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Secret Investor and Potterman Most Interesting In Ladbrokes Trophy Chase

The most interesting race of the day (and most difficult) is potentially the Ladbrokes Trophy Chase at Newbury on Saturday, which will be run at 3pm.

With the weather forecast set fair this looks likely to be run on good ground which could potentially catch a few of these out.

The Shape Of The Race

Looking at the pace analyser over staying trips at Newbury on good or good to soft ground we can see that those that aren’t too far from the pace are likely to be advantaged.

We have a fairly small data set here so this information should be taken with a slight pinch of salt. However most of the data points to a pace advantage. It’s not necessarily easy to make all here but front runners do have an IV slightly above 1 and a decent enough place strike rate of 21.05%.

Prominent racers have performed clear best in this sample. They have an outstanding IV of 2.19 and have been profitable to follow blindly producing a WIN PL of 7.25 and an EW PL of 19.56.

Those that race in mid division have performed well and also produced a profitable EW PL of 17.50 when followed blindly. However they have been very unprofitable to follow for win purposes.

What really stands out here is no held up winners from 66 runners. This run style has the largest number of runners and the least amount of success. Even the place strike rate is less than half as strong as that of prominent racers and only slightly better than half as good compared to mid division. It’s very likely that an extreme hold up ride will be a massive negative in this contest.

Looking at the pace map for this race, there looks to be no shortage of pace which will likely compromise the chances of anything that wants to lead exclusively.

It looks highly likely that Two For Gold is going to be the one that leads this field. He’s going to have to go off pretty fast to do so and he’ll be racing over two furlongs further than he’s ever gone before. He’s also jumped and hung right in the past so there are enough question marks here against him. There are a number of runners that look set to try to race prominently here and they include several of the market fancies.

Those nearer the head of the betting who could be more inconvenienced by their race position include the likes of Kildisart, The Conditional and Cloth Cap.

The Angles

Instant Expert

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We can see from the above place data that several of the market leaders are yet to run here at Newbury. There are also some distance and field size question marks over a few of these, particularly for Two For Gold and Secret Investor who are yet to race over this distance and have never encountered this big a field before.

Black Op is yet place in two outings in 16+ runner fields whilst Copper Head has only manged to place in one run from four in class 1 races which is a worry. Mister Malarkey’s poor record in big fields is another stat that stands out here.

With most of the market leaders generally scoring well enough with their place data we might gain a bit more insight by looking just at the win data.

We’re seeing a few more question marks here now for win purposes. Vinndication remains a solid choice whilst Kildisart and Aye Right look vulnerable in this class. Black Op looked relatively reliable from the place data but now looks a poor choice considering the win data.

Copperhead doesn’t have the best place record in class 1 races but he has previously won a class 1 race and he has a pretty solid record in most of the criteria here.

One at a bigger price who is beginning to look interesting is La Bague Au Roi. She has the joint second best win ratio on this kind of ground, the clear second best win record in this class (only behind the early favourite) and she has won all three starts here at Newbury.

Related Form

One race that could hold the key here is the Ultima Handicap Chase from this year’s Cheltenham Festival. The winner (The Conditional), the third (Vinndication) and the fourth (Kildisart) all reoppose here and are all near the head of the market.

The Conditional stayed on really well up the hill, especially considering he made a mistake two from home. He’s generally been seen to best effect on softer ground although he was runner up in this last year, albeit off a 9lb lower mark. He has previously been withdrawn because of good ground and is conceding race fitness to many of these so could be vulnerable in this.

Vinndication was just over 2.5 lengths behind Kildisart at Cheltenham and is now 3lbs better off. Kildisart had a lovely pipe opener last month over hurdles and will enjoy this ground. He also had the cheekpieces back on that he wore at Cheltenham.

He is arguably a more solid choice than Vinndication who sports first time cheekpieces here. Vinndication’s sire, Vinnie Roe, has a 11.93% strike rate in national hunt races with his offspring and that only drops to 11.76% when running in this combination of cheekpieces and a tongue tie so there is a very good chance he is no worse for it at least.

Vinndication should be better placed in this race though which makes deciding between the pair difficult.

