Tag Archive for: H4C

Racing Insights, Friday 27/05/22

Friday's free feature, the Horses for Courses (H4C) report shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track and is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. As with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

And here's how my Horses for Courses (H4C) report looks for Friday...

...with just two runners of interest, but then again my settings are quite onerous : you can choose your own for more qualifiers! Two is enough for me to be honest, because I've also got access to the following full free racecards...

  • 4.15 Chepstow
  • 5.10 Limerick
  • 5.40 Limerick
  • 7.10 Limerick
  • 8.20 Fairyhouse
  • 8.30 Pontefract

Regular readers of my columns past and present here on Geegeez will know that I'm not massively keen on Irish racing, which sadly eliminates four of the six free races today and I'm hardly bowled over by the two UK offerings, so I'm going to take a look at my two H4C report qualifiers, starting with Sharrabang who goes in the 2.20 Carlisle, an 8-runner, Class 6, 4yo+ flat handicap over a straight 5f on good ground...

His recent form hasn't been great and he hasn't actually won a race since landing this contest over course and distance a year ago for his second win here. He has 2 wins and 2 further places from six handicap outings here, yet has made the frame just once in 8 flat outings at other tracks whilst his other turf win came here over 7f. He last raced almost four weeks ago and was last home of seven at Hamilton over 5f off 2lbs higher than today and having been 6.5 lengths adrift, there's some improvement needed.

He's now partnered by 5lb Laura Coughlan, who has at least won a race in the past week, even if the yard is struggling. Stella Barclay's horses had (as of 3.30pm Thursday) failed to win their last 32 runs and the yard is a mere 2 from 77 so far this year.

Instant Expert highlights the horse's form under similar past conditions...

...and it's not exactly heartening, is it? That said, it doesn't quite tell the full story, as his poor 0 from 10 record at Class 6 is strange when he has two wins and a place from four runs at Class 5. He's o/6 on good ground but has placed on heavy and is 1 from 3 here on both good to soft and good to firm, so there's no reason why he couldn't win on good ground. He is, however, an interesting 6lbs lower than when winning here last year.

This was a 9-runner race, but stall 5 has been withdrawn, so our boy effectively runs from stall 7 of 8 and past races here have favoured a low to mid draw...

...and those races have tended to suit leaders best, although hold-up horses have held their own...

Sharrabang's natural style is to race prominently and whilst that's second best for making the frame, it hasn't gone too well for providing winners, but in combination with the draw, highly drawn prominent runners haven't done too badly with only high drawn leaders and low drawn hold-horses faring better. Perhaps his chances will improve if he kicks on in a race that lacks any real pace aside from possibly Mrs Bagerran outside him in stall 8.

*

And then we have Junoesque in the 3.20 Brighton, a 4-runner, Class 6, 4yo+ flat handicap over a left handed 1m4f on good (firmer in places) ground...

This 8 yr old mare has been in good form of late, winning both turf starts this season. Both were here at Brighton, firstly over 1m2f at this Class 6, before stepping up in both class and trip to win a Class 5 contest over today's course and distance. She's up 4lbs for that win, but does drop back down in class.

She has 8 wins and 2 places from 15 here at Brighton, of course but that LTO win was her first crack at 1m4f here with most of her runs coming over 1m2f. Her yard have good figures here too and although they're a little skewed by her own success, the yard isn't entirely reliant upon her. In fact without Juno's runs here, the yard have still had 22 handicap winners from 122 runners (18% SR, A/E 1.16) since 2014 and whilst jockey Darragh Keenan is 2 from 3 on Juno here, he's also 13 from 80 (16.25% SR, A/E 1.27) on other handicappers at Brighton.

Instant Expert has the lowdown on how Junoesque has fared in similar races previously...

The green blocks speak for themselves, so let's address the distance. One win from five doesn't fit in with the rest of her data and it turns out she's actually 1 from 2 at 1m4f with three defeats at a half furlong shorter, so that's taken care of that. Small fields over this course and distance have tended to favour those drawn lower, but when you've only four horses side by side, the draw shouldn't have too much effect over a mile and a half, but the data is what it is and the pace of the race is probably the thing to focus and with it being Brighton, you want to be up with the pace...

The need for speed here is unsurprising, as no doubt is this heatmap...

...we know that Juno is drawn in stall 1, so if she's a leading type, she'd be "well in" here and in those two runs here this season where she won...

Summary

Two runners with excellent course records but in vastly differing form right now. Sharrabang won this race last year , but has been poor since and I'm not convinced that even a return to favoured conditions is enough right now. He could, of course, go well without winning and that would make him of interest next time out, but not this time for me. Somewhat boringly, I see the 5/4 fav Colombe leading the 9/4 second fav Sir Gregory home, but all is not lost as I wouldn't be too surprised if one (or even both) of Good Listener and/or Mrs Bagerran at odds of 25/1 & 18/1 respectively outran those odds for a place.

Junoesque, on the other hand, poses a different problem for me. I don't like backing shorties and especially not odds on shots, but at 10/11 Juno might actually represent some value. She's only up 4lbs for an eleven length success over course and distance at a higher grade and I fully expect her to go in again. Once more, I'd expect the danger to come from the next in the market, who this time would be the 13/8 Torbellino and of the other two runners, I prefer the 16/1 Against The Odds to overturn the 7/1 Colonial Love.

Racing Insights, Friday 06/05/22

The Horses for Courses (H4C) report is the Friday free Geegeez GOLD feature and it does pretty much what the name would suggest and shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. As with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

My settings for the H4C report...

...have generated two runners of interest...

...and I'll be busy, because I've also got the following free race cards to aim at...

  • 2.50 Ascot
  • 3.15 Chester
  • 3.45 Chester
  • 5.30 Cork
  • 7.15 Ripon
  • 8.26 Wolverhampton

Those races aren't screaming out to mw right now, so I'm going to take a look at my two  qualifiers, starting with Revich, who runs in the 1.30 Chester, an 11-runner, Class 2, 4yo+ flat handicap over a left handed 7½f on good to soft ground...

As you can see from the card, he won his last start of the previous campaign (Class 2, 7f, Ayr) in mid-September, but was unplaced next/last time out. He was actually 15th of 22 at Doncaster in late March on his comeback from a 189 day absence, so he probably needed the run and it was the Lincoln, but he should strip fitter for having had it. In-form jockey Harry Davies takes a valuable 7lbs off here too, which has to help.

He's a former course and distance winner, the green icons suggest that both trainer and jockey are in good form and the latter's success is verified in the stat box which also reminds us of Revich's record at this track. I've added the trainers stats here too...

His overall record in similar flat handicaps shows a little deficiency at this level, as his best form has come in poorer races, but he still has some good numbers to back him up...

Revich's form here at Chester reads 153114237 including 2 wins and a place from four runs at the slightly shorter 7f trip and results of 1423 over today's 7½f course and distance. He is drawn is stall 1 and much is made about the rail draw here at Chester and in previous races over a similar trip/conditions etc...

...there's definitely more than a suggestion that the lower you're drawn the better. To go with those draw stats, we can also assess the pace for those 30 races above...

...and these essentially say that you generally need to be on the front end here at Chester over this type of trip. We appreciate however, that it's not always possible for all runners to race prominently, especially if they're not suited by the draw, which is where we feel that a pace/draw correlation is handy to see and for these races, it looks like this...

...which essentially tells Revich's team not to hang back with him, but otherwise he's got his best chance from stall 1. Unfortunately, Revich's recent defeat was indeed from a prominent position, but his win two starts ago was from a hold-up approach...

...had they been the other way around, I'd have been all over him, but I'm not as bullish now as I thought I might end up being!

I'm going to give Revich a bit more thought, whilst I consider the claims of Mark's Choice in the 6.45 Ripon, a 9-runner, Class 4, 4yo+ flat handicap over a straight 6f on good ground...

He was eighth of nine, beaten by thirteen lengths on his seasonal reappearance over this track and trip three weeks ago, weakening late on after a 201-day absence. He had previously won two of his last four runs of the 2021 campaign, both here at Ripon over 6f (Class 2) and then over 5f at Class 4, which raised his mark to 82. He's still on 82, but has a 5lb claimer on board today, which should help. Overall in similar flat handicaps his numbers are...

...which are decent enough, especially at Class 4 and are arguably the best of the nine runners entered here. He has won 8 of his 37 starts to date and side from those numbers above has 4 wins and 3 places from just 10 efforts over course and distance, but has plenty more to find here after being well beaten behind the re-opposing Fortamour today. He runs off a mark of 82 here and the stats above don't tell you that he's 0 from 11 in flat handicaps off 81 or higher, so a career best is needed technically, although we do have a jockey claim to consider.

He's drawn slap bang in the middle as 5 of 9, but the stats do suggest that a lower draw would have been more advantageous...

...as this is compounded by the fact that his usual hold-up style of running...

...hasn't been too successful here under today's expected conditions...

...data backed up by the heat map, which suggests that getting out quickly and setting the pace (as he used to do in years gone by) would be his best chance from that middle draw...

Summary

Two runners with excellent previous course records. One is easy for me to judge, one not so. In which case, let's do the easy bit first and declare that I'm not keen on the chances of Mark's Choice here. He has too much to make up with 4/1 favourite and likely winner Fortamour for my liking and I doubt he'll even make the frame when the likes of Shallow Hal amongst others are on the scene, so it's a no from me.

Revich, on the other hand, is a different kettle of fish and I think he might go really well. He's got a good draw, but might need to address his tactics a little better, he's a good overall record and I'm almost really keen on him, but I don't see him beating the 4/1 fav Boardman and at 5/1 himself, there's not enough juice for an E/W bet, so I won't be on Revich either, sadly.

