... the winner was either the 1st, 2nd or 3rd favourite in more than half of all races

Royal Ascot Ten Year Stats

19th Jun 2012
races / trends / turf

Royal Ascot is staged over five days, has thirty races, with over 450 horses running. If you are looking to find winners at the meeting where do you start?

You could use the FlatStats Racing System Builder. This feature will allow you to filter for specific races such as the Royal Hunt Cup, the Ascot Gold Cup, or you could examine a report for the whole meeting using the Royal Ascot Ten Year Dataset!

Royal Ascot Dataset

This is a dataset, which contains the results of all races at Royal Ascot for the past 10 years (excluding 2005 when the meeting was run at York). Using this dataset you can see the full results for stats such as:

  • Favourites at the meeting
  • All of Frankie Dettori's rides
  • All Colts running at the meeting
  • The record of 3yos in the 3yo+ races
  • Irish bred horses
  • And much more!

If you want to see the dataset now you can do so here: Ten Year Stats for Royal Ascot.

Running the report you will see many tables. The first is a Summary table, which is not that useful in this case because this show the results of backing every horse in every race!

Summary Table
Shows summary information about a race such as overall strike rate and profits for betting to level £1 stakes.

271 wins from 4307 runs, 6.3% strike rate

That's pretty meaningless!

£1 Win SP £-1347.13 (-31.3%)
£1 Win Tote £-736.00 (-17.1%)
£1 Win Betfair SP £-205.10 (-10.9%)

This is more interesting. This shows the results of putting £1 on every runner at the meeting. The bookie's SP gives the worst return, whilst Betfair's SP was best (note Betfair SP only available since 2008).

The next table is the Winners Info table. Again this is for all races and this would give better info for specific races. But this can still be used to get a general profile of the winners at the whole meeting.

Winners Info Table
Shows profile stats for previous winners.

1st 3 in Betting 52%
Course Winner Ratio 1.53

These are two standout stats. The first means that in all the races at each Royal Ascot meeting the winner was either the 1st, 2nd or 3rd favourite in more than half of all races! That's quite a stat considering there are so many runners.

The second stat shows that previous course winners do well at this meeting so look out for horses with a C or CD after their name.

The average stats are very useful but obviously this will be race specific. There is no point in pondering over an average winners age stat of 3.6 in the 2yo races. Best to leave the winners average for the more in depth analysis, such as for the Wokingham Handicap.

FlatStats Ratings Tables
Shows stats for various FlatStats ratings, such as the top rated horse, blue rated horses.

Ratings RangeWin%A/EROI%
Blue Rated 21.7% 1.11 -6.8%
Green Rated 6.9% 0.80 -33.9%
Red Rated 33.7% 0.80 -32.7%

The higher the FlatStats rating a horse has the better it will perform. Blue rated horses (those with FlatStats ratings of 90+) won 21.7% of their races and returned a slight loss of 6.8%. Red rated horses (those with ratings of less than 60) returned a loss of 32.7%.

Ratings PositionWin%A/EROI%
Top Rated 18.3% 1.04 5.4%
Top Third 11.6% 1.01 -11.6%
Middle Third 4.4% 0.65 -45.9%
Bottom Third 3.5% 0.64 -37.8%
Bottom Rated 2.5% 0.43 -69.4%

The FlatStats top rated horse has done well over the years. Backing this horse in every race has returned a 5.4% profit at SP, and obviously a higher profit at Betfair SP. But note that some years were a bit hit and miss. In 2010 the top rated horse only won 2 out of the 30 races that year, whilst a year later the top rated horse won 8 of the 30 races.

On average you can expect around 1-2 winners per day with most of the winners coming from the non Handicap races. You can check the performance of the FlatStats top rated horse at Royal Ascot by modifying adding another filter to the System Builder Royal Ascot Dataset for:

(Ratings) Ratings Position = 1

Just click on the Ratings button, select Ratings Pos and in the value box enter 1. You can also use this to check the record of all bottom rated horses, or just the red rated favourites if you wish.

SP Tables
Shows stats for various prices, favourites at SP or at Betfair SP.

SP Pos / PricesWin%A/EROI%
1st Favourite 26.3 0.94 -7.2%
Odds-On 58.8% 0.96 -2.2%
20/1+ 2.0% 0.69 -42.1%

This table shows that favourites are performing near enough as expected. Their A/E and ROI stats are no better or worse than all races at all courses in general.

One point to note though is that the record of the favourite does vary widely depending on the type of race. If you add another filter to the System Builder report for favourites:

(SP) SP Position = 1

You will see that in all the Handicap races the favourite has returned a 45.8% loss, whilst in all the Stakes races the favourite has returned a 10% profit!

Other stats you can uncover using the Royal Ascot Dataset filter for favourites include:

  • Aidan O'Brien has had 40 favourites at the meeting. 19 won for a 48% strike rate and returned a 43% profit
  • Sir Michael Stoute has had 42 favourites at the meeting. Only 8 won for a 19% strike rate and a 43% loss!
  • Backing the favourite in all the Group Class races hit a 36% strike rate and returned a 16% profit
  • Favourites that were bred in GB returned a 19% loss, whilst favourites that were bred in IRE returned a 3% profit
  • The worst day for backing favourites is the Wednesday, whilst the best day is on the Friday

Outsiders: 42 horses won at prices of 20/1 or more over the years. This averages around one per day. But don't think you can find this big priced winner and make a fortune because the majority of runners at this meeting are priced 20/1+

Out of 4307 horses that have run at this meeting since 2002 nearly half of them (2114) went off at 20/1 or more. But using the System Builder dataset and adding a rule for SP >= 20 you will be able to find out which races they tend to win. Clue: It's not the Group Class races!

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Article created 19-Jun-12. Stats may have changed since.

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