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a question about age bands in horse racing

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  • #4591
    NWRA
    Member
    • Total Posts 259

    This is a hypothetical question (kind of). Let’s say you watched a horse easily win a class 5 handicap for 3yo only, and made a mental note to back it in its next race (providing it was in the same class, conditions were right, etc).

    Then you notice its down to come out in another class 5 handicap: the conditions are the same, etc, and you’re immediately tempted… but then you notice, this time, the race is open to all ages. The opposition is much the same (in terms of handicap marks); but do you think the opposition will be more difficult to beat merely because they’re older?

    In other words, if a horse is going from competing in 3yo only races to all-age races, what do you think? Is this a disadvantage or doesn’t it make a difference?

    In a way, I prefer it because I don’t like 3yo only races – too many potential improvers, unexposed horses, etc, while in an all-age handicap they’ll probably all be exposed. But is a 75-rated 5yo better than a 75-rated 3yo simply because of its experience and/or physique?

    #107280
    dave jay
    Member
    • Total Posts 3386

    I think that the 3YO is at a disavantage against older horses both physically and mentally, generally speaking.

    #107281
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    • Total Posts 17718

    This is a hypothetical question (kind of). Let’s say you watched a horse easily win a class 5 handicap for 3yo only, and made a mental note to back it in its next race (providing it was in the same class, conditions were right, etc).

    Then you notice its down to come out in another class 5 handicap: the conditions are the same, etc, and you’re immediately tempted… but then you notice, this time, the race is open to all ages. The opposition is much the same (in terms of handicap marks); but do you think the opposition will be more difficult to beat merely because they’re older?

    In other words, if a horse is going from competing in 3yo only races to all-age races, what do you think? Is this a disadvantage or doesn’t it make a difference?

    In a way, I prefer it because I don’t like 3yo only races – too many potential improvers, unexposed horses, etc, while in an all-age handicap they’ll probably all be exposed. But is a 75-rated 5yo better than a 75-rated 3yo simply because of its experience and/or physique?

    A very good question, and I’m surprised you haven’t received any replies.
    A 75 rated 5yo would invariably be better than a 75 rated 3yo, but for its class more than any other consideration.
    Depending on the distance and the time of year, most 3yo going into all-age races are going up in class, and a 3yo, say for instance winning a 12f 3yo hcp off top weight of 75, and then entered in, say, an all aged 0-80 12f hcp at the end of June, would in fact be meeting horses some 20lbs better than he met in his previous race.(14lbs w.f.a. + notional 6lb penalty).
    While the w.f.a scale is designed to compensate for the age difference, it doesn’t make a horse run faster, and in cases such as the above, it will be meeting much better/faster horses (in an all-aged similarly graded race).
    A case in point is Saturday’s Eclipse. Though Authorised had won gp1’s at 2 and 3yo, he was still meeting horses ostensibly 11lb better than any he had met before, and though receiving a commensurate weight allowance, he was still likely to be asked to run faster/better at some stage of the race.
    Maybe that’s why 3yo’s don’t run so well in the Eclipse, unless they’re truly exceptional or, like Oratorio, they drop on poor/disappointing older horses.
    A further example, (Just to stir up the natives :lol: ), would be Detroit City’s much heralded fast-time win in the Triumph Hurdle, a feat he was unable to replicate against better/faster horses in the following seasons all-aged Champion Hurdle.
    It is certainly worth bearing in ming when backing 3yo first time in all-age races, and the greater the distance the greater the class leap, so doubly important from hereon in.

    #107296
    MikkyMo73
    Member
    • Total Posts 1789

    A further example, (Just to stir up the natives :lol: ), would be Detroit City’s much heralded fast-time win in the Triumph Hurdle, a feat he was unable to replicate against better/faster horses in the following seasons all-aged Champion Hurdle.
    It is certainly worth bearing in ming when backing 3yo first time in all-age races, and the greater the distance the greater the class leap, so doubly important from hereon in.

    Detroit City’s defeat was purely down to the horse not being the same animal as it was earlier in the season. In fact Afsoun, who is the same age, and had been defeated by Detroit City a few times previous, finished nearly 20 lengths in front of Detroit City in the Champion Hurdle. So if Afsoun could step up into an all age race and run a life time best, there was no reason why Detroit City couldn’t. Detroit City was beat after a few furlongs that day and likewise at Aintree, he simply wasn’t running to the form he was earlier in the season and in my opinion that had nothing to do with the age of the horse.

    Mike

    #107297
    the welsh wizard
    Member
    • Total Posts 352

    Reet Hard – with all due respect – that was the biggest load of tripe I’ve read in my life.

