A real mixed bag of trainers to look out for this week on Andy Newton’s hot-list…….
SEAN CURRAN (4 winners from his last 6 runners, 67% strike-rate): Based in Oxon, this small yard have certainly hit a rich vein of form of late with 4 winners from their last 6 sent to post. They do operate over both codes, but most of their recent successes have been on level. In terms of numbers they’ve had 6 NH winners so far, and 4 on the flat, while sticking with the flat their best tally so far is 10 back in 2008 – a figure I fully expect them to smash this term. Of the four AW tracks they have most of their runners at Kempton, Lingfield and Wolverhampton, and as we drawn ever nearer to the turf season if past campaigns are anything to go by you’ll find the bulk of their runners at Brighton and Chepstow. Jockey William Carson has been on two of their recent four winners, but the most impressive was Sergeant Dick, who won over hurdles at Southwell on Monday, and could easily go in again.
Track stats and up-coming entries: Exeter (2 from 5, 40%), Wolverhampton (6 from 74, 8%), Kempton (2 from 40, 5%), Stratford (1 from 13, 8%)
DAVID NICHOLLS (7 winners from their last 13 runners, 54% strike-rate): Most flat trainers would be happy with 50 winners in a season, but last year’s tally for Nicholls was his worst since 2001. 2011 saw them fire in 93 and the year before 88, but the way they’ve started 2013 (already on 9 winners) suggests they are ready to get back on track. Known as the ‘Sprint King’ you’ll see almost all their runners over 5,6 and 7f, while two of his better-known horses, Tax Free and Inxile, could be running at Doncaster later this week. Son, Adrian, gets the leg-up on most of theirs, he’s been on 5 of their recent 7 winners, but they do like to use Franny Norton too. They also do a lot better with their older sprinters – last season 28 of their 50 winners came with their 4+year-olds, and it could pay to know they had just 4 juvenile winners from 38 sent to post.
Track stats and up-coming entries: Southwell (60 from 291, 21%), Doncaster (9 from 148, 6%)
REBECCA CURTIS (4 winners from their last 9 runners, 44% strike-rate): Obviously At Fishers Cross, who won last week’s Albert Barlett Hurdle, was a huge highlight for the team and is now a leading fancy for the World Hurdle next season (around 8/1). They followed that up with a treble at their local track, Ffos Las, on Saturday and in fact 8 of their last 9 runners have finished fourth or better. They also look to have a real star in the making with jockey Patrick Corbett – he was on all three of their Saturday winners, and with his 7lbs claim he’s proving a real hit. That’s now 45 winners for the season for the yard, but more importantly a healthy £384k in total prize money banked, while after advertising her talents with the likes of At Fishers Cross you suspect it won’t be long before his owner JP McManus throws a few more her way. One of her recent winners, Scooter Fontaine is entered again at Bangor on Saturday, while they will be hoping to cap off what’s already been a cracking season with Teaforthree in the Grand National early next month. Finally, look out for any NH Flat runners the yard might have at Bangor later this week – they are currently 4 from 10 at the track in that sphere.
Track stats and up-coming entries: Bangor (16 from 57, 28%)
RICHARD LEE (4 winners from his last 10 runners, 40% strike-rate): An across the card double at Ffos Las and Uttoxeter last Saturday was followed up with another winner they sent all the way up to Carlisle on Sunday and all this means they are now on 19 winners for the NH season. Been around for a while, and often do well with their staying chasers with the yard’s best ever tally was 37 back in 1989-90. They’ve been quick to snap up the talents of promising jockey Micheal Nolan, who has been on two of their recent winners – many are tipping him as a future champion and if you’ve seen him ride it’s easy to see why after his 30 winners this term – in fact of his 197 rides this season a massive 52% have finished fourth or better, not bad, hey? Despite their good form if there is one word of caution it would be that they’ve only had 1 winner at Haydock from their last 32 runners – they’ve got 3 heading there on Wednesday.
Track stats and up-coming entries: Haydock (1 from 32, 3%), Stratford (1 from 17, 6%), Chepstow (10 from 72, 14%)
DAVID O’MEARA (4 winners from their last 10 runners, 40% strike-rate): Had no luck at Cheltenham last week with a few fair performers, but they made up for that with a Wolverhampton treble on Saturday – all three, Frontier Fighter, Classic Colori and Hiddon Coin, won easily to suggest they should be followed when on the track again too. Jockey Danny Tudhope has been on all four recent winners, and their overall flat stats in 2013 are 18 winners from just 54 runners (33%). In terms of their jumpers they are 7 from 45 so far, and despite time running out they will be hoping to get near to the 15 winners over the sticks they got 12 months ago. Of the four AW tracks they do by far the best at Wolverhampton with a 27% strike-rate, while look for any turf runners at Ayr (32%) and Sandown (40%) later in the season too.
Track stats and up-coming entries: Haydock (1 from 5, 20%), Wolverhampton (19 from 70, 27%), Doncaster (8 from 94, 9%), Sedgefield (2 from 13, 15%)
RICHARD HANNON (4 winners from their last 14 runners, 29% strike-rate): Okay, not mind-blowing figures, but with the new turf season just around the corner we are starting to see more and more Hannon runners and it looks as if most of them are ready to go. Richard Hughes has even dragged himself away from Cheltenham, where he was seen in the crowd celebrating Our Conor’s Triumph Hurdle win – the horse his dad trains, to start riding a few as he begins the defence of his jockeys’ title. For the last two seasons the Hannon camp have fired in 218 winners – their best ever – and you can expect more of the same again in 2013. Half the problem with these big yards is that they have so many runners (1367 last year) that it’s tricky sorting the wheat from the chaff, but it’s no secret they do well with their 2 year-olds (18% strike-rate over the last 5 seasons), so that coupled with keeping a close eye on tracks they do well at (I’d suggest a 20%+ strike-rate) are some angles you can adopt in an attempt to try and whittle their runners.
Track stats and up-coming entries: Kempton (107 from 733, 15%), Doncaster (27 from 142, 19%), Wolverhampton (26 from 134, 19%)
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