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Gearing Up For The Flat


 

 

 

Gearing up for the Flat 2009 by David Renham

 

 

 

By the time you read this article the turf flat season will be roughly a month away. The ‘close’ season is a time where I spend numerous hours, days and weeks collating and updating stats for the forthcoming season. This month my main focus is on three of the most prestigious tracks in the country – Ascot, Goodwood, and York. The stats for trainers, jockeys and starting price are taken from 2000 to 2008.

 

 

 

Ascot

 

 

 

All races – Starting Price rank

 

 

 

SP Rank

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

1

237

886

26.7%

-£86.58

-9.8%

2

126

821

15.3%

-£149.27

-18.2%

3

113

852

13.3%

-£37.67

-4.4%

4

72

830

8.7%

-£206.00

-24.8%

5

66

779

8.5%

-£99.00

-12.7%

6

45

794

5.7%

-£215.00

-27.1%

7

27

721

3.7%

-£300.00

-41.65

8

34

678

5%

-£46.00

-6.8%

9

21

598

3.5%

-£147.00

-24.6%

10

13

463

2.8%

-£201.00

-43.45

11th or bigger

44

2658

1.7%

-£1261.00

-47.4%

 

 

 

All races – trainers (minimum 30 runs; strike rate 13%+)

 

 

 

Trainer

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

 M Tregoning

23

89

25.8%

+£36.87

+41.4%

 Sir M Stoute

50

295

16.9%

-£50.11

-17.0%

 A O'Brien

31

186

16.7%

-£21.74

-11.7%

 J Fanshawe

20

120

16.7%

-£16.39

-13.7%

 W Haggas

20

128

15.6%

+£94.20

+73.6%

 R Charlton

14

91

15.4%

+£41.25

+45.3%

 M Johnston

56

371

15.1%

+£71.06

+19.2%

 C Cox

9

61

14.8%

+£33.00

+54.1%

 J Gosden

33

224

14.7%

+£5.65

+2.5%

 S Bin Suroor

25

183

13.7%

-£22.75

-12.4%

 

 

 

All races – jockeys (minimum 10 wins; strike rate 10%+)

 

 

 

Jockey

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

J  Murtagh

43

232

18.5%

+£172.21

+74.2%

K Fallon

42

290

14.5%

-£40.30

-13.9%

K Darley

38

264

14.4%

+£44.73

+16.9%

R Hills

35

273

12.8%

-£66.51

-24.4%

L Dettori

52

419

12.4%

-£95.78

-22.9%

J Fortune

34

295

11.5%

+£28.13

+9.5%

T Quinn

28

249

11.2%

+£28.88

+11.6%

J Spencer

34

317

10.7%

-£14.95

-4.7%

M Kinane

26

259

10%

-£127.88

-49.4%

 

 

 

Draw bias – there is no noticeable bias on the round course at Ascot, but on the straight course (5f-1m) in big fields it is usually best to be drawn very high or very low. On very soft ground it has been traditionally an advantage to be drawn high.

 

 

 

Here is an example from 2008 where there was a significant draw bias with one side strongly favoured:

 

 

 

27th July – Hong Kong Sprint 5f (26 runners)

 

 

 

1st Tom’s Laughter (drawn 23) 50/1

 

2nd Strike Up the Band (drawn 27) 8/1

 

3rd Total Impact (drawn 28) 16/1

 

4th Safari Mischief (drawn 25) 20/1

 

5th Orpsie Boy (drawn 26) 33/1

 

 

 

5 of the 6 highest drawn horses finished 1st to 5th. The best finishing position of a horse drawn in a single figure stall was 11th (Elhamri – drawn 9).