Racing Insights, Friday 29/04/22

Friday's free feature is the Horses for Courses (H4C) report, which as you'd expect shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion and as well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting.

As with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

My own personal settings for the H4C report...

...have yielded just one runner of interest for Friday...

...but I've also got the following 'free' races to aim at...

  • 1.15 Newmarket
  • 2.05 Goodwood
  • 2.40 Goodwood
  • 3.35 Newmarket
  • 8.30 Newcastle

...and after careful consideration, I think I'm going to look at the 2.40 Goodwood, which looks like a fairly open 10-runner, Class 2, 4yo+ Flat handicap over a straight 5f on good ground...

Some good form figures on display here, but Stone of Destiny, Live In The Moment and Lihou are winless in their last five and with the latter now stepping up two classes from finishing 8th of 10 at Wolverhampton recently, I'm ready to discard him immediately.

He's not the only one stepping in class, mind, as half the field ran at Class 3 LTO and it's easier to name the ones who aren't stepping up ie Raasel, Stone of Destiny, Live In The Moment and Fine Wine.

Three of the field (Mokaatil, Tone The Barone & Clarendon House) are LTO winners with the last pair coming here on a hat-trick and the latter horse being one of two returning from a lengthy break. Clarendon House hasn't been seen for nine months since back to back wins inside nine months last July, whilst Atalanta's Boy last raced on October when well beaten here over 6f. He did win here 9also over 6f0 two starts ago, but he had a pretty poor season and that form allied to the layoff and a first crack at 5f rules Atalanta's Boy out for me.

Of the eight I'm now down to, all have won over 5f and Raasel has won over course and distance, so that's a tick for him! All have raced in the last nine weeks with five of them having been seen this month. Not much to write home about in terms of trainer or jockey form, so let's assess race suitability via Instant Expert...

...where I'm drawn positively to four of the top five on the graphic, but I've concerns about Stone of Destiny's 2 from 26 record at Class 2. Further inspection shows just 4 places in the 24 defeats and that's just not good enough for my liking, so he's out of my reckoning at this point. Technically Mokaatil should join him, but as an LTO winner, I'm prepared to cut him some slack for now. Other than that, I'm not too perturbed by the numbers, although it should be noted that Raasel, Tone The Barone and Live In The Moment are now 8, 9 and 10lbs respectively higher in the ratings than their last wins.

The three I've eliminated so far are drawn in stalls 3, 6 and 9, so the seven still in contention are spread out across the full width of the stalls and past similar contests seem to have favoured those drawn centrally ie 3 to 7...

...which could be good news for Mokaatil, Fine Wine & Clarendon House and if we stick with those three for a moment, past outings suggest that the latter pair are likely to set the pace here today...

...but will have company from Lucky Ava and maybe some others, which means we could have a proper burn-up on ground likely to be the quicker side of good after the recent dry weather. If however, we refer back to the sample of races we used for the draw analysis, those contests haven't always gone well for those setting the pace and sitting just off in a prominent position or even mid-division has been a better option, opening the door back up for Raasel, Live In The Moment and Mokaatil, hence the openness of this contest...

If we combine the pace and draw stats into a heat map...

...we almost get a feeling that the higher you're drawn, the further back in the field you want to be and if put our runners into draw order and show where we think they'll race, then the bold black line is pretty much where we'd want to be (hopefully, this makes sense in print!)

So Raasel sits pretty much on the line for an ideal pace/draw match-up and he's only drawn one stall away from my preferred 3 to 7 area. Lucky Ava also sits close to the line, but she hasn't won on turf, races at Class 2 for the first time and is probably the 40/1 outsider for a reason, so I'll take her out of the equation, along with Live In The Moment, who is furthest away from my black line and despite having lost each of his last eight races is still too high in the weights for my liking.

Summary

I've quickly gone through the card and tools and have narrowed the ten runners down to five. And if truth be told, any of the five is good enough to win this, but the one I like best is Raasel. He won here over course and distance last September and then rattled off four more wins in as many runs in just six weeks before bedding down for the winter. He was only beaten by 2.5 lengths at Musselburgh a fortnight ago despite a 164-day lay-off and that run will have prepared ideally for this task, so at 6/1 (Bet365) I'm with Raasel.

I really liked the way Clarendon House progressed last season, but he's likely to need a run after 200+ days off track, plus he's up in weight and class, so I'll swerve him for now. Tone The Barone, on the other hand, won twice in March and now switched back to turf off 8lbs lower than his most recent A/W win  six weeks ago, he could be the biggest threat to Raasel.

Which in a roundabout way says that I'm having either Mokaatil or Fine Wine as the third horse in any windmill-tilting trifecta and I think the former's LTO win swings it for me. Highly unlikely to come in, but I'm sure a Rassel/Tone The Barone/Mokaatil tricast/trifecta will pay handsomely :  who knows?

Racing Insights, Friday 22/04/22

Your fabulous Friday freebie is the Horses For Courses (H4C) report, which shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track as is, by default, sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the your discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

And here's how my version of the H4C report looks for Friday...

In addition to this free report, we have (as always) a selection of fully functional racecards open to all readers and they are...

  • 2.25 Sandown
  • 4.00 Doncaster
  • 4.30 Doncaster
  • 5.00 Kilbeggan
  • 6.30 Kilbeggan

The H4C report only takes into consideration runs at the track and so should only be a starting point for a bet, it doesn't account for class, trip, going etc. so let me demonstrate my having a quick look at my two Friday "possibles", starting with Amalfi Doug, who runs in the 3.45 Perth, a 5-runner, Class 3, 5yo+ handicap chase (18 fences) over a right handed three miles on good to soft ground...

...where he's certainly not the pick on form and is older than all four rivals, but he does get weight from all of them, his yard do well at Perth and he's a former course and distance winner.

His career tally stands at 7 wins and 6 places from 36 races, which makes his Perth record quite remarkable at 7 wins, 5 places from 18! All 18 runs here have been in handicaps and they include...

  • 5 wins, 6 places from 15 over fences
  • 3 wins, 4 places from 10 at Class 3
  • 3 wins, 4 places from 10 at 3m/3m0.5f

but also just...

  • 2 wins and 2 places from 8 last year
  • 0 wins, 3 places on good to soft
  • and 0 runs under today's jockey

Instant Expert will verify some of the above, but also includes his defeats elsewhere...

A mixed bag for him there and certainly nowhere near the numbers of form horse Minella Trump, but he is 3lbs lighter than his last win and he looks set to do early battle with Minella if recent pace scores are anything to go by...

...and that could be his best bet of making the frame again, based on the way other small field 3m chases have gone here in the past...

Amalfi Doug is, of course, a 3-time course and distance winner, who has pretty much no form anywhere else and last won a race in early September, finishing 3rd of 4, last of 3 and pulled in his final three runs of last season. He returned to action at Kelso 18 days ago after 149 days off track, but after being headed 2 out ended up just 7th of 8, some 33 lengths adrift and a 3lb weight drop might no be enough here to see hold on for longer from his usual front-running tactics, especially if challenged early.

*

Next up we have Brotherly Company in the 5.10 Southwell, an 8-runner, Class 4, 5yo+ handicap chase (16 fences) over a left-handed 2m4½f on good (possibly slightly quicker) ground...

...where he, too, doesn't bring the best form to the table (Anightinlambourn & Steel Wave probably) and at 10 yrs of age is one of the older runners. He didn't go well last time out (7th) but has had a good rest of almost 11 weeks to get over it. A former course and distance winner, but neither trainer nor jockey seem in great recent form either and he's going be giving the field 4 to 13lbs here, although he does drop in class.

He has won 6 of 38 handicap starts to date and they include...

  • just 4/28 going left handed
  • 4/19 on good ground
  • 4/16 over fences
  • 4/15 in cheekpieces
  • 4/13 at Class 4
  • 4/12 for his current yard
  • 3/10 under today's jockey
  • 2/8 at 2m4.4f/2m5f
  • 3/5 here at Southwell
  • 2/2 here over fences
  • 1/1 over course and distance

...and Instant Expert can home in on just his handicap chase record...

...where he possibly has the second best set of figures behind the previously-mentioned Dreamsundermyfeet, both of whom are now rated just 3lbs higher than their last win. He's normally pretty consistent in his approach to races and the results he gets from them, so it's possibly no surprise that his 62 length defeat as 7th of 8 at Musselburgh last time out coincided with a change of tactics.

As you'll see below, he normally likes to either set the pace or at least be up near the leader(s), but for some reason he was held up LTO and never got going, so that run might be a false negative...

So, I'd still expect him to return to prominent/front-running tactics here, where he'll have company again from Dreamsundermyfeet amongst others, whilst the other form horse Steel Wave looks like he'll be waited with. Past similar contests suggest that both approaches work fine, but Steel Wave might have the edge.

Summary

Two horses with excellent track records, but I'd expect their fates to be quite different on Friday.

I don't really fancy Amalfi Doug at Perth and I can see it being a shootout between 15/8 fav Guy and 2nd fav Minella Trump at 9/4. of the two, i've got to say on the evidence above that I prefer the latter.

As for Brotherly Company at Southwell, I think he's more than capable of winning this, but I'm not sure that he will have enough to beat either or both of Dreamsundermyfeet or Steel Wave. The early market looks like it agrees and they have his two rivals locked at 10/3 joint favourites. If pushed for an opinion, I think Steel Wave might just prevail, but I'd certainly be interested in a 9/1 E/W bet on featured runner Brotherly Company.

