2.55 York (25-05-13): 32RED.COM SPRINT (HANDICAP STAKES) 5f, Class 2 (19 ran)

Good afternoon guys and welcome to the first ever Badly Drawn Horse (BDH) Blog post! The clue is essentially in the title but if you want to find out a bit more about this spanking new sister of NTF then just click on the ‘About’ page in the menu above.

To give you a brief overview… I will be looking at large field races run on straight tracks at distances up to a mile and identifying horses that run well from what I considered a poor, or at least unfavourable, draw. The idea is then to scrutinize these horses and highlight the conditions in which they excel (similar to my ‘1 to follow’ posts over on NTF) and look for spots to back them in coming races.

Hopefully that’s clear enough? Good, lets crack on with the inaugural Badly Drawn Horse post…

Race in focus: 2.55 York (25-05-2013): 32Red.com Sprint Handicap – 5f, Class 2 (19 ran)

How the race played out…

York 25-05-2013 - Pace Map

As you can see from my pace map the pace in this race came from the middle to low end of the draw. BOGART from stall 9 attempted to lead but he gave that up after only a furlong and front-running duties fell to stall 7 and JUDGE N JURY. I had already worked out pre-race that there was little to no pace from the high stalls (14+) and that is exactly how it panned out.

Interestingly all runners apart from STRANGE MAGIC in stall 1(who ran on his own on the far side and who’s run you can ignore) gravitated towards the middle to low part of the track, this obviously wasn’t ideal for those that were coming from the high stalls.

The end result…

Winner KINGSGATE CHOICE took full advantage of his positioning and tracked the pace before unleashing a winning run that no-one could match. The top 6 stalls all had to track down and find cover/pace to track as none of them had shown any sort of front running tendencies in any of their recent runs, obviously this instantly put them at a bit of a disadvantage. With that in mind YORK GLORY and ELUSIVITY are the obvious eye-catchers with both managing to get within a length or less of the winner.

From a draw perspective there will be more clear-cut races as we progress through the season but there are still worthwhile pointers we can take from this one…

BDH(s) to follow…

YORK GLORY (2nd) (K Ryan) – There is little doubt in my mind that, from a pace perspective, he wasn’t ideally drawn in stall 15. He had to chase the pace from early doors and track across to get cover and he then had to fight his way through runners who were in reality nowhere near the early to mid-race pace. If we also consider the fact he was hampered 2f out and also didn’t quite get the run he wanted 1f out then this 1/2 length defeat looks even better. Kevin Ryan has always held this horse in high-regard and the signs are there that he is primed to finally land one of these large field valuable handicaps.

Conditions – At this sort of level a strongly run 5f is probably his optimum. He looks relatively adaptable with regards to ground. He looks on a mark he can win from (98) and in honesty he may even have a few lbs up his sleeve.  He can land a similar type of race when he is drawn on the correct side (i.e. with plenty of pace).

ELUSIVITY almost made the list as well, there is no doubt he ran a solid race from his high draw, but I do have a feeling he is slightly anchored by his current mark. If the ground turns soft some time soon he may be of interest but my feeling is he needs to drop a couple of lbs before getting his head back in front. I will keep my eye on him and see if drops down the weights enough for when the ground turns soft again at the back end of the season.

YORK GLORY now enters my Proform ‘Horse Watcher’ tool (horse tracker in other words) and I will post on the Blog when he is due to run next.

I hope you all enjoyed the first ever Badly Drawn Horse Blog post and will continue to follow throughout the summer.

I will leave you with this little ditty…

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B11msns6wPU]

Ben (BDH)


  • Andy wallington

    Reply Reply May 27, 2013

    very eye opening info, will follow with interest.
    keep up the good work!

    • bdhorse

      Reply Reply May 27, 2013

      Hi Andy

      Many thanks and glad you are looking forward to following. Should be plenty to keep us entertained over the summer 🙂

      Cheers – Ben (BDH)

  • Peter Bell

    Reply Reply May 28, 2013

    Ben this is really interesting stuff and is an angle I have been exploiting for several seasons, like you, in big-field handicaps up to a mile on straight courses. The interplay between draw and pace is a complex one and, ever the masochist, I have also done some basic analysis of course pace ‘profiles’ of 5f – 1 mile races with 10-plus runners, to see which courses favour speedballs and which favour late closers (Ascot is definitely in the latter camp!).

    One other point, like me, I suspect you generate ‘pace points’ for horses in a race. The methodology employed needn’t detain us but the key point I have found is, rather than be forever looking at and analysing the next race, I have began to make money from sprint handicaps by going back and going over races I have analysed. after they have been run, and spending 10-15 minutes to see what I got right, what I got wrong and like Ben here, which horses raced above my expectations and are worth following (and trying to work out under what circumstances) and which to leave alone.

    So as a for example, following his run at Newbury on May 18th I’ve put TOP COP in my notebook as he did well against both a pace and draw bias, leading in a race suiting better drawn, hold up types. He raced off 88 and came sixth and if re-assesed at or below 85 will be of real interest as he is a huge horse, capable of giving lumps of weight away to inferior horses in a 0-85 handicap. He was gelded over the winter and tried in first time blinkers here – and horses run better subsequent to their first time in blinkers, contrary to popular belief. When the Balding stable is in better form, under the above circumstances in a race or at a course suiting front runners (Goodwood, Chester, York) he will be of interest.

    Anyway – really interested in seeing how this site and theme develops

    Good luck

    • bdhorse

      Reply Reply May 29, 2013

      Hi Peter and many thanks for your comment

      Excellent point about the pace bias on straight tracks and something I have studied myself as well, in fact the pace analysis page in my guides would be a kinda mini version of what you mentioned. Fully agree that even on the straight tracks (maybe especially on the straight tracks) some courses can play strongly to a certain running style. Ascot, as you say, suits ones coming from behind and is tricky for those on the front end.

      Your methodology sounds similar to my own and although it does take a bit of time it is extremely useful at unearthing horses to follow and sourcing future bets.

      Hope you enjoy following BDH

      Cheers – Ben (BDH)

      • Peter Bell

        Reply Reply May 31, 2013

        TOP COP goes in the Dash at Epsom tomorrow. Not dropped in handicap but has a 7lb claimer up and the course favours front runners. Wonder if he’ll put his best foot forward (big horses tend not to appreciate undulating downland tracks as it puts pressure on their knees) but softer ground may negate any jarring – has run badly though on the two times ‘soft’ has appeared in the title. What do we make of that lot then? Probably no bet for me, even at 18/1. Would want to see more in his favour still as he’s up against some smart cookies here at a track suiting course specialists

        • bdhorse

          Reply Reply May 31, 2013

          Hi Peter

          Yes, noticed he runs tomorrow. Agree that it probably isn’t his conditions tomorrow. May well help with him getting back down to the mark your after though…

          Ben (BDH)

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