Nearco

Are races getting faster?

39 posts in this topic

An academic who thinks I'm a bit obsessed with thoroughbreds has posed an interesting question:

'The Kenyan breaking the 2 hour marathon reminded me that recently someone I know said they had gone back and looked at the winning times of the Kentucky Derby and it appeared that there had been no increase in horses speed in 50 years (or so) perhaps even longer. Is this true in general.  I would think that improvements in nutritional knowledge and training regimes would have led to an increase in horses just as it has in humans?'

I found the times for the Kentucky Derby online, and produced a graph.  2019 is on the left, 1918 on the right. Quickest in modern times was Secretariat in 1973, 1.59.4  Slowest Sunday Silence in 1989 2.00.5  Weather & track conditions obviously have a bearing, but it would appear that over the past 60 years, times have only fluctuated by 5 seconds in a race of 2 minutes duration.

What is this telling us? Since the Thoroughbred is a closed stud book, we aren't introducing any new genes, just shaking the genetic dice.

Thoughts, please

image.png.c41abb568fb6c2c0bb3f4c281268a3a2.png

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21 minutes ago, Nearco said:

An academic who thinks I'm a bit obsessed with thoroughbreds has posed an interesting question:

'The Kenyan breaking the 2 hour marathon reminded me that recently someone I know said they had gone back and looked at the winning times of the Kentucky Derby and it appeared that there had been no increase in horses speed in 50 years (or so) perhaps even longer. Is this true in general.  I would think that improvements in nutritional knowledge and training regimes would have led to an increase in horses just as it has in humans?'

I found the times for the Kentucky Derby online, and produced a graph.  2019 is on the left, 1918 on the right. Quickest in modern times was Secretariat in 1973, 1.59.4  Slowest Sunday Silence in 1989 2.00.5  Weather & track conditions obviously have a bearing, but it would appear that over the past 60 years, times have only fluctuated by 5 seconds in a race of 2 minutes duration.

What is this telling us? Since the Thoroughbred is a closed stud book, we aren't introducing any new genes, just shaking the genetic dice.

Thoughts, please

image.png.c41abb568fb6c2c0bb3f4c281268a3a2.png

Improved drug detection has balanced out improved feed?

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I can remember Jack Glengarry, in one his articles , writing about this --probably 25+ years ago. Jack was a keen runner in his day and said while athletes were improving their times, horses were not just as the above states. Jack's opinion was that training methods were not changing --he said he had watched track work at Wanganui , as part of his job as a racing journalist, for 30 + yrs and nothing had changed. Methods may have changed since but I do not think times have improved much.

 

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Nearco, the Kenyan in question ran his marathon with the help of pacemakers that took him through the 2 hour barrier. The Japanese horses equally have pacemakers making the races a real speed test hence the 1.31 miles etc. Back in the 80s -90s  in NZ there were consistent sub 1.09 / 1.22 / 1.34 / 2.01  1200-2000m , Bonecrusher went under 1.59 and we saw 1.20 1400ms on numerous occasions, Diamond lover /Courier bay breaking 1.08 at Ellerslie,and of course kotare chief/ sea swift / Darias fun running around 3-15 for 3200....Not running as quick now one would say

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Good 3 is as firm as they like Blue, fast tracks didnt  seem to effect many, look at El Chico, loved the firmer tracks and raced through successfully to a rip old age, and broke 1.08 albeit on the straight courses on numerous occasions, not to mention 1.21 and 1.33 and 2 min up to 2000. Rare feat

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Agree and I've posted on this matter previously. Many of the national records, if you can find them, were set 30 years ago. As suggested, tracks are not allowed to get 'Hard and fast' these days but horses often raced much more in past decades. Grey Way had 151 starts and it was common to see horses surpassing 80 starts, so rather counter-intuitive to hard tracks hurting horses?

Still, if a horse can win without excessive speed, why would the connections risk it? Plus, with a closed shop of genetics, Frankel could be rated a 'Super' horse but his times don't look impressive. Track topography and conditions probably had a large effect on them and little changes in English racing. Also, there is no international standard for timing races - believe that races in U.S.A. start about 25 yards behind the official distance so the times are from a flying start. Still not much improvement over years.