Racing Insights, Good Friday 15/04/22

Friday's free feature is the Horses For Courses (H4C) report, showing the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track, sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at your discretion. As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

Here's how my H4C report looks this Friday...

...giving me four possibles to consider and they're supplemented by the following full free racecards...

  • 2.00 Newcastle
  • 2.20 Lingfield
  • 2.45 Chelmsford

Seeing as one of my H4C possibles runs in one of the day's free races, I suppose it makes sense to focus on the 2.45 Chelmsford, an 8-runner (hopefully staying that way), Class 3, 4yo+ A/W Handicap over a left-handed 7f on standard polytrack and at £10,800 it's worth winning, so here are the contenders...

Only three of these (Red Mirage, Hieronymus & Revolutionise) have failed to win any of their last five outings, although Hieronymus has certainly been banging on the door and Revolutionise certianly likes it here as the H4C horse. Conversely, both Aramis Grey & Hello Zabeel both won last time out with the latter bringing the best set of bare results to the table.

Both LTO winners are up in class here with Aramis Grey moving up one level, whilst Hello Zabeel steps up two classes for his second handicap outing, whilst Hieronymus, Revolutionise and Ostilio all ran at Class 2 last time around. All eight runners are past winners at this trip and Aramis Grey has won here at Chelmsford over 6f, whilst Red Mirage, Revolutionise and Bobby On The Beat have all won over this 7f course and distance.

Half of the field have raced in the last month (Ostilio ran 3 days ago), but the other half haven't been seen for 175 days or more (Hieronymus ran 223 days ago!)

RED MIRAGE
Is one of those coming back from a break (195 days to be precise) and having left Mark Johnston's yard, he now makes a debut for Team Balding hoping to recapture his early career form which saw him win each of his first three starts including a course and distance success just over a year ago after a 204 day absence. That season pretty much petered out, though and he was last home of ten and then seven on his final two runs of 2021.

HIERONYMUS
Banging hard on the door when last seen, finishing as runner-up in each of his last three starts including a couple of pretty big fields and was only denied by a head over a mile at Kempton in a Class 2 contest last time out. That was back in early September, though and fitness will have to be taken on trust. If he's ready, then the drop in class and trip puts him right in the mix.

REVOLUTIONISE
Finished third here over 6f before four runs over C&D that saw him finish 1721. Had a good winter over 20/21, but since winning at Wolverhampton in February of last year, hasn't won any of 12 starts. In fairness, all 12 have been away from Chelmsford and four of his last six have been over longer trips. A return to 7f here could suit him far better, allied to a drop in class and a lower handicap mark than his last win. Good place chance at least.

SPANISH STAR
0 from 5 on the A/W but was a narrowly-defeated runner-up over 6f at Lingfield on his last effort, but that was way back in November 2020. Since then he has 9 top 3 finishes from 12 starts on turf, winning twice, but ran a poor race at Newbury when last seen and now needs to transfer his better form to this sphere having not raced for six months.

OSTILIO
Won a 7f, Class 6 claimer for his first win for nearly 16 months, but hasn't kicked on in four handicap starts since finishing 5th of 7, last of 11, 8th of 9 and last of 12 at Newmarket just three days ago. I'd be surprised if he was better than 7th or 8th here.

ARAMIS GREY
The only mare in the race might prove to be the one to beat. She has made the frame in 16 of her 23 starts overall and has 5 A/W wins from 19. Has been kept really busy over the last year, racing 15 times in which she has been in the first three home 12 times (5 x 1st, 5 x 2nd, 2 x 3rd). Did just enough to win over 6f at Wolverhampton last time out and despite being up in trip, class and weight, she should be amongst the principals here.

HELLO ZABEEL
Just five runs to date and on the face of it, his form line of 20221 says he's one of the more likely ones to succeed here, but I'm not entirely convinced. Four of five starts have been at Class 5, including his win last time out in a maiden. He was only 2nd of 4 on handicap debut off a mark of 77 at Class 4 and now goers off 79 at class 3, so this will be tougher. The other three runners from his handicap debut are a combined 0 from 14 since and he has a 31 week break to overcome. I expect the market to like him, but I'm not keen right now.

BOBBY ON THE BEAT
Hardly prolific, but his 3 wins and 4 further places from 15 A/W starts easily outweighs his 0 from 11 (3 places) turf form and one of his wins came over this course and distance in February. In fact, in the last four months his results read 196112942, admittedly mainly at classes 5 & 6. He did run at this grade last time out, mind, when a 3 lengths runner-up of 12 over 6f at Kempton a month ago and could go well again here off the same mark.

That's an overview of the runners, but for more specific data on race suitability, we turn once again to Instant Expert...

...where unsurprisingly H4C horse Revolutionise has some good numbers across the board and he's 3lbs lower than his last win. Most of the red blocks cause very little concern to me as 0 from 2 or 3 is no disaster, but Aramis Grey's 0/6 and Bobby On The Beat's 1/7  at this trip need further analysis. The latter is also a concern at 6lbs higher than his last relevant win, as is Hieronymus' 12lb rise. that said, he has been in great form. We can look a little deeper into those distance figures by posting up the Instant Expert place stats...

...which certainly alleviate some of concerns about Aramis Grey with 4 placed efforts from 6, whilst H4C runner Revolutionise certainly catches the eye for at least a place.

A left handed 7f here has often favoured those drawn in the lower half of the draw, so those in stalls 1 to 4...

...might take some heart from the following...

...but a good draw is only worth anything if utilised properly and that's where we also need to look at pace analysis. Don't be fooled by the word 'pace', we're not just looking for the fastest runner, we're after the one whose racing tempo/positioning suits the contest best and our pace stats tell us that those races above have been won most often by horses who have set/dictated the pace of the race...

Prominent/mid-division runners have fared slightly worse/better than expected, but not noticeably so, but hold-up horses have really struggled. This data would appear to be better news for Hieronymus and Revolutionise than it would for Spanish Star and Aramis Grey, although the latter has raced fairly prominently in her three previous visits to this track...

And when we combine the pace stats with the draw stats, we can compose our unique pace/draw heatmap...

...where the ideal position would seem to be a low drawn leader. Revolutionise in stall 4 probably comes closest to fitting the bill, but the pace is likely to come from stall 7 and Hieronymus might not find it too difficult getting across to assume the lead. Previously fancied Aramis Grey could well step forward, based on her past runs here and also because Revolutionise will set off quickly next to her.

Summary

Aside from the pace angle, I've liked Aramis Grey all the way through the process. Hieronymus is the one I expect to set the pace and leaders do really well here and he's certianly not overdue a win based on his last few results, whilst Horses for Courses runner Revolutionise has almost the perfect pace/draw make-up along with a great set of instant Expert numbers and I think that these are my three against the field

To be honest, any of the three could win and we might get a decent race out of it, but if you were to push me for a prediction I think I prefer the 4/1 Aramis Grey.

Hieronymus looks destined to play bridesmaid again and if he was a little longer than 13/2, I'd be backing him E/W. I will, however, be placing an E/W bet on Revolutionise, because I think bet365 have him wrong at 11/1, so fingers crossed.

Racing Insights, Friday 08/04/2022

Friday's free Gold feature is the Horses for Courses (H4C) report, which does pretty much what the name suggests and shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that track and is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

And here's how my H4C report looks for this Friday...

As you can see, my settings only generated one horse for consideration, but you can set less stringent settings yourself to widen the choice. I'll have a quick look at Justforjames shortly, but there are also the following full free racecards to look at...

  • 3.45 Fontwell
  • 4.05 Aintree
  • 7.10 Ballinrobe
  • 7.50 Dundalk
  • 8.00 Kempton

And I think I'll look at the last of that list, where the presence of a likely short priced favourite opens up the possibility of a decent E/W bet in the 8.00 Kempton, a 9-runner, Class 4, 3yo, A/W Handicap over a right-handed 6f on std to slow polytrack...

Top weight Designer and Atomise both won last time out, but Bellarena Lady, Suanni, Sisters In The Sky, Captain's Bar and likely favourite Jungle Run have all won at least one of their last five outings. Some of these are short on handicap experience, with Bellarena Lady and Captain's Bar having just their second attempts, whilst both Designer and Atomise are on handicap debut.

Jungle Run steps up two classes here, but both Bellarena Lady and Sisters In The Sky drop down two levels with Cashew down one class. Only Jungle Run (2 days ago) and Secret Strength (22d) have raced already in 2022 with the other seven having been off track for 149 to 196 days, during which Bellarena Lady had a wind operation.

None of the nine runners have won here at Kempton before, that said only three of them have been here in the past, but five of them (Cashew, Sisters In The Sky, Captain's Bar, Atomise & Jungle Run) have tasted success over 6f during their short careers to date.

DESIGNER
Won a Class 4 novice event at Chester last time out (5f, soft) back in October which 'earned ' her a mark of 82 for her handicap debut and prior to that she wasn't disgraced in being beaten by just over 5 lengths in a 6f grade 3 race at Ayr. Her opening mark doesn't give much room for error, but her yard is in good form...

CASHEW
Won a 6f Class 4 Novice race at Windsor last May and then won over this trip on handicap debut in July, but last season petered out somewhat when he finished fifth in each of his last three races of the season and is possibly best left watched on polytrack debut, having not raced since October, despite the good recent form of his rider...

BELLARENA LADY
Made her debut less than a year ago and finished 1201 in her first four starts, but didn't live up to those levels in her final two runs of the season when tested at a higher level as 10th of 17 (4.5L) in a 5f Listed race and then 8th of 9 (6.5L) on handicap debut (Class 2, 5f). A step up in trip and an A/W debut after being off track since September poses several question marks, even if the yard has been amongst the winners recently...

