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The York Ebor Festival continues on Friday 24th August 2018, as the four-day meeting heads into it’s third day.
Four more LIVE ITV races to take in, including the Group Two Lonsdale Cup but day three is all about the Group One Nunthorpe Stakes as we get a chance to see some of the best sprinters on the planet doing battle again – did you know 14 of the last 16 Nunthorpe winners came from stall 11 or lower, plus finished in the top 5 last time out?
Anyway, as always, we’ve got it all covered here on STATZONE with all the key trends, plus our verdict, on each of the LIVE ITV races at the York Ebor Festival – we’re confident these trends will point you in the direction of a few winners, or at least help narrow down some of the big fields – So, let’s get started!
2018 York Ebor Festival Trends
DAY THREE – Friday 24th August 2018
1.55 – Sky Bet Stakes (Handicap) Cl2 1m4f ITV
14/15 – Aged 5 or younger
14/15 – Had won over at least 1m2f before (6 over 1m4f)
13/15 – Had 3 or more runs already that season
13/15 – Had won at least twice on the flat before
11/15 – Carried 9-5 or less in weight
11/15 – Won from stall 8 or higher
11/15 – Aged 3 or 4 years-old
8/15 – Ran at either Goodwood (4) or Newmarket (4) last time out
5/15 – Trained by Sir Michael Stoute (3) or Mark Johnston (2)
3/15 – Winning favourites (2 joint)
Fidaawy (11/1) won the race in 2017
STATZONE VERDICT: With all-bar-one of the last 15 winners of the race aged 5 or younger then that at least rules out seven of the 20 runners – Moonmeister, Super Kid, Mukhayyam, Dance King, Erik The Red, Pacify and Appeared, who are all older. Having raced at least three times this season is another plus, while with 11 of the last 15 winners carrying 9-5 or less in weight and coming from stalls 8 or higher these are other factors to look for. Taking all those factors into account there are six that standout – KELLY’S DINO, TITUS, ROYAL RESERVE, MAORI BOB, THEGLASGOWWARRIOR and ATKINSON GRIMSHAW. It goes without say a case can be made for all six with so many of the main trends on their side but of that bunch the two that standout for me are – KELLY’S DINO (e/w) and ATKINSON GRIMSHAW (e/w). The first-named was a good winner at Ascot last time out and a 5lb rise for that looks fair. Draw 13 will give him options but has looked an improving horse over the last few runs and should have more to offer over a trip that suits. Atkinson Grimshaw bounced back to form earlier this month with a third to another of the runners here – Mister Belvedere – but gets in here on more favourable terms to suggest he can get a lot closer this time. He’s finished in the top three seven times from his 10 starts on the turf too and with just 8-7 in weight gets in here with a low burden. The final one to note is the Sir Michael Stoute-trained MELTING DEW (e/w). Yes, this horse has topweight to overcome of 9-10 and falls down on that trend but does have a fair few of the others on his side. The yard also has a good record in the race – winning it in 2017 and 2010 – and Ryan Moore in the saddle is sure to make his 4 year-old popular too. He’s won two of his last three and wasn’t disgraced in second last time out when a close second in the Summer Stakes at Glorious Goodwood. A 5lb rise in the ratings makes life harder but this will only be his second run back after being gelded and could have more to come.
2.25 – Weatherbys Hamilton Lonsdale Cup (British Champions Series) (Group 2) Cl1 2m88y ITV
12/14 – Priced 8/1 or shorter
12/14 – Had 4 or more career wins
12/14 – Didn’t win last time out
11/14 – Had won over 1m6f or further before
10/14 – Raced 3 or more times that season
10/14 – Favourites placed
10/14 – Finished in the top 4 last time out
9/14 – Won a Listed or better class race before
8/14 – Aged 4 or 5 years-old
8/14 – Had run at York before (6 won)
3/14 – Ridden by Frankie Dettori
0/14 – Winners from stall 1
Montaly (16/1) won the race in 2017
Note: The 2008 renewal was run at Newbury
STATZONE VERDICT: It’s all about one horse here – STRADIVARIUS – as John Gosden’s star stayer looks to make it win number four this season, plus he’s also chasing the £1million bonus after landing the Yorkshire Cup, Ascot Gold Cup and the Goodwood Cup – he just needs to win this race to scoop the lucrative bonus that was put up at the start of the season should a horse land all four of these top staying races. He’s rated 118 and that’s the highest in the field and based on what we’ve seen this season then he’s the clear one to beat again here. Frankie is back in the saddle after being suspended last time and even though he only just got the job done (1/2 a length) in the Goodwood Cup he was always getting there. Those against him will look to the fact he’s got to give 3lbs away here to all the others but even with this he should still have enough to land this. On paper the 116-rated Idaho is 1lb well-in with the favourite as this Aidan O’Brien runner will get 3lbs off the Gosden horse – however, he was just over 6 lengths behind him at Goodwood last time and his only win this term came in the Group Three Ordmonde Stakes at Chester in May – he’s actually only won one of his last 10 starts! Therefore, second looks more likely to go to RED VERDON, who actually loves finishing second of late. He’s ended runner-up in each of his last four starts and looks set to make it five. Desert Skyline, Count Octave and St Michel are others that could fight it out for second but really this race is all about the winner and that looks most-likely to be the bonus-chasing Stradivarius.
