NBY 3.10 HENNESSY GOLD CUP
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
Good guide with 7 favs and 4 second favs obliging
Winners at 25/1 & 20/1 but the other 17 were all returned 16/1 or less
16 winners came from the first 7 in the betting, which corresponds to those priced 16/1 or less tomorrow
11-12 has been carried to victory 3 times, but the winner of one of the best Gold Cup's in living memory , Denman, was responsible for 2 of those.
The remaining 16 all carried 11-8 or less, which only gets rid of Smad Place who would be the only horse other than the great Denman to win this race more than once.
Offficial Handicap Rating (OR)
16 of the 19 winners had an OR of 140 or more as did ALL the last 15 winners. This knocks out the bottom two.
18 were rated no higher than 162 – exception was Denman (again!) who won off a whopping OR of 174 – which, again, gets rid of the top weight.
Younger horses have done best, 7yo's marginally better with 9 wins from 103 runs (9%)
Next best are 6yo's with 4-48 (8%)
8yo's are no forlorn hope with 4-67 (6%)
The record of 9yo's is tricky as their record of 2-64, whilst only half as good as the younger horses, is half decent. However, those 2 winners were our old friend Denman's second win and King George winner, Teeton Mill – who had a most unusual prep (made up mainly of hunter chases) for this.
No younger or older horse than the above has won this and i think it best to concentrate on 6-8yo's
18 had run 2-6 times in the last year
16 had either 1 run or were seasonal debutants
16 finished in the first 3 last time
11 won LTO
17 had won over 3m +
ALL had ran over 3 miles half a furlong
12 winners from 215 runners (6%) last ran between 8-60 days ago
7 – 99 (7%) last ran within 121 – 365 days
Nicky Henderson has won this 3 times. The yard is also in form with 9 winners from 29 runners in the last 14 days. He runs three:
Former winner Trio D'Alene is a 9yo who ran down the field in his last run
Same with Hadrian's Approach who would also be the lowest rated winner for 16 years if he won.
Vyto du Roc though, has a fine trends profile and is shortlisted
Paul Nicholls has won it 3 times too (twice with Denman). He has two runners, Saphir du Rheu and Vicente. Both have very good trends profiles (the latter a perfect one with a last time win). Both are shortlilsted
The Pipe family have won this twice and their sole representative is Un Temps Pour Tout, another with a perfect profile and shortlisted
Ben Pauling is 4/12 at Newbury over the last 5 seasons and 2/2 with his chasers. He runs Local Show whose only trends drawback is his seventh placed run last time
First, even though it has rained, the going, according to the times for the first three races today, would suggests GOOD TO FIRM going! One thing is for sure, the word "Soft" shouldn't be in any going description.
To return to trends. The following all have perfect or near perfect trends profiles:
UN TEMPS POUT TOUT can't be faulted and, with the last time win, is a perfect fit.
NATVIE RIVER ticks all the boxes but a last time win would have put the icing on the cake
SAPHIR DU RHEU diitto
VICENTE is Nicholls' other runnner and is the only other one with a last time win. Drifted out to 20/1 now though, which is a concern.
VYTA DU ROC lacks the last time win, and, off a rating of 143 would be the lowest rated winner of this for 12 years
The last two named are my least confident trends candidates.
I don't think the ground will be perfect for UN TEMPS POUR TOUT but this winner of a £57K Cheltenham handicap on "Good to Soft" which was on the Good side should have the pace to handle it. As a last time winner he has to be the percentage call.
My other selection is SAPHIR DE RHEU, who has not lived up to expectations over fences so far but , having run sixth in this last year on Soft going, he ran a cracker last time over 3 miles on Good in a £56K Ascot handicap, finishing like a train and just missing out by a short head on second. Tomorrow's ground and slightly longer trip should suit.
As a novice he won the G1 Mildmay Chase by 15l over 3m 1f on Good. His last run suggests he may be returning to that form and, though not one to plunge IN on, looks very well handicapped and wouldn't need to improve from his seasonal debut over this slightly longer trip, for his bang in form trainer.
