The Phase 8 Wishlist… (plus confirmed items)

Phase 8 of Geegeez Gold is coming...

Phase 8 of Geegeez Gold is coming…

As you’ll know if you’ve been a visitor for any length of time, Geegeez is committed to providing the most state-of-the-art racecards in Britain, with some of the most cutting edge form tools to support them. In seven phased releases so far, that package – known as Gold – has delivered to its hundreds of users:

Racecards

  • Inline form; trainer and jockey stats; head to head records; breeding, sales and form comments; and trainer/jockey form indicators
  • ‘Then What?’ shows the subsequent performance of all runners from form lines in UK/Ire races
  • Configurable going to enable the user to respond to, or ‘second guess’, any going changes

Full Form Filters

  • Filter the form for any horse, trainer or jockey by race code, going, distance, course, class, trainer/jockey; and by recent run or layoff; and by wins, places, or unplaced efforts

Instant Expert

  • View the entire form history for every runner in a race by today’s conditions. Configure the range of going, class, distance and field size you’re interested in (defaults to today’s exact conditions)
  • Search by win or place, and order by any column you choose

Pace Analysis

  • See how each horse has raced (i.e. led, prominent, midfield or held up) in each of its last four UK races
  • Establish where the ‘pockets’ of pace are in big field races
  • Understand if a race is likely to be truly run (i.e. with speed from the start), or falsely run (i.e. a crawl and then a dash to the line)

Odds Check

  • Compare odds from ten of the UK’s major bookmakers, and click through directly to get the best odds without fear of having your account marked, as Oddschecker users are
  • Use our handy ‘Best Odds’ column to avoid tracking across the grid to find the best prices

Reports

  • The Shortlist and Best Of highlight the pick of the day’s ‘Instant Expert’ profiles
  • Hot Form showcases the best – and worst (for all you layers) – form lines in terms of how the horses subsequently ran
  • Trainer, Jockey, and Trainer/Jockey combo reports offer four views each: 14 day form, 30 day form, 365 day course form, and course form since 2009.
  • Horses For Courses shows the course record for every horse running at a track at which it’s previously raced
  • Head to Head shows the record of every horse against the other horses in its race today

Tracker

  • Our easy to use Tracker tool allows you not just to follow horses, but also trainers and jockeys, and to see where they’re entered in the next five days

Premium Tips

  • Stat of the Day needs little introduction. It continues to go from strength to strength, and is currently over 70 points up in 2014 (including 56.92 points profit in the first half of the year, following on from profits in 2012 and 2013). These profits are derived from a single one point bet per day.
First half 2014 profits for Stat of the Day

First half 2014 profits for Stat of the Day

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That’s why I’m so proud of what we’ve put together for Geegeez Gold users. And I have always had a firm belief in re-investing back into the user community, which is why I’m already well into the Phase Eight (!) wishlist. Actually, some of the wishlist is a bit firmer than that, and some elements are confirmed ‘runners’.

Here is what’s confirmed in, and what is under consideration, starting with

THE BIG ANNOUNCEMENT

Ratings

I searched high and low – and sought your input – for a rating set that I could license as part of the Gold racecards package. The criteria were simple:

1. The ratings had to be proven to be effective, and

2. The ratings should not already be so ‘mainstream’ as to immediately be factored into the horse’s odds, thus negating any potential value benefit

I’m delighted to say that I’ve agreed a deal with a chap who is a PhD in Artificial Intelligence, and whose ratings are the output from a continuously learning algorithm. I’ll introduce him, and his numbers, in due course, but the start date for publication of this extra info is set for 1st September, all other things being equal.

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This is probably the single most requested addition to the cards, so I’m delighted to be able to bring these data into the Gold package. To subscribe to these ratings direct would cost 75% of the Gold subscription fee and, as you might imagine, it’s not a cheap deal to license them. But it is another great leap forward for the Gold subscribers’ value proposition.

Race Of The Day

Although the vast majority of Phase 8 work is for Gold subscribers, I never forget the amazing community of Geegeez readers – many of whom have been following me online since I started in 2006 (long service medals very well earned!!!) – and so the next phase will include a ‘Race Of The Day’ feature.

This will, as the name suggests, be one race – the second most valuable on any given day – where all Gold functionality is available to all registered free subscribers. That way, you’ll get a chance to see for yourself what’s included before you decide whether to take a trial or not. Or you can just enjoy the daily freebie, along Double Dutch and my editorial blurb, on the house. 😉

Feature Of The Day

This is 85% confirmed, subject to establishing the technical why’s and wherefore’s of making it happen. As well as one race a day with all Gold functionality available, I’m also hoping to offer one feature a day across all races to free subscribers. Again, the idea is the same: to allow non-Gold (free) subscribers to get closer to some of the other winner-getting features that form part of Gold.

