The Phase 8 Wishlist… (plus confirmed items)

Phase 8 of Geegeez Gold is coming...

Phase 8 of Geegeez Gold is coming...

As you'll know if you've been a visitor for any length of time, Geegeez is committed to providing the most state-of-the-art racecards in Britain, with some of the most cutting edge form tools to support them. In seven phased releases so far, that package - known as Gold - has delivered to its hundreds of users:

Racecards

  • Inline form; trainer and jockey stats; head to head records; breeding, sales and form comments; and trainer/jockey form indicators
  • 'Then What?' shows the subsequent performance of all runners from form lines in UK/Ire races
  • Configurable going to enable the user to respond to, or 'second guess', any going changes

Full Form Filters

  • Filter the form for any horse, trainer or jockey by race code, going, distance, course, class, trainer/jockey; and by recent run or layoff; and by wins, places, or unplaced efforts

Instant Expert

  • View the entire form history for every runner in a race by today's conditions. Configure the range of going, class, distance and field size you're interested in (defaults to today's exact conditions)
  • Search by win or place, and order by any column you choose

Pace Analysis

  • See how each horse has raced (i.e. led, prominent, midfield or held up) in each of its last four UK races
  • Establish where the 'pockets' of pace are in big field races
  • Understand if a race is likely to be truly run (i.e. with speed from the start), or falsely run (i.e. a crawl and then a dash to the line)

Odds Check

  • Compare odds from ten of the UK's major bookmakers, and click through directly to get the best odds without fear of having your account marked, as Oddschecker users are
  • Use our handy 'Best Odds' column to avoid tracking across the grid to find the best prices

Reports

  • The Shortlist and Best Of highlight the pick of the day's 'Instant Expert' profiles
  • Hot Form showcases the best - and worst (for all you layers) - form lines in terms of how the horses subsequently ran
  • Trainer, Jockey, and Trainer/Jockey combo reports offer four views each: 14 day form, 30 day form, 365 day course form, and course form since 2009.
  • Horses For Courses shows the course record for every horse running at a track at which it's previously raced
  • Head to Head shows the record of every horse against the other horses in its race today

Tracker

  • Our easy to use Tracker tool allows you not just to follow horses, but also trainers and jockeys, and to see where they're entered in the next five days

Premium Tips

  • Stat of the Day needs little introduction. It continues to go from strength to strength, and is currently over 70 points up in 2014 (including 56.92 points profit in the first half of the year, following on from profits in 2012 and 2013). These profits are derived from a single one point bet per day.
First half 2014 profits for Stat of the Day

First half 2014 profits for Stat of the Day

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That's why I'm so proud of what we've put together for Geegeez Gold users. And I have always had a firm belief in re-investing back into the user community, which is why I'm already well into the Phase Eight (!) wishlist. Actually, some of the wishlist is a bit firmer than that, and some elements are confirmed 'runners'.

Here is what's confirmed in, and what is under consideration, starting with

THE BIG ANNOUNCEMENT...

Ratings

I searched high and low - and sought your input - for a rating set that I could license as part of the Gold racecards package. The criteria were simple:

1. The ratings had to be proven to be effective, and

2. The ratings should not already be so 'mainstream' as to immediately be factored into the horse's odds, thus negating any potential value benefit

I'm delighted to say that I've agreed a deal with a chap who is a PhD in Artificial Intelligence, and whose ratings are the output from a continuously learning algorithm. I'll introduce him, and his numbers, in due course, but the start date for publication of this extra info is set for 1st September, all other things being equal.

This is probably the single most requested addition to the cards, so I'm delighted to be able to bring these data into the Gold package. To subscribe to these ratings direct would cost 75% of the Gold subscription fee and, as you might imagine, it's not a cheap deal to license them. But it is another great leap forward for the Gold subscribers' value proposition.

Race Of The Day

Although the vast majority of Phase 8 work is for Gold subscribers, I never forget the amazing community of Geegeez readers - many of whom have been following me online since I started in 2006 (long service medals very well earned!!!) - and so the next phase will include a 'Race Of The Day' feature.

This will, as the name suggests, be one race - the second most valuable on any given day - where all Gold functionality is available to all registered free subscribers. That way, you'll get a chance to see for yourself what's included before you decide whether to take a trial or not. Or you can just enjoy the daily freebie, along Double Dutch and my editorial blurb, on the house. 😉

Feature Of The Day

This is 85% confirmed, subject to establishing the technical why's and wherefore's of making it happen. As well as one race a day with all Gold functionality available, I'm also hoping to offer one feature a day across all races to free subscribers. Again, the idea is the same: to allow non-Gold (free) subscribers to get closer to some of the other winner-getting features that form part of Gold.

