top Breeze and I can find pros and cons about all four without selecting or disregarding any in particular. It's at this point that I take a look at the market and it seems that others agree with me, as I've named four of the top five in the market. The only minor surprise is how relatively short the old boy Lancelot du Lac is.

A watching brief for me, but hopefully there's something of value above.

 

Racing Insights, 1st October 2020

Yesterday's piece focused around trainer Saeed bin Suroor's record at Nottingham which showed a five year place strike rate of almost 60% with half of his runners going on to win and we didn't have to wait long for the advice to bear fruit as Late Morning made the frame (only beaten by a length) at 10/1 in the 1.45 race.

Global Hero was fifth (a place ahead of the SotD pick) and just a length out of the money in the warm Class 3 handicap, whilst in the last, Arabian Warrior was very popular with the punters, being backed down into 7/4 favouritism, before drifting out to an SP of 5/2. He was quite well beaten in the end, so the money was spot on, sadly.

And that's the story from Wednesday, now we move onto...

Thursday 1st October

Feature of the Day is Instant Expert for all races, which is free to all registered subscribers. Register here if you need to.

Thursday's free Races of the Day are

Your first 30 days for just £1

12:50:00 Salisbury
13:00:00 Clonmel
14:55:00 Warwick
17:10:00 Fairyhouse
18:30:00 Chelmsford

Of the five free races, only the latter holds any appeal from an Instant Expert point of view and what I want to look for is runners with plenty of green. So I start with the place tab and I'm looking for at least two greens from my four preferred place criteria, namely Going / Class / Course / Distance...

This helps me reduce a 12-runner contest down to 8 and then if we click the win tab, we then drop to five runners to examine more closely...

I've sorted them into draw order, as my next port of call would be the pace/draw tab, with both being very important in a 5f dash on the Chelmsford track, so we go to the Pace/Draw heat map, which looks a little (well, a lot actually) like this...

The sharper eyed amongst you will notice that I'm not even looking at prices, as I find the odds can be an unreliable influence in the decision making process. How many times have we swerved a horse, because the market didn't fancy it or how often have we been sucked into a short priced runner because "surely everyone can't be wrong" ?

So, without looking at odds, but using a logical process of elimination, I want to look at two horses now : He's A Laddie and Drakefell.

He's A Laddie hasn't been seen for almost 11 months, but this 3 yr old gelding does have 2 wins and a place from 4 A/W runs and was only beaten by half a length as a runner-up at class, track and trip under today's jockey on handicap debut whilst without going all SotD on you, trainer Archie Watson has excellent numbers with horses coming off a break, has good numbers with Hollie Doyle in the saddle and has more than his fair share of winners over the minimum trip.

As for Drakefell, he was a runner-up here over course and distance in a higher grade when last seen three weeks ago behind a wily old campaigner (Watchable) dropping down in both class and weight, so he's in good nick and is familiar with the task ahead of him. If allowed an easy early lead he could be difficult to dislodge.

Summary

Do I think either of my two featured runners will win?

Probably not, but you could make a case of backing either or both of them on an each way basis. I'd want high single-digit odds about Drakefell and double-digits for He's A Laddie, as I'm concerned that the two may take each other on up front and both get beaten by a finisher, whilst the latter's layoff is still a factor, despite his handler's obvious ability at getting one ready for a run.

It's also not one for those of a nervous disposition and you'd need to be quick, but there is always the potential of a back to lay here too. Not my chosen cup of tea, but it doesn't suit us all liking the same thing, does it?

 

Stat of the Day, 17th June 2020

Tuesday's pick was...

4.00 Chelmsford : Seneca Chief @ 11/4 BOG (2.34/1 after 15p Rule 4) WON at 6/4 (Tracked leader, pushed into lead over 1f out, pulled clear final furlong to win by three and a half lengths)

Wednesday's pick runs in the...

6.50 Chelmsford :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Currently, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.30am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.

Who?

Huraiz @ 4/1 BOG

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...in a 6-runner, Class 3, A/W handicap for 3yo over 7f on Polytrack worth £6,728 to the winner...

