Anthology Links

Article 11_002_1
25th January, 2011

1. Introduction

    The B2yoR Website has always had the aim to improve the general knowledge of 2yo racing and to raise its profile. Producing articles and previews has been part of that remit from the outset. After six years online there is now a large body of written pieces on the site covering a huge range of issues related to racing. But, until now, no simple way for someone to sample that work. The purpose of this 'Anthology' is to provide a method to call up the best of that writing. The second part of the document is split into six sections covering specific areas of racing plus a catch-all Miscellaneous part. In each section there are links to selections of the best writing held on the website. Along with the linking text this should allow anyone to get as full a picture as they require of what really matters to B2yoR.

    If someone read every document linked to from this Anthology they would still have read under 50% of the words written about 2yo racing contained on the site. The 'missing' bulk is mostly in Previews of an individual days racing which dealt with particular races and horses so, for the most part, had limited longer term significance. Given the large amount of writing the Anthology also marks a point in time where B2yoR is considering where to go next. More of the same is probably not a worthwhile option and more thought is needed about what would add some value into the future. The Anthology would be best read in conjunction with the article (or major rant depending upon your view) which details B2yoR's high level of disatisfaction with the level of Punditry in British Racing. That is both the TV and written media. Has the writing here added anything worthwhile or just part of the problem? Time to try and find a door.

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2. Second Section

2.1 Paddock Review

    Paddock Review is at the heart of the B2yoR view of racing and this part has the most selections reflecting that. If you take it seriously and work hard at looking at the horses the framework and patterns that emerge at all levels of racing can be explained by what you will see. When the B2yoR website started in 2005 there was some, internal, worry that making that point about Paddock Review would end up killing off the 'Edge' that it provides in race analysis. That has not happened and pre-parade rings are still not circled by ranks of horse reviewers and, for the most part, just the small number of devotees (some converts via B2yoR) and those paid to be there.

   The reasons for the lack of change presumably fall between the extremes of noone is listening and a complete lack of belief that there is anything worthwhile to see. There is more coverage of horses in the Parade Ring on the dedicated TV channels than there used to be but with huge variations in the quality of commentary to go with it. The 'Racing Post' have turned the person they have on-course into an all-purpose operative with six or seven jobs. One of those is to be the Paddock Reporter and if you watch these people at the track the time and effort most put into looking at the horses would not get them jobs professionally as full-time reviewers. The fact that they appear to come up with useful information despite the, mostly, cursory reviews can be taken as a positive sign for those who believe in it's worth. The word appear is in questioning italics in the previous sentence because the 'Racing Post' indulge themselves so thoroughly in being selective in trumpeting the successes of their 'tipsters'. If you have multiple tips in most races split between many different tipping approaches then highlighting the one who stumbled into a winner post-race is not at all clever. What sort of Strike Rate could you get if you were allowed six goes at every race?

    The first link goes to the original explanation of B2yoR's Paddock Review approach which was written in late 2004. Now, on rereading it scores well for energy and thrust but could do with some updating. That section makes the point that you should always be testing how effective the reviewing is and improving it as data and experience accumulate. There would be changes if it were written in 2011 and it could do with some improving.

    At the headline level a good question would be how you might collapse the 'Size & Build' variables into a Powerball approach and whether 'Efficiency' would be more useful than 'Athleticism' as a main variable with the latter becoming a major factor below the new top-level title. The second link below goes to the article on the site explaining the gaits of the horse. The last part of that document discusses an approach to defining 'Athleticism' and applying it. The slipperiness involved in dealing with the 'A' word is part of the reason for thinking a level higher in 'Efficiency' terms first.

            - Main 'Paddock Review' Section of the B2yor site.

            - Link to Horse Gait & Athleticism Article.

