Prompted by Matt Bisogno’s article on the up coming Nursery season I decided to have a look at a race category that I have not examined before. Matt’s excellent article had lots of food for thought, the only thing I questioned was that he had not split the data into train test partitions. This is something I think is not solely for Machine Learning applications but can also be applied to system building. So with this in mind I examined Nursery races from 2009 to 2015 inclusive using the first two years as a data run in. Any theories could then be tested on 2016/17.

My only port of call on this topic is trainer performance in these races and it may well uncover a classic example of Nick Mordin’s black is white and white is black in the world of betting.

Taking trainers strike rate in 2yo races generally and then also logging their strike rate in 2yo handicaps proved very interesting. At first I set the check to those runners where the trainer had a better SR in Nurseries than overall 2yo races. Prepare to enter Mordin world.

Bets 4866 PL -586 ROI% -12.04 VarPL -53 VROI% -7.18%

Now if we take a look at those trainers with an SR% less than their overall 2yo SR%

Bets 5326 PL +616 ROI +11.5 VarPL +54.3 VROI +6.82%

All the above are to BFSP before commission.

OK so how did this theory pan out on 2016 and 2017, well not too bad.

Bets 2155 PL +123 ROI 5.7% VPL +3.8 VROI +1.18%

Certainly this subset are worthy of further attention when deciding a bet. It would appear that punters overbet trainers with obvious good records in Nurseries whilst run of the mill records are ignored to heavily even amongst some big name trainers.

Examples of trainers to avoid would be S Bin Suroor and Roger Varian. They do well with their Nursery runners but the public seem to know that.

Trainers to watch out for in 2018 are

A B Haynes
A Berry
A Carson
A M Balding
A P Jarvis
A Stronge
Amy Murphy
Andrew Reid
Archie Watson
B Curley
B Haslam
B J Meehan
B Smart
B W Duke
C Allen
C G Cox
C Hills
C R Dore
C W Fairhurst
D Carroll
D Donovan
D J Coakley
D J S Ffrench Davis
D Kubler
D McCain Jnr
D Morris
D O’Meara
D O’meara
D P Quinn
D R C Elsworth
D Simcock
D W P Arbuthnot
Dr J D Scargill
E J Creighton
E J O’Neill
Ed De Giles
Eve Johnson Houghton
F J Brennan
G A Butler
G A Swinbank
Garry Moss
George Scott
H A McWilliams
H Palmer
H Spiller
Henry Spiller
Hugo Palmer
I Mohammed
I Semple
J Akehurst
J D Bethell
J G Portman
J Hetherton
J Howard Johnson
J Hughes
J J Quinn
J L Eyre
J Noseda
J Pearce
J Ryan
J W Mullins
J W Unett
K A Ryan
K Dalgleish
K R Burke
Kevin Frost
L McAteer
L Smyth
M A Jarvis
M Al Zarooni
M D I Usher
M Dods
M E Rimmer
M G Quinlan
M Johnston
M Murphy
M P Tregoning
M R Channon
M S Tuck
M Walford
Mark Gillard
Micky Hammond
Miss Gay Kelleway
Miss J R Tooth
Miss Jo Crowley
Miss L A Perratt
Mrs H S Main
Mrs I G-Leveque
Mrs K Burke
Mrs K Walton
Mrs L C Jewell
Mrs L J Mongan
Mrs L Stubbs
Mrs L Williamson
Mrs Marjorie Fife
Mrs S A Watt
N Wilson
O Stevens
Ollie Pears
P C Haslam
P Charalambous
P D Evans
P Hedger
P J Makin
P M Phelan
P McCreery
P R Chamings
P W Chapple-Hyam
Pat Eddery
Pat Morris
Patrick Morris
R A Fahey
R A Teal
R Brisland
R Curtis
R D Wylie
R Eddery
R G Fell
R Hannon
R Johnson
R M H Cowell
R M Whitaker
Richard Hannon
Richard Spencer
Robyn Brisland
S A Callaghan
S Dixon
S Durack
S Kirk
Sir H R A Cecil
Sir Michael Stoute
Stef Higgins
T B Coles
T D Barron
T D Walford
Tom Dascombe
W G Harrison
W G M Turner
W J Haggas
W J Knight
W J Musson
W Stone