Why?...

Well, as usual, the racecard should be your starting point...

...and we can instantly see a 3yr old horse dropping in class for his second run in a handicap and trained by someone with a good record at this venue. He's priced at odds we can get some reasonable value from, is the top rated (OR) runner in the race and also is top of our SR ratings.

Starting with that green C5 icon denoting that Mark Johnston has a good record here at Chelmsford. This is, of course, true, but for terms of relevance today, this is what's interesting about this runner...

An excellent recent course and distance record with horses deemed to have at least a chance by the market, and of those 50 runners...

  • 12/29 (41.4%) for 5.77pts (+19.9%) in races worth £4k to £8k
  • 10/22 (45.5%) for 24.13pts (+109.7%) in fields of 5-8 runners
  • 6/19 (31.6%) for 5.96pts (+31.4%) were unplaced last time out
  • and 4/10 (40%) with Franny Norton in the saddle...

...whilst in 5-8 runner contests worth less than £8k, they are 7 from 14 (50% SR) for 7.69pts (+54.9% ROI).

And now onto that HC2  icon denoting a second run in a handicap and in particular this Mark Johnston angle...


...and those 51 runners include the following ten profitable angles...

  • 11/35 (31.4%) for 19.78pts (+56.5%) from male runners
  • 9/29 (31%) for 12.69pts (+43.8%) over 6 to 8 furlongs
  • 8/30 (26.7%) for 14.07pts (+46.9%) were unplaced last time out
  • 8/22 (36.4%) for 10.86pts (+49.4%) on Polytrack
  • 7/17 (41.2%) for 17.01pts (+100.1%) in races worth £4k to £8k
  • 7/15 (46.7%) for 34.3pts (+228.7%) in fields of 5-6 runners
  • 6/19 (31.6%) for 19.9pts (+104.7%) after a break of just 11-20 days
  • 5/25 (20%) for 13.3pts (+53.2%) in 3 yo races
  • 4/14 (28.6%) for 15.17pts (+108.3%) for jockey Franny Norton
  • and 3/6 (50%) for 6.27pts (+104.5%) here at Chelmsford

...steering us towards...a 1pt win bet on Huraiz @ 4/1 BOG as was offered by Bet365, Coral & Ladbrokes amongst others at 8.15am Wednesday, but as always please check your BOG status. To see what your preferred bookie is quoting...

...click here for the betting on the 6.50 Chelmsford

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!

REMINDER: THERE IS NO STAT OF THE DAY ON SUNDAYS

Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!

Stat of the Day, 16th June 2020

Monday's pick was...

3.25 Pontefract : My Girl Maggie @ 11/4 BOG 2nd at 5/4 (Chased leader, led 2f out, ridden inside final furlong, headed close home and beaten by a neck)

Tuesday's pick runs in the...

4.00 Chelmsford :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Currently, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.30am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.

Who?

Seneca Chief @ 11/4 BOG

...in a 9-runner, Class 6, A/W handicap for 4yo+ over 5f on Polytrack worth £2,782 to the winner...

Your first 30 days for just £1

Why?...

With two wins (inc a C&D here) and a runner-up finish from his last four starts on the all-weather, this 6yr old gelding clearly brings the best form to the table today, compared to his rivals. He won well at Wolverhampton at this class/trip four days ago despite coming off a four-month break and should hopefully improve for having had the run.

Much of the above is quite clear on the racecard entry...

...and a quick look at his record on the all-weather tells us that he is...

  • 2 from 6 over 5f
  • 2 from 5 at Class 6
  • 2 from 4 in handicaps
  • 2 from 4 in a hood
  • 2 from 4 in May/June
  • 2 from 3 in 9-runner contests
  • 1 from 2 here at Chelmsford
  • and 1 from 2 over course and distance

You'll also notice a blue number 1 on that racecard snippet, denoting that this horse is flagged up on my query tool reports and clicking that "1" shows...