SUANNI
Was a winner at Bath over 5½f in September on handicap debut and ran a very creditable second of eight on A/W debut here over class/course/distance last time out. That, admittedly, was the best part of five months ago, but in a field lacking A/W experience could prove decisive and his stablemates have been running well of late...

SECRET STRENGTH
Actually won a Class 2 contest at Musselburgh last June, but aside from a runner-up finish (beaten by a short head) on A/W debut at Newcastle three weeks alter, hasn't really shown many other signs of that ability. Does have the benefit of having had a run just over three weeks ago, but will need to improve upon his 4th of 8 on what was a yard debut for new handlers.

SISTERS IN THE SKY
Has three decent enough Class 2 runs under his belt in his last three outings, starting with a win over 6f at Goodwood in July and although subsequently only fifth on handicap debut at York three weeks later, that was a 20-runner affair worth £36k and he was only beaten by just over 1.5 lengths behind Flaming Rib who is 2 from 2 since then including winning a Listed contest.

CAPTAIN'S BAR
Won a 6f maiden at Haydock back in September two starts ago, but never really got going at all in his only other outing since, coming home last of 9, some 43 lengths adrift after being stepped up in trip to 9f on handicap debut. I expect/hope the drop back in trip shows him in a better light here and he could go well for a successful Kempton Trainer/Jockey combo...

ATOMISE
Just three starts to date for this filly, who has shown promise/ability in all three. She was only just over a length and a half adrift on debut over 6f at Yarmouth last September before a mid-field finish in a Listed event was backed up by an LTO win at Leicester in late October. Like most of the field, she's coming back from a lay-off, but her yard have done well in the past with returning horses and her jockey's in pretty good nick too...

JUNGLE RUN The likely short-priced favourite is now a non-runner!

An inexperienced field with very few A/W run between them won't show up much on Instant Expert, but there might be something to glean from it...

I suppose class and distance are the two main area to focus on here, as most of the field have got data in both of those areas. It's easier her to look for red than green to possibly eliminate runners from the equation and the two standing out are Secret Strength and Sisters In the Sky.

The former has failed to make the frame in three efforts at Class 4, but has won one of two at Class 2 and has two runner-up finishes from three runs at Class 3, so he stays for now. The latter has also won at Class 2 and ran really well in that big-field valuable York handicap, so he also stays. The trip, however, is probably going to be Secret Strength's undoing. He has one win and two further places from ten starts, but all three places have come from three efforts at 5f.

The draw here would appear to suit those drawn in the 2 to 5 area, but the place stats favour the horse drawn in stall 1 and the numbers decrease in an almost linear fashion from there...

Whereas the pace stats for those same races say that you want to be prominent/leading if you want to win or even make the frame, A 6f at Kempton certainly doesn't seem to be for those wanting to hang back...

We can then cross-check those numbers with how this field have raced in previous outings...

...and Cashew (drawn in that 2-5 zone) looks like being the pacemaker here with the already discussed Secret Strength looking worst suited by the pace.

Summary

Generally inexperienced runners with even less A/W action under their belts is a journey into the unknown, but we know what level these horses can run to, we know how pace/draw affects 6f races at Kempton and we know the draw/running styles of our field. Jungle Run ticked more boxes than any and would have been the one to beat, but at a short price.

His defection leaves the race wide open and although we don't have many concrete facts/opinions on this one, we're better informed than most out there. The early market is just as indecisive with five runners priced at 11/2 or shorter and the wise/sensible move would be to draw a line through the card and move on, but where's the fun in that? There's a chance here to make a few quid off small stakes, so I'm going to have two little 11/2 punts on Cashew (draw/pace/hcp win at trip) and also on Sisters In The Sky, who I feel has produced the best runs of the field, now drops in class and might help set the pace.

Atomise was the other one that interested me, but she's drawn widest and 3/1 represented very little value to me.

Racing Insights, Friday 01/04/22

Every day we open up a selection of racecards to non-Gold subscribers to show them some of the functionality we offer from as little as £1 per day. On Friday, those 'free' races will be...

  • 1.55 Newbury
  • 4.05 Ayr
  • 5.15 Ayr
  • 5.40 Southwell
  • 7.20 Dundalk

In addition to this daily offering of a selection of fully functional cards, we also open up one of the Gold features each day...

Their names are generally a giveaway as to what they offer, especially on Fridays, where the Horses for Courses (H4C) report is the freebie. This does pretty much as you'd expect and shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that track, sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at your discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

My settings for the H4C report are as follows, but you can set your own, of course...

A course win and place strike rate of 33% and 66% is pretty exacting if truth be told and doesn't often generate masses of qualifiers. In fact, I've none to look at for Friday, so I'm going to run through one of the 'free' races for you today and the first of the two Scottish offerings looks the best of the free races on paper, at least.

That's the 4.o5 Ayr, a 9-runner, Class 2, 4yo+ Mares Handicap Hurdle (12 flights) over a left-handed 3m½f on Good to Soft ground and the £15,609 first prize will end up going home with one of these...

Timeless Beauty and Glimpse of Gala both won LTO and the latter is probably the pick of the pick based on recent finishing positions alone (not counting for race conditions/quality, of course) with three wins and two places from her last five. Pearl of the West, however, is the only one of the nine without a win in her last five(or eleven!).

Motown Maggie makes just a second handicap start after failing to place LTO, whilst top weight Get A Tonic is on handicap debut and drops down a level from Class 1 action to do so. She's the only class dropper here, but two (Glimpse of Gala & Wynn House) move up from Class 3 and two others (Timeless Beauty & Jessiemac) are up two levels from Class 4.

Flower of Scotland hasn't raced for almost three months but aside from Motown Maggie who raced 37 days ago, the others have all been seen in the last four weeks or so.

Aurora Thunder has already won here (over 2m4½f) at Ayr, as has Timeless Beauty (2m5½f), whilst Glimpse of Gala and Timeless Beauty have both over similar trips to today at other venues. Bottom weight Jessiemac, however, has won here over course and distance, albeit in October 2019!

Hopefully that takes you through the racecard details and explains them a little, now for a quick individual overview of each runner before we assess their past for under this race's expected conditions...

GET A TONIC
Might not look too well treated with a mark of 130 on handicap debut, but she has finished 322 in her last three outings, all at Listed class, the latest being a narrow (half a length) defeat over today's trip, where she would surely have won but for badly veering left on the run in. A similar effort here without the veer should surely make her the one to beat?

PEARL OF THE WEST
Has won 5 of 16 over hurdles, but hasn't won any of her last eleven outings since landing a Grade 2 at Punchestown almost three years ago and hasn't really ran well for a long time. Interesting to see how she copes with today's trip, having never been beyond 2m1f.

GLIMPSE OF GALA
Took five months off between mid-May and mid-September of last year, but has won three of five on her return (12131), culminating in a win over 3m at Ludlow four weeks ago. She's now up in class and raised 6lbs for that win where she was just over ten lengths in front of third placed Wynn House who reopposes here.

WYNN HOUSE
Won over 2m5½f at this grade on her seasonal reappearance at Wincanton back in November, which earned her a 3lb rise in weight. Since then she has finished 4th of 9 and then 3rd of 6 at Ludlow behind Glimpse of Gala last time out. She's now back to her last winning mark and some 8lbs better off with Glimpse. Whether that's enough to bridge the gap remains to be seen, but I expect her to go well here.

MOTOWN MAGGIE
Only debuted in August last year when 4th of 11 at Down Royal and not disgraced finishing within 10 lengths of the winner. She ten had six successive top three non-handicap finishes over 2m2½f to 2m5f before making a handicap debut over today's trip at Punchestown just over five weeks ago. The step up in trip didn't seem to help and she had little in reserve late on. This looks a tough ask, based on that run.

AURORA THUNDER
Three from twenty over hurdles isn't what you want from a Class 2 runner, but she does love it here at Ayr, making the frame in 5 of 6 starts, winning twice, both over 2m4½f. She was a runner-up in her only C&D attempt, when half a length behind Didonato in this race last year. Sadly that race hasn't proved to be much, but she's in decent enough form right now.

FLOWER OF SCOTLAND
Seems to switch between chasing and hurdling (HCHCCCHH so far!) with 1 win in each sphere, but unplaced in her other six outings. She was fourth of nine here over 3m1f last out, beaten by seven lengths off a mark of 117, which suggests that today's 2lb weight drop might not be enough to get her back to winning ways.

TIMELESS BEAUTY
A useful mare, but probably better over fences where she has been plying her trade for the last year finishing 13271. Her latest run/win was over this trip, so that's a bonus ahead of a return to hurdling. She did win here over 2m5½f in January '21 three hurdle starts ago, but that was a Class 5 affair and her last two efforts over hurdles have seen her go down by 25L and 17L at Class 4. This is Class 2 and she's 7lbs higher than that last hurdles run. This looks beyond her.

JESSIEMAC
Like the mare above, is also up two classes and she arrives here off the back of a 14 length defeat on this track almost three weeks ago. That was over 2m6f, so she's back up in trip today, which should suit here as her 5 from 27 hurdling record includes 4 from 11 at 3m½f to 3m2f, but that's about as many positives I have about her. She did run here over C&D two starts ago and although she was the runner-up that day, she was beaten by three lengths in a Class 4 and is now 4lbs and two classes higher than that run. She's not for me.

At this point, I'm against the likes of Flower of Scotland, Jessiemac, Motown Maggie and Timeless Beauty, but I've still a fairly open mind about the winner/placers. Class 2 staying events are often won by those with previous form under similar racing conditions and the easiest way to compare such events is via Instant Expert...

