The Weekend Bulletin (Sat 21st Sept)
Saturday sees the finale to the 3 day William Hill sponsored Festival up at Ayr and the feature race was given the Hot Trends treatment by our resident Big Race Guru, Nick Hardman.
Followers of Nick’s Big Race advice have been enjoying healthy gains for a number of years now and you can find out more about his specialist approach here https://bigracetips.co.uk/
The following are the Hot Trends that Nick will be focussing on for Saturdays Big Sprint:-
William Hill Ayr Gold Cup (6 f Handicap) – Sat 21st – Ayr 3.50pm
A massive cavalry charge and a lucrative pot at the end of it, the Ayr Gold Cup is a thrilling race and one that throws up a fair amount of decent priced winners, with 20 of the last 22 winners landing the spoils at double digit odds.
The first thing to note is that the last couple of renewals have been run on heavy ground, although this year the ground is currently forecast as on the good side of soft.
Two trainers that catch the eye are Richard Fahey with 2 wins since 2006 and Kevin Ryan with 4 wins since 2007. They clearly know what it takes to win this so cast an eye over their runners this year. No surprise if the former has multiple entries.
The first strong stat to look at is official rating and 11 of the last 13 winners were rated 100+.
The last 11 winners all carried 8-12 or more. Stick with that lot this time around and it may help in narrowing down the field.
All bar two winners since 1997 had raced in the last 35 days so be wary of any that have been off the track for more than this.
No horse older than 6yo has won this in the last 21 years, and 3yo’s have supplied us with just 2 winners in that time period, so stick with those aged 4yo to 6yo. If you do want to narrow it down further then 4yo’s have been responsible for 11 of the last 23 winners.
Another strong stat is that all bar three winners since 1997 came from the top 10 in the market. Given that 25 or more go to post then that trend alone does a decent job a reducing the field down to a manageable amount of likelier types.
Only two favourites have won this in the last 22 renewals so they are ones to be wary of.
This time we find that at least 4 runs in the current season is a starting point. If we cap it at a maximum of 9 runs in the season, then those with 4 to 9 runs under their belts have provided 19 of the last 23 winners.
Another interesting stat is that all bar two previous winners had run over 7f or further at some point in their career. That suggests this is a tough 6f and quite different to some of the speedball favouring tracks like Epsom, Goodwood and to a lesser extent Lingfield.
A win over 7f is also a bonus since those with a win at this distance or over a mile have a much higher strike rate than those who have win over no further than 6f.
It looks like a blend of speed and stamina is needed so look out for those runners who travel well (the Racing Post runner notes will tell you if they do or not).
All 23 previous winners (since 1997) had won no more than 7 career starts and 22/23 had won no more than 5 handicap races.
Go with proven performers as those with previous winning Class 1 and Class 2 form have a better strike rate.
However, avoid those dropping down from Class 1 as they have a record of 3-121 and so go with one that raced at Class 2 or 3 levels on their last start.
That gives us the following profile of the typical Ayr Gold Cup winner:
- Trained by Richard Fahey or Kevin Ryan
- Raced in the last 35 days
- Age 4yo to 6yo
- Rated 100+
- Carrying 8st 12lbs or more
- 4 to 9 runs in the current season
- Run over 7f or further and preferably won over 7f or a mile
- No more than 5 previous handicap wins
- No more than 7 career wins
- Previous Class 1 or Class 2 form
- Ran at Class 2 or 3 level last time out
- Top 10 in the betting
You can find out which of the entries in the Ayr Gold Cup Nick settles on as his final selection(s) below:-
Sat 21st Sept
This one has been given the full trends treatment in the Weekly Report and the qualifiers are Gunmetal and Buffer Zone. The latter may well win this but his odds are too skinny in a race as competitive as this. I think the one to take out of the race he won last time is Gulliver who was unlucky and gets a decent pull in the weights and is reunited with Jason Watson who rode him to win an ultra-competitive handicap at York earlier in the season. Unfortunately, his price has gone as he has been well backed. Gunmetal is harder to make a case for but he went up 7lb for winning the Great St Wilfed last year in the style of a smart horse (beat multiple subsequent winner Dakota Gold) and has dropped a few lbs since. He is reunited with Oisin Murphy who rode him to finish 6th in the Wokingham (1st in his group) and his last 2 runs were over 5 ½f, probably too sharp. He has form over 6f, 6 ½f and 7f and there is no secret that previous winners of this race got 7f. The application of first time blinkers needs to perk him up no end and if they do he would have an each way chance. Intisaab has not really reproduced last year’s form but the booking of Angus Villiers, who claims 7lbs, puts him effectively on 92. When you consider his last 6 wins all came off marks in the 100s there is no doubting he is well handicapped. It may be he is just well passed his prime but he did win 3 times last year and if he runs to his mark of 99 he should be thereabouts. Bacchus has that all-or-nothing profile and won the Wokingham off a big absence in 2018. Failed to repeat the trick this year and finished tailed off. However, he is clearly talented on his day and is just 1lb above the mark from which he won at Royal Ascot. He has done nothing since but if the re-application of cheekpieces perks him up he could well surprise a few here.
Bacchus @33/1 e/w (1/5 odds, 7 places, PP) same place terms Skybet (25/1) and WH (28/1)
Intisaab @14/1 e/w (1/5 odds, 7 places)
Gunmetal @18/1 e/w (1/5 odds, 7 places)
Together We Can Win in 2019
Darren & Steve