Members Report: 12/04/16 (COMPLETE)

Bar watching a horse or even a jockey for that matter, get seriously/fatally injured there are not many worse feelings in this great game of ours than being rather confident about a horse’s chance, backing them accordingly, only to watch them fall out the back of the tv set. I don’t know what went wrong with old Carrigdhoun today but it was rather deflating.

Unless something comes to light I won’t go looking for excuses. On paper he had everything in his favour – no chinks at all, and if I looked at that race 1000 times I would come up with the same conclusion – at the odds. Maybe he had a harder race than I thought last time. I mean even old Harry The Viking ran better than him! 🙂 The young progressive winner did it well as he was entitled to do, and at least I got that right. But, we got no real run for our money there so apologies. As I would hope you picked up in my write up, I was rather bullish about him, which compounds the misery! Bloody horses, eh?!

We move on, clinging onto a 1 point profit for the month I believe. +125.25 points for 2016 to date. And we have the Scottish National to look forward to – those of you long standing readers will recall we nabbed the winner last year, at 33/1 – banishing Grand National 2015 disappointment to the dustbin. The same again this year would be welcome and I will try be trying my best to do just that. 


There is a new post up with some stats/pointers for The Craven Meeting, starting tomorrow. 




3.00 Exeter

Copper Birch – 1 point win – 13/2 > 8/1 (UP)

While this race does have a feel about it which suggests ‘anything could happen’ – I have gone with one who still has time on his side, from a trainer who has a decent record here with his chasers and a horse who has one piece of eye-catching form – which was over this course and distance in March 2015. In that race, which was much much deeper than this he ran a decent third – he seemed to cruise into it turning in before the very well handicapped  Jonjo runner past (I was glad he did!) as well as one other. But, he stayed on there for third – it wasn’t a ‘knackered out on my feet’ plodding job over the line – he jumped really well up the home straight suggesting he had something left, and ran that way to the line. He just bumped into a couple. He was also was a few pounds higher there. Now, stamina is a question, especially being by Benefial (they could do better over these trips) but this better ground may help out. I think he needs some cut, but the lack of heavy should help him see it out better – or ensure he may have more energy come the line. This is only his second start over a trip like this and I was intrigued enough to have a go. Moloney is back on and after his early UR last time he won’t have had a hard race. The Pace is also a positive – he is a hold up horse – never ideal – but there are a couple of front runners in here and plenty of ‘pace pushers’. 

If he stands up – and he is usually a sound enough jumper (also has the pro back in the saddle) – I would like to think he may look like the winner as they turn for home – it is then just whether he stays or not – he won’t get a better opportunity than in this race and it should help answer that question once and for all. At 13/2, happy to take the chance. 

Of the rest…well Nail M is interesting of course, but at 4/1 I found myself unconvinced. This ground may be too lively for him and it may happen all too quickly- his best form has been in a swamp and even then he has still found one or two too good. He gets new headgear here – it may help, he may hate it – and he needs a strong rider, which he gets also. The yard though is still in and out of form. IF he ran like he did behind Woodford County here then clearly he won’t be far away. I can’t say he can’t win and have had 1/2 on, as he is a system bet – but personally I have a few too many doubts, in the context of his price.

On plenty of old form you could make some sort of case for nearly every other horse in here – plenty of old timers – and maybe one of them will bounce into life- but for the life of me I can’t work out which one it will be. They all have plenty of questions now and I am happy to take them on. We backed Alpha Victor LTO when he disappointed – he has a lot of letters next to his name now and is now 0/7, 1 p going RH – if this race were LH I may have been more tempted – I took a chance on his odds LTO, and he is being backed again. All about his mind. He stays and the ground should be fine. If he runs up to his best he will out-run his odds, for sure. But, he could as easily refuse/be pulled up. I think Golden Milan is a bit too inexperienced for  a test like this, and now has plenty to prove. UD’O – I am struggling to imagine him seeing out this trip – I don’t think he stays 24f, and can be a sulky bugger – like a few in here. I could go through them all but you get the idea.