Hot Form

Secret Investor’s winning seasonal debut is working out well.

The third has won since and the runner up (Potterman, who reopposes here) was only a short head away from victory on his next start. Secret Investor won that race comfortably and is only up 6lbs here (due to go up another 3lbs) which underestimates the strength of that form. Potterman runs off the same mark again and is due to go up 5lbs following this race.

Black Op was a 4.75 lengths 4th to Imperial Aura last time out and that runner has since won a Grade 2. He was also less than 2 lengths behind Champ here last season. Aye Right was runner up on his first start of the season in a Kelso handicap and the winner of that race, Nuts Well, has won again since.

Other Angles

Amongst the most in form trainers here are Kim Bailey (Vinndication and Two For Gold) who has a 25.42% win strike rate and 50.85% place strike rate in the past 30 days from 52 runners, Paul Nicholls (Secret Investor and Danny Whizzbang) who has a 28% win strike rate and 52% place strike rate in the same period from 125 runners and Anthony Honeyball (Regal Encore) who has a 27.78% win strike rate and 41.67% place strike rate in the past 30 days from 36 runners.

Regal Encore also has some other trainer stats in his favour. Anthony Honeyball has a 2.07 IV here at Newbury over the past 5 years and an IV of 1.98 in handicaps.

There is concerning trainer form from Warren Greatrex (La Bague Au Roi) who has had no wins and just three places from 32 runners in the past 30 days.

Aye Right is interesting from a sire snippet perspective. His sire has a strong record in marathon races (21.35% win strike rate, 15.18 WIN PL). The same goes for Copperhead and Potterman whose sire has a 27.59% win strike rate and 15.0 WIN PL over this distance range.

The Conditional’s trainer, David Bridgewater, does well in both handicaps in general and handicaps in this distance range with an IV of 1.68 for both. Danny Whizzbang goes here for Paul Nicholls and Sean Bowen who have a 27.27% win strike rate here as a combination over the past 5 years.

The Verdict

The hot form and related form of Secret Investor (10/1) and Potterman (18/1) make the pair extremely interesting. Secret Investor does have to prove himself in very big fields but he has finished 1st and 2nd in 13 and 14 runner fields in the past so it really shouldn’t be an issue. His trainer is in excellent form and he’s likely to be very well placed, just off the lead. He did jump right last time though which is a slight concern but he’ll love the ground.

Potterman might not be so well placed, although if not prominent he shouldn’t be too far off the pace. He’s extremely consistent and seems well suited by marathon races on good ground, in line with his sire stats. He’s a bigger price than Secret Investor and is a bit more proven from a stamina perspective so is preferred and fancied to reverse form with Secret Investor this time around.

Vinndication and Kildisart should run well and La Bague Au Roi may have been interesting but her trainer’s form is a concern.

Sat TV Trends: 29th February 2020

We’ve had better LIVE Saturday ITV race days, but with the Cheltenham Festival on the horizon then it’s no surprise the quality is slightly down – Newbury, Kelso and Doncaster provide the LIVE ITV action this week, and, as always, we’ve got all the races covered from a trends and stats angle.



**NOTE** - Newbury's Saturday card has been called off due to a waterlogged track

2.05 – William Hill Supporting Greatwood Veterans´ Handicap Chase (Qualifier) (Leg 3 of Veterans´ Chase Series) Cl2 3m2f110y ITV4

9/10 – Returned 9/1 or shorter
8/10 – Aged 10 years-old
8/10 – Won over at least 3m (chase)
6/10 – Favourites unplaced
5/10 – Carried 11-4 or more in weight
4/10 – Finished in the top 3 in their last race
2/10 – Won their last race
1/10 – Winning favourites
Carole’s Destrier (6/1) won the race in 2019
Trainer David Pipe won the race in 2015 and 2016
Trainer Paul Nicholls won the race in 2013 and 2017
The average winning SP in the last 6 renewals is 6/1

3.15– William Hill Supporting Greatwood Gold Cup Handicap Chase (Grade 3) Cl1 2m4f ITV4

