The Weekend Bulletin (Sat 21st Jan’17)
Last time around our regular pundit, Nick Hardman, tackled the feature race at Warwick, the Betfred Classic Chase, and went mighty close to landing a big’un!
As he often does when faced with a very competitive 20+ runner handicap he turns to his trusty stats and trends to help narrow down the field. In this instance he went for a trio of big priced runners that were a good fit and with the lowest priced one being 18/1 he suggested going Each-Way but also taking advantage of bonus place terms that some of the bookies offer on these types of events. This time around Skybet were offering 6 places at 1/5 odds and it would have been rude not to take advantage of this.
As it turned out the biggest priced of Nick’s selections, Goodtoknow (adv EW 33/1), nearly pulled it off but in the end could not cope with the late surge of race winner One For Arthur and had to settle for second and the handy place spoils. One of the other picks, Rigadin De Beauchene (adv EW 18/1), managed to finish in a clear 6th place and also added to the returns.
This weekend Haydock stages, weather permitting, a cracking card which includes the renewal of the Peter Marsh Chase (3.15pm) and who better to turn to than the Betting Insiders Big Race Guru, Nick Hardman, for the key trends to try and unravel the chances of the 14 runners that are currently entered.
Peter Marsh Chase (Grade 2; 3m); Haydock, January 21st
This 3 miles limited handicap (a race where a restricted weight range is specified) has been contested on heavy ground on 8 of the last 9 renewals and no surprise to see that the top weight (or joint top weight) has won just one of the last 12 renewals. That win came on soft ground. If the going is heavy we can give the top weight a swerve.
In fact, since 2004, horses at least 11lbs below the top weight have won 7 of the 10 renewals. Only Cloudy Lane and Jodami have carried more than 11st 2lbs to victory since 1997. Five of the last eight winners were ridden by a claimer so taking weight off the back of the horse really seems to help.
With the current forecast going as soft we should take note of entries by Venetia Williams who is adept at training the mud larks and she has twice trained the winner of this race. Likewise, Sue Smith has won the race three times, including last year’s winner Cloudy Too. Look out for runners entered by these two and I would add Kerry Lee into the mix as well. All three are excellent trainers of staying chasers, especially when the mud is flying around.
There has been only one winning favourite in the last 16 renewals and that is in spite of this race seeing small fields of 5 to 7 runners in the past. In fact, horses sent off at 4/1 or shorter have provided just 2 winners from 22 runners.
Do not be afraid to back a veteran chaser if you fancy one as this race has been won by two 12yo, one 11yo and four who were aged 10yo. Despite this, 8yo runners have the best record and are 6-36 at a strike rate of 17%. Horses aged 7yo or younger are few and far between and have a record of 0-19.
Horses with experience of marathon distances (3m 6f or further) have a good record and are 7-45 (strike rate 16%) and horses to have run in the Grand National are 3-21 (strike rate 14%). Eleven of the winners since 1997 had winning form over at least 3 miles and a break of 16 – 60 days looks ideal and accounts for 13 of the last 16 winners.
That gives us a decent profile to identify some of the likelier types who will line up for the Peter Marsh Chase.
• Carrying 11st 2lbs or less
• At least 11lbs below top weight (heavy going)
• Ridden by a claimer
• 9/2 or higher in the betting
• Trained by Venetia Williams, Sue Smith or Kerry Lee
• Aged 8yo or older
• Winning form over 3m or further
• Raced over 3m 6f or further
• Last race 16 – 60 days ago
In addition to Haydock Saturdays racing also includes some decent cards at Ascot, Lingfield and Taunton although the weather may still play a part of what goes ahead. You can find a sample of what has caught Nick’s attention by clicking here to read on:-
Nick Hardman’s Big Race Selections – Sat 21st Jan
Alary would have to be pretty special to take this off 11-10 and he concedes at least 7lb to the whole field. This is one we covered in the Insiders Report and from a trends perspective Otago Trail ticks plenty of boxes along with Bishops Road who needs to jump better but will be suited if this turns into a slog. Sausalito Sunrise can also be given a chance on these terms and ran a solid race last time at Cheltenham,
Sausalito Sunrise @12/1 e/w (1/4 odds, 3 places)
Bishops Road @12/1 e/w (1/4 odds, 3 places)
Otago Trail @11/1 e/w (1/4 odds, 3 places)
Here’s to a highly profitable 2017!
Together We Can Win
Darren & Steve