Nothing would be a total shock – but I suspect many of these will falter and you can’t keep making excuses for horses. As we saw yesterday, there is an increasing risk of the unexpected when backing horses of a certain vintage. Copper Birch has been running well enough this year and maybe he has always wanted a trip like this on Good to Soft. If he stays I think he has the class (in any case this is a very weak C3- so weak even Barton Gift may have a chance at a level he has fluffed at a few times) and is certainly well handicapped. A Paul Moloney stalking special is the order of the day!


That is all for tips.  



Jumps Handicappers

3.00 Exet: Nail M (12/1<) 2nd 4/1>10/3

3.35 Exet: Thatchers Gold (12/1<) 3rd 12/1 



Nothing today. Yet to look at Newmarket with my stats etc. I am only 10 mins up the road and it is pouring down – not sure if raining there but nothing worse than softening ground on the flat with unexposed horses – adds a level of complication to the puzzle. 


That is all for this evening. 


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Post Comments

Do join in the conversation below, we're a friendly bunch.. all questions welcome, and do share your selections or thoughts

35 Responses

  1. Tara Tavey my 17/1 win is running at 2:25 EXETER
    that time C3 race bu it is very strong horse with kiling finish

    1. Toby Lerone came good LTO and could now progress and follow up? Better performance than most in this race but can he give a repeat performance?

      1. I am on Toby Lerone. Same mark over hurdles that he won over fences. Is 3/5, 4 places when returning within 15 days and the Skeltons are making the trip over for just the one tomorrow

        1. yep I see no reason why he won’t give it a good go from the front here. Was pestered LTO for quite a way also, so can mark up a bit – jumped well and these fences are similar – handled undulations over hurdles so should be ok- can’t see a reason why he wouln’t give a good run for any backers. appears to be developing some consistency.

  2. Now, something to consider for next year now the dust has settled from the National meeting. Trends for the Topham proved very very strong.

    I used the filters below, throwing up the following shortlist:

    Eastlake WON
    Fairy Rath 2nd
    Distime 4th
    Gallery Exhibition 5th
    As De Mee 7th
    Bennys Mist 12th
    Dare to Endeavour 15th
    Rouge et Blanc 16th
    Astracad PU

    Had savers on Fairy Rath (agonisingly) and Distime stupidly not e/w
    Will take serious note of the shortlist next year

    NOT any of the below
    Blinkers Visor

    Highest Class Run
    Grp/Grd 1 Grp/Grd 2 Grp/Grd 3 Listed Class 2

    Highest Class Win
    Grp/Grd 2 Grp/Grd 3 Listed Class 2 Class 3

    Distance LTO Less than 3m-ish (can’t remember exactly)

    H-Run (90 Days) Between 1 And 4

    H-Run (Season) NOT Between 0 And 2

    H-Run (Fences) NOT Exactly 0

    H-Win (Career) NOT Exactly 0

    H-Win (Season) Between 0 And 2
    Horse Last Race Data – Categories relating to the most recent run of the analysed horse.

    (LR) No. of Runners NOT Between 1 And 6

    (LR) Days Since Run Between 4 And 120

    1. b4 last week’s race 8 of last 12 winners had experience of National fences, something the first three in betting lacked but now 9 from 13. I noted last week how Aintree was great for previous cdg figs, wish it was Aintree every week lol, Party Rock, Maggio & Eastlake all had solid previous.

      1. Just been doing figures for Topham & really it should be Third Intention that makes the Notebook for next year – giving the winner 15lb beaten 13l’s comes out top of the charts – with Colin Tizzard (most Gr1’s Brit trainer), on the back of a fine 5th in the Cheltenham Cross Country chase first attempt, he’s got prospects for something?

  3. Your tip Josh, he had earned a career best RP topspeed fig only 15 days ago, aged 11, this race may have come too soon after a hard race? His best two chase figs good ground with no ‘soft & 20f.

    He was only 5th top rated on my figs & came 6th, my 6th top Fiddlers Reel he came 2nd (may have under-rated) seems a Kelso specialist, placed 4 from 6 now.

    imho the winner was too well handicapped to oppose, he has a rpr of 110 from France to his name which equates to an official mark of 130 (sometimes at least) and here he was off 101. Although his dosage suggests he could be better at shorter trips?