So, my two against the field:
UN TEMPS POUR TOUT @ 8/1 generally
SAPHIR DU RHEU @ 9/1 with Hills
HAY 3.00 THE BETFAIR STAKES
LAST 11 RUNNINGS
All the stats are somewhat skewed by the great Kauto Star's record of 4 wIns in this from his first win at 6 to his last aged 11. I will indicate when i think this is relevant.
Fav won 4/11 ( 3 of which were Kauto)
3 second favs won and 2 third favs making it 9 wins for the first three in the betting
Other than Snoopy Loopy's shock 33/1 win over Kauto Star in 2008, all lther winners were returned 9/1 or less. This gets rid of Menorah and Vezeley for trends purposes
Official Rating (OR)
ALL had an OR of 157+ which disqualifies Seeyouatmidnight, trends-wise
11yo's are 1 from 3 in this but that one was Kauto! Another possible minus for Menorah
10yo's scored once from 5 runners but that winner was the 33/1 shock – slight question marks against Cue Card and Silviniaco Conti.
9 yo's have the best record with 3 wins from 20 runners (15%) a plus for Coneygree
7yo's are next best with 2/17 – one was Kauto – or 12%, a slight plus for Irish Cavalier
8yo's have the worst record with 2-24 (8%) – even Kauto Star lost as an 8yo! Another blot on Seeyouatmidnight's trends CV
10 had run 3 to 5 times in the past year – a problem for Coneygree who is without a run since November 8th 2015, Cue Card (6 races), Irish Cavalier (7) and Seeyouatmidnight (6)
10 had 2 runs or less that season – yet another minus for Seeyouatmidnight (i am going to look an idiot of that one wins!) and Menorah, with 3 runs this season each
9 had won over 3m1f plus, something Irish Cavalier and Seeyouatmidnight have not
8 ran 16-30 days ago and 3 last ran between 121 and 365 days ago which puts trends question marks against Coneygree 377 days off (none have tried to win this after more than a yeras lay off) and Silviniaco Conti (14 days off – 3 have tried but none have won returning less than 16 days after their last run).
Paul Nicholls has won this 6 times. Four times with Kauto Star and twice with Silviniaco Conti who won this in 2012 and 2014 (7L second to 2013 and 2015 winner, Cue Card, last year)
He also has his yard in fine form with 19 of his 52 runners having won over the last two weeks.
His record at the course, with his chasers, is 11-24 (a very high strike rate of 7-18 without Kauto!)
Silvianaco Conti, therefore, must be worth a second look. Other than the inconclusive matter of being a 10yo, the only major trends angle against him is his quick return after 14 days. Shortlisted.
Colin Tizzard has won this twice with Cue Card, another 10yo double winner of this. He was a revelation when beating the Nicholls horse in this 7l last year, but he had just had the wind op that allowed him to show, last season, for the first time, his full potential. He had a right to need the run trying to give 4lbs to Irish Cavalier last time and going down by just over 3L.
The RPR he achieved there was 13lbs lower than his Gold Cup and Aintree peaks last season and, having backed him last time, my first reaction was that maybe the old breathing problem has come back.
Purely on trends both the above have chances, though if either win, they will be the only horse other than the great Kauto Star to win it more than twice.
Sandy Thomson has had 7 runnners and two winners the past fortnight. Amongst many other trends negatives he would be the lowest ever (even than 33/1 shocker, Snoopy Loopy) to win this.
Noel Fehilly is 11/37 for Nicholls over the last two years.
There is no perfect trends horse here. Rather it is a question of weighing the number and importance of the negatives.
If we look at just those in the first 3 of the betting and less than 9/1:
Seeyouatmidnight breaks almost every trends rule
Cue Card could improve the 8lbs plus that will be the least needed to win this. Then again, the old breathing problem may have returned. At 6/4 fav (not a great race for favs – 1/8 where Kato wasn't the winning fav!) not very tempting.
That leaves us with the two horses that offend only on what may be the least important factors – number of runs and days since last run.
CONEYGREE has been off more than a year and hence breaks the number of runs and days since win trends (though none have tried after a longer lay off than a year). But he is the class horse.To win a classy Gold Cup on only his second run out of novice company was an amazing feat. Richard Johnson must be praying that Hobbs will pull Menorah out, so he can ride him.
