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By Garry Robinson

We may have found a new way of telling which trainers and jockeys are better than others. The evidence is inconclusive but interesting all the same. Darren Beadman has steadily worked his way up the jockey ladder to be back at his past spot of No 1. Darren rides for several trainers but most of all he has been riding for John Hawkes and Graeme Rogerson. Is it a coincidence that he lands a winner for John Hawkes at roughly every fourth try and less than one in six for Graeme Rogerson? With over 200 rides for Hawkes and over 100 rides for Rogerson, the figures should be reasonably reliable.

Beadman’s performance on Rogerson’s horses are about as good as you can get amongst even the best jockeys but his performance on Hawke’s horses suggests we would all be mugs to bet against him under these circumstances.

When you realise that John Hawkes spreads his horses amongst several top jockeys it is interesting to look at the performance of some of the others. Corey Brown rides roughly one winner in five when riding for Hawkes, Darren Gauci and Scott Galloway both ride one in six, whilst Rodney Quinn also scores at about one in six.

Apart from the jockeys, it says a lot about Hawkes’s ability as a trainer whilst admitting he does have first choice at a lot of the best horse flesh around.

The other extremely strong jockey/ trainer combination is the Chris Munce/ Gai Waterhouse combo which has a similar strike rate to Beadman and Hawkes. Another combo that is working at one winner in five is the less popular Jim Cassidy/ Gai Waterhouse combo. At the end of the day, we have to ask ourslelves “Is it worth betting on these horses, when we know they will be under the odds?”

Personally, I don’t worry too much about jockeys because on average, there is not much difference provided they can get on the right horse. Mike Pelling who is still one of Brisbane’s top riders tells me that when deciding on a horse to win it is 85% horse, 10% luck and 5% rider. That means that our form assessment should be based as much as possible on the horse’s ability and it’s handicaps for this race.

The only time I consider the jockey is when I see that an obviously top rider such as Beadman or Oliver is now riding when last time Joe Bloggs had the sit. This tells me that the connections must feel that the horse is now at peak fitness and they don’t want any mistakes.

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