...which tells me that this horse is trained by one of the trainers I look out for in 5f sprints on the A/W. And indeed, that's the case today, as trainer Daniel Kubler's record increases dramatically in such races, transforming an overall record of...

...to the following in 5f A/W contests...

These 40 runners include the following of note/relevance today...

  • 11/32 (34.4%) for 72.04pts (+225.1%) in handicaps
  • 8/21 (38.1%) for 65.37pts (+311.3%) from male runners
  • 7/22 (31.8%) for 38.36pts (+174.4%) since the start of 2018
  • 7/21 (33.3%) for 49pts (+233.4%) in races worth less than £4k
  • 7/20 (35%) for 60.44pts (+302.2%) in fields of 9/10 runners
  • 7/14 (50%) for 30.37pts (+216.9%) within 15 days of their last run
  • 6/19 (31.6%) for 24.97pts (+131.4%) on Polytrack
  • 5/13 (38.5%) for 48.93pts (+376.4%) at Class 6
  • 5/9 (55.6%) for 12.79pts (+142.1%) from those placed 1st or 2nd LTO
  • and 3 from 5 (60%) for 45.79pts (+915.8%) in May/June

And with the above suggesting that he does well in handicaps, does well with quick returning horses and does well with those who had a good race last time out, you'll probably not be too surprised to see...


With that excellent 12/20 record including of interest today...

  • 10/15 (66.6%) for 29.05pts (+193.7%) in races worth less than £4k
  • 8/14 (57.1%) for 23.91pts (+170.8%) on the A/W
  • 8/13 (61.5%) for 28.61pts (+220.1%) since the start of 2016
  • 7/11 (63.6%) for 20.24pts (+184%) at Class 6
  • 4/10 (40%) for 3.89pts (+38.9%) from LTO winners
  • 4/6 (66.6%) for 21.29pts (+354.9%) on Polytrack
  • 4/4 (100%) for 18.8pts (+470%) within 5 days of their last run
  • and 3 from 4 (75%) for 11.47pts (+286.8%) over 5 furlongs...

...giving us...a 1pt win bet on Seneca Chief @ 11/4 BOG as was widely available at 8.05am Tuesday (3/1 available at 9.00am if you're not already on), but as always please check your BOG status. To see what your preferred bookie is quoting...

...click here for the betting on the 4.00 Chelmsford

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!

REMINDER: THERE IS NO STAT OF THE DAY ON SUNDAYS

Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!

Stat of the Day, 8th June 2020

Saturday's pick was...

4.30 Newcastle : Astrozone @ 9/1 BOG WON at 9/2 (Made all, ridden and hung left entering final furlong, stayed on to win by a length and a quarter)

Monday's pick runs in the...

1.00 Chelmsford :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Currently, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.30am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.

Who?

Kath's Lustre @ 4/1 BOG

Your first 30 days for just £1

...in an 11-runner, Class 6, A/W handicap for 4yo+ over 6f on polytrack worth £2,782 to the winner...

Why?...

Last week, Matt did a series of videos around the racecards and the report suite and today, I'm going to use that data to suggest a runner that should give us a run for our money, so let's just open the whole card first...

As you can see, that aside from jockey PJ McDonald's C5 icon, the only positive form for trainers and jockey comes for our runner.

The blue zeroes say that none of the field appear in any of my saved query tool angles, but two horses (ours and A Place to Dream) have a Red Report Angles number and with our pick featuring 7 times on my report angles, that's my way in for today, as opening that box up shows the following...

So, we see that the horse is 3 from 7 at this track : she's actually 2 from 4 over course and distance. We'll ignore trainer 30-day form, as we've only a week of results to rely upon, but it's clear that Richard Hughes had a decent week last week and he does well with horses coming back from a break.

Jockey Finley Marsh rides the course well and has a good record here when riding for Mr Hughes. Other than the horses for courses angles which doesn't carry the relevant figures, the A/E is over 1.4 for all my angles and the IV is 2.1 and above, these are excellent stats.