    1. Yep that may well be it – certainly that may be only thing that explains the effort – he had a decent record in that rest pattern- so wasnt a ‘general’ case of him needing more time between races. All other conditions were perfect for me and he had the form to win that – you are more of a figures man than I am – given performance of some of those at Aintree I should probably edge your way a bit more!! – the selection didn’t run his race, so I won’t analyse it much more – race conditions/oppo were not the reason for that performance.

      The winner was well handicapped – at 3s, given his jumping to date, you could make a case for taking him on – regardless of everything else – but he is clearly learning and jumped well. On visual evidence/form he looks like a stayer – would think his dosage is a bit irrelevant now – unless they go over extreme distances and then you may have doubts – you wouldn’t NOT back him over 3m2f,3,3f now due to weak dosage figures.

      1. Aye, the Dosage is a funny old game, as far as I am concerned Frankel should have run in the Derby & Sprinter Sacre the Gold Cup, dosage says fine. One area I do like, a horse that meets the criteria for the Cheltenham Bumper, they often end up being fine national hunt horses whether they even run in a bumper or not.

        I’m always learning bud & I have only last 18 months incorporated what I now call the ‘cdg concept’ into my analysis. I do my own figs but due to work (ha ha gone now lol) & even now trying to bet as well as study form, too much racing, can’t keep up! I subscribe to Racing Post, my figs are locked in & I have to pay to see & while I do I want as much out of it as I can get. If I thought Dave Edwards was doing a good job fine but as far as I’m concerned he should be shot at dawn. Anyway,

        It’s slowly dawning on me that the cdg idea works best at certain specialist tracks & distances [I have a file on every course], like someone previously said on here they preferred a figure over a distance, probably because there are less of them & worth more?

        Sometimes [& again, my 0.20’s had a fantastic Aintree, including the National winner, a 0.20 is a horse that has clocked a fast time, 0.20 seconds per furlong faster than anything else on card] the figures don’t matter that.

        Having said that I just backed Ullswater EW in first at Southwell, now he clocked a 0.20 over hurdles but I’d wager that make him capable of some C6 on the flat sometime, he’s having his 3rd start for new connections, wasn’t disgraced first time at Southwell, been freshened up, return of the winning headgear 40’s I bet it’s 20/s since I wrote that lol

  4. Not been on here for a while so dont know what history has been said about the Topham. It amazed me a 10 yr old who had thirty five previous runs and hadnt won beyond 17f could finish a 2m 5f race like he did. For me thats typical of Jonjo O’neill.

    1. According to the Racing Post he clocked his best speed figure off 146 when 3rd in the race in 2014. Won it this year off 142, he was worth doing on Jockey 4 course stats alone? Fitted quite a few trends, maybe just held up better this time?

      1. Yep must admit stamina was my main concern before the race, despite that 3rd – would have to watch again to remember if I though it was a ‘plodding on’; third rather than staying on – but, horses can stay further as they get older – may be linked to settling better, being ridden differently, who knows. Also, having thought about it after – bar stats etc and I agree about that case – he has stayed on really well at Cheltenham over 17f in fast run, competitive races – given how stiff that track is you could certainly make a leap forward and say 21f around here may be ok – he did receive a great ride but I was surprised at just how strong he finished! And, everything is in context of price – he was 22s – any backers are entitled at those odds to say ‘i have a stamina doubt, but given everything else, I will have a go’.

        1. Interesting to see how far Umberto D’Olivate gets today… Not won or clocked a decent figure since 20f Dec14, he is definitely a Class 3 animal but how far can he carry it? So far he is struggling…..

  5. Hi Josh,
    Could you clarify McPherson Scooby 15.35 and the 90 day 0-1 wins or runs or is it in the last 90 days, I get confused sometimes, must be my age. thanks and Thatchers Gold in the same race I have heavy ground as selection?

    1. Hi Roy,

      it is 0-1 RUN in last 90 days / 0-1 RUNS in national hunt handicap type in career. This one hasn’t come up in my account as a qualifier.

      Thatchers on the drift a bit – don’t like horses from that stable that are weak in market – seems to be plan b after failed chasing campaign. Ground is an unknown, yet to prove he wont handle it – the trip may be more of the issue. A bit too short maybe. But, horses are there to make me look silly!!