Personally, I loved to watch Hero scorch tracks and saw him win at Otaki where he ran the others off their feet. Did similar in Mudgway Stakes (when it was Gr. 2) but ran too fast into the first turn there, in the 2,000 metres race of the Spring treble, and ran off the course! Looked last week and couldn't find a videotape of his wins but he caused some excitement at the races.

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watch videos of being on a horses back and you get an impression speed (or going fast) is racing, tempo and pace, to its endurance to win, accounts The Ability. 

The Human ideals of what is meant by fast, matched by the clock is perception only.

There is no doubt in my mind it is the quadrilateral action, bio-mechanics what has the edge. 

 

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On 10/15/2019 at 4:10 PM, Nearco said:

An academic who thinks I'm a bit obsessed with thoroughbreds has posed an interesting question:

'The Kenyan breaking the 2 hour marathon reminded me that recently someone I know said they had gone back and looked at the winning times of the Kentucky Derby and it appeared that there had been no increase in horses speed in 50 years (or so) perhaps even longer. Is this true in general.  I would think that improvements in nutritional knowledge and training regimes would have led to an increase in horses just as it has in humans?'

I found the times for the Kentucky Derby online, and produced a graph.  2019 is on the left, 1918 on the right. Quickest in modern times was Secretariat in 1973, 1.59.4  Slowest Sunday Silence in 1989 2.00.5  Weather & track conditions obviously have a bearing, but it would appear that over the past 60 years, times have only fluctuated by 5 seconds in a race of 2 minutes duration.

What is this telling us? Since the Thoroughbred is a closed stud book, we aren't introducing any new genes, just shaking the genetic dice.

Thoughts, please

image.png.c41abb568fb6c2c0bb3f4c281268a3a2.png

Can't believe that you think there is only 1.1 seconds between the fastest and slowest time and all those knowledgable ones commenting on post haven't picked up on it. The biggest improvements with horse speed has been harness mainly due to the huge improvement in track surfaces.

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17 minutes ago, Crow said:

Can't believe that you think there is only 1.1 seconds between the fastest and slowest time and all those knowledgable ones commenting on post haven't picked up on it. The biggest improvements with horse speed has been harness mainly due to the huge improvement in track surfaces.

We knew it was a decimal point issue Crow:rcfe-like:  I was at Alex park when Surmo way broke 2.40 for 2200  30 odd years ago at Alex park and the horse from memory was C8 rated, imagine the times that horse would be capable of given todays ‘improved ‘ track surfaces  :rcf-rich-1: Race Tempo is a major consideration, and we just dont see as many cutthroat races or the freegoing  types of yesteryear do we Crow? 

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Oops, yes, Sunday Silence's (slowish) time should have been 2.05. Bad proofreading on my part.

Visually, you can see that for the past 70 years, the trend line is flattish, Ie race times only improving by  1.7%.  Median time for all statistics is 2.03.0  and the average over the past 70 years is 2.02.3.

 

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9 minutes ago, Gruff said:

We knew it was a decimal point issue Crow:rcfe-like:  I was at Alex park when Surmo way broke 2.40 for 2200  30 odd years ago at Alex park and the horse from memory was C8 rated, imagine the times that horse would be capable of given todays ‘improved ‘ track surfaces  :rcf-rich-1: Race Tempo is a major consideration, and we just dont see as many cutthroat races or the freegoing  types of yesteryear do we Crow? 

Not a decimal 1.59.4 then 1.60.5 is actually 2 minutes .5 of a second. Was there the night Chokin broke 4 mins winning Auckland Cup think was first horse to do maybe mistaken?

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13 minutes ago, Nearco said:

Oops, yes, Sunday Silence's (slowish) time should have been 2.05. Bad proofreading on my part.

Visually, you can see that for the past 70 years, the trend line is flattish, Ie race times only improving by  1.7%.  Median time for all statistics is 2.03.0  and the average over the past 70 years is 2.02.3.

