Run Style Figures and Pace Angles
Run Style figures and pace angles are the numbers that we show on our race cards, to give to each horse for each run, depending on how it started its race.
A horse that led or was right up with the pace will get a 1. A horse that ran behind the leaders, will get a 2. A horse that ran in midfield will get a 3 and a horse that was held up or slowly away will get a 4.
It can help to know this fact about each horse in a race, so that you can determine where the pace of a race will be. Perhaps in a big field sprint handicap for example. As it is very often the case that the winner of these races will be drawn or run close to where most of the front runners are. Where the pace is, you will here the pundits on TV say.
If you have a race where there is only one front runner. This horse could be able to get to the front and control the pace. It can get an easy lead and take the race from the front and win almost unchallenged. ‘He rode the other jockeys to sleep’. You will have heard that one I am sure.
On the other hand, if you have a lot of front runners who want to take each other on. They can easily burn up all their energy by running too hard, too early. This allows the hold up horses to come through at the end and win.
It is very likely that you have seen both situations many times before. So, look out for races where you have just one or two front runners. As well as races with just one or two hold up horses.
Look a little deeper into the run styles using the system builder
You may or may not be surprised also, to know that non handicap races provide more front running winners than non-handicap races.
Take all weather races, both handicap and non-handicap races. These stats are for handicap races and win percentages for the run styles between 1 and 4. All races with 7 or more runners.
Now non-handicap races.
With a slight edge for front runners, 1 and 2 in handicaps. You can see that is greatly increased for the non-handicaps.
Front runners only winning about 10% of their races in handicaps. Whilst they are winning nearly 14% of their races in non-handicaps.
It is the same with Hurdle races too.
You can use the system builder to see how similar the results are for Flat turf and Chase races. Perhaps you can use this to your advantage in future.
Horses for courses
There are certain courses that are better for front runners and those that can help hold up horses. To improve your chance with run style figures and pace angles.
I mentioned courses that front runners or hold up horses prefer. You can check these out too on the system builder. Below I am looking for front runners in Chase races since 2018. Both handicap and non-handicap races with 7 or more runners.
Using the result breakdowns and looking at each course. I have sorted these by win% and show below the top 8 courses, for front runners in chase races.
Now you can see below all those with a strike rate of less than 10% for front runners in chase races.
Remember we are not concerned about the profit and loss here, just the winning strike rates. The odds of the winners will make the difference on the profits but we want to drill down into the chance of front runners here.
You can see that Lingfield, Taunton and Sandown have a strike rate of less than 9%. While Aintree has the lowest strike rate of them all with just 6.65% of front runners winning chase races.
The difference between Plumpton at the top and Aintree at the bottom is over 57%. Certainly something worth thinking about when looking at placing a bet at Aintree next time.
What about if we add a BSP rule?
Even adding that these front runners must have a BSP of 11 or less. So, we have the more fancied runners who should be winning more. Aintree is still at the bottom of the list.
Here is the bottom three, all with less than 14% strike rates. Sandown and Worcester are in both lists at the bottom as well.
The top courses including the BSP rule are below where they all have a strike rate for front running chasers with a BSP off 11 or less, of 20% or better.
Again, you can see that Cartmel, Plumpton, Huntingdon, Sedgefield and Market Rasen are at the top end.
You can try this yourself and look at how these courses fair over different distances.
I think just by looking at these stats here, you can see which are the best courses for front running chasers.
You can do this for all race types and all run styles. Not every course will be a standout. But you will find enough to keep as a set of rules that you can use going forward. Possibly every day there will be a course that you can look at.
Remember, once you have saved your idea as a set of system rules. You can run them through the system builder to get any possible selections every day.
Summary of Run Style Figures and Pace Angles Explained
As you can see, there is more to picking a winner than just looking at the horse and its form lines.
You have seen many a favourite finish well down the field. Well maybe it was because it had a run style that just wasn’t suited to the course and/or distance it was running over.
It does make you think, doesn’t it?
Have a play around on the system builder when you get a chance and see what sort of run style angles you can come up with.
Run Style Systems
If you are a subscriber to Inform Racing you can also find this post among our Resource Library.
The resource library version includes four already created and profitable Run Style betting systems that you can start using today.