    A major point to note is the 'Paddock Review' section deals with a specific approach to trying to assess 2yos for physical ability and allocating a small Official Rating range they can be expected to perform to after a single viewing. The more well known form of Paddock Review targets on-the-day wellbeing factors such as fitness and coat condition. This is termed 'Classical' review by B2yoR and the original 'Paddock Review' section on the site is a little too dismissive of it. In the intervening years since 2004 one of the areas B2yoR has been involved in is a major project to assess the usefulness of the Classical approach. Over two-and-a-half years a betting syndicate collected data about every runner in every flat race for a range of factors within 'Classical' review. This produced more than 150,000 reviews which could be analysed against the horse's performance on the day and as it developed through a season, or even a career.

    The 'Paddock Review' section would be much improved by amending it to reflect the experience and knowledge gained during that project. But, the story of how it was implemented and run, the data collected and the results produced would make something much more substantial than an update to a section. It could run to a book to do it justice and a good question would be did it 'Fail' or not? Whatever, if you have been part of that process watching 'Experts' doing 'Paddock Review' on the TV and being paid for it can be excruciating. There goes Lydia Hislop again, talking about horses sweating between their back legs but following up by a caveat that it may, or may not, be a negative factor. Do some research to find out or ask someone who has, perhaps? Next to Captain Cliche and Simon Mapletoft telling us that the prancing rabbit before us is "a nice type, a little on his toes.." before going on to say nothing committal about the next horse. Time wasting.

    The following links go mostly to Day Previews which included Paddock Reviews of previous races. These all include links to photographs to illustrate the points being made. In many cases they will consider a field in Review and how the better types can be identified. A number of them consider individual horses and how they developed and changed during a 2yo season. They are presented in date order with the most recent first. The two at the bottom of the list were initial examples which were published in the 'Racing Ahead' in that publication's early days when it was struggling to get established (never paid for four articles and 'sacked' for not providing an 'October' piece, FOC & unprompted, in the hope the magazine would not go under..., oh well.)

    Interesting to note the number of solid pieces written about Folkestone fields when preparing this section. Pondering this it is not just by chance but reflects that the pre-parade ring there would vie with the one at Windsor as being the best place to do Paddock Review. Just as well because both have useless, circular, Parade Rings obscured by trees to a large degree.

            - March 30th 2010 - Brocklesby field Paddock Review

            - April 27th 2009 - Windsor Fillies' Auction and physical types of trainer representatives

            - April 1st 2009 Preview - Go to Bottom bit with Pictures & Precocity notes. Rest is more Handicapping & Career Development.

            - October 10th 2008 - Folkestone maiden divisions compared

            - 30th September 2008 - Review thoughts on the later season Group winners and the relative development of Henrythenavigator & Raven's Pass as 3yos.

            - August 23rd 2008 - Art Connoisseur changing shape through the season & Folkestone test answer.

            - Folkestone Auction Review and VP Test in 2008.

            - July 20th 2008 - Powerball and Jargelle in the Supersprint, Haggas & Prescott knowing horse's ability pre-race.

            - July 16th 2008 - Review of a Windsor maiden plus John Best overtrying horses and a connection to Stallion Fee Returns.

            - July 6th 2008 - General Review thoughts from Folkestone, Vaughan prancers, Best inconsistency, Channon Grade 1 winner invisible.

            - July 5th 2008 - Zacinto's debut for Stoute at Sandown, untypical fitness level FTO

            - July 2008 - Kempton Fillies maiden Review - Too much Scrawn.

            - May 6th 2008 - Review of Guineas meeting maiden, Finjaan, Ouqba, Heliodor and all that.

            - 2008 April - Range of early season Paddock Review picture comparisons.

            - August Preview in 2007 - 4 x Fillies from Windsor in Virtual Paddock & the Lowther summary.

            - 2007 Albany Stakes - the Paddock Review background to a 50/1 winner.

            - April 5th 2007 - Paddock Review Types notes & Folkestone field Review.

            - A 'Small' Contribution - Weasel words for the Review of the first race of 2007.

            - Preview for May York maiden 2006 - Folio and not relying in 'Placed' form & general opinion of connections.

            - Review from first race of 2006 - Lingfield Conditions Race.

            - 'Racing Ahead' - August 2005 - Weighing up a Windsor Maiden.

            - 'Racing Ahead' - September 2005 - Newbury Maidens Paddock Review.