  6. Morning all.

    My Greatrex gnome has come out from under his toad stall and a gamble is expected on Miss Estella in the 4.10 at Exeter. Some 9/4 still available.

  7. Well u got a well handicapped horse, the cdg top2 are Upham Atom, marginally ahead of Copper Birch who should no doubt stay clocked a 112 same cd & now 106

    but there are others, Alpha Victor (will he start? Better hurdler), Quinz, if he stays? Umberto D’Olivate, new trip but fallen short at 9 attempts at around 3m to equal anything like his figs at 20f or less & Upham Atom who has won race before. The only question is his strike rate, beside the two non-winners, worst in field, prefer Upham Atom EW.

  8. Gift from the RP which reminds me I think I got some stats regs J Gosden & the hood one today

    “26% is the strike rate of Paul Nicholls’s horses (Whipcord) fitted with a tongue-tie for the first time” 1.50

    1. Yep I will get looking again at Mr Nicholls and his use of equipment – I think he is still worth backing blind when throwing stuff on first time – blinkers/tongue tie etc etc – albeit, I do get the impression some of it is luck – with Solar Impulse it was a last minute decision, and they just thought they needed to try something different. Donald McCain does/has a decent record with first time blinkers also – and certainly did when Maguire was up.
      Its a tricky one, certainly from a systematic perspective – certainly useful information to know when analysing any horses chance…but on flip side, you get horses like Le Reve – Wadham’s record with first time blinkers was abysmal before she put some on him – it is a tricky area – can depend on breeding –

      From memory I think ‘War Front’s progency do well in first time headgear – A O’Brien does well in that regard I believe, probably with some of War front’s – many of whom appear to have temperament issues.

      Problem with stats like that in RP is that they soon become well known, and overbet!

  9. Josh
    It pays to read your blog to end, I threw some loose change at Barton Gift which covered the lose from Copper Birch.

    Nice one.

    1. Good stuff Mike – I wish I had done that haha – but that is why I write the way I do! It was a weak C3 given number of horses who may not run their races – assured stamina that one – albeit his recent form was abject, with no excuses from what I could see. Another change of headgear though – CB didn’t stay but was happy to take chance he might, and improve for it.

  10. Re Newmarket stats, does not Cartago in the 5.40 fit. Gosden 3YO into handicap company? 25/1 in places.

    1. Is that for the 3yo handicap micro? If supported he would, to date (well,last three seasons) market has been a good guide in those handicaps – over 11/1 SP very poor record. Small samples though…oh he is a non runner.

  11. Josh
    Threw some loose change again at Teruntum Star 16/1 ew .K Ryan one of the trainers you gave in the Craven Review.
    14s when I put it on. Had a tickle on Desert storm a hannon horse. If you read your blog half a dozen times you get a picture of what ur about. Lol.

  12. Josh
    Hannon (Ventura Storm) follow Hannon you said, Ryan Moore combo did it for me. More loose change again.

    1. Good stuff Mike – I must admit to having a 1/2 on him 5/2 last night. That one has paid for Copper Birch! Hannons record in G3/Listed now 5/12,8 places at meeting last 4 seasons. It is straight forward sometimes! Unlike Gosden’s, his can still be backed blind.

      Slightly kicking myself, did have a quick look at Jockeys here, but left them – I think one Jamie Spencer had some rather good stats, but having not backed the Ryan horse, I can’t bear to go and look at them again!! Well done for having him. Gelding operation did the trick it seems.

  13. Hi Josh,

    Is the Cheltenham meeting this week on the new or old course since HRB doesn’t differentiate (must message the admin so he can amend this hopefully)? Any idea where this is can be found out?

    1. Hi Nick,
      The good racing folk of twitter inform me that it is the NEW COURSE…would be helpful if it was somewhere.
      Apparently the Old Course is ‘only’ used for the first meeting, Paddy Power meeting and first two days of Festival.

      1. Brilliant thanks mate. Must try and store that information somewhere in my brain. Front runners it is tomorrow than. That 3m4f chase looks like an interesting puzzle.

        1. Indeed! Went with an ‘educated guess’ as to stamina in today’s race, may go down more tried and tested route tomorrow albeit I have only had a cursory glance. Looks a cracker! Will try and solve it.

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