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Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Start of flat racing season 2009

The first two-year-old races of the season are posted, below, for Saturday, 28th March 2009.

I had a quick look at the entries for the WILLIAMHILL.COM - PLAY POKER BROCKLESBY CONDITIONS STAKES (CLASS 4) (2yo) 2.10 Doncaster. At the five day declaration stage there are 42 entrants. It is interesting to see a number of jockeys already booked to ride their mounts.
At the 48-hour declarations there are 22 runners for the Brocklesby Conditional Stakes with a win prize money of £11,333. The field mainly consists of small stables and relatively cheap juveniles. The most expensive being Chicita Banana trained by George Baker (60,000gns) and Swilly Ferry by B.W.Hills (58,000gbp). The interesting juveniles being: Archers Road (M.Channon), Bond Together (P.D.Evans), Could It Be Magic (W.G.M Turner), Eight Hours (R.A.Fahey), Swilly Ferry (B.W.Hills) & Chicita Banana (George Baker). These will unsurprisingly be the main protagonists in the betting. I have no particular interest other than reiterating that there will be a few winners come from the race. Looking forward to watching it - the season will soon be on its way.

It is worth keeping a copy of the Brocklesby entries as they often pinpoint talented juveniles, even if they forfeit their chance to take part (see bottom of page).
In detailing these entries I am not so much interested in their success or failure in the Brocklesby but simply noting that such declarations have often been a positive sign for their respective trainers in a historical context. It's difficult to have resounding confidence in a trainer with numerous declarations as this may dilute the likelihood of them having ability. In such cases the juvenile competing in the Brocklesby deserves most respect.
P.D.Evans has done well with his juvenile entrants for past years with Silver Wind & Calypso Girl both attaining wins as two-year-olds. Bill Turner generally places his best juvenile in this race & Channon has had many decent two-year-olds make their debut in the Brocklesby. However, all entrants are worthy of note as this race does hold significance.

As I have mentioned before, the Brocklesby is just a watching race for me. There will be a fair number of winners come from this race - so it's worth remembering those originally entered or who take part.
I found an interesting study covering a 12-year period to 2002 regarding the performance of Brocklesby contenders. Over this period only two fillies won and no winning juvenile was priced over 18/1. Again, colts were successful in 2006 & 2007. However, last year's winner was a filly, Sally's Dilemma, priced 7/1. Clearly, there are more colts/geldings featured in this race so fillies are at a disadvantage. The majority of winners in the 12-year period came from 5th,6th,7th position in the betting. However, in the last 3 years all winning juveniles have been priced 7/1 & less.