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2.2 Handicapping

    In the Dim-and-Distant B2yoR used to stick to Paddock work and use the Racing Papers ('The Sporting Life' (RIP) & then the 'Racing Post') plus the odd look at Timeform & Superform numbers for ratings. As the program to research into 2yo racing grew it became clear there were some fundamental issues with the ratings. They did not correctly assign performance ratings to many, perhaps the majority, of races. The Official Ratings (ORs) produced by the BHA handicapper (originally Jockey Club & then the BHB before the BHA appeared) were assigned using similar methods. Time to try something else.

    This started a long process of B2yoR assigning it's own performance figures termed Estimates. These were developed using an entirely different approach to that used by the handicappers above to try to understand and solve the problems with their figures. This is an ongoing process and over a ten year period the approach has changed and developed. Along with the work has come an understanding of just how flawed the standard ratings methods are. This is is good thing in many ways because it means there are lots of opportunities for those putting effort into other approaches to find profitable angles.

    In the B2yoR case the Paddock Review work has been 'Average', at best, during 2009-10 and an area that will be worked on more to improve the standards in 2011. But, the performance using the Estimates versus Official Ratings in Nurseries in 2009 was very good. Just a blip and not repeatable probably. But, with more time spent on Video Review and Estimate reworking, the returns were even better in 2010. To the point that it feels Too-good-to-be-true. But, you have to remind yourself that most horses have never run to the ratings they have when they start in handicaps. The official figures are projections from compacted & crumpled results and will be variably truthful intimations of real ability. Find a way to avoid the crude 'projection' and you ought to stumble into some unknown truths (helped by having looked at the horses properly in the Paddock).

    With that background the following articles and pieces cover the B2yoR development of both the understanding of the problems and attempts at implementing a solution. The first is a link to an article written before the 2008 season covering the reworking of the Estimates for the 2007 season over the preceding winter. That billing undersells the article because it is a detailed discussion of how the official handicapper works in the B2yoR view, the internal Weight-for-Age development at 2yo and how assigning ratings might be improved. It also considers at length the amount horses can improve physically and how this interacts with the handicapping system to produce the 'Shape' of horse's racing careers. An important starting point to read through this to get to grips with the issues.

            - Article - 2007 Estimates rework

    The following two links go to discussion documents from 2005 written when B2yoR started which cover similar ground but much less thoroughly and in a less well thought out way. Interesting in some ways to compare these with the later article to see how the B2yoR view matured. Both are too hard on the BHA handicapper in not fully understanding the restrictions he has to work within.

[Aside - the BHA guy does go to the Parade Ring and look at many fields so has gone up in B2yoR's estimation since those days. Along with the BHA handicapping team in general he also regularly attempts to explain the ratings they have come to. The Blogs they write on the BHA website are useful reading. This piece was written not long after the international ratings for the top European 2yos were published which created a mini furore in the press because Dream Ahead & Frankel were given the same rating. Mr Tester, the BHA handicapper, made the point that the two Press people who had written pieces accusing him of a 'Howler' and 'fudging the numbers' had not attended the press conference and had never spoken to him. The 'Fudging' was said to be to save face after rating Dream Ahead much higher than Frankel at one point earlier in the year before dropping the figure. In both cases B2yoR would agree with the BHA view and the people making the noise working off agendas which have little to do with trying to implement handicapping procedures. Whatever type you go for.]

            - 'Desperate Measures' & 'Collateral Damage' - 2 x Discussion Documents which consider the 2yo Handicapper and how he has to work.

    One of the areas that the B2yoR Estimates were targetted at was being able to answer simple questions like 'What level do 2yos for a trainer typically run to on debut?' and 'How much do they improve to the second run and when do they show peak form?. The following three articles consider those issues. Note that the 2010 Estimates have been reworked to match the 2007 set and these will be used as the basis for the 2011 season and judging debut runs. (Send an e-mail to B2yoR to get sets of the 2007 & 2010 reworked figures for reference.)

