Monday 28 September 2020

It's a Weighting Game for Isabella Swan

Horse racing - there's always something to learn. 

I can't say I'm a fan of betting two-year-old nursery races. In fact, I've become so frustrated by the challenge of trying to assess low-class horses at varied weights that I've given up. 

If you can't make money betting on maidens, logically a nursery race [handicap, for those who don't know what they are] will be even more of a puzzle than a Rubik's Cube. 

Sadly, I wasn't very good at that either. 

However, that doesn't mean we can't gain some insight from this race type as I learned something of interest today. 

Let's take a look at the 2:20 Bath - the Nursery Handicap over 5 1/2f. 

A Class 6 race for two-year-olds raced by the official handicapper from 0-65. Pretty average horses at best, and that may be complimentary.

Isabella Swan, trained by Clive Cox, won at odds of 14/1. 

This bay daughter of Twilight son had blinkers for the first time and Adam Kirby back in the saddle. He has ridden this juvenile on three of her five starts and the handicapper had given her a helping hand by dropping her 2lb in the weights so racing off 58. 

For those with an eagle eye, you may have noticed something of interest about today's jockey booking!

I hadn't noticed until Clive Cox was good enough to explain to Racing Post's Dave Toft. 

He said: ''The blinkers have been helpful. Adam [Kirby] rode ISABELLA SWAN last time and felt she needed a bit more concentration. She preferred to have a bit more space which we weren't getting on the all-weather. I'm pleased she got the job done. It's hard work for Adam to do nine stone on a Monday so I'm glad it's paid off!''

If you click on the jockey's name on the Racing Post, you will notice under their name it says: ''Lowest riding weight in the last 12 months.''

Surprise surprise it was 9 stone, exactly the weight carried by Isabella Swan.

Now, no one is saying that every jockey riding at their lowest riding weight is going to be sitting on a winner. But it makes sense to consider if a jockey is riding at their lowest weight or lost a pound or two for a ride that they have a little more than a passing interest.

It may be a sign worth following or add to your confidence.

Guest post: Jason Coote 

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