Has he got over his injury? Will he be 100%? I don't know but they have been very patient with him and he is 5/5 in chases (two of them G1's) and 4/4 on seasonal debuts. I would rather take 2/1 about his fitness than 6/4 about Cue Card buncing back.
The fly in the ointment could be Silvianaco Conti.His trainer alone showing up is enough to put the wind up the rest. The horse may be no back number either – though this will be his 25th chase.
Blew up last time in Ireland when beaten 11lengths by Valseur Lido and usually improves plenty for his first run. Pulled up in the Grand National in his last race last season but that told us nothing. In the race previous to the National, he slammed Dynaste 20L in a G1 on Soft and achieved an RPR just 1lb below his King George winning best in the process.
Even at his best, i doubt he would beat a 100% Coneygree , but IF he returns to the form of three races ago and IF their are any chinks in Coneygree, it could be this horse that takes advantage tomorrow. 7/1 fourth ( a negative) fav at the moment, i would be tempted to go each way if there were an extra runner!
You won't get rich backing the 2/1 CONEYGREE but he looks banker material if back to near his best. If he isn't, 7/1 Silviniaco Conti can profit.
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
BETFRED GOLD CUP (THE PADDY POWER as was)
Winners at 33/1 and 20/1 but 18 winners came from the first 8 in the betting
17 were returned 16/1 or less
Favs won 6, second favs twice and third favs x 4
ALL in range BUT:
16 carried 11-4 or lower (this knocks the top 9 out)
15 were weighted 10-5 plus (which puts the bottom two out)
Official Handicap Rating (OR)
ALL rated 138 or more (further reason to pick on the bottom two) and 17 were rated 139 plus (bottom 3 are now out). This almost perfectly tallies with the weights trends – always a good sign!
18 were rated 154 or less and seventeen 151- which, again, tallies almost perfectly with the weights trends
A race for the younger horses. 7yo's have done marginally best with 8 winners from 83 runners (10%). 5 & 6yo's have scored 2-22 (9%) & 4-47 (9%) respectively.
No horse aged 10 or older has won over the period.
8yo's are next worse with 3-77 (4%) and 9yo's scored 2-42 (5%)
17 had run between 4 and 8 times in the past year
None had more than 2 runs that season
16 finished in the first 6 in their last run
8 won and 3 finished second last time
ALL won over 2m 3.5F plus
17 had already won over two and a half miles or further
ALL had RUN over 2m 5F or more
ALL ran either in the last 30 days or between 90 – 365 days ago
Martin Pipe used to farm this race and the Pipe family have won this 7 times – though only one of those victories was under David. He runs the 10yo top weight, Ballynagour. Those two factors alone disqualify him on trends
Paul Nicholls has won this twice and those two wins came in the last 4 years. He has 4 entrants:
Art Mauresque is too high in the weights and OR's for a typical winner. He would beat the weight carrying record over the last 20 years and be the second highest rated over that same period, if he won.
Bouvreuil is not from the first 8 in the betting
Second fav Frodon has had 3 runs (one too many) this season
As de Mee is his best chance on stats and is shortlisted
Jonjo O'Neil has won this twice and his sole runner just sneaks in at the top of the weight and ratings band. Only twice though, has a horse rated more than 154 won this and 8yo's have the worst record, other than 10yo's and older, in this race. On those grounds, i will pass on the fav, More Of That.
Tom George has his yard firing on all cylinders with 7 winners from 23 runners over the past fortnight. His 6yo Double Shuffle would have a good trends profile but for the fact that no horse had last run between 31 and 59 days ago – this horse has had 34 days off
Johnny Farrelly is 3/9 over the last 14 days and he sends out Stilletto who, as a 7yo with a perfect profile is shortlisted.
Rebecca Curtis's runners are almost unstoppable at the moment with 6 of her last 14 winning. This makes me think twice about passing over her Vintage Vinnie who falls down on having had 3 runs this season and would be the lowest rated winner of this in 20 years.