            - Spotting potential from Estimates for the Debut Runs. 2005 John Dunlop article & 2007 Article follow-up
            - Article - 2yo Estimate distribution and on what runs 2yos show peak ratings.

    The following article covers the Brocklesby in various ways so will be of general interest before the 2011 start. Of particular interest to the Handicapping issue and understanding performance levels it looks back to the 2009 result in light of the Official Ratings that field had managed by the end of their 2yo year. It then considers how these levels show up in visual form and grouping within the result. Important as it defines CPs & GGaps.

            - March 27th 2010 - Changeover Points & Garbage Gaps, looking back to the shape of the 2009 Brocklesby Result & Ratings

        The next Preview contains a useful summary of the performance bands you should be looking for between OR45 to OR90 and the types of horses and performances that end up in each band. The Preview from 2008 covers much of the same ground.

            - April 1st 2009 Preview - Bluffer's guide to the OR performance bands.
            - August 3rd 2008 - Nursery approach in principle.

    There is a lot of, poorly founded, received wisdom in racing and one that B2yoR has never understood is the handicapping saw about ".. rate the race not the horse...". A blue screen comes up with 'Category Error' on it whenever it gets an airing. If you are rating horses in Paddock Review it just feels like nonsense. Anyway, the following article includes a classic example of what happens if you start rating races on the basis of their Class and label rather than the horses involved. Go to the Aside about the 2006 Queen Mary in section 6 of the piece.

            - Race Standardisation Errors example - 2007 reference to the 2006 Queen Mary in the Nursery Topweight Article

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2.3 Trainer Approach

    The 2yo Season presents a 'Closed System' where a similar number of horses run each season and have a similar distribution of abilities each year. The bulk of these horses are with major trainers who have set methods of how they train horses. This means that if you understand how a trainer approaches the 2yo season you can tell a lot about a horse before it has run, for example. Where and when it makes its debut will often impart a lot useful information. The site provides a lot of statistical information of this form but has made various attempts to show how this data can be usefully interpreted. The first two articles linked to were season end review of how trainers had performed placed in the context of what you would expect from them. The 2007 piece is of particular importance because the opening sections are useful general discussions of how trainers perform and the factors involved in their relative success.

            - 2005 Performance Review - Article
            - 2007 Performance Review - Article

    In 2008 the B2yoR site ran a debut (FTO = First Time Out) tracking system through the season to see how a range of trainer's performed against their normal methods. The following article introduced what to expect from the range of trainers before the season began. The Summary Table link goes to the final results they produced that year.

            - 2008 Article - FTO P&L Tracking introduction details (Link - to the final Summary Table).

    The site publishes FTO RAG (Red-Amber-Green) listings for each trainer to provide a visual comparison of how their debut runners performed order by Date, Starting Price & B2yoR Estimate. The following Preview explained at length the point of these files and how they can be interpreted.

            - April 4th 2010 - Trainer FTO RAG listing summary

    The links below go to a selection of Previews which covered areas relating to trainer approaches. Worth noting a couple of points about how records can change but in response to identifiable inputs. Richard Hannon had a relaxed attitude to debuts up to 2010 and got relatively few and mostly by superior types. This changed totally in the first 2-3 months of 2010 before settling down. Some part of the cause was a good set of 2yos but the main driver seemed to be the £10,000 bonuses on offer. No point messing about with 'Nice Intro' debuts when there is that much money waiting to be won. Richard Fahey always got more targetted FTO winners but also increased his number in 2010 apparently for the same reason. In both cases if you have no idea what a 'Normal' season should look like you will have no clue that something has changed that you might need to factor in to your analysis.

    By comparison Tom Dascombe had become the FTO win trainer in 2009 and then struggled in 2010. An obvious change in between was that he moved from Lambourn to Cheshire and he seemed to struggle to get going in the new premises. Looking back to his previous seasons his high class runners in early season as 2yos have developed a poor record of ever showing similar form. Many have never won since. With some sold on at the height of their apparent ability the precise causes can be hard to tie down.

            - April 21st 2010 - The David Evans' small 2yos win the 'Long Game' as well

            - April 12th 2010 - Richard Hannon's record with debut runners up to 2009 - and a complete change in early 2010.

