The Black Jacket

Greyhounds drawn in Trap 4 in a graded race will follow one of three racing lines. If they definitely prefer the black jacket to the white or orange, they will take a middle course without any significant deviation. If they are more at home when drawn in Trap 3 they will probably edge towards the inside. If they are more comfortable when racing out of Trap 5 they may take a line that is more middle-to-wide than middle.

The Trap 4 dog that holds a middle racing line will be ideally suited by a draw next to a dog in Trap 3 that goes middle to rails, and a dog in Trap 5 that is a wide runner. If the black jacket also has better sectional times than the dogs on either side, he (or she) is all set for a clear run.

The Trap 4 dog that prefers to be in Trap 3 is more likely to find trouble, especially if the dog in the white jacket alternates in his races between Traps 3 and 4, rather than Traps 2 and 3 He will definitely need to be quicker out of the traps than the three dog, and will also need superior early speed. Similar comments apply to the Trap 4 dog that is really more of a middle-to-wide runner. He must clear the five dog by virtue of his trapping or his early pace, or both. When I’m assessing the likelihood of a dog getting a clear run from Trap 4 I’ll always look at his lifetime form and check his success rate when wearing the black jacket, as well as his trapping ability and early pace.

Trap 4 has traditionally been dubbed the ‘coffin box’, but does it really deserve that less than flattering description? The reasoning behind it is, I suppose, that it is more difficult, from Trap 4, to get to the first bend in front and then cut in towards the rails than it is from Trap 3; more difficult because the dog in the black jacket has three dogs inside to clear, whereas the white jacket has only two. However, that presupposes that the dog in Trap 4 will actually want or need to cut in. As we’ve seen, some dogs will, but many will prefer to hold a middle line, or be more inclined to run middle to wide.

Trap statistics may help to shed some light on whether being drawn in Trap 4 is a disadvantage in comparison with a Trap 3 draw. If it is, you would expect that, over a representative period of time, more winners would emerge from Trap 3 than Trap 4.

I have extracted winning Trap 4 statistics for all tracks over the last six years (source: www.greyhound-data.com). For comparison, I have included, in brackets, Trap 3 winning percentages.

Percentage of winners from Trap 4 (4 bend races only); Trap 3 percentage in brackets.

Track2015 (to date)20142013201220112010
Belle Vue18 (18)16 (19)16 (19)16 (17)17 (17)16 (17)
Crayford16 (18)15 (18)18 (17)17 (16)17 (17)17 (18)
Hall Green16 (17)16 (16)17 (16)17 (17)17 (15)17 (16)
Henlow17 (18)16 (17)15 (18)15 (17)17 (18)15 (17)
Hove17 (17)16 (17)16 (19)16 (17)15 (19)15 (20)
Kinsley20 (20)17 (20)16 (19)16 (19)18 (19)15 (20)
Mildenhall17 (16)18 (10)15 (15)17 (18)19 (20)17 (16)
Monmore15 (20)18 (18)17 (17)17 (15)17 (14)19 (16)
Newcastle18 (19)17 (18)18 (18)18 (17)18 (17)16 (19)
Nottingham15 (19)16 (18)17 (19)19 (19)17 (19)16 (19)
Pelaw Grange17 (17)14 (18)18 (17)17 (15)17 (18)16 (16)
Perry Barr19 (18)18 (17)19 (18)18 (19)19 (16)19 (18)
Peterborough18 (17)19 (18)18 (19)17 (19)18 (17)18 (18)
Poole16 (19)17 (20)17 (19)19 (18)17 (21)18 (18)
Romford16 (15)16 (16)17 (20)17 (19)18 (19)18 (20)
Shawfield(limited data as most races run as handicaps)
Sheffield15 (19)16 (17)16 (18)16(18)15 (17)16 (17)
Sittingbourne15 (18)18 (16)16 (15)16 (15)18 (16)17 (15)
Stainforth17 (18)17 (18)16 (19)13 (17)16 (18)17 (18)
Sunderland16 (18)16 (18)16 (20)16 (18)16 (18)16 (17)
Swindon16 (18)16 (18)16 (20)16 (18)18 (18)16 (17)
Towcester16 (14)18 (14)----
Wimbledon17 (19)17 (17)17 (17)18 (16)15 (19)16 (17)
Yarmouth19 (17)18 (18)18 (17)18 (17)18 (18)18 (17)

Subjecting these statistics to closer analysis, I have divided the tracks into three groups: those where, over a six year period, Trap 3 has a higher percentage of winners; those where Trap 4 has a higher percentage; and those where there is no significant pattern.

Tracks where Trap 4 has a higher percentage of winners: Perry Barr; Sittingbourne; Yarmouth.

Tracks where Trap 3 has a higher percentage of winners : Belle Vue; Henlow; Hove; Kinsley; Nottingham; Poole; Romford; Sheffield; Stainforth; Sunderland.