Taking the first 8 in the betting, all priced 16/1 or less (as were 17 of the last 19 winners) and applying all the trends filters above gives us a shortlist of 4:
On account of his age of 7, the, marginally, most perfect trends fit is the 14/1 shot STILLETTO
However, percentage wise, 6yo's are not too far behind and 9/1 third fav, AS DE MEE, especially given the Nicholls yard form and good recent record in this race, is as near as damn it as good a stats fit as the above.
Venitia Williams sole runner is another with a perfect trends profile and 16/1 ASO makes up my trio of trends selections.
It would be remiss of me not to mention that the 9yo Buywise has everything but his age going for him.
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
Lousy race for favs with just one winning
Much better for second favs who have provided 5 winners
Winners at 50/1, 25/1 & 20/1 but all the rest returned 16/1 or less
Borne out by 15 winners coming from the first 8 in the betting
All qualify but 17 carried 9-5 or less, not good news for the top two
ALL rated 106 or less
17 rated 99 less (which knocks the top 10 out!)
3yo's are best, with 6 wins from 91 runs (7%) but, of the three 3yo's, two are too high in the handicap but the other, Cape Cova will be a good trends fit of not fav.
No horse older than 7 has won this which puts paid to a repeat of last years win from Litigant
5yo's are second best with 4-83 (5%) and one of their representatives is the present second fav!
4 & 6 yo's both have 4% wins to runs ratio with 6-145 & 2-51 respectively
15 had run 11 times or less in the past year
17 had run 4 times or more that season
15 finished in the first 6 last time
ALL had won over 10F +
15 had won over 11.5F plus
17 had RAN over 12F or more
ALL ran 60 days ago or less
John Gosden has won this twice and saddles current fav Cape Cova. Were he to go off second fav he would be of great interest.
Joseph Tuite is 2 from 6 with his runnners here over the past 5 years and 2/5 with his 4yo and older horses. He saddles last years winner, Litigant (no horse has won this more than once – let alone back to back – during this period). Too high in weights and handicap, too old at 8 and ninth last time, he is the most unlikely looking winner (from a trends viewpoint) in the field ….so pile in!!
Looking at all those 16/1 or less, which easily covers the first 8 in the betting, the top 10 are out merely on the ratings and last time finish trends.
Of the rest:
Erik The Red finished 7th last time
Cape Cova would be a big contender if not carrying the trends hoodoo of being fav!
Current clear second fav has all in its favour except has only run twice in the last year and therefore lacks the usual 4+ runs this season. However, I am tempted given the record of 5yo's and second favs. May go off fav though.
The only one with the perfect profile is WILLIAM HUNTER (16/1 generally) who is my trends pick.
I will have a saver on either WRANGLER or CAPE COVA. At present, Ladbrokes (who i always take notice of) have them joint favs. Given the the market normally gets this wrong i will go for the one that ends up second fav
28/10/16 SAT 3.00 ASCOT
WILLIAM HILL HURDLE
LAST 18 RUNNINGS
Good race for favs with 7 winning
Second fav won three as did third favs
First 5 in betting won 16
Winners at 14/1, 11/1 & 10/1. All the rest were returned 9/1 or less
ALL within range but 16 carried 11-9 or less
Official Rating (OR)
ALL rated 149 or less
16 rated 144 or less
5 & 6 yo's best with 6-54 (11%) and 7-54 (12%) respectively
4yo's 2-29 (7%), 7yo 2-31 (6%) & 8yo' 1-15 (8%)
15 had 3 or more runs in the past year
ALL ran 4 or less times that season (11 were making their debuts)
15 ran less than 3 times that season
14 posted a last time out first 9 finish (6 won)
Interestingly, 13 had won over a distance beyond two miles
All had run over further
16 had won over 2m and half a furlong or beyond
17 last ran between 16 and 365 days ago
Trainers and jockeys
Paul Nicholls has won this twice. Modus at 12/1 is a bigger price than is normal for a winner of this and finished outside the first 9 last time.
He has also saddled 18 winners from 34 runner in the last two weeks.
Diego du Charmil, Nicholls' other runner, has a lot going for him trends wise. Only is age (4yo) goes against him but Nicholls is a past master with these young ex French horses and he is shortlisted.
