Is there any truth to the theory that when Winx is racing, Hugh Bowman’s form on other rides suffers? I’ve taken a look at the facts and discovered a very interesting conclusion.
Much was made of last Spring and the seemingly poor form of Hugh Bowman with a theory that he’s not as focused on other rides when Winx is in her racing campaign and especially wants to make sure he doesn’t do anything in a race that might risk suspension.
In the approximate 2 week period leading into the 2017 Cox Plate, Bowman did go through a run of 32 rides without a winner, with that streak only broken when Winx won her historic third straight Cox Plate.
It’s perhaps fair enough for punters to judge him as riding in poor form during that period, but I thought I would look at a more comprehensive set of figures to see if there’s any real basis for the theory over more than a single two week period.
The table below shows the results of all Hugh Bowman rides (excluding Winx) in the periods the great mare has raced since 2016.
|13/2/2016 to 2/4/2016||115||18||15.7%||-6.2%|
|20/8/2016 to 22/10/2016||122||18||14.8%||-24.5%|
|13/2/2017 to 8/4/2017||94||15||16.0%||-8.4%|
|17/8/2017 to 28/10/2017||164||29||17.7%||-14.4%|
|3/3/2018 to 14/4/2018||47||8||17.0%||-1.8%|
Let’s compare this table to all of Bowman’s rides (excluding Winx) from 13/2/2016 to now including the times Winx wasn’t racing.
|13/2/2016 to current (exc Winx)||1141||203||17.8%||-7.4%|
As you can see, there’s no doubt Bowman’s strike rate has been a little lower during the times Winx has been racing, but it’s not significantly inferior with only 1.6 less winners per 100 rides (16.2% vs 17.8%).
What is notable though is that the betting return from his rides during the times Winx is racing is much lower (-13.2% versus his overall average of -7.4%.) However Bowman doesn’t control the odds the public sends his mounts out at, so we can’t hold that against him.
What is more interesting is if we break down Bowman’s rides when Winx is racing between NSW and VIC (excluding rides on Winx herself)
What a massive difference! It would seem that the issue leading to the inferior statistics for Bowman when Winx is racing is primarily related to his rides in VIC.
Let’s compare this “Winx is racing” state vs state breakdown to Bowman’s overall figures (excluding Winx rides)
When we compare these two, it’s clear that there is a minimal difference in Bowman’s NSW statistics during the times Winx is racing compared to those when she isn’t.
His strike rate is only 0.9% lower (less than one winner less every 100 rides) and his betting return (POT%), while lower at -5.8% vs -3.3% is still excellent given his high profile status and popularity among punters.
The issue is that his results in VIC have been poor, especially compared to the standard Bowman sets in NSW and in reality, by anyone’s measure. Of his 143 total rides in VIC, 44 of them have been less than or equal to $5 in the betting market for just 3 winners and a -74% betting return.
Given the bulk of Bowman’s VIC rides have come when Winx is racing (94 of the 143 total), that’s the factor making his overall stats appear inferior during Winx’s racing preparations.
From this I have to conclude that there is no truth at all in the theory that Winx racing has a consistent affect on Hugh Bowman’s form or results on other rides.
There is nothing at all wrong with his results on other rides in NSW when Winx is racing, they’re still very good. The issue is more about an overall lack of success in VIC, even when Winx isn’t racing and the fact that he has more rides down south when she is racing.