 

Yes 6 seconds or 36 lenghts

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59 minutes ago, Crow said:

Not a decimal 1.59.4 then 1.60.5 is actually 2 minutes .5 of a second. Was there the night Chokin broke 4 mins winning Auckland Cup think was first horse to do maybe mistaken?

Sorry Crow i was referring to the Two minutes five not Two minutes and 5/10... 2.05.0 /2.00.5 ... You may be right, were you there for that miracle mile :rcf-sad-3: 

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Races are getting faster if you consider ALL runners ,not just the winners.The average times have improved for all runners and blanket finishes are more common not so much because of handicapping but because the tracks,training,feeding,horse breeding are becoming more homogenised.The average times AND performances of frontrunners have improved  so that horses CANNOT win if they get too far out of their ground because the difference between the best and worst horse in any given race is less than it used to be ,a horse doesnt have to be the best to win but if it jumps and runs a reasonable time the best horse has no chance(winx excluded)

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1 hour ago, Nukkledragga said:

Races are getting faster if you consider ALL runners ,not just the winners.The average times have improved for all runners and blanket finishes are more common not so much because of handicapping but because the tracks,training,feeding,horse breeding are becoming more homogenised.The average times AND performances of frontrunners have improved  so that horses CANNOT win if they get too far out of their ground because the difference between the best and worst horse in any given race is less than it used to be ,a horse doesnt have to be the best to win but if it jumps and runs a reasonable time the best horse has no chance(winx excluded)

Are you in your 20s knuckles?

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56 minutes ago, Leggy said:

Are you referring to Nukkle's IQ Gruff?

Not at all:rcfe-happy-2: just seems he was never exposed to racing in the 80s/90s  to make such a statement, jocks now are quick to control tempo, and others seem loathe to make mid race moves like you see in the more competitive  Australian scene. Only an opinion

As far as IQ is concerned Some states in the US dont give the death  penalty to those with an Intelligence quotient lower than 70 which is considered, dear i say Retarded :rcf-sad-1:

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52 minutes ago, Leggy said:

Are you referring to Nukkle's IQ Gruff?

My argument has nothing to do with my IQ or lack of , what I am saying in plain english is that the WORST horses are faster now so that overall horses are indeed faster even though the winners times havent improved markedly,even someone with your obvious LACK of IQ points should understand that

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5 minutes ago, Nukkledragga said:

My argument has nothing to do with my IQ or lack of , what I am saying in plain english is that the WORST horses are faster now so that overall horses are indeed faster even though the winners times havent improved markedly,even someone with your obvious LACK of IQ points should understand that

So can you point us to some evidence of that Nukkle?

If I take the example race in the headpost, and look at the results from say the last 30 years, I don't see that. I actually find the opposite though only slightly.

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11 minutes ago, Gruff said:

Not at all:rcfe-happy-2: just seems he was never exposed to racing in the 80s/90s  to make such a statement, jocks now are quick to control tempo, and others seem loathe to make mid race moves like you see in the more competitive  Australian scene. Only an opinion

As far as IQ is concerned Some states in the US dont give the death  penalty to those with an Intelligence quotient lower than 70 which is considered, dear i say Retarded :rcf-sad-1:

You could go stateside and commit mass murder with impunity

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1 hour ago, Leggy said:

So can you point us to some evidence of that Nukkle?

If I take the example race in the headpost, and look at the results from say the last 30 years, I don't see that. I actually find the opposite though only slightly.

If you install the racing .com app you will be able to watch aussie races live às well as an archive of videos including a series by 'pro punter'Daniel O'sullivan who shows a raft of stats and graphs that illustrate this and many other points that are free for all(and therefore worth every cent) but he dispels MANY MYTHS with facts .

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4 minutes ago, Nukkledragga said:

If you install the racing .com app you will be able to watch aussie races live às well as an archive of videos including a series by 'pro punter'Daniel O'sullivan who shows a raft of stats and graphs that illustrate this and many other points that are free for all(and therefore worth every cent) but he dispels MANY MYTHS with facts .

Having been following Australian racing Nukkles, possibly the case but not in NZ :rcfe-like:

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