Alex Hales' runners are 1-3 at the course but his Minallaforleisure is a 20/1 shot and has had 3 runs this season, neither of which is typical.
Harry Fry's runners here are 10/30 and his hurdlers 9/18, but Hint of Mint has been off the course for 602 days and has a zero for his last run.
The betting forecast and the profile narrows it down to 2, neither of whom have a perfect profile.
CH'TIBELLO would need to equal the weight carrying record and be the third highest rated horse to win this in the last 20 years. He may, but the weight stat puts me off.
This leaves us with DIEGO DU CHARMIL whose only trends drawback is his age of 4.
One of the two four year old winners of this was a 13/2 shot trained by Nicholls and his yard is in such formidable form – not to mention the horse has had one run this season and won plus was a Cheltenham festival winner in March on UK debut – that it is hard to look further than this 6/1 second or third fav.
DON 3.50 THE RACING POST TROPHY
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
Over the period there have been winners at 33/1, 25/1 and 20/1, so shocks not unheard of
12 favs have won though and 7 of the last 10 have done so
16 were returned 14/1 or less
All 3 with a rating had an OR of 96+
17 had between 1 and 4 runs prior to to this race
17 posted a first 3 finsh last time out
12 won LTO
No maiden won
16 won over 7F +
18 had ran over 7 furlongs or further
Trainers and Jockeys
AP O'Brien has won this 7 times; Finn McCool, at 20/1, looks like he could be in as the pacemaker and, at those odds, would be the joint third longest priced winner. All of the past 7 O'Brien winners had SP's of 10/1 or less. Other than that, has a fine trends profile.
Of his two other runners, Anvil is a maiden but Yucatan is the fav and, but for the lack of a last time win, would have a perfect trends profile.
David Elsworth has his horses in fine form and he saddles Sir Dancelot whose only trends negative is he has had 5 runs rather than the usual 2-4.
William Haggas is 8/26 with his 2yo's here over the last 5 seasons and his Rivet is clear on the official ratings. His lack of a first three run last time makes him unappealing as a trends horse. Hope for his followers though is that the jockey, Andrea Atzeni, has rode the last three winners of this race!
Ryan Moore is 67/215 for O'Brien.
Looking at those 14/1 and shorter, Contrapopposto and Raheen House are rated less than 96.
Rivet finished fifth last time.
Sir Dancelot has had too much racing (5 runs) as has Salouen.
The Anvil is a maiden.
This leaves the fav in a race where more than two thirds of favs have won both over the last 19 years and the last 10 – YUCATAN. Even he could have had a better profile if he had won his last race but he fulfils the first three last time criteria.
At Evens, currently, you won't get rich backing him so, given the yard's forecast and tri-cast exploits, i wouldn't be at all surprised if his 20/1 shot FINN MCCOOL ran a big race and is the each way alternative for those averse to short prices. His only trends downside is his price, but, big prices are not unheard of in this.
ASC 1.25 LONG DISTANCE CUP (G2)
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
18 were returned 9/1 or less, which leaves just four runners today
12 came from the first two in the betting
16 has 2-8 runs in the last year
15 ran 2-6 times that season (we lose once raced this season, and 2014 winner, Forgotten Rules
17 had already ran over 2 miles, which disqualifies Simple Verse on trends
This leaves us with two possibles.
On trends alone Order of St George is best. Quest for More, with 8 runs in the last year is cutting it fine and is well held on a line through Sheikzayed Road who was well beaten by the fromer nearly 6L in the G1 Gold Cup by the former, but beat the latter a nose in the G2 Doncaster Cup.
Trainers & Jockeys
Dermot Weld always has to be watched at Ascot as he has a 7-21 strike rate here and is 5-12 with his older horses. As mentioned, his Forgotten Rules is a run short of being a typical winner of this, having won it in 2014. Only the great Persian Punch has won this more than once in the period looked at.
Ryan Moore has a fantastic 31% strike rate, from a huge sample, riding for AP O'Brien and this tends to add confidence to the trends selection.