As for the race itself, this type of contest lends itself to horses drawn low that "like to get out" and the two horses that look most likely to lead are ours in stall 1 and a runner in stall 4. This is best illustrated by the Geegeez pace/draw heat map for the contest as follows...

So, all of the above considered, I think we're in a pretty strong position today. What I haven't touched upon is that although our mare was only fourth last time out, that was a Class 4 contest and she drops two classes to run here today She was bumped at the start of the contest and lost ground and as it was her fifth effort in less than seven weeks, it might also have been one race too many at the time and this graphic might also be of interest here...

More pictures than words today, but still plenty of numbers to consider...

...as I recommend...a 1pt win bet on Kath's Lustre @ 4/1 BOG as was offered by BetVictor and Hills at 8.05am Monday, but as always please check your BOG status. To see what your preferred bookie is quoting...

...click here for the betting on the 1.00 Chelmsford

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!

REMINDER: THERE IS NO STAT OF THE DAY ON SUNDAYS

Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!

Stat of the Day, 8th June 2020

Saturday's pick was...

4.30 Newcastle : Astrozone @ 9/1 BOG WON at 9/2 (Made all, ridden and hung left entering final furlong, stayed on to win by a length and a quarter)

Monday's pick runs in the...

1.00 Chelmsford :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Currently, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.30am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.

Who?

Kath's Lustre @ 4/1 BOG

Your first 30 days for just £1

...in an 11-runner, Class 6, A/W handicap for 4yo+ over 6f on polytrack worth £2,782 to the winner...

Why?...

Last week, Matt did a series of videos around the racecards and the report suite and today, I'm going to use that data to suggest a runner that should give us a run for our money, so let's just open the whole card first...

As you can see, that aside from jockey PJ McDonald's C5 icon, the only positive form for trainers and jockey comes for our runner.

The blue zeroes say that none of the field appear in any of my saved query tool angles, but two horses (ours and A Place to Dream) have a Red Report Angles number and with our pick featuring 7 times on my report angles, that's my way in for today, as opening that box up shows the following...

So, we see that the horse is 3 from 7 at this track : she's actually 2 from 4 over course and distance. We'll ignore trainer 30-day form, as we've only a week of results to rely upon, but it's clear that Richard Hughes had a decent week last week and he does well with horses coming back from a break.

Jockey Finley Marsh rides the course well and has a good record here when riding for Mr Hughes. Other than the horses for courses angles which doesn't carry the relevant figures, the A/E is over 1.4 for all my angles and the IV is 2.1 and above, these are excellent stats.

As for the race itself, this type of contest lends itself to horses drawn low that "like to get out" and the two horses that look most likely to lead are ours in stall 1 and a runner in stall 4. This is best illustrated by the Geegeez pace/draw heat map for the contest as follows...

So, all of the above considered, I think we're in a pretty strong position today. What I haven't touched upon is that although our mare was only fourth last time out, that was a Class 4 contest and she drops two classes to run here today She was bumped at the start of the contest and lost ground and as it was her fifth effort in less than seven weeks, it might also have been one race too many at the time and this graphic might also be of interest here...

More pictures than words today, but still plenty of numbers to consider...

...as I recommend...a 1pt win bet on Kath's Lustre @ 4/1 BOG as was offered by BetVictor and Hills at 8.05am Monday, but as always please check your BOG status. To see what your preferred bookie is quoting...

...click here for the betting on the 1.00 Chelmsford

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!

REMINDER: THERE IS NO STAT OF THE DAY ON SUNDAYS

Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!

Stat of the Day, 6th March 2020

Thursday's pick was...

4.45 Wincanton : Le Boizelo @ 4/1 BOG WON at 3/1 (Soon towards rear, behind 5th, good headway on outside chasing leaders 13th, chance 3 out, went 2nd before next where left well clear, eventually winning by 12 lengths

Friday's pick runs in the...

3.10 Chelmsford :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Generally, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.15am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.

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Who?

Krazy Paving @ 11/4 BOG

...in a 10-runner, Class 6, A/W Handicap for 4yo+ over 6f on polytrack worth £3,170 to the winner...

Why?...

