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Favourites And Horse Racing

A couple of years ago we decided to run a 1000 race study of how favourites performed under different circumstances in an attempt to gain an understanding of what made certain favourites layable and what made them backable.

It was an interesting exercise but, of course, on a sample of 1000, (all the time we had to spend on it in March 2008), it was never going to be a definitive work.

Recently, fellow Tasmanian Roger Biggs, mathematician and author of such things, dropped me an email to helpfully correct some of the figures that we arrived at based on his sample size of nearly 200,000 races. Wow - great database! That size of database to draw on makes his calculations far more valid than mine.

Here are those corrections that he e-mailed:

Winning Percentages of favourites by Days Since Last Start: (196755 races)

>= 301 days................ 31.7%
201 - 300 days.............33.6%
100 - 200 days.............33.0%
50 - 99 days.................34.8%
29 - 49 days.................34.1%
21 - 28 days.................32.1%
14 - 20 days................ 32.3%
8 - 13 days...................33.1%
1 - 7 days ....................36.9%

Winning Percentages of favourites by field size: (196,755 races)

17+starters........... 23.2%
16 .......................26.2%
15........................27.1%
14 ......................27.8%
13 ......................29.2%
12 ......................29.7%
11 ......................31.2%
10 ......................32.3%
9 ....................... 33.1%
8 ........................35.4%
7 ....................... 37.3%
6 ....................... 41.5%

 

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