Obviously, we want horses with a largely green profile, but I wouldn't discount a horse with lots of red blocks from small sample sizes. The alarm bells usually come from those who have tried and failed several times, but even then there could be another side to the story. For example, Aurora Thunder's 0 from 7 at Class 2 is disappointing, but when we change from win stats to place stats...

...she's suddenly much more attractive to us and her consistency shows through, even if she doesn't win often enough. At this point, I'm probably still wanting to be the five from earlier (ie 1-4 and 6). Aurora Thunder is one of those and she was the runner-up in this race last year when all three placers came from off the pace before becoming the front three from three hurdles out. That hold-up approach, however, hasn't really worked out here in similar events in the past as seen on our Pace Analyser...

...where I'd probably want to be on anything bar a hold-up horse, but here's where we hit a potential snag, as...

...there's not actually a great deal of pace on show here, based on their recent outings. I think that if we applied a best three of four rule, we might get a clear indication of how they might run. We've not one single "4" denoting leader on display, but somebody WILL have to lead and I think that's likely to be Glimpse of Gala/Motown Maggie. The ones least suited on pace profiling based on the stats above are Wynn House and Aurora Thunder, but do check the place data, as hold up horses are just as likely to make the frame as leaders are.

Summary

I quite quickly crossed Flower of Scotland, Jessiemac, Motown Maggie and Timeless Beauty off my list of possible winners, leaving me with five to go at. Of my final five, I think Pearl of the West is the weakest and probably should have crossed off sooner. She's in terrible form and maybe an extra 7f might help her, but that's some punt.

So, now there are four. Based on pace, I think it's going to be hard for Wynn House and Aurora Thunder to win, but the pace data says they've a good chance of making the frame. Of the two, I'm leaning towards the latter on past form and also the market. Aurora Thunder was the runner-up in this last year and Hills have opened her up at 17/2, so I'm having a small E/W play there.

As for the winner, I think that despite Glimpse of Gala's obvious good recent form, Get A Tonic's overall consistency and her pair of back to back Listed class runner-up finishes give here the edge and she's the one for me here. There probably won't be much in it and Hills have my 1-2 at 3/1 and 4/1, so they think it'll be close too.

Racing Insights, Friday 25/03/22

Friday is Horses for Courses day at Geegeez where we share the H4C report to all readers. It's a report that pretty much does what it says on the tin ie it shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

And here's what my H4C settings...

...have generated for Friday...

In addition to this report, we also our usual quota of daily 'free' racecards for non-Gold subscribers and they'll be...

  • 2.10 Hereford
  • 2.20 Musselburgh
  • 3.20 Hereford
  • 5.30 Dundalk

And I think I want to take a look at Blackcurrent in the 8.15 Newcastle, an 11-runner, Class 6, 4yo+ A/W handicap over a straight 5f on standard to slow tapeta and here's his racecard entry...

And as you can see, as well as his place on the H4C report, he also has a stack of stats supporting him today, but I want to dig deeper into his own record, as you can see the trainer/jockey/sire data for yourselves above.

His overall career record of 6 wins of 35 is respectable for a Class 6 runner, but improves to 6 from 28 on the A/W and 5 from 18 in A/W handicaps. And it's A/W handicaps that I'm interested in with this one. With this particular race in mind, that 5 from 18 A/W hcp record includes...

  • 5/16 at Class 6
  • 5/15 over 5f
  • 5/15 when not the fav
  • 5/14 after 8-30 days rest
  • 5/11 on a straight track
  • 4/11 on tapeta
  • 4/10 at odds of 4/1 to 12/1
  • 4/8 since the start of 2021
  • 4/6 in cheekpieces
  • 4/4 over course and distance
  • 3/4 under the direction of today's jockey Paula Muir
  • 3/4 in Feb/March
  • and 2/2 this year

Some of those stats above are reproduced in Instant Expert, of course...

...which also tells us that he's only 2lbs higher than his last win, which came here over course and distance earlier this month, completing three C&D wins on the bounce from mid-December. he's only 7lbs higher than the start of that run, because he always seems to do just enough to both win and protect his handicap mark.

He has set the pace in each of those three course and distance wins and we can see this on the racecard pace tab as follows...

...showing that he's definitely a front-runner and that's certainly the way to approach 5f here, based on past races...

He's drawn in stall 1, which gives him the rail and winning post to aim at and also hopefully keep him straight, but low draws haven't done that well here previously, giving Blackcurrent his first red cross after all those green ticks...

That said, he did win a 14-runner handicap from stall 1 over course and distance to land the first of those three most recent wins, so it's not an impossible task, it just makes life a bit more difficult.

Summary

I like Blackcurrent a lot here. Yes, the draw could have been kinder and yes, he's on a career high mark, but he's in great form, he's only 2lbs higher than his last win, has great relevant stats and with the racecard data re trainer/jockey/sire, he's worth taking a punt on. 13/2 (Hills) looks a bit generous and although Lynn's Boy will be a big danger, the latter is too short for me at 5/2 and I feel the pair should be closer together in the market (4's and 5's perhaps?). So I'm on Blackcurrent at 13/2 today.

One that did interest me here too was Tathmeen, who might outrun his 11/1 odds without actually winning.

Racing Insights, Friday 18/03/22

The Horses for Courses (H4C) report is our free feature every Friday and it quite simply shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the your discretion. As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

Sadly, after applying my own settings...

...the H4C report has no potential bets for me, but all is not quite lost, because I've still got these 'free' races to aim at...

  • 1.10 Fakenham
  • 2.00 Doncaster
  • 2.50 Cheltenham
  • 8.15 Newcastle

And that's a tough selection, too! Conditional Jockeys Maiden Hurdle / Novice Handicap Chase / 19-runner Grade 1 Hurdle / Class 5 AW sprint make up the free races and I never thought I'd prefer to look at the low grade sprint, but here were are. It's the one of the four that causes me least discomfort, so let's see if we can unravel the 8.15 Newcastle, a 7-runner, Class 5, 4yo+ A/W handicap over a straight 5f on standard tapeta. James Watt is a non-runner, so only two places on offer here...

Mews House is our only LTO winner, but that was some 170 days ago and like Mister Bluebird (98d) and Blissful Song (86d) might need the run, whilst the fact that Mews & Blissful are our two class risers isn't a positive either. On the other hand, Gowanlad, Khabib and Danzart all drop down in class.

Khabib is in good form (12 last two), as in Blazing Hot (1152), but in fairness, all seven have won at least once in their last five runs and this looks quite competitive for a lowly A/W sprint. Danzart is the only one yet to win at this minimum trip, whilst Gowanlad, Khabib and Blazing Hot have all won over course and distance.

GOWANLAD
Won over course and distance here two starts ago after back to back runner-up finishes at Southwell (5f) and here over 6f. He wasn't suited by the way the race unfolded here LTO and will be keen to bounce back for a yard in decent enough form...

MISTER BLUEBIRD
Just one place from four A/W efforts, he looks better on turf where he has 2 wins and 3 further places from 9 and coming off a 14-week break this looks like a pipe-opener ahead of a return to Flat racing next month. That said, his yard do go well here and he might be a dark horse.

KHABIB
Won over C&D two starts ago at this grade in February and ran really well to be 2nd of 8 LTO. That was also over C&D, but he was up in class and weight and now back down at Class 5, he stands every chance of a return to winning ways under an in-form jockey...

DANZART
No course wins, no distance wins, just a solitary 6f success from ten starts so far. Flopped on what was both an A/W and new yard debut here over 6f LTO when tailed off last of 8 some 24 lengths adrift. It would take some serious improvement to even get near here, but he's down in class and his jockey loves it here...

BLAZING HOT
Won back to back C&D contests a fortnight apart in January, but then didn't have enough in the tank over 6f. He dropped back to this trip last time out and was only 1¾ lengths behind Gowanlad three weeks ago and he now re-opposes 5lbs better off. His yard do well here and he's 9112 over C&D

MEWS HOUSE
Won over this trip at Catterick last time out but that was last September and in addition to the lay-off, he's up in class and weight. Like Mister Bluebird, he's better on turf and this might also be a pipe-opener for him too. He looks like stable second string behind Blazing Hot above, but not only does the yard do well here, they do well with LTO winners and horses coming back off a break.

BLISSFUL SONG
Just one from six on the A/W and his last four runs (all A/W) have seen her finish last of 11, last of 10, 4th of 13 and second last of 14. First-time cheekpieces had effect last time out and an 86-day absence is hardly likely to help either, even if trainer & jockey have some impressive relevant stats behind them...

At this point, I think it's the three former course and distance winners (Blazing Hot, Gowanlad and Khabib) that are the most likely here with possibly Mister Bluebird posing the biggest threat, but let's see how relevant form stacks up on Instant Expert...

...where Khabib looks best suited with four greens and an amber. Mister Bluebird's poor A/W record stands out sadly, as does Mews House's failure to deal with standard going. Gowanlad hasn't done particularly well here at Newcastle previously, but most of those runs were over 6f, so I won't discount him just yet.

Five furlongs = 1100 yards  = 1000 metres. On a straight artificial dragged track track there really should be very little bias/advantage from the draw, other than possibly the horse nearest the rail having that aid to stay straight. Surely it's all about speed and positioning? But here are the draw stats for similar contests anyway...

...as you can see, the extremes (1 & 7) have won slightly less often than you'd imagine/expect, but their place stats are no worse than stalls 3 & 6, so I doubt Gowanlad nor Danzart's connections will be too worried. If pushed, I'd say stalls 5 then 4 were the best, but that might simply be because the riders can see all the others either side of them. But my assertion is that it's the way you tackle the straight five here that will make a difference and the advice is very simple...