For those needing a miracle, Adam Kirby, who is 3-10 for Sylvester Kirk, rides 100/1 shot Forgotten Rules.
It will be a most uncoventional route, via a 3L third in the Arc just 13 days ago, but ORDER OF ST GEORGE ticks all the boxes. With the speed to run such a screamer in the Arc and to win the Irish St Leger by 11L, yet the stamina to win the two and a half miles G1 Ascot Gold Cup, this looks an extraordinary horse. The only doubt could be the hard race at Chantilly and the return after just 13 days, though his record running between 8-15 days is 2-4.
At best priced 5/6, no-one will get rich backing him. He is, however by some way the likeliest winner.
As an each way punt i may, thanks to the amazing record of Dermot Weld here,overlook the minimum 2 seasonal runs rule and back former winner FORGOTTEN RULES
ASC 2.00 CHAMPION SPRINT (G1)
LAST 19 YEARS
16 were returned 11/1 or less
16 were from the first 5 in the betting
ALL had run at leat 3 times thaat season – Shalaa has run just once
18 posted a first 5 finish last time which loses Twilight Son
18 were distance winners, which gets rid of Meca's Angel and Librisi Breeze
This leaves us with a trends shortlist of 2: The Tin Man and Quiet Reflection
Trainers & Jockeys
Gosden's is the in form yard with 15 winners from 46 runners in the past 2 weeks. He runs Shalaa whose trends flaw was mentioned above.
Pat Smullen is 1-2 for Mick Channon and he rides 50/1 shot, Mobsta.
Ryan Moore is 1-3 for Henry Candy and he rides Twilight Son whose zero last time out rules him out as a trends pick
The trends point to the first two home in the £160K G1 6F Sprint at Haydock 6 weeks ago. I can see no reason why the form should be reversed and QUIET REFLECTION (3/1 generally) is the selection.
ASCOT 2.35 FILLIES & MARES STAKES (G1)
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
Returned 14/1 or less
Won over 10F which leaves Queens Trust out of it having won over no more than 7F
Ran over 12F which, though having flopped over that trip twice (once in this race last season), would seem to go against Speedy Boarding.
This leaves a shortlist of three: Journey, Zhukova and Seventh Heaven.
Trainers & Jockeys
The in form Gosden yard run two and Journey is on the shortlist
Suroor is 8/28 the last 14 days but runs a 33/1 outsider in Promising Run
Dermot Weld (whose record at Ascot was discussed above) runs Zhukova, also shortlisted
Ryan Moore's record for AP O'Brien bodes well for the other shortlisted horse, Seventh Heaven
Jim Crowley is 2/5 for Suroor and Promising Run is beginning to look like the one that could provide the shock if there is to be one
Aidan O'Brien has never won this race
Without doubt Seventh Heaven is the form horse. The conqueror of Arc winner, Found, in the Yorkshire Oaks, though receiving 10lbs weight for age, may well have been a little flattered though as Found is an Autumn horse who came good when unlucky in the Arc last year before winning the Breeders Cup. According to RPR, Found improved 7lbs from that race to the Arc which would have probably been enough to turn the form round in the Yorkshire Oaks.
Add to that the trainers record in this race and i am prepared to take her on at 7/4.
Gosden's Journey could be an improver but will need to be, having been beaten in this last year's lower class renewal.
I still maintain the Epsom Derby form of the first 3 was top class form and, in beating US Army Ranger last time, ZHUKOVA stamped herself a top class horse and, at 7/2 looks over priced.
ASC 3.10 QUEEN ELIZABETH II STAKES (G1)
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
This is the best race for favs on the card with 8 winning
Interestingly, NO second favs won but three third favs obliged
17 were returned 9/1 or less
Now we come to what i think is the key stat, the stand out stat of all the research i have done on all the races so far:
17 had no more than 5 runs in the last year
18 had no more than 5 runs that season
This trend is interesting as it suggests this is not a race for horses who have had busy campaigns in hard races. This knocks all bar Lightning Spear, from the 9/1 or less price band, out of it.
Trainers & Jockeys
Aiden O'Brien has won this 3 times and his fav, Minding, having done the 1000 Guineas and Oaks double, is the obvious form horse. But, too many hard races this season?
