The Goat & The Different Suburb

Factoids V the Goat that’s a real stat

90% of half the stats bandied about in racing – all sport for that matter. GWS MCG hoodoo anyone? – are seven eighths misleading crap.

Yes a fact can’t be wrong if it’s accurate, but the “barrier x has won x amount of the past x Melbourne Cups” types are nothing other than filling airtime/column inches.

While measuring inner or wider barriers in certain situations for possible patterns are a logical way of looking for a lead in EG a high pressure Stradbroke or Caulfield Cup, a singular barrier in one annual race is trivia not a learning tool.

Worse still is in “approved” industry sponsored racing media, you only hear “positive” “gee whiz how good is he or she going?” stats but never why you should be wary of a runner when/if a jockey and/or a trainer is having a bad run.

For instance coming into the last race on Saturday at Flemington – which I stayed out on – Anjana was crunched from $4:20 to $3:80 favourite, but I (proudly!) rated it only $6:00 (on top in a wide race) writing:

1 Anjana Lachlan King • Mick Price (15) 60kg

$6:00 Should take a power of beating if she brings here best and is drawn outside to do just that returning from SA. Won this track/distance first up with a monster 2nd best last 400 and 200 of the day off a very soft tempo, then really elevated with a big overall performance at Moonee Valley at 1200. Fairly plain over 1100 at MORP when 3rd, but her Goodwood run was excellent with a big mid race and the 6th best last 800 of the day, with only the winner SPRIGHT – who would kill these – better. Neither trainer nor jockey is having a good run, but that might just create a better price. Her best will take a power of beating.

She ran 10th but pulled up with EIPH and it may have had zero to do with “neither trainer nor jockey is having a good run” but that didn’t help you if you ignored that factor and backed her.

I chose not to ignore it which is why I stayed out of the race knowing she was the best horse, but concerned if she’d run to her best and/or be ridden to run to her best with an out of form jockey.

I didn’t document the stats in detail the run, but it always shapes my thinking and will here.

Leading into the meeting:

Mick Price has had 29 runners at single figures since 23/04 for ZERO wins including 9 favourites

Lachie King had been beaten on all 6 favourites he’d ridden in the city since the 1st of March, and prior to a Friday night winner at Cranbourne had 45 winless rides since 22nd of April.

I do “play” with the filters as I believe that can reveal certain things such as coping with pressure on favourites, riding better in the country v city etc, but I’m not sure how you could have been confident with ANJANA at the price given both the stable and rider being out of form?

BUT!

Then there is the great Damien Oliver (GOAT – greatest of all time) and as you can see below, when it comes to Flemington distance races THAT is a stat to trust and be guided by!

Updated from Saturday and A CONFESSION I WROTE IT INCORRECTLY LAST ORIGINALLY LAST SATURDAY THAT YOU CAN SEE BELOW! but Damien Oliver has now had 22 rides in 2500+ distance rides between FIORENTE’S Melbourne Cup and Steel Prince at $7 and under for 10 wins! Try 45% strike rate v 24% market expectations! That is insane!

He knows how fast to be going and where to be on the track.

And when there’s a nose in it like Saturday, that’s the side of the bet to be on!

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Same track. Same distance. Different suburb

You can’t get a better example of every race presenting it’s own set of unique circumstances – that makes the game endlessly fascinating – than FIDELIA winning same track and distance two weeks in a row on similar surfaces

and…

On Vince’s Accardi’s dailysectional.com.au data at the 800 metre mark:

18/05 was going +0.9 lengths above benchmark

25/05 was going -13.2 lengths below benchmark

So her first 800 metres last Saturday was 14 lengths slower than the week before.

No wonder she had plenty of energy in the tank for a big finish!

“Racetrack” Ralphy Horowitz provides independent form analysis via racetrackralphy.com.au. He uses Vince Accardi’s dailysectionals.com.au IVR benchmarking service and together they do the Year Round Carnival podcast review of the weekend’s main races every Monday”

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