...get out quickly and stay out! The further back in the pack you race, the lower your chance of winning and leaders have an almost 1 in 2 record at making the frame, which will suit Khabib most of my preferred trio....

Summary

After looking at the card and writing my brief reviews, Khabib was going to be my pick with Gowanlad holding off Blazing Hot for second. Instant Expert confirmed Khabib in my thoughts and his pace profile is good too, so it's Khabib for me. Sadly I'm not the only one reaching that conclusion and he's the current (4.25pm) favourite. I had him down at that kind of price, so I'm happy with that.

As for second place, Blazing Hot shows better than Gowanlad on past relevant form and edges it on pace, so I'd want Blazing Hot ahead of Gowanlad for the places. Both are priced at 4/1, which is more than I expected, but too short for E/W purposes and they're only so long, because my dark horse Mister Bluebird is 3/1, a price that's surely a bit skinny? I had him around the 11/2 mark.

Racing Insights, Friday 11/03/22

The Horses for Courses (H4C) report is our free Geegeez Gold feature every Friday and it does pretty much as the name suggests and shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at your discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

Sadly, my own settings for the H4C report...

...have proved too restrictive for any potential bets, so it's a good job that we also have the following free racecards...

  • 1.45 Exeter
  • 4.50 Newcastle
  • 5.20 Newcastle
  • 6.00 Dundalk

I'm not a fan of the Irish A/W scene and the Newcastle races are better than the Exeter one. Sadly the two Newcastle races only have 3 and 5 runners respectively, but I think you could make a case for at least four of the runners in the 5.20 Newcastle, as it looks quite competitive for the grade, so that's where we'll head. It's a 5-runner, Class 4, 4yo+ Mares Handicap Hurdle taking in nine flights over a left-handed two miles on good ground. The prize is £6,208 and here's how they line up...

So, only Just Jess comes here without making the frame when last seen and we've a couple of LTO winners in the shape of Bella Bluesky and Taragrace, but the latter is now stepped up in class, as are Just Jess and She's A Rocca.

It's a race fairly short on handicap experience, as She's A Rocca accounts for five of the field's total seven efforts, as both Taragrace and Just Jess are on their second crack at handicaps, whilst it's debut day for Bella Bluesky and Nikolayeva, whilst the latter is the only one of the five without a win at a similar trip to today.

We've no course winners on show, but Taragrace's yard has a good record here and bottom weight She's A Rocca comes from a yard in good form. There shouldn't be any rustiness here, as all five have raced in the last 24 to 42 days. As for some background on this handful of mares...

BELLA BLUESKY
Won a Class 4 bumper over 2m½f on good to soft ground at Musselburgh almost a year ago and has enjoyed a good start to this season. She was a runner-up beaten by just over 2 lengths here over course and distance in mid-January despite being off track for 208 days and put that run to good effect when winning at Kelso at the same grade/trip next/last time out five weeks ago. She looked pretty comfortable in a 4-length success that day and should be amongst it here on handicap debut.

NIKOLAYEVA
Actually won at this trip on the A/W at Wolverhampton back in September 2020 and ended her Flat campaign with a convincing 5.5 length win at Leicester over 1m4f last October. Since then, she has raced twice over hurdles, making the frame on both occasions on heavy ground and might go even better on this quicker surface.

TARAGRACE
Didn't really show much in one bumper and three hurdle contests at this level earlier in the winter, but took advantage of a lenient-looking mark of 95 and a drop in class for her handicap debut at Doncaster six weeks ago, when driven out to win by 2.5 lengths. The step back up to Class 4 allied with a 7lb rise in weight makes this far tougher and we have to decide whether she's now coming into form or whether her last run was a flash in the pan.

JUST JESS
Showed little in two Class 5 bumpers in November 2020 before being pulled up in her first two efforts over hurdles, admittedly up in class and trip. She then had a wind op and dropped back to 2m to land a 7-runner novice hurdle by 11 lengths on heavy ground three months ago, but has been pulled up before 3 out and then 6th of 9 (21 lengths) in two outings since.

SHE'S A ROCCA
Won a Class 5 bumper on debut in November 2019 before struggling in a Listed contest the month after. She then switched to hurdling, where her third place (of 10) at Doncaster last time out, has easily been her best piece of work and the only time she has made the frame in eight attempts and that came after being in her box for 15 weeks, the first-time tongue possibly helping. She was only just over half a length off the winner, having been headed late on and whilst she's only up a pound, she is up in weight after a defeat. That said, she does get weight all round and her yard is in good touch right now.

With so little relative past experience, I'm not sure that Instant Expert will tell us much, but let's check win and place stats for previous NH efforts...

...where it's very hard to ignore the claims of Bella Bluesky, whose only negative is a 0 from 3 Newcastle record, but has made the frame in two of those defeats, so "gets" the track well enough. She's fine on good/good to soft ground, class and distance and providing the race is run to suit her, she's probably the one to beat for me. And with that in mind, we should check here (and the others) running style...

...and that's the order in which I think they'll break based on past hurdles runs. Our pace analysis of short-trip contests here at Newcastle...

...says it's very tough for hold-up horses to win here, which isn't good for Taragrace, who's already up in both class and weight.

Summary

The bookies (well, just Hills right now) have Taragrace as the 11/8 fav here and I think that's mighty short for one up in class/weight and seemingly unsuited from the pace angle. Yes, she won last time out, but she's 9lbs worse off now after a reduction in jockey claim added to her own 7lb rise and I'd oppose her here with the current 9/4 second favourite Bella Bluesky, who ticks lots of boxes on form and Instant Expert and we think she'll be quite prominent.

So, it's Bella Bluesky for me and if pushed for a back-up for forecast purposes, I think I prefer front-runner the 4/1 Nikolayeva. She won't lack stamina, could set a fair gallop and has placed in both starts so far over hurdles. In fact, she might well tough it out and try to hang on and win.

NB I wrote the above piece before realising Taragrace was running in Thursday's 2.45 Carlisle, which she won at 7/4, albeit back down at Class 5 and only by a heads, so I'm happy with my original conclusion.

Racing Insights, Friday 04/03/22

Friday's free Gold feature in the Horses for Courses (H4C) report, which does pretty much what you'd expect and shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

You can, of course, set the parameters to suit you, but here's how my H4C report looks for Friday...

Plus, along with a couple of specific horses to look at above, I've also got the following 'free' racecards to take aim at...

  • 2.00 Doncaster
  • 2.10 Lingfield
  • 4.35 Newbury
  • 4.55 Dundalk

Buniann has 5 wins and 5 further places from 12 over course and distance, but looks up against it on Friday in a Class 4 contest, as virtually all his best form is a class lower. I've als0 little/no interest in racing at the Dundalk track, but the last of the three 'free' UK races is another competitive small field, soft ground handicap contest, so my focus falls upon the 4.35 Newbury. Six runners aged 8-11 are set to go to post prior to tackling 13 fences over a left handed 2m½f...

No spectacular recent form, but Casa Tall and Somekindofstar have at least put together some fairly consistent results according to the formline. Commis D'Office, on the other hand, would appear to be the one to follow from a trainer/jockey form angle. Paddy's Poem and Chic Name both drop down from Class 2, but the latter is (a) the only one of the six not to win at a similar trip tot his one and (b) running for the first time in a week shy of two years. He is, however, the only previous course winner of the six.

PADDY'S POEM
Ran consistently well during a 15-race over a 39-month period from Dec'17 to Mar'21, only finishing outside the first three once whilst winning four times, a four-time runner-up and eight third place runs despite breaks of 212, 222 and 393 days in the sequence. Struggled in a Grade 3 at the '21 Cheltfest and was pulled up at Sandown last time out. Lots to prove now.

MONSIEUR LECOQ
A decent enough hurdler who made the frame on 8 of 15 starts, winning three times, but hasn't yet transferred that form to the bigger obstacles, although he was unlucky not to land a Listed chase at Ascot back in October where he led before last. He was clear when he then idled badly up front and got caught in the final strides. Since then it hasn't gone well in four starts finishing 6th of 7, last of 7, pulled up before 3 out and 2nd of 3 off this mark,

CHIC NAME
Was the runner-up in the Edinburgh National just over two years ago, but hasn't raced since pulling up in the Glenfaclas Cross Country Chase at Cheltenham's 2020 festival six weeks later. 16 of his last 18 runs over the past five years have been at 2m7½f of further, so this is a huge drop in trip for this stayer's reappearance, suggesting that's just a pipe-opener for another race elsewhere.

CASA TALL
Has three wins and two places from his last six outings and was a winner off just 2lbs higher than here when scoring at Exeter three starts ago. Looked like he needed the run after a nine-week break when only 5th of 9 (31L) here over course and distance last time out, but has to be considered based on prior form.

SOMEKINDOFSTAR
Has been a far better chaser than a hurdler and although a bit hit and miss over fences, has managed 3 wins and 2 places from 9, yet his four runs out of the frame include defeats of 20, 47, 20 and 26 lengths, so it's a case of which version turns up here and the one we saw at Sandown a fortnight ago wasn't good.

COMMIS D'OFFICE
Yard's in form, jockey's in form, jockey rides well for the yard, tick tick tick. Bottom weight, so receives all round and ended last season with a win at Southwell over this trip. A step up to Class 3 racing this winter hasn't yet borne fruit, with him last of 6 (19L) at Doncaster in December and a 19-length 4th of 7 at Sedgefield last time out. All this has dropped him back to his last winning mark and on a track where yard and rider seem to have thrived, he could get back in the game here.

