Doncaster Racing TV Trends

Friday 15th September 2017

1.50 – Japan Racing Association Sceptre Stakes (Group 3) (Fillies & Mares) Cl1 7f ITV4Β 

12/14 – Never raced at Doncaster before
11/14 – Won between 1-3 times before
10/14 – Raced within the last 6 weeks
9/14 – Had won over 7f before
9/14 – Drawn in stalls 3-7 (inc)
8/14 – Placed favourites
7/14 – Came from the top three in the betting
7/14 – Returned 4/1 or shorter in the betting
7/14 – Won last time out
4/14 – Winning favourites
3/14 – Won by the Hills stable
2/14 – Ridden by Ryan Moore
2/14 – Trained by Roger Varian (last 2 runnings)
1/14 – Irish-trained winners
0/14 – Winners from stall 1 or 2
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 10.5/1

With not a single winner in the last 14 runnings from stalls 1 or 2 then Whatsthemessage (1) and On Her Toes (2) has this trend to overcome. In contrast, horses from stalls 3 to 7 (inclusive) have gone well in the race with 9 of the last 14 (64%) coming from this draw range. Therefore, Drumfad Bay, Pirouette, Sibilance, Music Box and Unforgetable Filly look interesting. Of those six the consistent Pirouette commands respect and is the only past course winner in the field, but it’s the Aidan O’Brien-trained MUSIC BOX, with Ryan Moore riding, that ticks a lot of boxes. Moore has also won this race twice in recent years, while this 3-year-old has finished in the top three in 12 of her 15 starts. She’s been placed at this level the last twice, but the drop back to 7f could be the key with her last win coming over this trip, three starts ago. Soft ground is also perfect and Moore in the plate is the final added bonus. Of the rest, the Roger Varian yard have also done well in the contest – winning the last two runnings – so their TOMYRIS – is another for the shortlist. Yes, draw 12 might not be 100% ideal, but the stable clearly love targeting this race and with just five career runs there could be more to come. She was a fair third in this grade last time out at Goodwood and before that sixth in the Group One Coronation Stakes, behind Winter, at Royal Ascot. She’s another with winning form on soft ground and being that she also stays a bit further than this 7f trip (has won over a mile) then that proven stamina – especially in the closing stages – will be a big asset. Eternally and Talaayeb are others that are sure to be popular in the betting, but by the time the race goes off might not represent much value.

2.25 – Wainwrights Flying Childers Stakes (Group 2) Cl1 5f ITV4

14/14 – Had raced in the last 4 weeks
12/14 – Placed horses from stall 2 or 3
11/14 – Drawn in stall 7 or lower
10/14 – Won 1-2 times before
10/14 – Winning distance – 1 length or less
10/14 – Had won at Listed or Group class before
9/14 – Returned 5/1 or shorter in the betting
7/14 – Winning favourites
7/14 – Placed favourites
6/14 – Foaled in April
6/14 – Ran at York last time
5/14 – Trained by the Richard Hannon yard
5/14 – Ridden by Frankie Dettori
4/14 – Won last time out
1/14 – Irish-trained winners
0/14 – Winners from stall 1
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 11/2

Not much depth to this year’s renewal as, despite there being nine runners, it really only looks between three horses. The 100-rated Pursuing The Dream might be the value of the main trio and there could be more to come now she got off the mark last time out at York. But that was on her seventh career start so that would be a slight worry. Yes, it was a Listed victory in a decent race over in France, but this is a step up in class again here and her only try on soft ground resulted in being beaten 8 ΒΌ lengths. So, for me, it looks to rest between Havana Grey and Heartache. Of the pair, Havanna Grey is the higher rated at 113, to Heartache’s 107, but the last-named does receive 3lbs in weight so there is not a lot in it (3lbs). With no winners from stall 1 in the last 14 years then Heartache will also need to overcome this trend, but with Ryan Moore booked then this season’s Royal Ascot Queen Mary winner is still going to be very popular. She was only just touched off over 5 1/2 furlongs last time so the drop back in trip is also a plus, but the soft ground is a slight unknown having only raced on good-to-soft or quicker in the past. It’s a tight call with the main two, but with ALL of the last 14 winners having raced in the last 4 weeks then HAVANA GREY just gets the nod. This grey likes to blast out and run from the front so the return to 5f will also be a plus for him. He was a convincing winner of the Molecomb at Glorious Goodwood in early August and with that also coming on soft ground then conditions will be perfect. His only blot came at Royal Ascot in the Norfolk but has quickly put that race behind him with two wins and a second. The Molecomb runner-up – Invincible Army – has also franked the form since when winning well at Kempton last weekend so I’ll be sticking with Havana to make it a β€˜grey’ day for his rivals here. Of the rest, with 12 of the last 14 horses placed from stalls 2 or 3 then Wings Of The Rock (2) and May Girl (3) might be worth a small interest to hit the frame.

