Racing Insights, 10th June 2021

Wednesday's short-priced favourite won relatively comfortably in the end, but we missed out on the forecast as Tinchoo could only finish third. Thursday's feature of the day is full free access to the Instant Expert tab for all readers for all races, including our races of the day which are...

  • 1.25 Yarmouth
  • 2.45 Nottingham
  • 5.30 Yarmouth
  • 5.40 Uttoxeter
  • 5.50 Leopardstown
  • 6.30 Haydock

The best of the UK races above is the second on the list, so today we focus on the 2.45 Nottingham, a 7-runner, Class 3, 4yo+ Flat Handicap over 6f on Good To Firm (good in places) ground and it's worth £5,927 to the winner. A brief look at the race suggested Muscika might be the main fancy, but let's delve further into the card itself...

Form : Only One Night Stand and Dancinginthewoods have a win in their recent formline and we've no LTO winners.

Class Movers : Muscika is down one class, whilst Typhoon Ten, Wentworth Falls, Dancinginthewoods and Caser key are all stepping up a grade.

Course/Distance record : All have won over this 6f trip, but only Wentworth Falls has won a race here at Nottingham.

Trainer Form : Positives for Lethal Lunch & Dancinginthewoods, but negative for Case Key

Jockey Form : Positives for One Night Stand & Dancinginthewoods, but negative for Case Key & Muscika

Last Race : All have raced in the last 45 days with Lethal Lunch, Muscika, Typhoon Ten and Case key rested for less than a fortnight.

OR/Weight/SR Spread : Top OR is 23lbs higher than lowest, but Muscika will carry top weight after claims and have 19lbs more than Case Key. The SR spread is greater at 36 from high to low, but the top six of the seven are only 21pts apart.

Lethal Lunch is probably better on the A/W (4 from 12) than he is on turf (2/16) but has been running pretty well over the last six weeks or so and only went down by a length and a quarter off this mark last time out. His turf form is a worry, though, but his yard are in decent nick.

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Muscika paid the price for doing too much early on when 2nd of 9 at Epsom five days ago. He was only beaten by a neck, though, behind a horse rated 4lbs higher and at a higher grade than this. He goes off the same mark today and running to his mark should be enough if the ground isn't a little too quick for him.

Typhoon Ten's last win was in a similar Class 3, 6f, Gd to Fm handicap off a mark of 86 in early August 2020. He has suffered 13 defeats since then but has finished 332 in his last three outings as his mark continues to drop. Luke Catton will take 7lbs off a mark of 87 and that should make him really competitive here.

Wentworth Falls was only beaten by 2.25 lengths at Thirsk last time out, giving a really good account of himself, but he's not getting any younger and stepped up in class off the same mark, you can only see him finding this more difficult.

One Night Stand won two of his last four in 2020, both over 6f and off marks of 73 and 80. He returned to action just over a month ago after a 21-week break and could only manage 16th of 18 off 85 (-3). He's down another pound but has no jockey claim, so technically 2lbs worse off and he's one to trust here off that mark, even if today's jockey (S de Sousa) rides this track well.

Dancinginthewoods won on debut but then didn't win any of the next nine starts, but has since finished first and then fourth in back to back Class 4, 6f handicaps at Leicester off marks of 78 and 81 respectively. It was good to soft for the 4th place LTO and he's much better on good to firm. A mark of 81 is probably still beyond him, but quicker ground will help and his yard have fared well here in the past

Case Key is the lowest rated horse in the race and he's fairly modest at best. 6 from 57 so far with just one win per year from 2015-20. Law of averages says he wins one this year, but I doubt it'll be this one. Reappeared 13 days ago after a 221 day absence to finish last of 6, beaten by nearly 40 lengths over 5f at Pontefract and now up in class of the same mark, he's not for me. His yard do well here, but they can't win them all!

Muscika still looks a fairly decent choice after the above, but plenty look like being capable of getting involved today. The only two I'd rule out would be One Night Stand and Case Key who should be the last pair home here. Overall and relevant form is available to us via Instant Expert, a far better traffic light system than the UK travel one!

What struck me first about the above two sets of data was the poor strike rates for a Class 3 contest. Further inspection showed just 32 previous wins for these seven runners at a strike rate of a mere 13.6% from 235 combined runs, highlighting inconsistency more than anything else. What that does do, though, is remind us that none of these are that much better than the rest and most of them could win. Lethal Lunch and One Night Stand are both 11lbs higher than thier last success, making this tough.

Draw Stats...

Stalls 1 & 2 are the place to be with almost 53% (18/34) of winners and 39.7% (31/78) of placers coming from those traps, which could be good for the with the extra 11lb weight, Lethal Lunch & Case Key!

Pace/Run Style Stats...

