Keeping An Online Formbook (3)

Last month I began to discuss in detail the information recorded in Ballistic Kid’s formline, which was as follows:

23/10/15 Ballistic Kid (Rumble Impact) bk d Mar 13; A2: 2-19; A3: 3-15; Tr 6; w; mp; ro; stays

After noting a greyhound’s strike rate in the grade it’s competing in (and in the grades above if it has competed at a higher level in the past), I then consider its preference as regards trap draw. Most greyhounds can only show their best form when housed in the trap that is most suitable for their style of running. Some dogs, of course, are more versatile than others, and may show equally good form from, say, traps 5 and 6. Ballistic Kid has occasionally won from Trap 5, but he is definitely happier in Trap 6. I will probably change Ballistic Kid’s formline trap preference to Tr 6/5, with his better trap mentioned first.

I comment on trap preference only if a dog has actually won from that trap. However, the grade in which it achieved that success isn’t as important as the win itself. Also, if a dog has a particularly poor record from a trap I would note this in its formline. An extreme example of a greyhound finding a particular trap not to her taste is Sheffield grader Leona Hi; her somewhat unimpressive record from Trap 2 is 0-41!

Finally, I note, in abbreviated form, the dog’s running style (you can find a list of these abbreviations, and what they stand for, in my February 2016 blog). Ballistic Kid takes a wide course; he doesn’t have good early speed but shows middle pace and runs on towards the end of his races; and he has won over six bends as well as over the standard four bend distance.

When comparing the formlines of the six dogs in the race, running style is of great importance. This information allows you to build a mental picture of how the race will be run, and which dogs will be likely either to find trouble or to get a clear run. As an example, I have taken a race involving Ballistic Kid that I analysed with a view to having a bet, and have reproduced my online formbook below:

Sheffield 2nd February 2016 (A3)

Trap 1: Gaelic Ramble (Goldmine Ramble) bd d Mar 11; A1: 1-12; A2: 8-64; A3: 11- 36; Tr 1; r; sl-av tr; mp; ro

Trap 2: Yahoo Johnny (Mall Brandy) bk d Jun 14; A3: 0-0; Tr 2; r-m or m so far; ep; ls

Trap 3: Kildare Wizard (Ace Hi Rumble) bk b Feb 14; A3: 0-3; Tr 3; m; can show ep

Trap 4: Jolly Jodie (Ace Hi Rumble) be b May 14; A3: 0-3; Tr 3/2; m or m-r; ep

Trap 5: Beretta Hawk (Westmead Hawk) wbk d Mar 12; A2: 2-30; A3: 6-38; Tr 5; m-w or w; mp; ls; stays

Trap 6: Ballistic Kid (Rumble Impact) b d Mar 13; A2: 2-19; A3: 3-16; Tr 6; w; mp; ro; stays

From the running style information, it seemed likely that Gaelic Ramble, a slow starter and the only true railer in the race, would get a clear run along the rails. Yahoo Johnny would be quicker to the bend, and might get a clear run if he held a rails-to-middle course; if, however, he took a middle line, he might have trouble clearing the early-paced Kildare Wizard. And Jolly Jodie, in Trap 4, had run middle or middle-to-rails in her previous races, so Kildare Wizard could find herself squeezed for room on the run up unless she found the early speed to avoid the black. Beretta Hawk, in trap 5, liked to run middle-to-wide or wide, so seemed unlikely to tangle with Jolly Jodie. If he ran middle-to-wide he wouldn’t crowd with Ballistic Kid either, but if he moved wide there could be a problem for him and Ballistic Kid.

You may have noticed that my online form book doesn’t include the dogs’ best recent time. That doesn’t mean that I don’t think it important; on the contrary, it’s vital information. But I only consider times that have been recorded in the last month, and so I prefer to update the dog’s formline with its best recent time only when I analyse a race for a possible bet. The times for this particular race were as follows:

Tr 1: A3: 29.90 (A4: 29.85); Tr 2: A4: 29.75; Tr 3: A3: 30.06 (A4: 29.87); Tr 4: A3: 30.21 (A4: 29.82); Tr 5: A3: 29.86; Tr 6: A2: 29.51

A glance at these times shows just how great a time advantage Ballistic Kid took into this race, and it was no surprise that he was a short-priced favourite at 11/10. The result was as follows:

1. Tr 3: Kildare Wizard (Quick Away; Always Led); 2. Tr 6: Ballistic Kid (Ran On; Wide); 3. Tr 1: Gaelic Ramble (Very Slow Away; Rails); 4. Tr 2: Yahoo Johnny (Checked Wide; Crowded 1 and 4); 5. Tr 5: Beretta Hawk (Crowded 4); 6. Tr 4: Jolly Jodie (Crowded 1; Middle)

Ballistic Kid avoided trouble and ran well enough, but didn’t reproduce his previous fast time. Established A3 dogs are always vulnerable to a young dog improving through the grades, and at just 2 years old Kildare Wizard trapped well and used her early pace to go clear, recording a time of 29.72.

September 2018
Focus On Poole
August 2018
Focus On Perry Barr
July 2018
Focus On Nottingham
June 2018
Focus On Newcastle
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
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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