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Angus McNae

Captain's Blog - Friday 7th September

I am not one to spend too much time putting together lists of so called eye-catchers and the like, after all an eye-catching run will always be achieved under a certain pace scenario and who is to say that a similar pace picture will develop next time the eye-catcher runs.

Likewise collateral form needs to be analysed very carefully. It is simply folly to say that Horse A has a good chance today because last time out he beat horse B who has won since. Such a statement fails to recognize the role of pace in the race where A beat B and indeed in the race that B won next time out.

Often I hear that a race is working out well because two or three winners have come out of the race. Yes, on the face of it that looks to be solid enough evidence that other winners may come from the race, but such a statement cannot be made without looking at the pace scenarios that occurred in those subsequent races.

Those two or three winners that came out of the so called key race may have got easy leads or been judiciously ridden in the face of a fierce gallop. That is why pace analysis is important, no not important, but vital and more important than virtually any other aspect of form study. In itself pace analysis is difficult, and without sectional times it can be impossible, but we must take this sport and the analysis of it forward and to do so we must question old methods that reinforce out-dated modes of analysis and embrace the concept of pace.

I bang this drum periodically and it does me no favours, but pace is the final frontier in racing analysis and the sooner we all realize that the better. Andy Beyer realized this in 1993 when he wrote "pace handicapping is in its nascency, and in in the future it may revolutionize the game." It is 2012 now, time for us to play catch up!

I have a day at home today and am contemplating going for a run, this contemplation may take all day and thus I may never even dust the trainers off, but weirdly I feel better, if not fitter for at least contemplating the Idea.

My selection today is Nasri in the 5.15 at Haydock. He ran a big speed figure last time out and a repetition of that will see him win today. His front-running style on today's fast ground will work well at a track where it is generally hard to make ground from off the pace. A couple of firms are going 6/1 at the time of writing and that is a very fair price.

Have a good day.

Today's Selection

5.15pm Haydock Nasri



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