Those who race just off the pace fare best from a win perspective, although hold up horses just shade the place percentages. Leaders have an IV of 0.93, which is almost par and therefore deemed reasonable. The mid-division sample size isn't big enough to be considered reliable enough for me.

Draw/Run Style Combos...

Unsurprisingly, the low drawn prominent racer fares best, with the low hold up horse also winning more than once in five. All draw sectors and all pace profiles have at least one area of green, but mid-drawn hold up horses have struggled.

Race Heat Map Prediction...

It looks like Muscika will attempt to set the pace from stall 6 and that's the right thing to do from that draw. I'd then expect Case Key and Typhoon Ten to tuck right in behind, just ahead of One Night Stand, but I'd then expect Case Key and One Night stand to run out of steam in the final quarter mile and eventually go back through the pack. We've no real hold-up horse here, so even if Wentworth falls ends up as back marker, he's still likely to catch those two as they come back to the field.


This could well be a tight little affair between a bunch of unreliable horses not used to winning, but I'd expect that Musicka and Typhoon ten would be the main protagonists. The former is likely to be the favourite and I've not got much separating them, but I have a slight preference for Typhoon Ten to overturn the fav  here.

So, it's the 7/2 Typhoon Ten for me ahead of the 7/4 Muscika for me. As for the rest, Lethal Lunch's 7/1 looks generous.

Racing Insights, 2nd June 2021

My 1-2 at Leicester on Tuesday had to settle for 2nd and 3rd, as the talented Spirit of Bermuda finally behaved herself and go on with the job in hand. I had said this about her..."has ability, but also has some temperament issues..." I highlighted that she'd won a Class 2 previously and she was bang at it today, straight out of the stalls and away, hitting the front with a furlong to run and then proved unstoppable. Close but no cigar.

Wednesday's feature of the day is the Trainer Stats report, whilst our free races will be...

  • 3.40 Nottingham
  • 4.20 Wexford
  • 5.10 Kempton
  • 6.00 Curragh
  • 7.40 Curragh
  • 8.30 Ripon

The first of that list is the best of the UK races, so today's piece will focus on the 3.40 Nottingham, an 8-runner, Class 4, 3yo Flat handicap over 1m½f on good ground. The prize is £4,347 and here are the contenders...

This field has just 31 prior runs between them, but all bar the bottom two on the card (who are a combined 0 from 11) have won at least once already.  Sevenal and Qaasid both won last time out. They are both making a handicap debut here, as is George Morland, whilst this will be a second handicap start for Ilzza'eem and Dark Company, who drops down a class to run here, but Sevenal, Qaasid, George Morland all move up a grade.

It's 30 weeks or so since Qaasid and Dark Company were last seen, but the rest of field have raced in the past 2 to 6 weeks, as of today (Tuesday). We have a 10lb weight spread according to the assessor and our SR ratings suggest a tight affair between Dark Company and Siam Fox.

The handlers of Ilza'eem, Qaasid, Bertie's Wish ad Dark Company all have positive track profiles, as do the jockeys of Ilza'eem and Siam Fox. From a recent form perspective, Qaasid's trainer and the jockeys on Sevenal, Qaasid, Bertie's Wish and Siam Fox are of note.

Qaasid has never raced on turf, which is why he has no SR figure.

Ilza'eem was a runner-up on his first two starts. both over 7f before winning at Redcar over a mile in early April. He then made his handicap bow at Wolverhampton at Class 3 off a mark of 89 and was last home of seven over today's trip. That was 15 days before this race and although he's down in class and weight (-2lbs), he'll need to come on for that run now back on turf.

Sevenal was a decent runner-up over 7f on heavy ground on his only 2yo start and was then beaten by 5 lengths over 1m2f on his return from 5 months off the track, but followed up with a battling win over this trip a month ago. He now wears cheekpieces for the first time and looks to have a decent chance off an opening mark of 84.

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Qaasid was well beaten on debut last August and was a modest 3rd of 9 a month later, both over 7f  at Class 5. He then stepped up to a mile to win another Class 5 contest at Kempton. On that run, you'd think he'd have a good chance here, but he's up in class, he hasn't raced on turf before and hasn't been seen for 30 weeks. I don't think his mark gives him much room for error either.

George Morland is still very unexposed after just two starts that saw him win on debut (C5, 7f) at Kempton and then was narrowly beaten after a better effort on his turf debut at Salisbury, also at C5, 7f. Up in trip and class here, but he already looks better than an opening mark of 82 and could go well here.

Bertie's Wish is probably better than 9th of 12 last time out would suggest on his second handicap run. He won a maiden (C6, 7f) on his third start and then also won on handicap debut at this class/trip off a mark of 76. He either didn't handle the extra 5lbs or the softer ground last time out, but goes off the same mark on better ground here, so you'd expect him to be nearer this time.

