RACING AHEAD: Trainers to follow in December

RACING AHEAD with Tony McCormick
RACING AHEAD with Tony McCormick

Racing pundit Tony McCormick from presents his weekly column, this week looking back at his November trainers and forward to two trainers to note in December.

Paul Nicholls and Venetia Williams continued the fine form of our monthly trainers to watch in November. This followed solid figures from Nigel Twiston-Davies and Neil Mulholland as part of our trainers to follow in October.

From following the criteria set out in an earlier column, Nicholls sent out 31 runners, with eight of those winning returning a profit of £75.50 to a £10 stake, with the trainer having a 61% win and place strike rate.

It must be said that Nicholls’ last 10 runners were beaten for the angle, although five of those placed, with three of the last four runners finishing second. Interestingly, from the eight winners, only two were sent off favourite.

Williams had 37 qualifiers during the month, with 10 finishing first past the post, returning a £275.50 profit to a £10 stake. Saroque and Pepite Rose both won earlier in the month at odds of 10/1 and Union Jack Dycy winning at 8/1 on Saturday kept the angle ticking along nicely to return a 27% strike rate.

For our two trainers to follow in December, let’s start with Nicky Henderson. The master of Seven Barrows can actually be followed blind, with him having a 29% strike rate, yielding a £21.30 profit to a £10 stake in the last four years.

Digging a little deeper in to the figures, it is obvious that his hurdlers are the horses to follow. Henderson’s runners in Hurdles, Maiden Hurdles, Handicap Novice Hurdles and especially his Novice Hurdlers, with a 30% strike rate, must be treated with the utmost respect.

We could leave the angle there, but following his qualifiers that are Irish or French bred, aged between three and six and with an SP no bigger than 14/1, could provide us with some Christmas tokens in the next couple of weeks.

Charlie Longsdon had 16 winners from 69 runners in October, dropping back to only, and a disappointing, five winners from 68 runners in November. Hopefully, Longsdon is still a creature of habit as he has had a quiet November for the last four years, following on from a successful October, including a staggering 22 winners in 2013 and 12 in 2014.

His December record reads, eight in 2011, 12 in 2012, 11 winners in 2013 and seven successes last term. Longsdon has his Maiden Hurdlers, Novices Hurdlers, Handicap Chasers and Handicap Novice Chasers primed in December.

Following runners in Class 3 or 4 contests, GB or Irish-bred, aged between five and eight and had finished in the first three in one of their last three starts, could well prove profitable this month.

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