My initial thoughts after looking at past relevant form via Instant Expert...

...were that I'm not keen on Chic Name or Commis D'Office on soft ground, nor did I like the latter at Class 3. Monsieur Lecoq looks well weighted here at +10 from his last win, but the other stats look a bit sketchy, whilst the other three were also interesting. I think I should check the place stats to see if either of Chic Name or Commis D'Office have just been unlucky...

...where the answer seems to be "probably not". Neither have good place records on soft ground either and Commis seems to have toiled in this grade, even if he has won off today's mark previously. His approach to this race is likely to be "get away sharpish and see if you can hang on" based on the field's past four runs...

...which also suggest that Casa Tall is the likely back marker and whilst those who have led have done pretty much as well as you'd expect (IV 0.96). those waited with have done best of all...

...giving best chance to the likes of Monsieur Lecoq and Casa Tall.

Summary

I think I want to be with runners biding their time here and that takes me almost immediately to Monsieur Lecoq and Casa Tall. The former has seemed out of sorts of late and his Instant Expert numbers aren't great, but a mark of 138 is 10lbs lower than his last win and if today's the day he gets it back together, he could make this a procession.

Casa Tall, however, has been running consistently well of late aside from LTO when he probably needed the run. In addition to a good pace profile for this race, he's proven at this grade and I fancy him to finish ahead of Monsieur Lecoq. Of the rest, Commis D'Office will be popular due to the bottom weight and the Trainer/Jockey Combo. Chic Name will surely need the run, Somekindofstar is only consistent in his inconsistency, whilst Paddy's Poem is also out of form and tough to like right now.

So, for me it's Casa Tall at a fairly attractive 4/1 with Hills (the only one currently showing odds!) with the 5/2 fav Monsieur Lecoq fancied to be the danger.

Racing Insights, Friday 11/02/22

A nice 9/2 winner and 32/1 forecast on Thursday topped the kitty up a little ahead of Friday, which is Horses for Courses day at Geegeez and the H4C report does exactly what you'd expect by showing the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

My Friday H4C report looks like this (you can change your parameters, of course)...

and this is supplemented by the following free 'races of the day'...

  • 1.10 Kempton
  • 1.55 Bangor
  • 3.40 Bangor
  • 5.00 Dundalk
  • 5.30 Dundalk

And I think I'll look at my qualifiers from the H4C report today, starting with Prince Abu in the 2.10 Southwell, an 8-runner, Class 5, 4yo+ A/W handicap over a left-handed 2m2½f on standard to slow tapeta...

This 5 yr old has made the frame in each of his last five starts, winning three times and also this run has taken his mark up 15lbs in total, he's still expected to put up a bold show on a track where he has finished 63121 in five handicap runs, but he's now running 2f further than ever before and he's up in class and weight following a pretty facile 5 length win over 2m at Kempton last week. Prior to that he won here over 2m½f a fortnight after his only previous run at Class 5, when only beaten by a length and a quarter over 1m6f here, but staying on well.

The stats above are backed up by Instant Expert...

...which shows his defeat as runner-up on his only previous Class 5 start and also highlights the fact that he hasn't raced this far before. Mind you only two of the field have tackled this trip before and neither look dangerous here.

At this point we'd normally look at pace and draw, but with the new tapeta track still in its infancy, we don't have enough reliable data to lean on, so it's 'gut feeling' time. I think that a 6lb penalty shouldn't enough to hold him back here. He's drawn out in 6 of 8 stalls, but that's not an issue as he's a confirmed hold-up horse, so those 1-5 will set off quicker and he'll just tuck in at the back and ride his own race hopefully unhindered and I think he's the one to beat here, ahead of Black Kalanisi and First Charge. Whether I back him or not will depend on the market later, but I suspect we'll be looking at 7/4 to 2/1 about Prince Abu.

Jenson Benson then runs in the 7.15 Chelmsford, a race that we should have more data on, with it being a 7-runner, Class 5, 4yo+ A/W handicap over a left-handed mile on standard polytrack...

Five of his last six runs have been here at Chelmsford, making the frame on every occasion, finishing 13132, including 112 over course and distance having gone down by just a neck last time out. He clearly likes it here, as he has no form at all anywhere else (575853) with the '3'3 being a nine lengths 3rd of 4 at Kempton, admittedly over 1m4f a class higher than today. He has made the frame here in a higher class, when third off a mark of 63 over 1m2f here three starts ago. Back to his preferred mile and with his jockey taking 3lbs off a mark of 64, this is well within his grasp.

Instant Expert points out that it's his Class 5 bow...

...but he does have that Class 4 third place under his belt from November. Going, course and distance are all fine, as you'd expect and his place stats are even better...

...with the only potential issue being that mark of 64, but as I said, he was third at Class 4 off 63 and with today's jockey taking 3lbs off, a Class 5 race is well within his comfort zone. He's drawn slap bang in the middle of the stalls in 4 of 7 and although that's not the best draw (low is king here), plenty of horses have run well from 4 of 7...

Ideally at Chelmsford, you get out quickly and stay out in front as long as you can and the challenge generally eventually comes from the mid-division stayer and mid-div is probably where we'll find Jenson Benson. It's not the best place to run on this track, but with an IV of 1.00, it does as well as you'd expect...

Finery is the one likely to set the fractions and hope to hold on in this one and I suppose the question is whether JB can catch the mare who'll carry 10lbs less than our featured runner. I do think that Jenson Benson is the one I'd want to be on, but Finery's light weight and front-running tactics from favoured stall 1 will make it really tough/tight here with Always Fearless probably the danger to that pair. So much so that I'm going to want 7/2 or even 4/1 to get involved.

Summary

I do like both H4C runners, but I'm never interested in backing winners purely for strike rate purposes, they simply have to be at a price I'm happy with and I'd want at least 7/4 about Prince Abu and 7/2 about Jenson Benson.

At 4.10pm, I could get 7/4 about the Prince, but there was no market for the later race. I'll have to check the odds later for that to see if I can get 7/2 or better about Jenson and I also think that a small saver bet on Finery at 6's or better wouldn't be a bad play either.

 

Racing Insights, Friday 28/01/22

Do you like to back horses with a proven record at the track they're next running on? If so, then the Horses For Courses (H4C) report is just the ticket!

It shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at that track and is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at your discretion. As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

And what's more, it's FREE to ALL readers EVERY Friday!

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

Here's what my settings for the H4C have generated for Friday...

In addition to this report, we also offer the following as our FREE 'races of the day'...

  • 1.15 Doncaster
  • 4.10 Huntingdon
  • 5.15 Wolverhampton
  • 6.30 Dundalk
  • 7.15 Wolverhampton

Golden Force is clearly an interesting runner with a form line at Wolverhampton reading 13132, but all his form is over 8.5f rather than Friday's 7f and he's scheduled to bump into my winner from last Saturday, Tadleel, so I'll serve that and take a look at the first of the 'free' races, which is the highest rated of the five.

The 1.10 Doncaster is a 7-runner, Class 2, 5yo+ Handicap Chase taking on 12 fences over a left-handed 2m½f on Good (softer in places) ground, where one of these will take home the sum of £20,812...

None of the seven come here in top form, but all bar The Big Bite and Gold des Bois have won at least one of their last five outings and the latter has rattled the crossbar in four of his last five, whilst the former looks the weakest here based purely on results. He is however the only one of the seven to have won here previously (over 2m4½f), but all seven have won at similar trips to today. The top two in the weights, Funambule Sivola and Before Midnight step down from Class 1 (Gr3 and Gr2 respectively) action LTO, whilst Fransham's last run was at Class 3. The Big Bite and King D'Argent have been rested for seven and eight weeks respectively, but the other five have been seen in the past month. We've a clutch of in-form riders, whilst the trainers of Funambule Sivola and King D'Argent have been amongst the winners of late.

Funambule Sivola tops the weights off a mark of 152 and comes here after a 26 length defeat at Cheltenham in a Grade 3 chase on New Year's Day. His four runs prior to that defeat, however, saw him land back to back Class 2 handicaps and then back to back Class 1 (Gr1 then Gr2) runner-up positions, so it's highly possible that the poor effort at HQ was a one-off. The drop back in trip should help and trainer, jockey and trainer/jockey are in sparkling form...

Before Midnight was well beaten/outclassed when last home (20 lengths) of four at Kempton last time out. Mind you, that was the Grade 2 Desert Orchid Chase and was also his only defeat in five starts during 2021, after he won a Class 4 bumper and then 3 Class 2 handicaps. A return to that kind of form puts him right in the mix under a jockey in good nick and a yard with a good record over fences...

The Big Bite is 6 from 17 overall, which is decent, but he did win four of his first five starts and is just two from twelve in the last three years. Since taking a 198-day break after a 6th of 9 in a Grade 2 at Cheltenham last April, he has failed to complete either of his starts this season and with his yard having just 1 winner from 46 over the last seven months, you'd want to look elsewhere today.

King D'Argent represents Team Skelton who are, as they always seem to be, in good health and amongst the winners, but this is unlikely to be their latest success. A decent enough chaser, who finished 1F11 from December to March last season taking his mark from 114 to 144, is now in the handicapper's grip and was beaten by some 64 lengths at this class/trip at Newbury LTO. He has been eased 4lbs for his trouble, but I doubt that makes him competitive here.

Fransham had 5 wins and 3 places from 18 runs in a decent enough hurdles career and won at the second attempt over fences last November, but he unseated at Wetherby just after Christmas and was only third of four in a lower grade at the same track a fortnight ago, so he may well have stalled for now.

