NEWMARKET – SATURDAY
1.50 (Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes): Aidan O’Brien has snared five renewals of this event, albeit six contests have slipped by since the genial Irish trainer last won the prize. 1999 was the year that Aiden claimed his first success and I guess that Cape Of Good Hope is the pick of his three runners this time around. That said, Beatboxer is expected to give John Gosden his third successive winner of the race when represented. The last eight winners have scored at a top price of 11/4, stats which include three clear market leaders and one joint favourite. Seven favourites have won during the last 21 years, whilst 14 of the 25 market leaders reached the frame (exact science) during the study period.
2.25 (Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes): Five favourites have won during the last decade, whilst Aidan comes into the race on a hat trick. Aidan’s ‘Lowther’ winner Fairyland must go close, though there do not appear to be any cracks in Michael Bell’s winner Pretty Polyanna who has raised her game with every race. Going back further in time, eight clear market leaders and one joint favourite have prevailed during the study period, whilst 13 of the 22 market leaders have secured Placepot positions in the process. Eleven of the last twelve winners have scored at a top price of 4/1.
3.00 (Group 1 Middle Park Stakes): By declaring two runners for this event, Aidan O’Brien looks hell bent on getting the record for himself, with the Irish trainer currently being one of seven trainers to have secured four victories in the contest. That said, Aidan is the only modern day trainer in the list, given that the previous ‘recent’ winner (trained by Fred Darling) via the other handlers was recorded back in 1947. Ten Sovereigns has to be the call though we have to digest the fact that three of the last four winners have scored at 25/1, 22/1 & 10/1. Four clear market leaders and one joint favourite have won the ‘Middle Park’ during the last twelve years, whilst eight of the fifteen favourites during the period secured Placepot positions.
3.35 (Class 2 Cambridgeshire Handicap): 14 of the last 15 winners of the ‘Cambridgeshire’ have carried a maximum burden of 9-4. Five of the first seven horses home in 2012 were drawn twenty or higher (the same ratio from stalls 17+ in 2013) and the draw stats below suggest unless the going is soft, horses from higher numbers tend to hold an edge. Horse drawn high tend to have the edge (aside from renewals contested on soft/heavy ground), with nine of the last twelve winners have been drawn in double figures. Indeed, 36/48 horses which claimed Placepot positions during the same period were similarly housed. John Gosden is the only represented trainer to have won this event twice during the last eleven years, with Wissahickon (drawn 21/35) and Stylehunter (32) expected to lead home his three raiders this time around. Horses towards the top of the market with definite claims (aside from the afore mentioned Gosden runners) include Very Talented (24) and UAE Prince (13), though Seniority gets a value for money shout from stall 27 at 28/1 with Betfair at the time of writing. Sharja Bridge would have been given a much better chance but from stall eleven, things have not worked perfectly for Roger Varian’s raider. A week or so ago, Roger’s runners were in good form but a subsequent ratio of 1/11 also means I’m swerving Sharja Bridge, albeit marginally. Although only one favourite has prevailed during the last ten contests, eight market leaders have won during the last 28 years which for a competitive event like this, is a very reasonable record. Eight of the 25 market leaders have finished in the frame during the study period.
Draw factor–nine furlongs:
2017: 29-22-13-10 (34 ran-good to soft)
2016: 28-35-8-13 (31 ran-good to firm)
2015: 7-1-17-4 (34 ran-good)
2014: 11-28-14-10 (31 ran-good to firm)
2013: 4-28-3-20 (31 ran-good to firm)
2012: 21-7-2-12 (33 ran-good)
2011: 31-5-24-27 (32 ran-good to firm)
2010: 3-20-15-22 (35 ran-soft)
2009: 12-6-34-24 (32 ran-good to firm)
2008: 15-35-34-27 (28 ran-good to firm)
2007: 25-16-31-19 (34 ran-good to firm)
2006: 20-27-21-28 (33 ran-good to soft)
2005: 3-5-6-11 (30 ran-soft)
2004: 33-29-31-18 (32 ran-good)
2003: 19-8-5-12 (24 ran-good to firm)
4.10 (Class 4 seven furlong juvenile maiden event for fillies – Division 1): Too much of a lottery for my liking, though Luca Cumani’s newcomer Swansdown is supposedly a nice type who is said to have a guaranteed future, whatever happens this afternoon. Lyzbeth caught the eye at Ascot and could well reach the frame with trainer Martyn Meade having secured the Cambridgeshire on the card twelve months ago. Three of the six contests to date were secured by favourites whilst all seven market leaders have reached the frame.
4.10 (Class 4 seven furlong juvenile maiden event for fillies – Division 2): Charlie Appleby’s record of 12/41 on the heath this season is something to behold and Moneta is expected to represent the stable to good effect. The same stats for division one obviously apply here.
4.45 (Class 2 Nursery event for fillies): Six renewals have slipped by since the last (11/4) favourite obliged, though five of those six winners were (at least) returned in single figures. Form experts will believe that Winter Light should reverse form with Stay Classy from their last encounter though the 8/1 on offer (Hills and Paddy Power) about the latter named Richard Spencer raider looks big enough. William Haggas has claimed two of the last nine contests, with Wingreen marginally preferred to Seductive of his two entries this time around.
5.20 (Class 2 all aged seven furlong handicap): Six renewals had slipped by since the only (joint) favourite scored at 6/1 during the previous decade before last year’s 5/1 market leader prevailed. That said, eight winners scored at a top price of 10/1 which is a fine record in such a competitive contest. Danielsflyer could be a ‘plot job’ here from David Barron’s shrewd yard, whilst the 7/2 quote about Spanish City looks about right given his consistent first rate efforts this term.