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January Trainers 2011
As long term members will know, each month, I write an article based on past trainer performance focusing on a particular month. In general trainers tend to be creatures of habit and tend to peak / trough at similar times each year. This article is based on National Hunt trainers in the month of January with data taken from 2005 to 2010.
Firstly let us look at races – chases, hurdles and bumpers combined.
All races (Jan 05-10) – 50 runs minimum (SR 15%+)
Nicky Henderson tops the list in terms of strike rate (as he did in both November and December). Despite his excellent strike rate, you would not have been able to retire on his profit of £2.31. Indeed, all his profits came from 2005 to 2007 and in each of the last 3 years he has made a loss. However, there have been areas where profits could have been achieved. For example, his 4yo runners have an excellent record in this first month of the year thanks to 12 winners from just 22 runners (SR 54.5%) for a profit of £28.32 (ROI + 131.%). Hence one should take careful of any 4yo runners he sends out this month. Henderson has also made decent profits from both Newbury and Fakenham – at Newbury he has saddled 8 winners from 20 runners (SR 40%) for a profit of £6.18 (ROI +30.9%); at Fakenham he has sent out 7 winners from 12 (SR 58.3%) for a profit of £7.76 (ROI 64.7%).
Last month I looked at “in running” angles for Henderson. The reason being that “in running” betting is becoming very popular – only 24 of his runners took an early lead, but 13 went on to win so if a Henderson horse leads early get on as soon as possible!
Howard Johnson seems to have a solid record in January with a strike rate of 1 win in 5 and profits of roughly 19 pence for every £1 wagered. As with Henderson, Howard Johnson’s 4yos have an excellent record – 12 wins from 36 (SR 33.3%) for a profit of £48.92 (ROI +135.9%). Once again take note!
It is also worth knowing which trainers perform poorly / underperform in this month. Here are the trainers with the lowest strike rates:
All races (Jan 05-10) – 50 runs minimum (SR 5.5% or lower)
As we always see, most of the trainers in this list show significant losses – 16 of the 20 in the list have produced losses of over 50p in the £. I would be avoiding all runners from these stables in the coming month with one possible exception. Kim Bailey has had a torrid time as a trainer since the heady days of training Alderbrook to win the Champion Hurdle and Master Oats to win the Gold Cup both in 1995. Since then his career took a nosedive and his overall strike rate for the years 2005 to 2007 was a dismal 5%. However, 2009 started to see an upturn in fortunes and since August 2010 he has saddled an impressive 19 winners from 74 (SR 25.7%) which is up with the best of them. Hence, despite his poor record in January, I expect him to produce a far better strike rate than the 4% he has managed in the last 6 Januarys.
With any general stats such as these though, it often best to split into more specific race-types. Also certain trainers seem to do better with one than the other. Hence, let us look at chase races only in January since 2005:
All chases (Jan 05-10) – 30 runs minimum (SR 17%+)
Howard Johnson tops the list in terms of strike rate, and he has made a decent overall profit. Indeed in 4 of the 6 Januarys his strike rate for chasers has exceeded 30%. Another “in running” pointer now – chasers from the Howard Johnson stable score just 12.5% of the time when they are held up early on (eg. race midfield or at the back). Conversely horses that took the early lead have gone to win 44% of the time!
Venetia Williams is prominent in the chase table, and although she had a poor 2010 with her January chasers, I would view that simply as a blip. Her record in non handicap chases has been excellent – 15 wins from 32 (SR 46.9%) for a profit of £24.13 (ROI +75.4%). The market tends to be an excellent guide too with favourites and second favourites combining to produce 33 winners from 84 runners (SR SR 39.3%) for a profit of £29.09 (ROI +34.6%).
Moving onto hurdle races now:
All hurdle races (Jan 05-10) – 40 runs minimum (SR 15%+)
Alan King has made decent profits and despite the fact that his stable struggled in the 09-10 NH season, he still managed to secure a profit in January ‘10 thanks to a strike rate of 25.9%. With his stable in better form this season, one would expect another good January is on the cards. It looks best to focus on non handicaps, especially novice hurdles.
Moving onto bumpers next. Let us look at the performances of all trainers who have saddled at least 20 bumper runners during this month over the 6-year period:
All bumper races (Jan 05-10) – 20 runs minimum
Difficult to find profits there, but clearly Henderson is the man to follow, whereas bumper runners from Hobbs and Howard Johnson look best avoided.
All in all there seems to be some useful data for Janaury and good luck punting this month!
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