Dark Company was 3rd of 9 on debut over 6f on soft ground (Pontefract, C5), but won a 7f novice event next time out prior to finishing 3rd of 8 in a Nursery at Wolverhampton (7f) at this level. He runs off the same mark here (79), but has a seven month lay-off and 1.5f further to deal with here and his two best runs were on the A/W. Place material, though.

Siam Fox is 0 from 5 so far and after starting out well finishing 223 in Novice contests seemed to lose his way in two handicap races 180 days apart, beaten by 9L and 8L at this class/trip. Eased 2lbs but I'm not sure that's enough.

Invincibly is now 0 from 6, but has made the frame in three of his four starts on the Flat and was only half a length behind the winner, Maison de York at Redcar last time out and that one has turned out and won again since off a mark of 76. Invincibly runs here off 77 and I'm just a little concerned that the 2lb rise is too much, as I don't think he's as good as the one he lost to LTO.

Just 31 combined runs between this group and many of those have been on the A/W, but relevant Flat form looks like this...

Unsurprisingly, there's not that much to go on there and the short summaries of each runner are probably more informative at the moment, even if they do lean on my own personal opinions slightly.

The draw stats here suggest a slight benefit for mid-drawn horses for win purposes, but the higher drawn runners make the frame more often, but to be honest, that's not screaming draw bias to me...

...and when we look at individual stalls, treating 8&9 as one unit, of course...

...stalls 3 & 5 don't look great but with those in 2, 4 and 6 doing well enough, I'm happy to count those as anomalies and say there's no real draw bias here.

As for pace, again there's no clear ideal place to race. Prominent runners just about fare best, but the message from Nottingham is don't dwell! Hold up horses have a really poor record...

And with three of the four run style all performing better than par and there being no real draw bias, it's therefore unsurprising  that the pace/draw heatmap has a huge swathe of green across it...

The low leader figure is interesting and that might be due to the tightness of the final bend causing those on the rail to check their stride for a moment to not hit the apex too quickly. Such a large swathe of green would say that plenty of runners in any given race would stand a decent chance of winning and that definitely seems to be the case here, based on their last couple of runs...

Of the eight, only George Morland and Dark Company are close to the red zones and in the case of the latter, that's because stall 3 is a low draw in a 9-runner contest. We've only 8 runners, so he's technically mid-drawn in dark green and arguably best drawn of all based on his race positioning.


As with many 3yo contests with inexperienced/unexposed sorts, another factor kicks in : gut feeling. And based upon what I wrote about each runner and the limited data from the tools, I think I want George Morland and Sevenal as my first two home. The former has run well on both occasions and looks favourably treated off a mark of 82, whilst Sevenal impressed by winning gamely last time out and is also probably better than 84.

So, for me it's the 6/1 George Morland to narrowly beat the 5/2 fav Sevenal.

As for third, I see it being very tight between Dark Company, Ilza'eem and even Qaasid/Bertie's Wish. I wouldn't be surprised if they all finished in a heap, but long layoff aside it'd be Dark Company for me at 9/1. He's just about E/W price there, but that's a personal choice, of course.

Stat of the Day, 30th September 2020

Tuesday's pick was...

8.10 Wolverhampton : Critical Thinking @ 8/1 BOG 6th at 8/1 (In touch, pushed along over 1f out, not trouble leaders)

Wednesday's pick runs in the...

3.30 Nottingham :

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

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


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Andaleep @ 4/1 BOG an 11-runner, Class 3, Flat Handicap for 3yo+ over 1m2f on Good ground worth £12,129 to the winner... 


I'm going to keep it short and hopefully sweet today, starting with the racecard... we bid a fond farewell to SotD with an in-form 4 yr old gelding hailing from an in-form yard with a good 2 year record on the Flat (and over middle distances) albeit from small sample sizes.

Andaleep has been first past the post in each of his last three starts (although subsequently disqualified on the first of the three), all over this 1m2f trip and he's 2 from 2 at 16-20 days rest and 2 from 2 under today's jockey William Carver.

Trainer Graeme McPherson is undoubtedly best known for his NH exploits, having sent out 796 NH runners since the start of 2016, whilst his record on the Flat over the same period stands at...

...and these include of relevance today...

  • 6 from 18 (33.3%) at 1m2f to 1m6f
  • 6 from 13 (46.2%) at odds of 9/4 to 11/1
  • 5 from 7 (71.4%) at 16-20 dslr
  • 3 from 8 (37.5%) with 4 yr olds
  • 3 from 5 (60%) over 1m2f
  • 2 from 4 (50%) with LTO winners
  • 2 from 4 (50%) in September
  • 2 from 2 (100%) for jockey William Carver
  • and 1 from 2 (50%) here at Nottingham...

