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Angus McNae

Angus McNae - Thursday 1st August 2013

First furlong crucial to Sussex outcome

The sectional times courtesy of Turftrax were very interesting as regards Wednesday's Sussex Stakes. It looked to be a strongly run race and the numbers confirm that to be the case. Within that framework there are some revealing observations to be drawn. 

Firstly it is my contention that the first furlong here was as significant as the last. When the stalls opened Kevin Manning and Richard Hughes had different plans. Manning wanted to go forward aggressively and track Leitir Mor, his pacemaker who missed the kick again.

Hughes wanted to take back and ride a patient race. This led to Dawn Approach going through the first furlong in 14.10 seconds, compared to Toronado who went through in 14.73 seconds and a half second that surely related to a considerable saving of energy reserves.

Only Trade Storm ran a slower first furlong and that enabled him to ultimately run the fastest furlong of the race clocking 10.89 seconds between the three and the two pole.

Secondly whilst Dawn Approach grabbed a half-second advantage through just one furlong of the race Toronado clawed that advantage back steadily from the five pole thereby distributing his energy evenly through the race.

Dawn Approach was 0.12 seconds quicker than Toronado between the six and the five pole and then Hughes steadily began to erode the advantage, and the sectional analysis here must put the emphasis on how steadily he did it.

Between the five furlong point and the winning line Toronado was marginally faster than Dawn Approach at every split.

At no point did Hughes ask Toronado to make up ground quickly, at no point did he panic and ask his horse to run a furlong half a second faster than Dawn Approach, he just gradually closed up on Kevin Manning as these numbers show.

From the five to the four pole:

Toronado 11.83

Dawn Approach 11.94

From the four to the three:

Toronado 11.00

Dawn Approach 11.21

From the three to the two:

Toronado 10.97

Dawn Approach 11.12

From the two to the one:

Toronado 11.53

Dawn Approach 11.67

From the one to the winning post:

Toronado 11.93

Dawn Approach 12.12

These figures show that Richard Hughes distributed his horse’s energy perfectly.

To be fair so did Kevin Manning from the five pole, but the first three furlongs and particularly the first was his undoing.

I would like to touch on Trade Storm, who ran two individual furlongs quicker than any other horse in the race.

He was fastest between the four and the three pole and a the two pole and the one showing him to be a talented horse and he will have his day when he can sit off a strong gallop and come with a smooth run. His wins at Meydan were far from a fluke.

I tipped a 7-1 winner for us in the shape of Magic City on Wednesday and today I like the look of Red Avenger in the opening handicap.

This horse ran into Maputo at Newmarket and it was no disgrace to finish second to that horse in a race that was completed in a very fast time.

Maputo is clearly very useful and Red Avenger in finishing second to him showed that he is going forward.

Ryan Moore on board is a bonus and at the time of writing Stan James go 15-2 which makes this horse a decent each-way poke.

Enjoy day three folks, and watch those first furlongs, they are so important to the outcomes of races.


Angus’s Thursday tips:

2.15 Goodwood - Red Avenger at 7-1 with bet365



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