15/16 – Carried 11-5 or less in weight
14/16 – Won by a horse aged 8 or younger
14/16 – Had run within the last 6 weeks
13/16 – Had won between 1-4 times over fences previously
13/16 – Raced at Newbury (hurdles or fences) previously
13/16 – Won over this trip previously
11/16 – Officially rated 139 or higher
11/16 – Placed in the top 5 last time out
10/16 – Winning distance – 2 lengths or less
9/16 – Favourites placed
9/16 – Won by the Paul Nicholls stable
8/16 – Winners that came from the top 3 in the market
8/16 – Won by a French-bred horse
7/16 – Won by a horse aged 8 years-old
6/16 – Went onto run at the Cheltenham Festival (no winners)
5/16 – Won by an Irish-bred horse
5/16 – Favourites  to win (1 joint)
3/16 – Ridden by Nick Scholfield
2/16 – Won by the Pipe yard
2/16 – Ridden by Barry Geraghty
2/16 – Ridden by Sam Twiston-Davies
1/16 – Won their last race
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 9/1
Note: The 2006 renewal was a dead-heat



1.50 – 888Sport Handicap Hurdle Cl2 3m96y ITV4

Only 7 previous runnings
7/7 – Aged 9 or younger
6/7 – Ran in the last 6 weeks
6/7 – Priced 9/2 or shorter in the betting
6/7 – Finished 4th or better last time out
6/7 – Carried 10-13 or more in weight
6/7 – Irish bred
5/7 – Ran in the last 3 weeks
5/7 – Favourites place in the top two
4/7 – Finished 1st or 2nd last time out
4/7 – Ran at Doncaster (2) or Ascot (2) last time out
3/7 – Winning favourites
2/7 – Aged 9 years-old
2/7 – Won last time out

2.25 – 888Sport Bet £10 Get £30 Handicap Chase Cl2 2m90y ITV4

8 previous runnings
8/8 – Priced 15/2 or shorter
6/8 – Aged between 6-8 years-old
5/8 – Carried 11-1 or less in weight
5/8 – Placed 1st or 2nd last time out
3/8 – Raced at Musselburgh last time out
2/8 – Trained by Brian Ellison
2/8 – Trained by Paul Nicholls


3.00 – 888Sport Take ‘Em On Mares´ Novices´ Hurdle (Listed Race) Cl1 3m96y ITV4

6 previous runnings
6/6– Returned 4/1 or shorter in the betting
5/6 – Finished 1st or 2nd last time out
5/6 – Aged 5 or 6 years-old
5/6 – Favourites placed in the top 2
5/6 – Ran in the last 7 weeks
3/6 - Won by the favourite (1 co-fav)
3/6 – Irish bred


3.35 – 888Sport Grimthorpe Chase (A Handicap Chase) Cl2 3m2f ITV4

15/15 – Aged 8 or older
14/15 – Won over at least 3m (fences) before
13/15 – Won no more than 4 times over fences
12/15 – Ran within the last 8 weeks
11/15 – Carried 10-12 or less in weight
11/15 – Aged 9 or older
10/15 – From the top 3 in the betting
10/15 – Priced 11/2 or shorter in the betting
10/15 – Rated 131 or less
9/15 – Placed in the top 3 last time out
7/15 – Raced over fences at Doncaster before (3 winners)
7/15 – Won their last race
7/15 – Irish bred
4/15 – Went onto run in that season’s Grand National (no winners)
2/15 – Favourites
8 year-olds have won 3 of the last 5 runnings
Chidswell won the race in 2019
Definitely Red won this race in 2017




2.45 – William Hill Premier Kelso Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2) Cl1 (4 yo+) 2m2f ITV4

10/11 – Aged 7 or younger
10/11 – Favourites placed in the top three
10/11 – Raced in the last 7 weeks
9/11 – Placed in the top 4 last time out
8/11 – Ran in the last 4 weeks
7/11 – Returned 6/1 or shorter in the betting
7/11 – Had won at least twice over hurdles before
6/11 – Won last time out
6/11 – Had raced at Kelso before
5/11 – Irish bred
3/11 – Winning favourite
3/11 – Ran at Musselburgh last time out
2/11 – Trained by Lucinda Russell


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