Moonlighter was a heavy ground winner at Sandown just under a year ago, but was subsequently pulled up in a pair of Class 1 outings either side of a 230-day absence. Since the latter of those Class1 runs, he has been 5th of 8 (14L) and 3rd of 7 (11L) in the last seven weeks, finding little late on in either despite a falling handicap mark. Another 3lb drop puts him 6lbs below his last win, so he's well weighted here, if struggling for form.

Gold Des Bois has won just twice in twenty starts and 1 from 7 over fences despite scoring on his chase debut at Ballinrobe last May. he did. however, finish as a runner-up four times on the bounce at Tramore (hurdles), Kelso, Carlisle and Musselburgh for which his mark rose from 119 to 130 without winning. he then unseated 2 out under pressure last time out and he's probably quite a bit too high in the weights, probably better off at Class 3.

Of the seven above, the ones currently making most appeal are the top two on the card dropping down from Class 1, Funambule Sivola and Before Midnight and their apparent superiority would appear to be reaffirmed via Instant Expert...

...where the only potential fly in the ointment that might stop them filling the frame is the fact that Funambule is carrying 11lbs more than his last win. That said, I think that if these two approach the race correctly, they should be head and shoulders above the other five. The approach suggested, here, is...

and with our field having recent pace scores of...

...it's not hard to envisage that my preferred duo being up with the pace.

Summary

Short and sweet today and it pretty much writes itself. Two horses (Funambule Sivola and Before Midnight) have stood out out all the way through the process and I think they finish in that order too. Whether you think they're good value at 7/4 and 11/4 is up to you, but the latter is certainly competitively priced. Of the others, only Fransham was of much E/W interest, but he would need to drift from his current 15/2 for me to even consider him and then his pace profile would probably still deter me.

Racing Insights, Friday 21/01/22

Friday's free feature is the marvellous Horses for Courses (H4C) report, which shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion. As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

We also have a selection of free racecards each day and for Friday, they are...

  • 1.50 Ludlow
  • 2.15 Southwell
  • 3.15 Market Rasen
  • 5.15 Dundalk
  • 5.45 Dundalk

My settings for the H4C report have generated just one runner of interest...

...and he's likely to be second favourite in a 4-runner, Class 3, 7f A/W handicap. His record here at Newcastle reads 11132 with him seeming to prefer the slower nature of this track. He has won 3 times and placed in a further 3 of 9 runs over 7f on the A/W so far and although yet to land a Class 3, he is a former Class 2 winner and his record over course and distance reads 1112.

He comes here in good nick, having been a narrowly-defeated runner-up in each of his last two starts, yet gets to race off the same mark here. He's top rated by both the assessor and the Geegeez SR figures and will be looking to improve on an already impressive record held by his yard in this type of race, namely Richard Fahey + Newcastle A/W handicaps + Class 3/4 + 5/7f = 20 from 65 (30.77% SR, A/E 2.00) for a Betfair SP profit of 90.77pts at an ROI of 139.65%. These include 8 winners from 18 in fields of 6 runners or less.

There's not much to work with on draw stats in such a small field and I'd be inclined to think there's not a massive bias in a small-field straight seven furlongs, but it seems that those away from the rail fare better, which will suit Tadleel in four of four.

...with those drawn four or higher winning nine times. Tadleel likes to race prominently here at Newcastle and has done so in his two recent narrow defeats and the stats suggest that this also in a positive move for him...

So, with both draw and pace stats in his favour (albeit off a small sample size) and his excellent record here at Newcastle, especially over this trip, there's a compelling case to be made for backing Tadleel if the price is right.

Summary

Tadleel is currently the 11/4 second favourite behind the even money Diavolo, who makes a tapeta debut here and seems a tad short considering not all runners take to the surface. I was expecting 2/1 or 9/4 about Tadleel, so 11/4 is a good price and I'll gladly take that.

Very short and sweet today, but this is how quick you should be able to make a decision on each race.

Good Luck,
Chris

Racing Insights, Friday 14/01/22

Friday's free Geegeez GOLD feature is the wonderful Horses for Courses (H4C) report, which does pretty much what you'd expect and shows the full course history since 2009 of any horse running that has previously had a run at the track. It is sorted by number of wins, but this can be changed to any column at the user’s discretion.

As well as today’s race time, course, horse name, jockey and trainer name, there is a breakdown of runs, wins and places, and profit and loss calculations for both win and each way betting. And as with all Geegeez reports, there is a ‘Today’ and a ‘Tomorrow’ (for the next day’s racing) view.

HINT: Layers might like to look towards the lower end of the report, for those with negative performance at the track.

[Please refer to our User Guide for further information]

In addition to the H4C report, we also have our usual selection of free races and they're going to be...

  • 1.00 Huntingdon
  • 2.20 Sedgefield
  • 3.45 Dundalk
  • 3.50 Sedgefield
  • 6.15 Dundalk

And here's how my H4C report looks...

...and with Road Warrior running in a 'free race', it makes sense to cover the 2.20 Sedgefield today, which is a soft (firmer in places) ground, 7-runner, Class 3, 5yo+ handicap chase, where they'll go left handed for 2m3½f over 16 fences in a bid to land the £9,803 first prize...

Galileo Silver was a decent enough hurdler/bumper (placed in 5 of 7 inc 2 wins), but has come into his own over fences of late and now comes here on a hat-trick after wins by 11 lengths and 16 lengths in his last two races. Up a class and another 9lbs (up 14lbs from 2LR) makes this tougher but not impossible. He's 3 from over 2m4f and 1 from 1 here, so he's on familiar territory and his yard does well both with chasers but also with LTO winners...

The King Of May hasn't won a race since his brief 2019/20 season where he was 2 from 3 including a soft ground win here over 2m½f at this grade. His last three runs have seen him 4th of 6, last of 6 and 4th of 6 again beaten by 13, 20 and 22 lengths with a breathing op seeming to have no effect. He looks set to struggle again, even if his trainer & jockey have a good record here...

Dr Sanderson won four of his first five career starts back in 2018/19, but seemed to lose his way under high handicap marks in the 130's. That mark eventually fell to 112 last November and he duly cashed in with a win over 2m½f at Ayr and followed that up by scoring again over 2m3f off 117. He's up in class here and raised another 5lbs and bearing in mind his LTO win was only by half a length all out, he might not quite get there this time, although the runner-up front LTO won next time out off 4lbs higher.

Ashutor won back to back, soft ground, Class 3 chases at Stratford & Fontwell off marks of 125 & 132 inside 9 days last August but has failed to even make the frame in any of seven starts since, although in fairness five were at Class 2 and one was a grade 3. He's down in class (-1) and weight (-5), but he's in such poor form right now that he's best left alone.

Road Warrior is, of course, our H4C horse, his jockey is in good form as is his yard who have a good record here helped partly by the horse's 3 wins and 3 places from 8 visits. He landed a hat-trick of wins in Feb/Mar/April last year but struggled in two Wetherby runs in October. Two good December runs back here followed and he won over course and distance last time out. He's up in both class and weight, as you'd expect, but he's in great nick and likes the soft ground and should be there or thereabouts once more.

Commis D'Office got off the mark at the tenth time of asking when winning by a length over 2m½f at Southwell last march before bedding down for nine months. His reappearance didn't go so well, up 1 class and 4lbs, he was last home of six, nineteen lengths adrift at Doncaster and whilst he'd be entitled to come on for the run, his first nine races don't suggest he wins here stepping up in trip.

Hideo has only raced once in the UK and did very little bar get round at Wetherby just after Christmas. He was at the back throughout and came home last of four beaten by 43 lengths. But he's not totally new, he was a six-race maiden in France prior to his £10,000 sale and that form wouldn't be good enough here for me, especially as his yard are 1/27 in handicap chases here over the last two years!

Based on the above brief overviews, I like Galileo Silver, Dr Sanderson and Road Warrior (in card order), but I don't like the other four. Maybe Instant Expert will persuade me?

Well, Galileo would like it quicker if truth be told, although he has won on heavy, he's inexperienced at this level, but gets the trip, That 9lb rise is troublesome. The King looks better than I expected and will get the conditions well enough and is well below his last winning mark but has never raced this far. Dr Sanderson's record at this grade is lamentable at 1 win and 1 other place from 11 and a 5lb rise probably rules him out.

Ashutor is the one catching the eye based on going/class form, but it has to be repeated that those wins were largely almost a year ago and he's bang out of form right now. That said, he clearly has ability and is well weighted of 122 here. We know Road Warrior will love it here again, yes he's up 4lbs from his highest winning mark, but his form is good although he's yet to prove himself at this level. Commis D'Office isn't suited by class or the going and Hideo just doesn't seem good enough.

Chasers don't use stalls, of course, so no draw to think about but what about tactics here? Well, the pace analyser for past similar races says...

...that those setting the pace do best from both a win and place perspective by some considerable distance...

 and if we look at how this field has raced in the past...

...it's very hard to get away from the H4C horse!

Summary

Road Warrior is the H4C horse here and he's going to need a career-best effort to win here and hold off likely favourite and hat-trick seeker, Galileo Silver. Aside from the 4lb rise, Road Warrior has ticked boxes all along and a quick look at the market says he's 5/1 with Bet365. I thought he'd be closer to 10/3, so I'll take a piece of that. Galileo Silver will be prominent too, but he's even more of a weight hike to bear and runner-up is where I have him.

If you need a third horse, I think I will stick with Dr Sanderson as he fared well through the analysis and should be up in the leading quartet. Commis D'Office is the dark horse, though. He could take it on and his yard are flying right now, but I'm just not sure enough to put him forward.