 

 

 

Pace bias / running styles - knowing what type of running style is favoured at certain C&Ds give you a useful edge over the majority of punters. It also gives you more scope to play “in running”. Here is an Ascot breakdown by distance:

 

 

 

5f – clear advantage to front runners / prominent racers;

 

6f – slight advantage to prominent racers;

 

7f – very difficult for front runners to make all;

 

1m (st) – advantage to hold up horses (accentuated by big fields);

 

1m (rd) – 1m4f – better to race prominently than be held up;

 

2m+ - no discernable advantage.

 

 

 

Goodwood

 

 

 

All races – Starting Price rank

 

 

 

SP Rank

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

1

399

1398

28.5%

-£107.90

-7.7%

2

246

1343

18.3%

-£91.11

-6.8%

3

166

1304

12.7%

-£168.43

-12.9%

4

138

1312

10.5%

-£149.50

-11.4%

5

100

1256

8%

-£208.50

-16.6%

6

69

1186

5.8%

-£295.50

-24.9%

7

49

1151

4.3%

-£433.00

-37.6%

8

32

935

3.4%

-£399.00

-42.7%

9

19

832

2.3%

-£466.00

-56%

10

15

675

2.2%

-£356.00

-52.7%

11th or bigger

40

2347

1.7%

-£1042.00

-44.4%

 

 

 

All races – trainers (minimum 30 runs; strike rate 17%+)

 

 

 

Trainer

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

 S Bin Suroor

37

150

24.7%

+£4.03

+2.7%

 J Noseda

18

82

22.0%

-£4.87

-5.9%

 C Wall

9

43

20.9%

+£15.38

+35.8%

 Sir M Stoute

42

207

20.3%

-£7.66

-3.7%

 J Gosden

53

272

19.5%

+£15.50

+5.7%

 L Cumani

20

106

18.9%

+£2.78

+2.6%

 J Fanshawe

18

97

18.6%

-£9.01

-9.3%

 P Chapple-Hyam

9

49

18.4%

+£0.83

+1.7%

 W Kittow

6

34

17.6%

+£18.50

+54.4%

 M Tregoning

40

230

17.4%

+£5.75

+2.5%

 Sir M Prescott

9

52

17.3%

-£8.88

-17.1%

 

 

 

All races – jockeys (minimum 10 wins; strike rate 13%+)

 

 

 

Jockey

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

L Dettori

68

324

21%

-£43.86

-13.5%

K McEvoy

22

114

19.3%

+£42.35

+37.1%

J Murtagh

22

133

16.5%

-£1.94

-1.5%

K Fallon

44

289

15.2%

-£71.86

-24.9%

R Moore

60

420

14.3%

+£89.81

+21.4%

P Robinson

23

162

14.2%

-£5.31

-3.3%

S Sanders

40

285

14%

+£83.96

+29.5%

M Kinane

12

88

13.6%

-£30.29

-34.4%

J Spencer

35

264

13.3%

-£14.60

-5.5%

J Fortune

52

394

13.2%

-£33.61

-8.5%

 

 

 

Draw bias – on the straight course there used to be a significant advantage to horses that were drawn high to middle. This seemed to increase in bigger fields. However, the last 3 years has seen a more level playing field. From 2006 to 2008 there have been 48 handicaps with 10 or more runners and the draw split has been as follows:

 

 

 

 

Top “third” of

the draw

Middle “third” of the draw

Bottom “third” of the draw

Winning percentage

29.2

43.8

27.1

 

 

 

 

Placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd percentage

39.6

34.7

25

 

 

 

It seems low draws are at a slight disadvantage, but there is less in now than there was a few years ago.

 

 

 

A similar scenario has occurred at 7f. For many years the 7f trip at Goodwood was one of the most draw biased in the country. If we look at the figures from 2000 to 2005 for 7f handicaps with 10 or more runners we get the following:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top “third” of

the draw

Middle “third” of the draw

Bottom “third” of the draw

Winning percentage

53.2

23.4

23.4

 

 

 

 

Placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd percentage

44

34.8

21.3

 

 

 

High draws had a significant advantage and very low draws struggled. However, in the last 3 years, a mixture of watering and rail moving has seen the bias disappear. The draw stats for 2006 to 2008 are thus:  

 

 

 

 

Top “third” of

the draw

Middle “third” of the draw

Bottom “third” of the draw

Winning percentage

25

45.8

29.2

 

 

 

 

Placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd percentage

27.8

37.5

34.7

 

 

 

The highest draws have gone from winning slightly more than 1 race in every 2, to now winning just 1 in every 4 races.