...whilst those sent off at 9/4 to 11/1 over 1n2f to 1m6f some 16-20 days after last run have finished 121111 with the 83.3% strike rate yielding profits of 26.75pts (+445.8% ROI) at Industry SP or 30pts (+500% ROI) at Betfair SP, including 3 wins from 3 at today's trip...

...steering us gently towards... a final 1pt win bet on Andaleep @ 4/1 BOG as was widely available at 2.00am Wednesday, but as always please check your own BOG status (*some firms are not BOG until later in the morning)To see a small sample of odds offered on this race... here for the betting on the 3.30 Nottingham

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

Here is today's racecard


On behalf of Matt and myself, I'd like to thank you all for your support and loyalty over the years, especially when things haven't always gone our way : I really do appreciate it. The lack of pressure from the readers have ensured that I could approach each new day without a monkey on my back and I hope I can count on the same leeway/latitude for our new venture.


Racing Insights, 30th September 2020

One of the elements that separates the betting improvers from the stay-the-samers is reviewing matters after the fact. Because Racing Insights is more of a stream of punting consciousness than a tipping column, it allows us to - Janus-like - look back as well as forward. That's a verbose way of saying we'll include any observations from the previous day which might be useful in future. We might call that Racing Hindsights...!

Racing Hindsights

Looking at yesterday's inaugural offering - link here - the draw/pace combination did for form horses Equidae, as predicted, though the market also foresaw that, his odds drifting from 7/2 to an SP of 15/2. He finished 11th of 14 having got shunted wide and never securing an effective racing position.

At the sharp end, I overlooked the winner - and favourite - Ugo Gregory on the basis that I didn't want to be with a hold up horse. As it happened, there was a lot of pace, more than expected, and that set things up for the well-drawn waited-with victor.

A couple of takeaways: firstly, in this race, Nobby Nuts was ridden more patiently than has recently been the case, and encountered a little trouble in running. He stayed on for a never nearer sixth, and might have been fourth with a clear passage. He wasn't unlucky as such, as he'd have never troubled the first two, but he goes in my tracker with the following comment:

Nothing to go overboard on, but could be a fair price and offer a bit of value in a big field soon.

The second point, and a good one for me personally, was that although the prominent low draws didn't land the spoils in the featured seven-furlong handicap, they did in the other two races. Both Highfield Princess (11/4) and Redarna (13/2) were very well backed (including by me 🙂 ) and won comfortably. The takeaway is that Ayr's seven furlong range is one where low/prominent is a setup from which to find a bet; and kudos to Dave Renham for flagging that. His work is something we may return to regularly.


Racing Insights, 30th September 2020

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To Wednesday's racing. Feature of the Day is the Trainer Statistics report, which is free to all registered subscribers. Register here if you need to.

Wednesday's free Races of the Day are

Let's take a look at the Trainer Stats report, Course 5 Year view. I have some filters set, which are 15 runs minimum, A/E 1.25 and IV 1.5. If you want to know more about those metrics, you should check out this important post. Just understanding these numbers - and putting them to work for you - will give you a head start on almost all punters. Obviously, feel free to set these filters up in a way that suits your personal tastes.

I've clicked the A/E column heading to sort by that column, largest first, and that gives me a list of trainers and their horses to look at more closely.

Clicking the 'Show/Hide Inline' button reveals the actual runners:

I'm immediately struck by the top row which tells me that Saeed bin Suroor has a 50% strike rate at Nottingham in the last five years. When I click on the little black down arrow to the left hand side of his name, it shows me his actual runners. (This past history table can be sorted by any column, so you can see, for example, whether they were all shorties, or for a particular jockey, or if the winners were a long time ago, etc).

There's lots of recency in the winner column, and for a range of jockeys. Most were at the 5/1 or shorter price point - no odds on site at the time of writing - so we might want to focus at the sharp end.

Picking between the quartet is bound to lead to egg on face, but I will highlight one of them for the sake of this piece. Global Hero had a long time off and was entitled to need his comeback run. We can see from the inline trainer data below that bin Suroor's record with horses having their second start in a handicap (note also the HC2 indicator adjacent to the horse's name) is very strong - 28% - as is his record when he steps one up markedly in trip, nigh on 30% of those having won in the last two years.

It's a competitive race, and a good race, too; but he is interesting as a starting point.



That's all for today. Remember, these articles will always have a beginning (the retrospective on the previous day) and a middle (some thoughts and observations around potentially playable angles for the following day's racing), but they may be lacking an end - a pick.

Sometimes they will, sometimes they won't. As you'll doubtless already be tired of reading, that's not the purpose of Racing Insights.

Do please leave a comment with any thoughts or questions you have, and we'll try to address them in subsequent days.


p.s. Racing Insights 'officially' replaces Stat of the Day from tomorrow evening with the first day's racing featured being 1st October.