Tag Archives: Mark Johnston trainer

Stat of the Day, 30th March 2013

Stat of the Day: 27/03/13

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day, 30th March 2013

A quick catch up then as there hasn't been a SotD for a couple of days on the site. Thursday 28th saw Niceonefrankie (emailed out due to gremlins on site) anything but; Friday 29th was Good Friday and therefore no racing; which brings us to today, an extremely competitive Easter Saturday. I'm taking a chance on one at a price, in the...

3.35 Musselburgh

A really valuable handicap, worth over £31,000 to the winner, is this. Mark Johnston is on fire at the moment, with five winners and four seconds from just twelve runners in the last week. He's obviously decided he'll support this race, and has four nags entered!

Johnston's record with 3yo handicappers (16/1 or shorter) here at Musselburgh since 2008 is impressive: 16 wins and 19 places from 78 runners, for a profit of 11.48 points.

So, we know he's a man in form, and we know his similar types go well at the track. But... he's got four entered here! What to do? Well, the sensible play is to go with the one with the best profile for the race. Step forward, Fraserburgh.

Named after a town 178 miles north of Musselburgh racecourse, Fraserburgh is likely to be popular with on-course punters. But he's got more form-based claims than that too. Indeed, in seven career starts to date, he's only been out of the frame once. His full form string reads 3272321, and his inevitable victory was by six lengths in a Southwell maiden.

It's a sure thing that this is a much stronger contest, but the step up to a mile looks bang on for a horse which has presumably been a slow maturing type. He's by crack miler, Shamardal, out of the mare which also bore smart two mile hurdler, Dodging Bullets. That's why I assume he's late maturing, given that he was an early foal and started out over five furlongs!

The good to soft ground should be spot on; the trip ought to bring improvement (though this is surmisal on my part); his handy running style will help; and, whilst he's only the third string of the Johnston quartet on market rank, I'm hopeful he can again make the frame at least.

He's 20/1 with William Hill, and they'll lob in a free bet to the same stake as your first tickle if you open an account with them today. Each way the play: a poke at a price.

William Hill Sports


Click here for the latest betting on the 3.35 Musselburgh

Stat of the Day, 15th August 2012

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day, 15th August 2012

Yay. We're off the cold list, and in some style. Cats Eyes led from trap to line yesterday, at odds of 5/1. 14/1 was advised, but the non'runners meant there was a 30p rule 4 deduction to bets struck prior to withdrawal of the first of three horses which came out.

In case you don't know, that means a £1 win bet would have been subject to a 30p cut at the specified odds. In this case, we'd have been paid out for 70p at 14/1, which is £10.50, meaning our winning odds were 19/2 (or 9.5/1 if you prefer). Make sense? Good.

Half a point each way, with the deduction, means we recorded a profit of 6.125 units (I think!), and clawed back most of the monthly deficit.

It's a familiar theme today, as we bid to claw back the rest of the deficit, up in East Riding, and specifically the…

5.25 Beverley

When Beverley races, the first thing I look at this time of year is to see if Mark Johnston has a middle distance three-year-old racing in a handicap against older horses.

His record in this context is five from eleven in the past four years (45.45%), for a profit of 15.25 points.

And today he has just such a horse, in the shape of Aliante, a three year old filly by Sir Percy.

Aliante is officially rated 65, which makes her the highest rated horse in the race. Or the best horse, to put it another way. It's wonderful news then that she gets eight pounds from the next best horses in the race, a most generous concession.

She has had six runs this season, the last four on turf. Having run well enough over a trip shy of optimal at Salisbury on the first of those, it's quite possible she was subsequently bogged down in the mud for the middle two efforts, both on soft ground.

But last time out, dropped in grade, and on much faster ground at around today's trip, Aliante finished a good two length second to Authora at Yarmouth. She was ridden from well off the pace there, and also lugged in behind one in the last furlong.

Despite that, she came home best of all, and I think the stiff Beverley finish, and fast ground are spot on for her this afternoon.

I would like to see her ridden a bit closer to the pace, and SdS (Silvestre de Sousa) may well do that. There are very few in the field capable of significant improvement, and if Aliante runs to her best, she'll take some beating.

She's 3/1 BOG with William Hill, and they'll give you a free matched bet if you open an account with them today (lovely fellows), and quote promo code F25.

William Hill Sports

Alternatively... Click here for the latest odds for the 5.25 Beverley.

Stat of the Day, 11th August 2012

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day, 11th August 2012

I was really disappointed to discover that Addikt was a non-runner yesterday, as it was already down to 7/1 in a place at the time of withdrawal, having been nominated at 12/1. I also subsequently learned from the excellent Hugh Taylor that the horse was being withdrawn for the fourteenth time. Sure a record, and also a loophole in the rules which needs closing.

Anyway, stakes returned and we'll try again this afternoon, in the…

3.25 Haydock

Mark Johnston runners remain in good heart just now, and he has a bit of a specialist going at Haydock later.

License To Till is the horse of the moment, and it's specifically his career stats over today's trip of one mile two and a half furlongs which catch the eye.