3.00 – Al Basti Equiworld Gimcrack Stakes (Group 2) (Colts & Geldings) Cl1 6f ITV
15/15 – Won just 1-2 times before
15/15 – Raced within the last 6 weeks
12/15 – Returned 8/1 or shorter in the betting
12/15 – Finished in the top 3 last time out
10/15 – Won just once before
10/15 – Foaled in March or later
10/15 – Had won over 6f before
9/15 – Came from the top 3 in the betting
3/15 – Trained by Kevin Ryan
3/15 – Trained by William Haggas
2/15 – Winning favourites
Sands Of Mali (14/1) won the race in 2017
STATZONE VERDICT: An open-looking renewal of this year’s Gimcrack Stakes, but the horse that sets the standard based on his close third in the Group Two Richmond Stakes last time is SHINE SO BRIGHT. This Andrew Balding runner ran well on it’s debut for the yard at Goodwood there and prior to that was a fair fifth to the classy Calyx in the Coventry Stakes. He’s a horse that is clearly going the right way and the way he stayed last time suggests he’s got more to come. A fast-run race will suit, and we can expect him to be finishing off the race well again – William Buick takes the ride. Of the rest, the Kevin Ryan team have done well in this in recent years so their Emaraaty Ana will be hoping to add to that record, while the Richard Fahey yard won this prize 12 months ago – they run Space Traveller. This juvenile is unbeaten from two starts and really caught the eye when dotting up at Hamilton last time out – this will be harder but he’s a horse that connections must feel is up to the rise in grade. Cases can be made for Cosmic Law, Chunk Willis and LEGENDS OF WAR (e/w), especially the last-named who gained a confidence boosting win at Newbury last time out. He flopped in the July Stakes at HQ last month, but I feel is better than that and the fact he was sent off 2/1 for that race backs that up – he’s the danger for me. The final one to note is the Aidan O’Brien runner – The Irish Rover. This 2 year-old will be looking to become the yard’s first winner in the race since Rock Of Gibraltar (2001) and only their second in total. He was a fine third in the Group One Phoenix Stakes last time out at the Curragh and on that form is a big player. He was, however, also 13th in the Coventry Stakes so has a bit to make up with Shine So Bright, plus with five career runs is looking a tad more exposed than some of the others in the race. He can go well, but others are preferred.
3.35 – Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes (British Champions Series) (Group 1) Cl1 5f ITV
14/16 – Finished in the top 5 last time out
14/16 – Had won over 5f before
14/16 – Came from stall 11 or lower
13/16 – Had an official rating of 108 or more
12/16 – Favourites to finish in the top 4
12/16 – Had run at the course before
11/16 – Were previous Group race winners
7/16 – Ran at Goodwood last time out (inc 6 of last 8)
4/16 – Winning favourites
2/16 – Ran at Sandown last time out
2/16 – Placed horses from stall 1 (3rd in 2003 & 2012)
6 of the last 7 renewals were won by fillies/mares
Marsha (8/1) won the race in 2017
STATZONE VERDICT: One of the sprinting highlights of the season and even though we’ve got 16 runners heading to post it’s a contest that really only revolves around a few. The horse nicknamed ‘The Batmobile’ – BATTAASH is the one that is hard to get away from after bouncing back to form in devastating fashion in the Group Two King George Stakes at Glorious Goodwood last time. He dotted-up by 4 lengths that day, with Take Cover back in second, and with a rating of 127 then he’s a full 7lbs clear of his nearest rival – Blue Point. Those against the speedy Charles Hills-trained favourite might look to the fact he was only fourth in the race last season but having since won three of his four starts does clearly look a better horse this year. At just 4 year-olds then he’s could even have more to come. Blue Point will have it’s supporters though – he’s the only horse to have beaten Battaash this season! That came in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot in June but Battaash fans will know their horse ran far too freely that day and with Blue Point since flopping in the July Cup then this Godolphin horse isn’t the most consistent of sprinters. Yes, dropping back to 5f (from 6f last time) then this will suit as he’s yet to finish out of the first two from his both starts over the minimum trip. However, after what we saw last time it’s hard to not have been taken with the Batmobile’s dominance, so he gets the call. Of the rest, Judicial and MABS CROSS (e/w) can go well of those at bigger prices – especially the last-named, who hails from the Michael Dods camp that have won two of the last three runnings. Yes, she’s rated 17lbs lower than Battaash but fillies/mares have a great record in the race of late (winning 6 of the last 7) and she was a fair third in the King’s Stand back in June behind the main two in the market here to suggest she’s not got much ground to make up – she also gets a handy 3lbs from the older horses in the race.
That should be all you need, if you can’t make the right decisions with all that info, there’s no helping you!