    #107298
    the welsh wizard
    Member
    • Total Posts 352

    [

    A very good question, and I’m surprised you haven’t received any replies.
    A 75 rated 5yo would invariably be better than a 75 rated 3yo, but for its class more than any other consideration. What?
    Depending on the distance and the time of year, most 3yo going into all-age races are going up in class, and a 3yo, say for instance winning a 12f 3yo hcp off top weight of 75, and then entered in, say, an all aged 0-80 12f hcp at the end of June, would in fact be meeting horses some 20lbs better than he met in his previous race.(14lbs w.f.a. + notional 6lb penalty).
    While the w.f.a scale is designed to compensate for the age difference, it doesn’t make a horse run faster, Yes it does! and in cases such as the above, it will be meeting much better/faster horses (in an all-aged similarly graded race).
    A case in point is Saturday’s Eclipse. Though Authorised had won gp1’s at 2 and 3yo, he was still meeting horses ostensibly 11lb better than any he had met before, and though receiving a commensurate weight allowance, he was still likely to be asked to run faster/better at some stage of the race.
    Maybe that’s why 3yo’s don’t run so well in the Eclipse, unless they’re truly exceptional or, like Oratorio, they drop on poor/disappointing older horses.
    A further example, (Just to stir up the natives :lol: ), would be Detroit City’s much heralded fast-time win in the Triumph Hurdle, a feat he was unable to replicate against better/faster horses in the following seasons all-aged Champion Hurdle. But he could in the Greatwood!
    It is certainly worth bearing in ming when backing 3yo first time in all-age races, and the greater the distance the greater the class leap, so doubly important from hereon in. What???!!

    #107311
    Artemis
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1736

    A bit unkind, Welsh Wizard.

    I think RH should have emphasised the fact that a 3yo rated 75 meeting an older horse rated 75 over any distance in July in a handicap will receive a weight for age allowance to compensate for the younger horses lack of maturity, rather than lack of class. The ratings/handicapping system presumes that the two horses are in the same class, which can only be an approximation because the weight for age scale is based on average differences between mature horses and younger horses.

    #107313
    yeats
    Participant
    • Total Posts 2927

    A very good question, and I’m surprised you haven’t received any replies.
    A 75 rated 5yo would invariably be better than a 75 rated 3yo, but for its class more than any other consideration.
    Depending on the distance and the time of year, most 3yo going into all-age races are going up in class, and a 3yo, say for instance winning a 12f 3yo hcp off top weight of 75, and then entered in, say, an all aged 0-80 12f hcp at the end of June, would in fact be meeting horses some 20lbs better than he met in his previous race.(14lbs w.f.a. + notional 6lb penalty).
    While the w.f.a scale is designed to compensate for the age difference, it doesn’t make a horse run faster, and in cases such as the above, it will be meeting much better/faster horses (in an all-aged similarly graded race).
    A case in point is Saturday’s Eclipse. Though Authorised had won gp1’s at 2 and 3yo, he was still meeting horses ostensibly 11lb better than any he had met before, and though receiving a commensurate weight allowance, he was still likely to be asked to run faster/better at some stage of the race.
    Maybe that’s why 3yo’s don’t run so well in the Eclipse, unless they’re truly exceptional or, like Oratorio, they drop on poor/disappointing older horses.
    A further example, (Just to stir up the natives :lol: ), would be Detroit City’s much heralded fast-time win in the Triumph Hurdle, a feat he was unable to replicate against better/faster horses in the following seasons all-aged Champion Hurdle.
    It is certainly worth bearing in ming when backing 3yo first time in all-age races, and the greater the distance the greater the class leap, so doubly important from hereon in.

    I would have to disagree with all of that, if Authorised was at such a disadvantage why did he start 4/7 and Oratario beat the only other 3yo in the field, the 2/5 Motivator.

    #107328
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    • Total Posts 17718

    I thought that might cause a stir. :lol:

    Mikkymo/Welshwizard.

    I have discussed the reasons for DC’s Champion Hurdle demise elsewhere on this forum, and gone into some detail as to why. Whether you agree or not is entirely up to you, now is not the time of year for re-raising that particular discussion. Suffice to say that the ‘out of form’ horse won’t run in next year’s race, no matter what you may think.

    Artemis
    Because they are labelled with the same h/c rating does not mean that the horses are the same class.
    Class, in my definition anyway, means one horse is better than another, and there is no question that 3yo’s aren’t, which is why they need a concession.

    Yeats
    If Authorized wasn’t at a disadvantage, why did he need 11lbs?
    Oratorio and Motivator ran first and second because Starcraft ran 20lbs below form and the remainder were no-hopers, imo, of course.

    #107335
    MikkyMo73
    Member
    • Total Posts 1789

    I thought that might cause a stir. :lol:

    Mikkymo/Welshwizard.

    I have discussed the reasons for DC’s Champion Hurdle demise elsewhere on this forum, and gone into some detail as to why. Whether you agree or not is entirely up to you, now is not the time of year for re-raising that particular discussion. Suffice to say that the ‘out of form’ horse won’t run in next year’s race, no matter what you may think.

    I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I would go as far as saying Detroit City will never win a hurdle race again.

    Mike

    #107341
    heffo
    Member
    • Total Posts 319

    I’ll take that bet off you MikkyMo provided you mean ANY hurdle race.
    Price?

    #107357
    Artemis
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1736

    RH,

    That might be your definition, but it would not be the one that most people in racing would use. I believe the accepted definition is that the class(of horse A) is the level of race in which horse A is able to be competitive and has a realistic chance of winning, regardless of its age.

    When 3yos do meet older horses of the same class, these more mature older horses are certainly better(as you say), but the weight for age tries to compensate for this inequality.

    There is no argument here, really. Just a difference in terminology.

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