Shane Foley is 5/17 for Adrian Paul Keatley whose Jet Setting beat Minding in the Irish 1000 Guineas. The same question applies to her.
Breton Rock is not a miler but Andrea Atzeni is 5/18 riding for trainer David Simcock. I can't help wondering if this 66/1 shot is a pacemaker for his other runner, Lightning Spear.
LIGHTNING SPEAR is the trends pick by default but he is no mug. Won going away last time in the G2 Celebration Mile at Glorious Goodwood last time and, reading the following, that may have been only a prep for this:
"the last two races have been so frustrating to watch as Lightning Spear hasn´t been able to produce and show for one reason or another. You feel sorry for the horse because he´s got so much talent and I think he´ll show that at the end of this year and next. He´s got a turn of foot and can pick up – David Simcock, trainer. " Racing Post
Best priced 12/1 but likely to go off around 8 or 9's, LIGHTNING SPEAR is my trends surprise horse, so far.
ASCOT 3.45 CHAMPION STAKES (G1)
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
17 were returned 12/1 or less
18 had 6 runs or less over the last year (which puts paid to Found's chances, trends-wise)
ALL ran 6 times or less that season (again bad news for Found)
15 finished in the first 3 last time
5yo's have a 14% strike rate compared to 7% (6 winners) for 3yo's & 9% (8 winners) for 4yo's
10 won LTO
Trainers & Jockeys
We have the Weld stats at the track, Gosden's and Suroor's yards good recent form and Ryan Moore's record for O'Brien.
The only new stat for trainers is the record of JC Rouget at the course, 2-7, with 2-6 being 3yo's
Christophe Soumillon is 2-4 for Rouget here and he rides the horse with the perfect trends profile – ALANZOR
Sivlestre de Sousa is 2/3 for Suroor and he rides Racing History, who, as a seasonal debutant, would be an unusual winner.
AP O'Brien has never won this race.
Applying the above, we have a trends shortlist of three:
Fascinating Rock, as a 5yo, appeals and he won this last year. Alborada and Twice Over won it two years running. A win, rather than a second, last time would have been ideal.
French Derby and Irish Champion Stakes winner, ALMANZOR, has a flawless trends profile and can't really be opposed.
I backed US Army Ranger ante post for the Arc. I thought he was ridden to get the trip in the Epsom Derby when making up amazing ground from Tattenham Corner and looking like he was going to run Harzand down, only to fade, having done all his work getting there.
Harzand let the form down since but was struck into in the Irish Champion and, just two weeks later, was still feeling that in the Arc, for my money.
At 25/1 last night (now gone) US ARMY RANGER has a near perfect trends profile and, should there be a surprise, could be the one to provide it. My each way bet in this at 16/1 generally.
LAST 19 runnings
A poor guide with winners at 66/1 twice, 50/1 twice and 25/1 – 4 of those winners were in the past 5 years!
However 2 favs, 2 second favs and 2 third favs won, giving 6 winners from the first 3 in the betting
14 came from the first 9 in the betting
ALL carried 9-8 or less and 17 carried 9-6 or lower
Official Rating (OR)
17 were rated 98 or less, which very nearly ties in perfectly with the 9-6 or less trend
The older they get the better their wins to runs strike rate, with two exceptions – the dire record of 5yo's who have won this just once from 140 runners and the decent record of 3 yo's, who are 2-38 (5%)
Of the rest, in order of merit (strike rate wise), 9yo's are 1-15 (7%), 8yo's 2-36 (6%), 7yo's 3-77 (6%), & 4yo's 4-198 (2%)
14 ran between 4-9 times in the past year
17 ran 2-7 times that season
16 ran 1-7 times that season
17 finished in the first 7 last time
17 had won over 2m plus (flat or hurdles)
18 RAN over 2m1f (flat or hurdles)
17 ran between 16 and 120 days ago
2 winning 3yo's rated 94 & 95
All the above filters lead us to three – and they are all 4yo's, which, while they have won 4, have the second worse strike rate, is not ideal. So none of these are perfect fits, just bear in mind we have to choose how exactly to narrow down a 35 runner field and i am choosing to downplay the age stats.