Pretty much like yesterday, in that the racing on offer today isn't much to write home (or anywhere!) about, so I'm keeping it simple again with an in-form runner who should be suited by conditions.

Trainer Olly Murphy's runners have 3 wins and 3 places from just 7 outings on the A/W this year (last 7 weeks to be more precise) and some of that is down to this 8 yr old gelding, who himself has four wins from his last eight runs and comes here seeking a hat-trick after back to back wins over this grade, course and distance last month under today's jockey.

Those wins took his own A/W record to an impressive 7/34 (20.6% SR) for 22.1pts (+64.9% ROI) and this includes of relevance today...

  • 7/33 (21.2%) for 23.1pts (+69.9%) over 6f
  • 7/28 (25%) for 28.1pts (+100.3%) within 50 days of his last run
  • 7/18 (38.9%) for 38.1pts (+211.5%) during January to March
  • 6/31 (19.4%) for 22.3pts (+71.9%) in handicaps
  • 6/30 (20%) for 14.6pts (+48.8%) on Standard going
  • 6/28 (21.4%) for 16.6pts (+59.4%) going left handed
  • 6/25 (24%) for 22pts (+88%) in blinkers
  • 6/21 (28.6%) for 20.3pts (+96.7%) in fields of 8-11 runners
  • 6/20 (30%) for 21.3pts (+106.5%) on Polytrack
  • 4/14 (28.6%) for 23.2pts (+166%) for trainer Olly Murphy
  • 3/6 950%) for 10.3pts (+171.5%) here at Chelmsford
  • and 2/2 (100%) for 9pts (+450%) with Grace McEntee in the saddle (his last two runs)

And with him being drawn in stall 6 with a liking for racing prominently, the unique Geegeez pace/draw heat map also suggests we should get a good run for our money...

...all of which led me to...a 1pt win bet on Krazy Paving @ 11/4 BOG as was widely available at 8.05am Friday, but as always please check your BOG status. To see what your preferred bookie is quoting...

...click here for the betting on the 3.10 Chelmsford

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!

REMINDER: THERE IS NO STAT OF THE DAY ON SUNDAYS

Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!

Punting Angles: Chelmsford City Racecourse Part 1

After a short summer break recharging the batteries (in theory) it’s time to get back to work and begin preparations for the onset of winter, writes Jon Shenton. That doesn’t mean National Hunt yet, I’m afraid. Rather, we’re going to get stuck into the polytrack of Chelmsford, hopefully stealing a march by doing some early research before the real all-weather schedule starts to kick in.

Chelmsford Overview

‘Chelmo’ has been a fixture of the racing calendar from 2015, ignoring its brief prior incarnation as Great Leighs in 2008, and is widely known for offering impressive prize money. In 2018 £5.2m was shared across 63 fixtures according to the official website. That, as well as the track’s proximity to the Newmarket training centre, has arguably led to a better quality of racing on this artificial surface than any of the others.

The track constitution is illustrated in the course map below. It is just about a mile in circumference and the turns are relatively broad and sweeping in nature, sufficiently so to develop a turf track to sit inside the current AW oval. There are chutes for the seven- and eight-furlong starts, more of which later.

 

Chelmsford Top Trainers

Before checking out specific race distances, we’ll adopt our usual tactic of scanning the trainer ranks for potential profit.

Usually in this series of articles data relates from 2012 to present day. However, as Chelmsford has only been up and running for four years, there are obviously less data to go on in terms of overall duration. However, that is more than compensated for by the fact that in its brief existence there have been over 17,000 runners at the track. To put that into perspective there have been fewer than 7,000 runners at Epsom from 2009 to date. All data in this article covers racing up to Friday 30th August 2019.

 

Trainer Performance

Using geegeez.co.uk’s Query Tool, the below table shows all trainers with an A/E performance of greater than 1.00, concentrating only on runners sent off at 20/1 or shorter; and there needs to be a minimum of 100 runners for a trainer to qualify.