For instance, we might have Stat of the Day available to all registered users on a Monday; The Shortlist report available to all registered users on Tuesdays; Trainer Stats reports available to all on Wednesdays; and so on. Pretty good, right?

Smart new look...

As well as adding those new bits, I'm also working with a guy whose remit is to a) smarten the site up, b) make the site more mobile and tablet friendly, and c) make the site quicker.

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As Geegeez has developed it has outgrown its current 'skin' and needs something a bit more 2014, and a bit less 2012 (two years is a VERY long time on the internet!). For those with an interest or awareness in such things, we're looking at a more responsive theme, and a crisper UX. In plain English, things should be quicker, work better, and look nicer. 🙂

One other thing you will probably notice soon is a new 'front door' on the site, which is designed to encourage new visitors to join Geegeez' mailing list and trial the Gold subscription. As you're probably on my mailing list, and have probably at least trialled Geegeez Gold, there will be a button/link on that 'front door' to enable you to get straight to the good stuff. But I'll explain all about that nearer the time.

**

So those are the confirmed, or nearly confirmed, items. And below is a list of 'possibles' for Phase 8.

User Control

At the moment, the user experience is a bit 'basic' for Gold subscribers. I want to improve that, by allowing some elements of how you interact configurable. In other words, you can define how you want information to be presented.

For instance, let's say you look for a certain set of criteria on the Trainer/Jockey Combo report (as I do), wouldn't it be great if you could define the filters for that data in your 'My Geegeez' area, and every time you logged in and went to the Trainer/Jockey Combo report, you saw only the stuff you're interested in?

Now, I'm certain this is possible, but I'm not certain how easy or difficult it is to implement this, which is why this is a wishlist item currently. That comment applies to most of the below, too.

Report Filters

Speaking of report filters, I'd like for each report to have a set of dropdown lists at the top to enable users to select minimum/maximum number of runners; and minimum number of wins and/or places.

These 'local' filters could override the 'global' filters defined in the user control if the user wanted to changed them, but they would default to whatever had been defined in 'My Geegeez', or to 'All' (i.e. as now) if nothing has been defined in 'My Geegeez'.

Make sense? If not, don't worry for now. It will all become clear as/when it happens.

Full Form Filters

I'd like to add Hcap/Non-Hcap to the Horse filter, so that a user can look at a horse's form specifically in - or not in - handicap company. And I'd also like to add a 'Trainer' option to the horse filter, so that users can see how a horse has performed since its current trainer took charge.

Course Information

We're getting close to having a meaningful set of definitions of the 'handedness' (i.e. left-handed or right-handed, or figure of eight, or straight) of each distance at each course; and we're also nearing completion of definitions of the constitution (i.e. sharp, galloping, flat, undulating, etc) of each course.

Once I'm happy that we've got those nailed down, we'll incorporate them into the race cards somehow. I'd like to add to the Instant Expert, but there are space constraints with the current layout.

Class Definitions on Instant Expert

This has been a mild irritation for a while, for two reasons. Firstly, we've never got to the bottom of defining adequately a 'class' structure for Irish racing. They don't have explicit classes like we do, but they do have ratings bands for handicaps, prize money for all non-handicaps; and Group/Graded and Listed events. So, it should be possible to define a class structure.

Because of the lack of concrete divisions, it will be a 'best guess' but should be at least 95% accurate, which is better than the vacuum that exists in that space currently.

The other element of frustration is that all Class 1 races are treated the same from an Instant Expert perspective. That means that currently a Listed race is treated the same as a Group 1 race, which is obviously sub-optimal. Again, we need to get that sorted.

Tracker Emails

This one is a bit trappy, due to the way the back end (database stuff) is designed, but it would be sensible - and clearly very useful - if we could email users overnight and/or the day before (to be defined by each user), to notify them of the horses, trainers and jockeys they're interested in which have entries.

**

Although the ratings and site re-design pieces will be happening in early September, there's no fixed time scale for the other parts. I'd hope that mid-September would be achievable for those, but it's normally prudent to discuss with the clever people who will actually make it happen before offering bold statements of imminent arrivals!

So I'll chat with Dave and Nige, the wizard smarties behind those racing wonders that make Gold the thing of brains and beauty that it is.