He's run over this slightly extended ten furlong trip seven times in his career, and has won five of those races. Indeed, the full figures are 1311110.

License To Till is also one from one at the course, a run over this distance too, when winning off 83 in May. Since then he's won again over the extended ten furlongs, at Chester, off a mark of 90.

And since then, he's been third in a good race at Newmarket off 95, over the standard ten furlong trip. He was just pipped for second that day.

Ground is fine, course is fine, race class is OK (he's won in Class 2 twice, including two months ago), and it wouldn't surprise me if License To Till tried to lead from start to finish, again as he did in that Chester race.

It's Saturday and as you'd expect this is a very competitive race, but License To Till looks over-priced on what he's achieved so far, in the context of today's conditions.

He's 9/1 BOG with Boylesport, the price is going, and I'll take a piece each way. Of course, be sure to...

Click here for the latest odds for the 3.25 Haydock.

Stat of the Day, 31st July 2012

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day: 31st July 2012

Majuro was third at 14/1 yesterday, a lot bigger price than advised, thus highlighting the value of using a Best Odds Guaranteed (BOG) bookie.

In truth, we may have been a bit unlucky with 'just' a place, as Majuro missed the break quite badly, and then had a number of traffic problems meaning he had to go the long way round from the back. In all, I estimate he lost at least six to eight lengths and yet was beaten a short head and three lengths. Still, a 7/2 place return is not too shabby, and we finish July in rude health.

Today, we'll go to a familiar well and try to draw more profitable water, in the…

5.10 Beverley

We had a nice winner with this approach the week before last, and today looks like another horse with a chance to bring home the bacon.

The approach is Mark Johnston's three-year-olds running in all-age handicaps over a trip of a mile and quarter or further. Basically, because they receive hefty weight for age allowances, and are generally fit as fleas and bred for a trip, this group of runners seems to do very well.

Indeed, specifically at Beverley over the last four years, the tactic has paid off with five winners from sixteen runners, and a profit of 8.75 points.

This afternoon, Key Gold attempts to enhance that record. She's been running very well in three-year-old handicaps since winning her maiden over today's trip of a mile and a half.

But this is the first time she's raced against her elders. The significance? Whereas against her own age group, she carries weight directly in alignment with her peers' ratings, here she gets a tidy allowance of twelve pounds.

Key Gold's rating of 69 is joint highest in the race, and yet she runs from just four pounds off the  lowest in the race. Although I don't really believe that a couple of pounds make any difference, it's certainly fair to say that the best part of a stone is significiant.

Since winning that Class 4 maiden, she's run well in handicaps and this Class 5 affair should be within her compass.

9/4 BOG is the price, with only a few bookies having shows as I write, so do…

Click here for the latest odds for the 5.10 Beverley.

p.s. Dermot Weld runs the following in Galway non-handicaps tonight: Big Break (6.10), Storm Lightning (7.10)

Stat of the Day, 17th July 2012

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day

Stat of the Day: 17th July 2012

So Stat of the Day notches a four-timer, and with a nice priced winner too. Flying Pickets was a very strong fancy to make the frame, and I hoped he might be able to win (though was far from confident on that score).

As it turned out, the place was never in doubt, with clear daylight between the first three and the rest. The win though was a very close run thing: just a nose and a short head separating that trio of podium positions.

Under a very strong Willie Twiston-Davies ride (did very well to get the horse in a decent position early too), Flying Pickets did the bizzo at odds of 6/1 (advised at 13/2).

So today, we attempt the nap hand, which is asking rather a lot, especially as I'm heading to one of my nemesis tracks, and the...

4.00 Beverley

I shall be present tomorrow, as my friend Tony Mac is sponsoring the preceding contest, the irishbigracetrends.com handicap. Hence, I thought I'd take a look at the card.

It's not a lucky track for me, but stats are stats, so forget about my personal punting traumas and focus on the numbers (he says, telling himself!).

The top trainer here is Mark Johnston, with a cracking 25% strike rate from nearly 200 runners, and a profit of 29.93 points. He's got two runners today, and whilst the one in the 2.30 (Pure Excellence) will have an each way squeak, it's the other one I'm more interested in.

Moon Trip is the only three year old against older horses in this two mile marathon. At this time of year, three year olds running against older horses get tidy 'weight for age' concessions. And, the further the race distance, the better they seem to do.

Specifically, in flat turf handicaps of 1m6f or greater open to 3yo's and up, horses priced at 8/1 or shorter have broken even at starting price over the last ten years.

One of the shrewdest exponents of this manoeuvre is the aforementioned Mark Johnston, whose 31 runners under such conditions have yielded eleven winners for a profit of 8.61 points and a strike rate of 35.48%.

Moon Trip is not certain to get the trip, being a son of Cape Cross out of a King's Best mare (both sire and dam sire were milers or thereabouts), but he is almost certain to have an easy lead here.

That's been advantageous at Beverley over the years, and in receipt of seven pounds and more from his rivals despite having the joint third highest rating, I hope he can at least make the frame.

13/2 is available with both bet365 and William Hill BOG, but as ever, do...

Click here for the latest odds for the 4.00 Beverley.