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Late Season 2yo Maidens
Late Season 2yo Maidens by David Renham
In this article I am going to look at 2yo turf maidens run from September to November. When researching this article I was going to focus on the last 5 seasons and look at numerous angles, but when I noted the decent record of favourites in these races, I decided to check back a further 5 years to see how favourites fared then too. As it turned out, they fared equally as well. Hence my focus changed somewhat and I decided to look into these favourites in 2yo turf maidens (Sept-Nov) in more detail. Here is what I found (data is taken from 2002-2011). All profit and loss is quoted to Starting Price.
First of all here is the record of all favourites which match the criteria set:
A break even situation over 10 years is quite remarkable so let us look at the yearly breakdown:
6 winning years and 4 losing years which is what you would probably expect from a roughly break even 10 year record.
At this juncture I thought it was looking at price to see if there were any patterns that emerged. One clear pattern emerged with horses priced 2/1 or bigger far better value than those were less than 2/1. The table illustrates the difference:
Clearly there is better value in the higher priced favourites and this will be accentuated if you back then Best Odds Guaranteed or Betfair SP.
Let me now move onto days since last run:
There is no clear pattern to be gleaned from this data. However, it is interesting to see horses making their debut showing a profit when they start as favourite. 2yo debutants tend to have a very poor record, but clearly those who are fancied at this time of year do well. It is also worth noting that quick returners (1-14 days) have the poorest record in terms of returns. 2yos generally struggle when turned out too quickly as they are still physically immature and cannot take quick back to back races.
Onto breeding next - specifically country of breeding.
USA breds have a good record and remarkably they have made a profit in 9 of the 10 years. The shame is that USA breds are diminishing in numbers each year so it is not an angle that is likely to offer us much of a real edge in the future.
A course breakdown was my next port of call and here are the findings:
It is difficult to be confident that course patterns will remain the same over the next few years. However, the Newmarket stats are possibly the most likely to `repeat` as the results come from a relatively big sample size.
Who are the trainers to follow when their 2yo maidens start favourite at this time of the year? Here is a table showing all trainers that have secured 8 or more wins.
It is not surprising to see so many of the top trainers in this list. Many of their better two year olds will be running at this time of the season. Prescott, Charlton, Candy and Smart do have impressive records. On the other hand John Dunlop’s record is remarkably poor in comparison.
I now investigated LTO performance. I felt it was better to look at distance beaten rather than finishing position and this is what I found:
The most interesting trend/stat to date comes from this table. Horses that were beaten over 5 lengths LTO that go onto be favourite next time have an excellent record. A strike rate of roughly 4 wins in 10 and returns of over 19 pence in the £. Maybe punters are slightly put off by the fact they were beaten so far last time and allow their prices to start higher than they should – that is one possible explanation. However, whatever the reason, it is something we should take note of. Another LTO fact worth noting is that those horses that ran in a nursery handicap LTO have provided 33 wins from 77 (SR 42.9%) for a profit of £19.96 (ROI +25.9%).
Next I wanted to see if the going made any difference:
No clear patterns here other than perhaps the fact that favourites on soft or heavy have performed well making a profit on both types of easy ground. However, I cannot explain why the good to soft results are relatively disappointing.
I hope this article has offered you some potentially profitable angles this autumn. Let’s hope past results are replicated in 2012.
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