In the meantime, as the door is still ajar for Phase Eight, feel free to make any suggestions or comments below. I'm determined to continue to add as much value as possible for Gold subscribers - and Geegeez visitors as a whole - and your input will definitely contribute to that. (Thanks).

Matt

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30 replies
  1. Gary says:

    Sounds first class,I know it is not always relevant, but where it is, would it be possible to incorporate distinct draw advantage?

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Gary

      Yes, I’m conscious of the emphasis many people place on draw biases; and it’s something I would like to include.

      But it’s easy in my opinion to be misleading with such information. And at the moment it’s better to have no info than misleading info.

      It is definitely on the agenda, but it’s not nearly as straightforward as many of the sites that publish draw bias comments make out!

      Thanks for the reminder though, and we will try to do something in Phase 9 for this…

      Matt

  2. RonCombo says:

    As a proud member of the user community :), some really good stuff here, like the ratings proposition and course info could be really handy. GeeGeez just keeps on getting better! What about a GeeGeez app? Probably horribly expensive but for a SoTD, DD snapshot could be useful when one is out and about?

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Thanks Arthur. And yes, an app is something we’d like to look at. As you say, horribly expensive and would likely be limited functionality version with bolt ons to follow. In the short term, we’re working on making the site much more mobile and tablet friendly/responsive.

      Thanks as always for your support,
      Matt

  3. Andy says:

    Sounds great. I’d still like to see the trainer trace feature that’s in the Racing Post – ie trainers’ records in a particular race.

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      That’s a really interesting one, Andy. As we don’t have the ‘calculated data’, i.e. a feed with the answers in it, it would mean going through all of the historical information and aligning races as being ‘the same race’ in different years.

      That’s something we could potentially do for the major races, but for your average Nottingham claimer, probably not…

      I too like that information though.

      Best,
      Matt

  4. maverick99 says:

    All excellent IMO and as a suggestion might the Trainer/Jockey combo not be restricted to just course form? Statistically the total every course record of a Trainer/Jockey combo potentially has greater overall significance than just the runners a trainer has had at the course. A trainer may have only had 6 runners at the course with the current jockey without winners i.e. 0/6 but overall at all courses may be showing 25/100. A 0/6 SR is statistically insignificant, but a 25/100 SR is a totally different proposition. With all statistics and probability mathematically the greater the sample size the greater the accuracy. Low sample sizes can in fact distort the real probability.

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi maverick99,

      I agree entirely with your statistical assertions and, in fact, that’s why the four ‘cuts’ of the data are as they are. The problem with, for instance, 2009+ total trainer/jockey is that there would be some massive numbers in there, which really deserve breaking down somehow.

      They’re not perfect segments, granted, but I personally feel they’re the most usable four elements (and any more than four segments would feel like overkill to some users). Appreciate that’s just my opinion, and I further appreciate it differs from yours!

      Best,
      Matt

      • maverick99 says:

        I take your point. Bottom line is even the barest of data ideally requires additional work but where do you actually draw the line whilst also providing useful and accurate data that the majority will find useful in an easy to read and understand format? For those that actually want to delve deeper there are after all alternative options and I do appreciate that not everyone has the time and/or resources to “unpick” raw statistical data, so I totally understand the pragmatic case of providing a useful and accurate chosen segment snapshot.

        • Matt Bisogno says:

          Thanks maverick99, and yes, ‘pragmatic’ is the perfect way of summing things up. It’s my intention to make the tools accessible to as many as possible. That doesn’t preclude more advanced tools – far from it – but I don’t think we’re at that stage yet. It will be the 2015 task to really ramp up the form book side of things. I’m excited by that project, but have to finish this one first!

          Thanks again for coming back,
          Matt

  5. alan says:

    why on most if not all sites,when they put up race card proofing bets no one can read them there too out of focus, it makes it look very dodgy,with todays technology cant they put up something clearer or am i being nieave

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Alan

      I’m not quite following you. Can you give an example please?

      Thanks,
      Matt

  6. Roderick Bridger says:

    Hi Matt,
    a feature I would like to see is being able to view the days cards on one page: Like HorseRaceBase.
    Rod

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Rod

      Do you mean all races for a meeting on a single page, one beneath another?

      If so, that should be possible to include.

      Matt

      • Roderick Bridger says:

        Hi Matt.
        Yes, either a meetings cards or all meetings cards, sortable by Instant Expert, etc.
        Cheers, Rod.

