Tolworth Hurdle 2018 Trends

As March draws ever closer, we’re constantly looking for Festival clues and the Tolworth Hurdle will test the credentials of several horses with Festival aspirations. Won in recent years by horses such as Finian’s Oscar, Yorkhill and L’Ami Serge, another potentially smart horse should shatter the glass ceiling in this year’s renewal. A race for the top yards in recent years, this year’s renewal promises to be a corker with four horses at this early stage priced up between 2/1 and 4/1.

As with any big race, there are trends we can look at to try and help us deduce the winner and we believe we’ve found the key statistics below. Before we begin, it must be noted that there was no race in 2009 and 2010, as the meeting was abandoned due to frost on both occasion.

Trends

  • Age is a crucial – Since 2000, only two horses who have not been aged five or six have gone on to win the Grade 1 event
  • Top trainers do the business – Since 2000 eight renewals have been swept up by Paul Nicholls and Nicky Henderson
  • Short priced favourites do the business – Since 2004, all winning favourites (6/11 renewals) have been at a highest price of 6/4
  • Fitness is crucial – Eight of the past ten winners had run at least twice that season prior to the race
  • Doubling up – All of the past ten winners had won at least one race that season before contesting the Tolworth

It’s a hard one to split in terms of the trends but Claimantakinforgan just shades the vote, as he’s the Henderson trained horse of the top three in the market. He is aged six and has won both his runs over timber this season, so gets the nod on the statistics.

Analysis

A race that has been won by some top class horses in recent years, it is no surprise to see so many short price favourites going in. This year is much more wide open with the antepost markets placing Kalashnikov and Western Ryder as the joint favourites at a general 2/1. Baring two horses, the field is only spilt between 2/1 and 12/1, so that bodes well for a competitive renewal of the race. The race has been farmed by Nicky Henderson and Paul Nicholls in recent years and as such they’ve scooped up eight renewals since 2000. Claimantakinforgan and We Have A Dream are both entered for Henderson and the market cannot split them at this early stage with only a point difference. Nicholls has the very interesting Mont Des Avaloirs entered, his only representative this time around.

Age is an important one for this year’s renewal and it has a direct impact on the chances of We Have A DreamSussex Ranger and Whatswrongwithyou. The first two named horses are aged four and the latest horse to win at that age was Behrajan in 1999, becoming only the fifth horse in history to win this race at that age. Seven year olds have a slightly better record in the race, but the statistics show that it’s much more favourable to be either aged five or six.

In terms of fitness, all horses have had a run this season other than Dream Brother, who would be making his rules debut. History shows that having at least two runs is best, with the only horses not to have two runs this season being Speak Easy and Whatswrongwithyou. Winning has come easy for this field, so the ‘winning this season’ statistic can only rule out Whatswrongwithyou and Summerville Boy.

As always, we’ll have all the key news and build up leading to a top class weekend of action on our Twitter page, @myracingtips. Make sure you’re following so you don’t miss a thing!

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