            - 9th June 2009 - Dascombe's Debut runners overview.

            - 6th June 2009 - Mark Johnston debuts and worrying about how to assess them.

            - 26th May 2009 - John Dunlop - 43 years with a licence and still does not know how to evaluate one at home.

            - 17th May 2009 - Review of Trainers who had debut winners to that date in the season.

            - 9th May 2009 - Start of the 6f races; how trainers might time & place a debut of a better type so they are ready for Royal Ascot.

            - 27th June 2008 - Thoughts on the merits of Bolger, Stoute & Dascombe.

            - 2007 May - Selected Trainer's Record in Listed Races.

            - 2007 April 26th - Hannon & Channon Debuts Review versus 2006.
            - 2007 early April - Hannon first 15 debuts Outline.

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2.4 Race Pace & Shape, Pre-Race Set-ups and the Final Result

    The handicapping section above charts how the B2yoR estimates developed out of a dissatisfaction with the ratings already available. More of the same in this section but with the lack of satisfaction with the Form Book. Go back to the times before 1986 with no live video of races and sitting reading the Form Book listings are what you had. We now have Video archives of all the races run and access to much more information overall. But the Form Book remains a staple but leaves out a lot of the factors that make the race result. Simple things like did an overly pressing pace allow the 33/1 shot to blag a second place he can never repeat can be hard to assess. What about draw & track biases and understanding how a race broke apart.

    This section covers a range of areas where the B2yoR tries to augment a basic 'Form Book' by identifying other factors which 'make' a race result. The site has published 'Run Style' and Halfway positions for runners since the start and these are vital clues in understanding particular races and what set-ups will suit particular horses. An attempt to breathe some of the life and colour back into the 'Form Book' in ways not generally factored into results. Taking Halfway positions as an example if you believe completely in them and combine them with various 'Efficiency' factors you can categorise races very well and assess which horses ran better than they were able to show, or the reverse.

    B2yoR would spend very little time in 'Classical' Form Book study in analysing most races. A quick look through previous results to see what class of horse the runner has finished with before and what the shape of the races were. No counting of lengths beaten, very little collateral form considerations and so on. Paddock Review, Run Styles and Race Shapes allied to B2yoR ratings and Video review.

    The first link here goes to an important piece buried away in a preview which gives some key background Principles that underpin the thinking about how races were, and will be run.

            - May 1st 2009, Run Styles of winners over 5f, affect of Pace, Powerballs interaction with surface, etc...

    The rest of the links in the list go to a variety of sources which discuss a wide range of factors which can be studied under this heading. This includes the area of Race Set-ups which involves trying to assess what type of horse profile wins races of a particular type.

            - Race Result 710 in 2010 - Intricate race shape to the Flying Childers but Hughes still manages to deliver useful handicapper Zebedee to win.

            - Race Result 551  & 559 in 2010 - Draw and Pace bias interacting at York and the course's spokesman losing his cool.

            - Race Result 513 in 2010 - The Sandown 7f Races shape and how predictable it was in 2010.

            - Race Result 321 in 2010 - Example of how Pace can produce an unusual result which will not be repeated and how Paddock Review can identify it.

            - Race Result 77 in 2010 - Trying to place a Changeover Point, Garbage Gap and pick out the usable ones in the Ruck.

            - Race Result 67 in 2010 - Did Rimth show something freaky or Just different?, the Dettori Roadblock because he is bigger than The Rules.

            - Race Result 64 in 2010 - Pace pressing, hanging and acting aplenty at Warwick.

            - May 1st 2010 - Robert Winston uses Scarlet Rocks to break a Leicester maiden apart and manages not to fall off.

            - March 31st 2010 - Southwell 5f course vagaries, the fallacy of pundits' analysis of 'Strength' in jockeys.

            - 14th June 2009 - Unusual Race Shapes at the re-laid courses, Ascot & York.

            - 11th June 2009 - Newcastle's straight track bias.

            - 6th June 2009 - The best "Bluffer's Guide" to the Woodcote Stakes.