 

 

The top pair of Charlie Wallis and Derek Shaw are certainly of interest, perhaps David Simcock too.  Aside from that at this helicopter level, there isn’t too much to get excited about.

 

Charlie Wallis

Wallis’s stable is based in Essex so the relatively high volume of runners at his local track makes sense. It’s noteworthy that the yard has a real all-weather specialism, with over 70% of their total runners appearing on artificial surfaces. Being a relatively new team (training since 2015), this may change as the operation develops and progresses. Until then, runners from the team are well worth monitoring here.

Analysing Wallis animals by the distance at which they have competed results in the following splits:

 

Sprinting is obviously a key focus. A large proportion of runs, wins and returns have been sourced over the 5- and 6-furlong ranges. For angle building I’m only interested in these short distances although you could easily argue that the sample sizes over further are insignificant and, in time, they may show similar performance to the sprints. That might be the case but I’m happy to stick with the larger samples up to three-quarters of a mile.

Wallis over 5&6 at Chelmsford puts up some nice numbers without too many more filters. If I were being a perfectionist, it’s preferable that one of his has had a recent run. Using horseracebase.com to drill down further, the yard has never had a winner (on any course) when a horse has been off the track for more than 90 days and, ideally, a run in the last 45 days would be optimal for this angle.

 

SUGGESTION: Back Charlie Wallis runners at 20/1 or shorter over 5 and 6 furlongs at Chelmsford, [Optional, exclude horses that have not run in the last 45 days.]

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Derek Shaw

Moving on, Derek Shaw is another cornerstone of UK all-weather racing and, much like Wallis, a similar proportion (70% or thereabouts) of the yard’s activity is focused on the ‘sand’.

Checking the performance of his 248 runners by SP provides something on which to chew. The data below are for horses running at Chelmsford with an SP of 12/1 or bigger.

 

With only five winners from 81 bets and a strike rate of a smidgen over 6% in my view it’s marginal whether it would be worth fishing in that pool long term. However, taking all Shaw Chelmsford runners at 11/1 or shorter we build a potentially compelling picture when further analysing by race class:

 

It’s crystal clear that there is a division between performance in classes 2 and 3, and in classes 4-7. I think it’s not unreasonable to assert that the Shaw string wouldn’t contain the best raw materials in terms of racing talent with which to work. Perhaps some of the better class races are just a notch too high for the animals at Shaw’s disposal.

 

SUGGESTION: As always, simplicity is best and that’ll do for me, back Derek Shaw at Chelmsford in Class 4-7 races where the SP is 11/1 or shorter.

 

Without too much delving, those are two straightforward angles to file away in your QT Angles for use over the main all-weather season and beyond.

 

Ian Williams

One other worth bringing to your attention, though just bubbling under the 100-runner level (with 96), is Ian Williams. I don’t propose to go into detail here, but his numbers are worth keeping in mind (and perhaps researching yourself if you have the time).

 

Short Priced / Fancied Runners at Chelmsford

As you may have noted from previous columns, I’ve started to get a bit of a taste for angles focusing on shorter price runners. The table below simply illustrates the record of trainers where runners have an SP of 5/1 or shorter (50 runs minimum).

 

Obviously, there is some duplication with the trainer data presented earlier; Wallis and Shaw predictably are prominent (Williams too). Of the others, at first glance Messrs. Dwyer, Tate and Easterby appear to be potentially worthy of shortlisting when the cash is down. No doubt that some of these could stand alone as angles. However, before piling in it would be highly advisable to check consistency of performance. Based on samples of this relatively small magnitude it is perfectly plausible that the inclusion on this table is attributable to a golden year or two.

 

Specific Chelmsford Race Distance Analyses

One mile races

One advantage of the all-weather is that we can almost take one of the key variables in racing out of the equation. Changes in underfoot conditions are less prevalent, though weather variance can affect the surface more than the official going relates; so, coupled with the abundance of meetings on the AW tracks, there is nearly always a rich source of data regarding pace and draw to delve into.  Virtually all races at Chelmsford are on Standard, however, there are a handful of Standard/Slow contests included in the analysis from this point onwards.

