In this section, I explain how to determine the racing pace of a greyhound and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of individual styles. Studying Sectional Timings, Reading Race Comments, Observing Track Positions and American Chart Writers are included.
Greyhound Predictor Software Version 2.0 allows for four types of racing pace to be simulated:
All dogs will have their own individual style of racing, this is best illustrated by observing a greyhound's pace in a race!
Early Pace - This type of greyhound pace produces very quick sectional times as these dogs reach top speeds in the very early stages of a race. These 'fast breakers' perform best when allowed to lead "on the bunny" from the start and rely on a clear run in-order to set an unassailable lead! Although, early paced dogs inevitably tire and may fade dramatically in the closing stages!
Middle Pace - Dogs with this running style are seen to their very best effect when accelerating along the backstraights in the middle-stages of a race. Although, they often find themselves racing closely surrounded by other dogs in a tightly packed field and for this reason are more prone to interference then other pace types and maybe impeded or forced to check when challenging at the 1st or 3rd bends!
Finishing Pace - All 'staying dogs' show their best running when gaining ground towards the end of a race and subsequently benefit when trouble occurs amongst the pace-setters. Although, 'finishers' will have to pass all the dogs in-front of them and can often be hampered or forced to run wide! Most 'puppies' finishing fast in races will in time be stepped up in distance, as will most dogs better suited to longer races.
All Round Pace - These hounds maintain a 'strong gallop' throughout a race. Although, sometimes this may be considered a little one paced!
Now check your raceform.
To Know a dog's pace type, you must literally read between the race formlines, as there is no specific statistic or racing-data that informs this. However, clues are given and basically there are three ways to calculate a greyhound's pace:
1 - Studying Sectional Times - You should always try to compare 'sectional times' run on the same date and over the same track distance as this will generally inform you which greyhounds are fast, average or slow away in the first few seconds of a race.
In Australia, some of the world's finest stadiums or "city tracks" sometimes supply 3 split times: the initial run to the bend, the approximate 1/2 way clockings and 'coming home' or 'home run' sectional measured to a 1000/second from the top of the back-stretch to the winning line maybe stated.
2 - Reading Race Remarks - The following comments indicate pace-type:
Early Pace = (ep), clear 1st, led 1, very quick away (v qaw), fast away (f aw) always led (aled), led to line, box to wire.
Middle Pace = led 1-2 to run-in, led 2, led 3, slow away-early pace (sa ep), mid-stretch drive.
Finishing Pace = very slow away (vsa), lacked early pace (lep), led 4, led on line (ld ln), ran on (rn on), finished well (fw), stretch drive, winning drive.
All Round Pace = These greyhounds share similar comments to other pace types and can win races by both leading all the way from the start or by staying on strongly at the end and perhaps overall perform best when holding a good early position!
In Irish greyhound race comments they use the term evenly away (ev aw).
3 - Observing the Race Positions - In UK dog formlines all previous race positions are recorded at the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th bend and finishing line. This data is located next to the 'sectionals' and usually provides an accurate guide to a dogs pace type:
eg: Early Pace = 1 1 1 1 2 - Middle Pace = 3 2 1 1 2 - Finishing Pace = 6 6 4 3 2 - All Round Pace = 2 2 2 2 2
Generally, it's easy to pick out the 'early pace' and 'finishers' although dogs with 'middle' or 'all round pace' will always be a little more difficult!
In America it's the 'Official Chart Writers' who determine a runners position in a race:
Off Call or Break Call - This is the racing positions of the greyhounds 1-8 exiting the starting boxes.
The 1/8 Call - This is the dogs position exiting the 1st (escape) turn.
Stretch Call - This is the runners position in the field measured at a point just entering the final turn.
Finish Call - This is the dog's final finishing position 1-8 measured at the finish line.
I suggest the 3rd thing to do while at a meeting, is to go "out for a shout" and look at the runners on parade. I like to see 'alert dogs' with their tail tucked well underneath themselves, resembling a coiled spring! rather than perhaps a 'sluggish looking' or 'happy dog' with it's tail waggling in the air!
I suggest the 4th and last thing all 'Greyhound Predictors' should remember when going to the "bow wows" or "cherryhogs" is to continue watching the dogs run to the 'pick up' or 'sough' (sgh) after the race finishes, as this will help identify the correct racing pace for all your future predictions!
Now enter Early, Middle, Finishing or All Round Pace.
Next Page: Racing Line