For instance, we might have Stat of the Day available to all registered users on a Monday; The Shortlist report available to all registered users on Tuesdays; Trainer Stats reports available to all on Wednesdays; and so on. Pretty good, right?

Smart new look…

As well as adding those new bits, I’m also working with a guy whose remit is to a) smarten the site up, b) make the site more mobile and tablet friendly, and c) make the site quicker.

As Geegeez has developed it has outgrown its current ‘skin’ and needs something a bit more 2014, and a bit less 2012 (two years is a VERY long time on the internet!). For those with an interest or awareness in such things, we’re looking at a more responsive theme, and a crisper UX. In plain English, things should be quicker, work better, and look nicer. 🙂

One other thing you will probably notice soon is a new ‘front door’ on the site, which is designed to encourage new visitors to join Geegeez’ mailing list and trial the Gold subscription. As you’re probably on my mailing list, and have probably at least trialled Geegeez Gold, there will be a button/link on that ‘front door’ to enable you to get straight to the good stuff. But I’ll explain all about that nearer the time.

**

So those are the confirmed, or nearly confirmed, items. And below is a list of ‘possibles’ for Phase 8.

User Control

At the moment, the user experience is a bit ‘basic’ for Gold subscribers. I want to improve that, by allowing some elements of how you interact configurable. In other words, you can define how you want information to be presented.

For instance, let’s say you look for a certain set of criteria on the Trainer/Jockey Combo report (as I do), wouldn’t it be great if you could define the filters for that data in your ‘My Geegeez’ area, and every time you logged in and went to the Trainer/Jockey Combo report, you saw only the stuff you’re interested in?

Now, I’m certain this is possible, but I’m not certain how easy or difficult it is to implement this, which is why this is a wishlist item currently. That comment applies to most of the below, too.

Report Filters

Speaking of report filters, I’d like for each report to have a set of dropdown lists at the top to enable users to select minimum/maximum number of runners; and minimum number of wins and/or places.

These ‘local’ filters could override the ‘global’ filters defined in the user control if the user wanted to changed them, but they would default to whatever had been defined in ‘My Geegeez’, or to ‘All’ (i.e. as now) if nothing has been defined in ‘My Geegeez’.

Make sense? If not, don’t worry for now. It will all become clear as/when it happens.

Full Form Filters

I’d like to add Hcap/Non-Hcap to the Horse filter, so that a user can look at a horse’s form specifically in – or not in – handicap company. And I’d also like to add a ‘Trainer’ option to the horse filter, so that users can see how a horse has performed since its current trainer took charge.

Course Information

We’re getting close to having a meaningful set of definitions of the ‘handedness’ (i.e. left-handed or right-handed, or figure of eight, or straight) of each distance at each course; and we’re also nearing completion of definitions of the constitution (i.e. sharp, galloping, flat, undulating, etc) of each course.

Once I’m happy that we’ve got those nailed down, we’ll incorporate them into the race cards somehow. I’d like to add to the Instant Expert, but there are space constraints with the current layout.

Class Definitions on Instant Expert

This has been a mild irritation for a while, for two reasons. Firstly, we’ve never got to the bottom of defining adequately a ‘class’ structure for Irish racing. They don’t have explicit classes like we do, but they do have ratings bands for handicaps, prize money for all non-handicaps; and Group/Graded and Listed events. So, it should be possible to define a class structure.

Because of the lack of concrete divisions, it will be a ‘best guess’ but should be at least 95% accurate, which is better than the vacuum that exists in that space currently.

The other element of frustration is that all Class 1 races are treated the same from an Instant Expert perspective. That means that currently a Listed race is treated the same as a Group 1 race, which is obviously sub-optimal. Again, we need to get that sorted.

Tracker Emails

This one is a bit trappy, due to the way the back end (database stuff) is designed, but it would be sensible – and clearly very useful – if we could email users overnight and/or the day before (to be defined by each user), to notify them of the horses, trainers and jockeys they’re interested in which have entries.

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Although the ratings and site re-design pieces will be happening in early September, there’s no fixed time scale for the other parts. I’d hope that mid-September would be achievable for those, but it’s normally prudent to discuss with the clever people who will actually make it happen before offering bold statements of imminent arrivals!

So I’ll chat with Dave and Nige, the wizard smarties behind those racing wonders that make Gold the thing of brains and beauty that it is.

In the meantime, as the door is still ajar for Phase Eight, feel free to make any suggestions or comments below. I’m determined to continue to add as much value as possible for Gold subscribers – and Geegeez visitors as a whole – and your input will definitely contribute to that. (Thanks).

Matt

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