  7. ianker says:

    Matt,
    I’m pleased that you are going to ‘smarten things up a bit’ because the way things are going with the mountains of info.you provide it’s going to take all day to pick a horse going through all the stats available.
    Don’t get me wrong it’s the best site on the web.but I can visualize having to be really selective in choosing races(which I know you should be)and whittle them down to just two or three, otherwise I will be struggling, time wise to pick a horse .
    I suppose what I’m saying is too much is sometimes as bad as not enough and I personally think you’re practically there.
    So a good smartening up will be perfect. Not as though it isn’t now

    Brian

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Brian

      Yes, I’ve been conscious of that for a little while now, and what I’m planning on doing is making a few suggestions as to how to use the info, based on available time and experience, and also on preferred number of bets.

      It’s reassuring to read that this will probably be useful for some users, because you’re absolutely right – there is a LOT of info there now!

      Best,
      Matt

  8. ianker says:

    Hi Matt

    Thanks for prompt answer. Keep up the good work, because your’e definitely doing something right, Since being a Gold Member (9th April) I have never deposited money in my betting account only drawn out.

    Brian

  9. topnag123 says:

    I use your tracker facility, and the trackers of a few other sites as well. which I keep separate to avoid confusion. Almost all of my betting is in handicap races, but I still have to click through each of my selections or trainers-to-follow to see if they are entered in handicap company that day. Would it be possible to add a couple of basic filters to the tracker to speed up the elimination process? I was thinking perhaps of turf/AW, h’cap/non-h’cap, flat/N.H. Is that sort of thing do-able?

    Fred

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Fred,

      Thanks for this: another perfectly possible suggestion. Will add it to the list, and hopefully we’ll be able to incorporate, though possibly not in P8.

      Best,
      Matt

  10. Kev says:

    Hi Matt, exciting developments for the site. Just a couple of points, which you know I have raised before. Firstly, AW or Turf filter would be most useful, as although that information is in the Full Form Filter, the benefits to me of the site are its speed of visual analysis and looking through each animals race form and deciding if the race and rating was achieved on sand or grass is time-consuming (especially as Lingfield has both surfaces). Secondly, I hope that you can sort out the Post data feeds as it can be frustrating to get blanks on parts of the site. I know that you find it annoying too. Finally, I look forward to the new ratings that you are going to introduce. Great work. Regards, Kev.

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Kev

      Thanks as always for your comments. I’ll look into the AW/Turf tick boxes. I think it’d have to be a tick box rather than a radio button, otherwise people wouldn’t be able to select both.

      It should be possible, though as I’ve mentioned before, I’m keen a) not to clutter the Instant Expert too much, and b) not to overlap it with the Full Form Filter too much. It’s a tricky balance.

      The data feed issues are frustrating, and we are making some headway, albeit slowly.

      Thanks again for your comments,
      Matt

  11. twood715 says:

    Hi Matt,

    Onwards and upwards.

    Brilliant website, brilliant race cards. As I’ve posted before the pace analysis is fantastic,virtually every horse I choose is placed. Didn’t have much time today had a quick look before I went out chose Giantstepahead (Newmarket 7:17) based on pace and previous form and it came home at 8/1. Like the previous comment I don’t deposit money into my accounts any more.

    Looking forward to the next phase of improvements.

    Terry

  12. Essexboy says:

    Hi Matt being a lazy punter who struggles to work his way through the stats Would it be possible to pick one of the four double dutch picks to be the Gold pick. You and Chris almost always come up with a winner out of the four. Then there would be two tips for gold users 1 below say 5/2 and one above that price. ?

  13. Andrewson says:

    HI Matt,
    Wow – can’t you just email us all a list of winners each day and save your self all this work? 😉
    Seriously though do you think a breakdown for HCP / Non-HCP incorporated into the Trainer / Jockey / Trainer-Jockey combo stats would be useful? Or is this part of what you are already alluding to above?
    Many thanks and please keep up the good work…,
    Stephen

  14. Andy says:

    Something I’d like to see an forgive me if it’s readily available is recent trainer form including an overnight update or at least Friday for Saturday/festivals racing.ie perhaps some kind of rating to reflect a trainers last 10 to 12 races in wins/placed horses. I found this approach profitable on class 1 N Hunt Sat races. But found myself separately checking each trainer. This element is an important chapter in K Burke’s book.
    Regards
    Andy

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Hi Andy

      We have a trainer form 14 day view, which is updated daily overnight. It’s in the Trainer Form report from the Reports dropdown. By clicking the trainer’s name you can view all of their recent runners (click the ‘more’ button to get the next batch of runners from their form history).

      Hope that’s what you were after,
      Matt

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