            - 27th May 2009 - The Hilary Needler Trophy and Beverley's 5f Course.

            - 5th May 2009 - Catterick Draw and efficiency over 5f.

            - 1st May 2009 - Run Styles that work over 5f and a bit more thought needed with 'Eyecatchers'.

            - 26th April 2009 - Brighton and Debut runners, more fallacies in the Expert view.

            - 9th April 2009 - Folkestone stands' rail bias and Seeded Draws for horseracing.

            - Chester 5f Race Shapes - May 2007

            - May 2nd 2007 - Conditions race winners & SPs 2004-6 (+Trainer records with Ascot runners).

            - April 12th 2006Summary of type of early season set-ups. = first section only.

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2.5 Season Shape

    Horse racing is kind in many forms in being packaged up in ways that encourage the belief that studying it will mean you can solve the puzzles it sets. The turf season, for example, is structured in various ways at many levels that set boundaries on the type of results that can occur. The development of the 2yo season from the Brocklesby at Doncaster in late March through to its close at the same course in early November has a well set format. Understanding how the season progresses along with the opportunities and targets it sets for trainers. Putting this into context was the idea behind the 'Landscape' articles. The article below covers the first 220 races, or so, that make up a season that will typically have more than 1,000 of them.

    By Royal Ascot around 1,000 juveniles will have made their debut out of around 3,000 by season end. All but a handful of races to that point will have been at 5f or 6f and the Royal Meeting hosts the first juvenile Group races.

             - Landscape 1 - Article covering the development of the 2yo season from the Brocklesby through to Royal Ascot.

    Now, the Landscape 2 & 3 articles are yet to be written and would cover the period from late June through to November. The last four months of the season average around 200 races a month after the first 200 are spread over 3 months. Everything is more pressured and less time to analyse and understand races. One of the classic ways British horse racing 'protects' itself from being too kind. Some of the major points in the other articles would be development of the 7f races and the start of the 8f events; the commencement of the Nursery (handicap) races in July and these will make up 20% of the races through to season end & the raft of valuable 'Sales' races.

    A major part of this period is the milestones provided by the Group races that are run. These culminate in the five Group 1 'Championship' events run over the distances from 6f to 8f in later September into October. The following link goes to the article which detailed what the 33 Group events were originally in 2006. This has gone up to 35 with the Oh So Sharp Stakes for fillies in early October upgraded to Group 3 from Listed level since that time and the Acomb Stakes having had the same promotion before being run in 2006.

    Note there will be changes in location for the Fillies' Mile and Royal Lodge in 2011 with that pair of races moving to Newmarket from Ascot along with a date change. Ascot has a new centrepiece meeting in mid-October for 2011 with the Group 1 Champion Stakes (for 3yo+) moving from Newmarket as part of that day. The move of the Ascot races is part of the balancing up of the overall interchanges.

             - 2yo Pattern Racesand how they came to be as they are.

    The first of the following pair of links goes to a Preview in 2008 which surveyed the quality of the Group races run to that point along with the prospects for the later events. Useful background for the type of variability in performance quality these races can be won with. The other was a similar summary but from earlier in the year. Both give useful indications of how, where & when the better 2yos may be debuted and their careers developed.

             - 10th September 2008 - Review of the juvenile Group races and the range of quality of winners (& see Sept 30th update in Paddock Review list)
             - 19th May 2008 - mid-May review of quality seen to that point in context of what the Royal Ascot races will require

    The next two links are Previews which cover items specific to the start of races over longer distances at set points during the season. For example, after all the 5f to 6f 'sprint' races what type of horses and quality are going to run in the earliest 7f events? Is it as easy to get debut wins over 8f as at 5f or are there different factors?

             - 7th August 2008 - considerations with debut runners over 8f including which trainers get FTO wins.
            - First 7f Race Thirsk - 2006

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2.6 Pundits and Jockeys

    The previous five sections have a focus on positive areas that B2yoR would say are important for analysing races and trying to get to the core of what is really happening. This final section moves away from that to cover a couple of other areas. The first - Pundits - have pretty much zero value in assessing races and the other - Jockeys - far less than the Pundits would like you to think. The article associated with the production of this one inspects the problem with Pundits in detail but worth linking to a few examples here.