The three are third fourth and fifth favs and i would back all three to win based on the none too good record of the first two in the beting and the fact that fav St Michel (a 3yo in a race good for them) has had more than 7 runs this season annd has to run off a mark 2 lbs higher than the two other 3yo winners. Starchitect is the opposite with just the one run this season.
So, the selections:
Prescott's supposed second string SEA OF HEAVEN 10/1 @ boylesport
Current third fav, and ratings pick, SWEET SELECTION 10/1 @ boylesport
THE CASHEL MAN @ 16/1 Paddy Power 1 Betvictor
ALL 3 have perfect trends profiles other than being 4 yo's.
DUBAI FILLIES MILE (G1)
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
Good guide with 8 favs and 4 second favs winning
Other than a 28/1 winner, all the others were returned 10/1 or less
18 came from the first 4 in the betting
Official Rating (OR)
Of the 8 winners of this with an OR, ALL were rated 90+, as are the only two with an OR tomorrow.
17 had run between 2-4 times
18 finished in the first 3 last time – 14 won
17 won over 7F plus
ALL ran over 7F+
ALL ran within the last 60 days
AP O'Brien has won this 4 times and he saddles two.
Hydrangea has had one too many runs to be ideal trends material, and is just held by stablemate, Rohdendrum anyway. The latter would have been a strong trends pick with a win last time, but the third place LTO puts me off because of the preponderance of last time winners.
Hugo Palmer has his horses in fine form with 9 winners from 29 runners over the last two weeks. His horse, Fleabiscuit, won last time but has had just the one run (no other winner in the period had less than 2) and is 20/1 at the moment, well outside the 10/1 second longest priced winner.
Looking at the first four in the betting, we can exclude the O'Brien pair (reluctantly, as he is a serial trends buster!).
The problem is that the fourth in the betting is a close call. As i write, Hydarangea has drifted out to 11/2 and the ideal trends horse (three times runners have won 9 renewals), RICH LEGACY is a rock solid 6/1.
Current fav, Sobetsu won a maiden by 10 lengths over over C/D last time, improving vastly on his dubut run behind race experienced second fav, Spatial, over 7F, again in a maiden.
But RICH LEGACY is the (potential) trends horse with the form in the book, having won the G2 May Hill Stakes over a mile and, as i say, with three runs and a win last time, has a perfect profile IF she is sent off from the first four in the betting. I am gambling she will either be backed into the first four in the betting and/or Hydrangea will drift . She is available at 6/1 generally.
TWO YEAR OLD TROPHY (LISTED)
LAST 19 RUNNINGS
Mixed bag. There have been big priced winners at 40/1 & 28/1, a 20/1 winner and two 16/1's.
On the other hand, 7 favs won as did 4 second favs
16 came from the first 7 in the betting
15 came from the first 5
Official Rating (OR)
15 had an OR (all todays runners are rated) of which 13 were rated 89 plus
ALL ran 1-9 times
16 finished in the first 4 last time
7 won last time
Only 2 maidens have won this over the period
Only 10 had already won over 6F plus
But 18 had RAN over 6F+
The ratings trend alone narrows it down to 5 and, when we introduce the top 4 finish last time out, we are left with two.
OREWA has the perfect profile and won a 108K Curragh sales race 2 lengths last time. Whether he will be as at home on this faster ground (yielding at the Curragh last time) remains to be seen but he has ran well and achieved a good RPR on Good)
Hugo Palmer's yard is in fine form, with 9 winners from his 31 runners over the past fortnight and 2 of his 3 two year old runners here have won. He runs the worthy 5/1 fav, MAZYOUN who was second in an even more valuable 147K sales race at Doncaster last time and will like this ground. The trends negative for this one though is his lack of a win (only 2 such winners).
In summary, i have backed OREWA, who is the definite best on trends, at 14/1 with Hills (Ladbrokes go the same), each way. My only worry is the ground may be too fast.
I have backed MAZYOUN as a saver at 5/1 with 365 (generally available) who will like the ground.