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Between March 2010 and April 2017, this blog recommended wagers on 520 individual races on Jump Racing in the UK, resulting in a PROFIT of £1,525.39 on cumulative stakes of £5,726 - this is equivalent to a Return On Investment of 26.60%.


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advising selections on which to wager, since March 2010.

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Lower the grade, higher the risk

One of the problems with weekday wagers on horseracing is that lower grades have a higher risk due to the imponderables of lower consistency of performance, inexperience, and lack of decent form-lines. Last week, I did quite well with my personal wagers (I usually have a small wager every day, more often than not it will be a place-only wager) and made a profit on 5 of the 6 days - I don't usually bet on a Sunday. This week, luck hasn't been going my way and on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I've lost, thankfully it has only been small amounts. 
Take yesterday as an example.
After reading the form on the train on the way into the office (I've given up taking the laptop on the train as the wifi and mobile signal from my phone is too weak and reception is sporadic - 5 years ago (before 4G) the signal was excellent - what's happened?) with the Racing Post paper coming into its own and the most technological tool used being my highlighter pen (orange), I narrowed down a few likely wagers. There were 2 place-only and one potential "win" wagers. The first to run was at Market Rasen in the 2m7f handicap hurdle at 1:00pm which was a Class 4 race and in the morning there were 12 runners with the early fav One Of Us the most likely winner as I could not find anything to oppose him with. As such, I was on the hunt for a place-only opportunity especially as the exchanges were offering a market for 4 places on the race. I decided MOIDORE had a decent chance of being in the 1st-4: only runner of trainer Charles Pogson who has a decent strike-rate at Market Rasen with hurdlers, the horse was a C&D winner and a winner over the trip on heavy ground after which he was rated OR134 in June 2016 and he'd spent much of 2017 running in Class 3 races. As a consequence, his rating had slipped to OR108 and after a break he'd run well over 2m7f on his return in November LTO.  I thought the race had little depth to it and when the early fav One Of Us was declared a non-runner I was really surprised that the odds on the horse "place-only" to 4-places was 3.10 or 2/1. Sure enough, the horse was going well being covered-up at the rear of the closely packed field, and looked untroubled by the pace of the race and, as they went into the final circuit, the in-running odds for a 1st-4 place went odds-on.  At that point, disaster struck, as the horse bundled-through the 8th flight (of the 11 to be jumped) and un-shipped his jockey! The way the race panned-out I have doubts that MOIDORE would have won, but I feel almost certain he'd have been in the 1st-4, if not the 1st-3, had he not made that jumping error. 
Just twenty minutes later, my 2nd wager of the day ran at Newbury, the Nicky Henderson trained PERCY STREET.  The horse had run 6th (off 22) in the Grade 3 "Fred Winter" Juvenile 2-mile handicap hurdle off OR124.  After a few disappointing runs he had dropped to OR115 and so was dropped into this Class 4 event.  I had taken the early 9/2 and was "sitting pretty" when the race started and the odds on PERCY STREET were 3/1. Unfortunately, the reason why he'd dropped to OR115 quickly became apparent as the horse looks to have lost interest in the game. 
By now I wasn't too happy, but was still hopeful of turning things around with my 3rd selection of the afternoon, which was again a "place-only" wager.  It was the 3:00pm at Newbury, a 2m7f Class 3 handicap chase with 10 runners, and I did not have a great deal of confidence in the markets leaders - Indy Five was having only his 2nd chase race, and Kimberlite Candy was only the fav as he was ridden by Barry Geraghty.  I had previously wagered on TWO SMOKIN BARRELS when he'd run 2nd at Lingfield over this trip in November, so I knew he stayed the trip if he was a bit one-paced.  I thought he was unlucky to fall at the 1st-fence when he last ran on Boxing Day so I thought he had an excellent chance of making the 1st-4 as (again) this race appeared to lack depth.  As the race turned-out, both the market leaders departed early-on, and my selection was going particularly well as they entered the final mile of the race.  TWO SMOKIN BARRELS actually led jumping the 2nd-last fence, but his lack of pace showed again, and he was unable to stay with the leading pair who went on to dispute the finish - but he did plug on to be 3rd, and saved my day.
It's a tricky day today, and of the meetings I prefer the racing at Ludlow to Wincanton.  It is interesting that Jonjo O'Neill puts his talented son, the 7lb claimer Jonjo O'Neill, on CHAMPAGNE AT TARA in the 3-mile handicap chase at 2:00pm.  I tipped this horse when he ran at the Cheltenham Festival last March over 2-mile, and he has a touch of class.  Whether he will stay this 3-mile trip is debateable but, if he does, he could go well. The obvious wager in this race is confirmed stayer and mud lover, Sego Success.  The Hunter-Chase at 3:10pm on the same card is between Mendip Express, who is a horse I've followed for the past couple of seasons, and Virak having his hunter-chase debut. If Virak is anywhere near his old form then he will surely win this race. However, the race for my "place-only" wager is the 3-mile handicap hurdle at 3:45pm and the horse that catches my eye is VINEGAR HILL. He is the only runner here from trainer Stuart Edmunds who doesn't send many to Ludlow.  He's won a couple of 3-mile hurdle races and has recently been chasing, but was pulled-up LTO (in the race in which Two Smokin Barrels fell at the 1st fence) after making a bad error.  At first I thought this was just a confidence building race but, at the ratings, I think the horse has a serious chance. He's currently at 3.80 (or 11/4) to be in the 1st-3 or, if you are feeling a little more risk averse, he's 2.60 (or 6/4) to be in the 1st-4.  I've taken the 3.80 to be in the 1st-3.

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