 

 

 

Pace bias / running styles – there is little advantage to any particular style of runner at Goodwood. However, it should be noted that in 5f sprints front runners have a moderate record in comparison to other courses over the minimum trip.

 

 

 

York

 

 

 

All races – Starting Price rank

 

 

 

SP Rank

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

1

1010

287

28.4%

-£12.27

-1.2%

2

954

153

16%

-£172.01

-18%

3

981

117

11.9%

-£162.84

-16.6%

4

958

111

11.6%

+£62.50

+6.5%

5

937

48

5.1%

-£436.50

-46.6%

6

907

54

6%

-£190.00

-20.9%

7

800

38

4.8%

-£183.00

-22.9%

8

750

28

3.7%

-£285.00

-38%

9

677

23

3.4%

-£264.00

-39%

10

536

15

2.8%

-£186.00

-34.7%

11th or bigger

2591

47

1.8%

-£1154.00

-44.5%

 

 

 

All races – trainers (minimum 30 runs; strike rate 14%+)

 

 

 

Trainer

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

 S Bin Suroor

33

131

25.2%

+£5.45

+4.2%

 J Dunlop

23

109

21.1%

+£57.85

+53.1%

 Sir M Stoute

51

250

20.4%

+£11.72

+4.7%

 Sir M Prescott

6

32

18.8%

-£0.25

-0.8%

 J Noseda

19

102

18.6%

+£40.06

+39.3%

 A O'Brien

18

107

16.8%

-£35.63

-33.3%

 H Cecil

8

53

15.1%

+£17.99

+33.9%

 L Cumani

17

114

14.9%

-£29.24

-25.6%

 M Bell

14

96

14.6%

+£29.25

+30.5%

 

 

 

All races – jockeys (minimum 10 wins strike rate 11%+)

 

 

 

Jockey

Wins

Runs

SR

Profit

ROI

L Dettori

45

215

20.9%

-£34.83

-16.2%

M Kinane

27

156

17.3%

-£7.13

-4.6%

K Fallon

57

349

16.3%

-£26.98

-7.7%

R Moore

19

134

14.2%

+£27.80

+20.7%

N Mackay

10

76

13.2%

+£54.13

+71.2%

J Spencer

31

237

13.1%

-£20.96

-8.8%

R Hills

22

172

12.8%

-£1.87

-1.1%

M Hills

27

232

11.6%

-£40.47

-17.4%

J Quinn

13

114

11.4%

+£2.75

+2.4%

 

 

 

Draw bias – there is little draw bias on the straight course (5/6f) although horses tend to stick to the centre of the track so in big fields it usually pays be drawn fairly central. On the round course low draws have a slight edge right up to 1m4f.

 

 

 

Pace bias / running styles – here is a York breakdown by distance:

 

 

 

5f – very slight advantage to prominent racers;

 

6f – slight advantage to front runners / prominent racers;

 

7f - 1m2f88yds – no real advantage;

 

1m4f or more – advantage to hold up horses.

 

 

 

York is perceived to be a track that favours front runners / prominent runners, but the overall figures do not back this up. For example in 7f handicaps, only 2 of the 21 races since 2000 have been won by the front runner.

 

 

 

Hopefully this article has given you a few pointers for this coming flat season.

 

 

 

Finally can I say a big thank you to Simon Walton at Proform racing (www.proformprofessional.com) and Paul Dyson, as their databases helped me with my pace and draw research.

 

 








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