Racehorse research proves money can’t buy a winner

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  • Recent research has proven that, in the world of racing, money can’t buy you a winner.

    The study was undertaken by a graduate at Writtle College, and compared the price thoroughbred yearlings fetched in the sales ring with their subsequent prowess on the racetrack.

    It concluded that there was only a medium to low association between sale price and track performance.

    The research was based on data from over 5700 yearlings at the Tattersalls and Goffs sales between 2004 and 2005. The individual sales were then compared with the end of season timeform ratings between 2006 and 2007.

    “This study confirms that potential performance is subject to many factors — sales price being just one,” explained Dr Tim Whitaker, a recent graduate of Writtle College who supervised the work.

    “Better understanding of the environment the horse is subjected to will help us to predict future performance, but buying yearlings is always going to be a gamble.

    “In fact, part of the fascination, is those animals that defy you — the data we studied revealed that the 2006 Derby winner Sir Percy was bought for just 16,000Gns!”

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