    The B2yoR Results in 2009, and increasingly in 2010, added thoughts about wider issues into analysis of what had happened in the race. The first three selections link to items in the Race Summary box at the bottom of each webpage. The first ponders around what use Tom O'Ryan is if he only wants to help his 'Pals' out (the Fahey stable and those orbiting it, primarily) and this stops him being a 'journalist' in some circumstances. The second does more of the same around Dave Nevison who gives a lot of indications of having Gone-at-the-Game but is still chugging around the Park anyway.

            - Result 678 in 2010 - Smiling while putting you away. Tom O'Ryan looks after his mates some more.
            - Result 657 in 2010 - Pointless Punditry, Dave Nevison wastes everyone's time but still pockets the cheque.

    A memorable race at Kempton with an awful lot of bad riding decisions. You wonder about Ajtebi. He has ridden Group or Grade 1 winners on, at least, three continents but is he any good? He is generally much too attacking in rides and does not appear to know how fast he is going, or perhaps even realise that the race pace matters hugely.

           - Result 662 in 2010 - Jockeys Ajtebi & Mitchell give a masterclass in ineptitude. [Sporting Life Race Video Page - Opens new Window/Tab. The Winner is the horse that falls out of the stalls and disappears out of the picture during the first furlong.]

    The 2010 Guineas races at Newmarket prove too much for the Pundits.

            - May 3rd 2010 - Pundits find the most analysed races of the season to date unfathomable.

    Go to the final section of the Preview in this link for the 'Eyecatchers..' part. Looking back to how little information there used to be to analyse races and how, even now, much of that available never gets into the grey, flat, 'Form Book'.

            - May 28th 2009 - Eyecatchers, Fossils & Living Creatures. More Experts letting us down.

    The next link goes to another lengthy Preview of that day's racing and the section to look for is the penultimate one well down the page. Why are most Pundits incapable of using numbers to quantify ability in any circumstance except the wrong one (i.e. believing in Official Ratings as if they were 'God given' when it suits, like claiming races and the end of season 'Top 10' figures).

             - May 17th 2009 - Pointless Punditry - mob-handed Experts wholly avoid 'Sticking a Number on it'.

    Target text is right at the top of the next link recalling classic comedy from Best & Cattermole as they swim through a stream of barely consciousness. Cattermole in general seems an odd mix of man-in-his-50s and Oh-My-Gard West Coast teenage ditz. Unable to link from Point A to sensible Conclusion C through simple Fact B. Instead to be found standing admiring the flowers while simpering "Aren't they just, like, fantastic.., awesome". Is there a teenage girl in the US working her way through the colours for the 9:20 from Wolverhampton while doing Sean Connery impressions?

            - 30th April 2009 - Pointless Punditry - the baffling creation Mike Cattermole along with John Best do the Two-Blokes-in-a-Pub routine.

    Go to the third and final section of the following 'Preview' to find an attempt at a thoughtful analysis of Mr Spencer. Written after a poor ride on a 2yo at Windsor gave his critics more to berate him for. His supporters, who think he is a genius, then got going to ensure no worthwhile debate ever emerged.

            - 22nd April 2009 - Jamie Spencer profile.

2.7 Miscellaneous

    A catch all section to provide an area to links to documents which do not fit easily into the others.

            - Article - Horse Coat Colour Genetics explained.
            - Article - Explanation of the factors that enable horses to win multiple races in a 2yo season.
            - Article - Topweights in Nurseries and how they fared in 2006. Also linked to in the 'Handicapping' section.
            - Article - Taplin & Timeform's '2yos of 2007' Preview. Realistic view of the book. Published by Raceform from 2009
            - Article - 2008 summary of Trainer & Sire Stats on the B2yoR Site. Explanation of the Stats on the site for Trainers and sires and hints on how to interpret them.
            - Discussion - Finding Value at the Yearling Sales. A different take on the problem.

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