Our first zoom into the profile of a specific trip is over the mile. If we refresh our memories from the course map, the start is located in a chute and there is approximately a furlong and a half of racing prior to the first left hand bend, where the runners join the main track. That does not give much time to secure a good early position, and being trapped deep on that first bend is a realistic danger.  In other words, there is a whiff of low draw bias about the set up here, especially in bigger fields.

I’ve compiled the draw and pace data and attempted to consolidate it in a single table. At first glance it may appear complicated, but hopefully with a small bit of explaining will be quite simple.

 

The table is basically a mash-up of draw bias (using the draw analyser IV3 numbers) and the pace profile (Pace Analyser with IV) consolidated on one table by number of runners.

A quick refresher of what IV3 means: it is simply the average Impact Value of a stall and its nearest neighbours. For instance, the IV3 of stall six would be the average IV of stalls 5, 6 and 7

The numbers are one thing, and the colours are another, but what does it mean and how can the insight be used to optimise our chances in finding potential winners?

Broadly speaking, the greenish tinged numbers represent good performance with the red ones conversely not so good (as Sven might say).

Without doubt, there are more green shades in the lower box numbers, indicating the expected low draw bias. This appears to hold true for all field sizes too: an inside draw is a positive when assessing the merits of an individual horse.

Moving across to the pace box to the right, the green numbers are concentrated around the leading and prominent runners.  At first glance it looks like an early-to-the-lead horse is the most desirable.  On closer inspection, however, we see that a prominent runner is arguably as valuable in terms of winning potential for most field sizes. The deep green relating to leaders in 13/14 runner races fields (data based on small samples of 24 and 20 respectively) gives a possible visual skew to the data.  What is in no doubt is that being up with the speed is highly desirable and, related, hold up horses generally have it to do.

Low daws are good, and early speed is good, but what happens when they are combined? That’s where our old friend the draw/pace heatmap (found at the bottom of the DRAW tab on flat race cards) can offer some valuable insight.

Evaluating races where the number of runners is between 7 and 10 inclusive over a mile (chosen as they are the most common field sizes so sample size is larger) and consolidating in the heat map (IV) we get the following composition.

Heat Map of mile races at Chelmsford with 7-10 runners inclusive using IV

 

The heat map paints a very clear picture:

  • Low draws are desirable irrespective of run style
  • For those drawn in the middle, a prominent or leading style is preferable
  • For those drawn high, a front running style is the only favoured approach 

 

7 Furlong races

Before wrapping up, from reviewing the course map I thought it may be interesting to use the same approach over the seven-furlong trip. The hypothesis is that a low draw may be of less relevance as horses and riders have a full three furlongs to get a position before the first turn. Thus, it ought to be possible to negate the risk of being trapped out wide and, therefore, potentially ease the sort of draw bias seen at the mile distance.

 

Alas, the hypothesis doesn’t hold true as the data indicate that there is still a form of bias towards lower stalls when viewing through the prism of IV3. That said, the draw doesn’t appear to have too much effect until field sizes of nine or more are experienced. In the broadest terms stalls 1-6 seem to be better off than stalls 7 and above in almost any circumstances.

For larger fields of 13 and 14 runners there appears to be a strong bias to the lower numbers although, again, sample sizes are smaller. Usually that can be attributed to getting out of the gates and securing good track position early on, ordinarily up with the speed and avoiding hazards in running brought about by a congested field.

Again, a quick check of the heat map can help:

Heat Map of 7f races at Chelmsford with 13-14 runners inclusive (IV)

 

This view is only comprised of 41 races but it’s clear that a horse in a low stall has a stronger hand to play than its wider-drawn competitors in the biggest field sizes. If that same low drawn horse leads it has an IV of 3.81 which means, it’s nearly 4 times as likely to prevail as the average!

In the second part of this Chelmsford epic, I’ll cover sires, jockeys, the fate of favourites, as well as the impact of draw and pace on 5- and 6-furlong races.

Until then, thanks for reading.

- Jon S