3:00 – William Hill Mallard Stakes (Handicap) Cl2 1m6f132y ITV4Β 

14/14 – Drawn in stall 11 or lower
13/14 – Aged 5 or younger
13/14 – Had won at least twice before
11/14 – Drawn in stall 8 or lower
10/14 – Had won over 1m4f or further before
10/14 – Winning distance 1 length or more
10/14 – Carried 8-10 or more
10/14 – Aged 3 or 4 years-old
8/14 – Had 5 or more runs that season
7/14 – Had run at Doncaster before (5 won)
6/14 – Ran at York last time out
5/14 – Returned a double-figure price
5/14 – Won last time out
5/14 – Winning favourites
4/14 – Ridden by Jamie Spencer
2/14 – Trained by Michael Bell
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 9/1

Yes, probably not the best renewal of this race, but with 10 of the last 14 winners aged 3 or 4 years-old then that’s a 71% return. Therefore, considering we’ve only two that fit that age trend – Time To Study (3) and Lord George (4) it might be easier to just focus on these two. In fact, 13 of the last 14 winners were aged 5 or younger and with ALL of the other five runners aged 6 or 7 then this further backs-up the chances of both LORD GEORGE and TIME TO STUDY. Lord George was last seen running eighth in a Listed race over in France, but before that was a fine fourth in the Northumberland Plate at Newcastle. He’s only a pound higher than that effort and his normal jockey, George Wood, is back in the plate to claim 3lbs. Yes, the ground is a slight unknown with his best form coming on quicker surfaces, but the drop back in trip will help on that score, as will the smaller field. Time To Study looks set to go off as the market leader and from the Mark Johnston camp that often do well in these staying handicaps is sure to attract support. He was a fair third last Saturday at Haydock in desperate conditions and before that only 3 Β½ lengths behind Stradivarius at Ascot when fifth in the Queens Vase. That is solid Group Two form over this trip and being a 3-year-old gets in here with just 8-8 to carry – meaning all the others have to give this 98-rated runner weight. Soft ground would not be a concern, with the only slight worry being that if this race is coming a bit soon after that slog at Haydock just 6 days ago, but the Johnston horses tend to take their racing well so he’s worth chancing on that front. Of the others, Ryan Moore catches the eye being booked to ride the Consistent Byron Flyer, that has finished runner-up in his last three, while Godolphin’s Penglai Pavilion would enter calculations on old form but at 7-year-old is not getting any younger.

3:35 – Doncaster Cup (British Champions Series) (Group 2) Cl1 2m2f ITV4

15/16 – Had won over 1m6f or further before
14/16 – Had 2 or more runs that season
13/16 – Returned 11/2 or shorter in the betting
12/16 – Drawn in stall 4 or higher
12/16 – Had run at Doncaster before (6 won)
11/16 – Placed last time out
11/16 – Had won 5 or more times before
10/16 – Ran at York last time out
10/16 – Aged 6 or younger
10/16 – Group race winners
9/16 – Winning distance 1 or more lengths
8/16 – Unplaced favourites
6/16 – Won last time out
5/16 – Winning favourites
3/16 – Trained in Ireland
Sheikhzayedroad won the race in 2016
Pallasator won the race in 2015
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 10/3

Some old faces line-up again here for the Doncaster Cup, including the last two winners of the race – Pallasator and Sheikhzayedroad. The first-named took the race in 2015 but has actually only once since from 10 races so heads here with a fair chance, but also something to prove. Connections opt for the first-time cheekpieces here though, so that might spark him back into life, while Rosie Jessop has been given a big race ride so a change of pilot might also do the trick. But too many ifs-and-buts for me and at the age of 8 is certainly not getting any younger. Sheikhzayedroad is the other recent winner of this race after landing the prize 12 months ago by a nose from Quest For More. He went onto win the Long Distance Cup at the Ascot Champions Meeting after that so this time of year clearly suits him and he showed a return to form last time with a close fourth in the Lonsdale Cup at York. Another of today’s runners – Montaly, won that race but SHEIKHZAYEDROAD (e/w) has 3lb pull with that Andrew Balding-trained runner this time and that can make the difference. The longer trip is fine, as is the softer ground, while his recent form figures, when dropped into Group Two company, read a decent 3-1-1-3-4. Yes, Montaly is certainly a stayer on the up this season and looks set to run another big race, but he’s got to give 3lbs+ away to all the field and also doesn’t look great value in the betting. The consistent Desert Skyline is the only 3-year-old in the race so gets a handy amount of weight from all the others. He’s rated 110 anyway, which is about the same mark as most of these so with that significant weight pull is another that looks to have a big say. But he is a horse that does seem to find a few too good in his race and is now six runs without a win. Ryan Moore is reunited with Thomas Hobson after they teamed-up to win at Royal Ascot in June, but he was 5 lengths behind Montaly last time in the Lonsdale Cup so has a bit to find on that horse and the fourth Sheikhzayedroad. Of those at bigger prices the Hughie Morrison-trained FUN MAC (e/w) is interesting. He was a close third behind Montaly in the Chester Cup back in May, but heads here in form after a good win over in France in a Listed race. He was 4th in the 2015 running of this too and will be fresher than most after a 54-day break.

Andy Newton

Andy is a member of the Horse Writers’ Association and an established horse racing expert and tipster. He's been featured in Gambling Online magazine, and as an expert in the Official Wetherbys Cheltenham Festival betting guide since 2011 as well as other leading publications . Andy also has regular columns on, and and specializes in big race trends and stats.
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