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Unravelling the speed-going relationship: A proof of concept study from British turf flat and jump race meetings

Hobbs, Sarah Jane and Tatlisulu, Altug and Johnson, Amy and Rowlands, Simon and Lucey, Mark and Martin, Jaime and Graydon, Robert and Northrop, Alison Unravelling the speed-going relationship: A proof of concept study from British turf flat and jump race meetings. [DataSet]


The maximum galloping speeds of racehorses during a race are influenced by the functional performance of the ground amongst other factors. For turf racecourses in Britain, the ground is descriptively classified and numerically quantified on the morning of a race meeting by the clerk of the course and subsequently published to assist decision making. Importantly, this includes deciding whether a horse should or should not run. The going is also assessed and classified during the meeting by racing analysts using the normalized winning times from each race result. Differences between official and performance going assessments are regularly reported, therefore this study aimed to evaluate whether an alternative method of measuring going could better predict going measured from performances. Measurement and performance data from 25 flat and 25 jump meetings were compared using linear and nonlinear models. The strongest predictors of performance going for all 25 meetings were for flat; cushioning (r2=0.705, P<0.001) and firmness (r2=0.726, P<0.001), and for jump; cushioning (r2 = 0.502, P<0.001). The strongest models were all nonlinear. As cushioning can be compared with the forces that the horse will experience at gallop, this measurement may be a useful addition to include when evaluating racecourse going on race day mornings. For flat racing, evidence from this study suggests that maximum galloping speeds reduce on firm going above a measured cushioning value of 11 kN. Beyond this, the model predicts that horses will slow down, possibly due to changes in limb contact timings to manage limb forces limits.

Research / Data Type: Dataset
DOI: 10.17030/uclan.data.00000453
Research Centres: Applied Sport, Physical Activity and Performance
Research Institutes: Institute for Behaviour, Sport and Rehabilitation (BSR)
Depositing User: Sarah Jane Hobbs
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2024 06:40
Revision: 17
URI: https://uclandata.uclan.ac.uk/id/eprint/453

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