After the disappointment of Camelot's Triple Crown bid there is a slight feeling of disappointment around the racing fraternity this week as Nijinsky's 42 year record motors on for another 12 months, but let's not take anything away from the winner - Encke - who stole the St Leger under, what I thought was, a great ride from Mickael Barzalona.
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Anyway, onwards and upwards and this week the focus turns back to the sprinters as the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup is the feature contest on Saturday.
Run over 6f this race is always one of the big betting heats on the flat racing calendar with a 20+ field set to line up for the Ayr sprint, while the consolation Silver and Bronze races run prior to the main event can often provide excellent clues when it comes to accessing the outcome.
With a big field then there will be a lot of focus surrounding the draw, but with 70% of the last 10 renewals seeing a winner from a double-figure stall then those of you that like your trends can knockout a big chunk of the field using that stat.
In fact, 5 of the last 10 runnings have seen the first two home hail from double-figure berths, while if your fancy gets given stall 1 you might want to re-think as we've not seen a horse from draw 1 even get into the top three in the last 10 years.
If you're thinking of just siding blindly with the favourite on the day then this could be another big negative as this race has been a punters graveyard and a bookies dream in recent years. Since 1980 the race has only seen one winning market leader land the prize, and in the last 10 years we've seen just 2 jollies hit the frame - with all of the last 10 winners returning a double-figure price in the betting.
In contrast, the positive things to look out for are checking your pick has previously won over this 6f trip with 8 of the last 10 fitting that trend, plus horses that have had 7 or more runs already that season have gone well too.
Keep anything that ran at either Doncaster, Goodwood or Haydock last time out on your side as this stat accounted for 80% of the last 10 winners, while if you are a punter that pins a lot to trainer stats then you'll want to know that David Nicholls (4) and Kevin Ryan (2) are the yards with the best recent records in the race.
Age and weight play their part too with 7 of the last 10 winners being aged 4 or 5, and with just 4 horses taking the race aged 6 or older since 1980 then you might want to put a line through any of the older entries.
In terms of weight if recent renewals are to be repeated then it could pay to look for horses more towards the top of the handicap with 7 of the last 10 carrying 9-2 or more.
At this stage of the week there are still far too many entered to have a firm view on the race and we certainly don't want to be backing anything ante-post this late in the day in case it doesn't even make the main race.
With that in mind I suggest you wait until the final line-up is confirmed on Thursday then apply some of the above key trends to the field and at the very least you'll have got what looks a daunting race on paper down to a more manageable number.
Key Ayr Gold Cup Betting Trends
10/10 - Won at a double-figure price
9/10 - Didn't win their last race
8/10 - Had raced 7 or more times that season
8/10 - Favourites unplaced
8/10 - Rated between 90-100
8/10 - Had raced at either Doncaster (4), Goodwood (2) or Haydock (2) last time out
8/10 - 3 or more career wins
8/10 - Won over 6f previously
7/10 - Aged 4 or 5 years-old
7/10 - Won carrying 9-2 or more
7/10 - Won from a double-figure draw
6/10 - Placed in the top 4 last time out
6/10 - Winning distance - 1 length or less
5/10 - The first two home hailed from a double-figure draw
5/10 - Had run at Ayr before
4/10 - Trained by David Nicholls (has won the race 6 times)
2/10 - Trained by Kevin Ryan
2/10 - Ridden by Frankie Dettori
0/10 - Placed horses from stall 1
0/10 - Favourites to win (1 winning fav since 1980)
0/10 - Filly or mare winners
Since 1980 just four winners aged 6 or older
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 17/1