Tracks where there is no significant pattern: Crayford; Hall Green; Mildenhall; Monmore; Newcastle; Pelaw Grange; Peterborough; Towcester; Wimbledon.

From the evidence of these statistics it would seem that a Trap 4 draw poses more problems for the average middle runner than Trap 3. Therefore, if contemplating backing the dog in black, be sure that he has the requisite speed from the traps and the early pace to get clear of the dogs on either side on the run-up. Alternatively, a slow trapper that finishes well can be considered, but only if he has shown in his previous runs the trackcraft necessary to weave his way through the field without running into trouble. But this, as the Racing Post comment compilers are fond of pointing out, is never easy.

May 2018
Focus On Monmore Green
 
April 2018
Focus On Hove
 
March 2018
Focus On Doncaster
 
February 2018
Focus On Crayford
 
January 2018
Focus On Central Park
 
December 2017
An Index Of Previous Blog Posts
 
November 2017
Focus On Belle Vue
 
October 2017
Young Graders To Follow (2)
 
September 2017
Young Graders To Follow
 
August 2017
Getting A Clear Run
 
July 2017
Essential Tools For Greyhound Betting (2)
 
June 2017
Essential Tools For Greyhound Betting (1)
 
May 2017
Specialisation (2)
 
April 2017
Specialisation (1)
 
March 2017
Qualities Of The Successful Backer
 
February 2017
Compiling Race Ratings (2)
 
January 2017
Compiling Race Ratings (1)
 
December 2016
Racecard Comments : S - X
 
November 2016
Racecard Comments : M - R
 
October 2016
Racecard Comments : H - M
 
September 2016
Racecard Comments : H
 
August 2016
Racecard Comments : E - H
 
July 2016
Racecard Comments : B - D
 
June 2016
Racecard Comments : A - B
 
May 2016
Form Cycles
 
April 2016
Keeping An Online Formbook (3)
 
March 2016
Keeping An Online Formbook (2)
 
February 2016
Keeping An Online Formbook (1)
 
January 2016
The Striped jacket
 
December 2015
The Orange jacket
 
November 2015
The Black jacket
 
October 2015
The White jacket
 
September 2015
The Blue jacket
 
August 2015
The Red jacket
 
July 2015
Upgraded Dogs To Avoid
 
June 2015
Upgraded Dogs
 
May 2015
Downgraded Dogs
 
April 2015
Focus on Romford
 
March 2015
Focus on Swindon (2)
 
February 2015
Focus on Swindon (1)
 
January 2015
Exploiting Formline Comments (2)
 
December 2014
Exploiting Formline Comments (1)
 
November 2014
Greyhound Racing: Make It Pay (2)
 
October 2014
Greyhound Racing: Make It Pay (1)
 
September 2014
Greyhound Betting Expert Advice (6)
 
August 2014
Greyhound Betting Expert Advice (5)
 
July 2014
Greyhound Betting Expert Advice (4)
 
June 2014
Greyhound Betting Expert Advice (3)
 
May 2014
Greyhound Betting Expert Advice (2)
 
April 2014
Greyhound Betting Expert Advice (1)
 
March 2014
The Time Test
 
February 2014
Recording and Reviewing Your Bets
 
January 2014
What’s a "grade within a grade"? (2)
 
December 2013
What’s a "grade within a grade"? (1)
 
November 2013
Trap Draw
 
October 2013
Sires To Note
 
September 2013
Racing Post Summaries (3)
 
August 2013
Racing Post Summaries (2)
 
July 2013
Racing Post Summaries (1)
 
June 2013
Laying Greyhounds On The Betting Exchanges
 
May 2013
Spotting The Ungenuine Dog
 
April 2013
Compiling A List Of Greyhounds To Follow
 
March 2013
Specialisation (2)
 
February 2013
Specialisation (1)
 
January 2013
Winter Ground Conditions
 
December 2012
Front Runners v Strong Finishers
 
November 2012
Weight
 
October 2012
Identifying Improving Greyhounds
 
September 2012
Race Ratings (2)
 
August 2012
Race Ratings (1)
 
July 2012
Following dogs in form
 
June 2012
Adopting a professional approach (3)
 
May 2012
Adopting a professional approach (2)
 
April 2012
A Greyhound's Win / Lose Ratio
 
March 2012
Adopting a professional approach (1)
 
February 2012
Warning To Speed Fans
 
January 2012
Following Bitches After Seasonal Rest
 
December 2011
Early Paced Dogs
 
November 2011
Speed Handicapping (5) : More FAQs
 
October 2011
Speed Handicapping (4) : FAQs
 
September 2011
Speed Handicapping (3)
 
August 2011
Speed Handicapping (2)
 
July 2011
Speed Handicapping (1)
 
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