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Kauto Star – Left or Right?

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  • #7107
    Bosranic
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    • Total Posts 1982

    Paul Nicholls has said countless times that Kauto Star is a far better horse going left-handed, but the form of his illustrious career thus far tell us a different story.

    His most impressive wins have been on a right-handed course:

    2006 Tingle Creek
    2006 King George
    2007 King George
    2008 Commercial First

    He has also struggled to beat L’Ami and Exotic Dancer at Newbury and Haydock respectively going left-handed.

    What do you think? Is he better going left or right?

    #151530
    davidjohnson
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    • Total Posts 4491

    Based on his form it doesn’t matter but if you have the tape of his AON win last season, look at the head on after the last and see how he’s trying to lug left all the way and only runs straight only once he has the rail.

    #151587
    clivex
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    • Total Posts 3420

    Even at Kempton he jumped a bit left, but its true there is a pattern there. A lot of horses have a preference for travelling one way or other but does that always translate into the bias in jumping? Would assume it should….but

    #151615
    davidjohnson
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    • Total Posts 4491

    A lot of horses have a preference for travelling one way or other

    Really? Can’t say it’s something I’ve noticed. I’d say a small number do and mainly over jumps because they tend to jump that way.

    #151623
    clivex
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    • Total Posts 3420

    Wrong. Too simplistic.

    This was analysed by Alan Potts in the Inside Track. I am fairly sure that he was clear that most horses have a in built preference, but often its marginal

    #151887
    chloed
    Member
    • Total Posts 433

    actually all horses have a preferential side

    #151888
    davidjohnson
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    • Total Posts 4491

    I wouldn’t dispute that a horse would have a preference for leading with one leg over another, I just don’t think it has anything other than a negligible difference on the vast majority of horses form.

    #151931
    carvillshill
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    • Total Posts 2778

    A lot of horses have a preference for travelling one way or other

    Really? Can’t say it’s something I’ve noticed. I’d say a small number do and mainly over jumps because they tend to jump that way.

    Couldn’t disagree more DJ. I’d say it’s more than a small number, more like 20% and it’s a vital piece of information if you can spot it.
    Kuato definitely wants to go left, he wins right-handed in spite of this.

    #151935
    davidjohnson
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    • Total Posts 4491

    Go on then. Pick any race at the Cheltenham Festival and show me 20% of the field that has a marked preference for going one way over the other.

    #151936
    Librettist
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    • Total Posts 559

    Go on then. Pick any race at the Cheltenham Festival and show me 20% of the field that has a marked preference for going one way over the other.

    Only nine-runners in the Ryanair Chase. Racing Demon has a preference for going right-handed. Only one more to find to fulfill the 20%!

    #151940
    clivex
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    • Total Posts 3420

    Go on then. Pick any race at the Cheltenham Festival and show me 20% of the field that has a marked preference for going one way over the other.

    This is surely nonsense. It doesnt have to be entirely visable. A jockey’s job is obviously to keep them in a straight line, but clearly a preference one way or other must help then horse stretch out more naturally round the bends (at least) and that will surely affect the way they perform

    #151944
    carvillshill
    Participant
    • Total Posts 2778

    In the Ryanair
    Racing Demon is best right-handed
    Mossbank is best right-handed, despite his best performance being in the Lexus.
    The Listener jumps right on quickish ground
    Justified is best right-handed
    L’Antartique is best left-handed.

    Convinced yet DJ?

    #151949
    davidjohnson
    Member
    • Total Posts 4491

    Not overly so I must admit. I obviously won’t argue about Racing Demon. I can’t have it how Mossbank can be best handed when as you say his best performances have come going left handed and he looks just as effective both ways to me. The Listener does occasionally jump right but is his Leopardstown form inferior to his John Durkan? Not really for me. L’Antartique has raced exclusively on left handed tracks in Britain bar when winning at Carlisle so I don;t think there is any evidence either way and Justified is just a freak. How can a horse be better going right-handed (10 of 11 career wins) when he tends to jump left!!

    At least I’m open to debate though now :wink:

    #152071
    Peruvian Chief
    Member
    • Total Posts 1931

    High Chapparals only two runs out of the first two were both going right handed at Longchamp in the Arc.

    I backed him both times, thinking 12f with cut in the ground made him the one to beat. I remember thinking after the 2nd Arc that going right handed possibly had something to do with it as he didn’t seem to travel with his usual ease, even with seemingly ideal trip and ground conditions both times.

    #152076
    moehat
    Participant
    • Total Posts 7922

    I’m pretty sure that Lester Piggott mentioned something about this in an interview he gave in The Observer a few years ago.

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