Sunday, 25 March 2012

Weekend Update

A fairly quiet weekend, after the comparative rush of selections seen from Wednesday to Friday, and despite some decent efforts unfortunately no returns for us win-only backers.

Let's start on Saturday where we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
4.05 Kelso Pyjama Game 1pt 8/1+ generally inc. 9/1 Coral

The second time we've had Pyjama Game as a selection this year, and another placed effort. Things looked promising as he closed on the leader but his run flattened out and he had to make do with third, after going off at 9/1. Safe to say it was fairly frustrating to see Scotswell, who came third for us last week, run out a pretty comfortable winner on his first start since.

On to today, and we had two:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
3.10 Hexham Bandanaman 1pt 7/1+generally inc.15/2 Bet365 8/1 Totesport
4.40 Hexham Oh Right 1pt 9/1+generally inc. 10/1 Stan James/Boyles 11/1 Bet365

Bandanaman went off at 11/2 and ran well enough for a good while, but the winner had skipped clear and a mistake at the last didn't help, and he faded out of the frame.

Oh Right put in a strong performance an hour and a half later, after going off at 8/1. He jumped the last in front, but was unfortunately hauled in by the favourite close to home, going down by less than two lengths.

Confirmation of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Saturday 24th March 2012

Pyjama Game, 3rd/13, 8/1 --- 8/1

Sunday 25th March 2012

Bandanaman, 4th/6, 15/2 --- 11/2
Oh Right, 2nd/9, 9/1 --- 8/1

Since our last winner on Tuesday we've had 41.2% get placed, which is of little comfort to those of us backing to win, but at least they've generally speaking been running ok. We've also been beating SP with an average of 7.76/1 advised price, to 6.74/1 SP.

Let's hope we get our compensation in the days ahead!

Friday, 23 March 2012


So on Tuesday night we were writing how things were turning for the better, and how it was "hopefully the start of a long overdue sweep back towards strongly building on earlier profits."

Well three days on and a reminder that there's no getting carried away in this game, with eleven points dropped. Clutching at positives, we've got the price with the majority of our selections, and most have been there pitching when the action got serious, but still, a highly frustrating three days. Tomorrow's another day and it can all change very quickly - and for the better.

Let's start yesterday where we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
3.00 Carlisle Prince Blackthorn 0.5pt 8/1+ generally inc. 17/2 Hills 9/1 Totesport
4.20 Chepstow Henry Hook 0.5pt 6/1 generally
4.20 Chepstow Timetoring 0.5pt 16/1+generally inc. 20/1 Hills/Lads
4.40 Carlisle Prince Of Dreams 1pt 9/2+generally inc. 5/1 Lads/Hills &others
5.05 Fontwell I've Been Framed 0.5pt 5/1+generally inc. 6/1 Coral&others 13/2 Totesport

Prince Blackthorn went off at 7/1, was held up and never able to get into it.

Henry Hook (5/1 SP) led and looked promising, touching just above evens in running, but when he was joined he had no answer, and he finished 7th. Timetoring was a candidate for our worst showing of the year, going off at 25/1 and never looking remotely in it.

Back at Carlisle and Prince Of Dreams was held up right at the back and made smooth progress to come to seemingly throw down a challenge, but he was never able to get close enough to the leader who had flown and in the end got out battled for second, finishing third, after starting at 5/1.

I've Been Framed was another to look promising for a while, but he was outpaced when things got serious and he could only finish third.

On to today and we had three, all relatively short priced (for us):

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.40 Newbury Amigayle 1pt 9/2+ generally inc. 5/1 Hills/Totesport&others
5.10 Sedgefield City Ground 1pt 5/1+generally inc. 11/2 Hills/Bet365/SportingBet
5.30 Newbury Magic Prospect 1pt 5/1+generally inc. 11/2 Hills/StanJames/SportingBet/Skybet

Amigayle jumped right at a few fences, and tried to win it from the front, but lost the lead four out, and lost second on the run-in, finishing third in the end (SP 7/1).

City Ground was strongly backed all the way into 2/1, and came with what looked a highly promising run before the tank emptied and the winner skipped clear.

Magic Prospect was hampered by fallers two out but it wouldn't have made any difference, with Charlie Mann's 5yo too one paced to get properly competitive, finishing third, after starting at 5/1.

Summary of Results with prices (advised --- SP):

22nd March 2012

Prince Blackthorn, 7th/9, 8/1 --- 7/1
Henry Hook, 7th/16, 6/1 --- 5/1
Timetoring, 16th/16, 20/1 --- 25/1
Prince Of Dreams, 3rd/8, 5/1 --- 5/1
I've Been Framed, 3rd/6, 6/1 --- 4/1

23rd March 2012

Amigayle, 3rd/12, 5/1 --- 7/1
City Ground, 3rd/5, 5/1 --- 2/1
Magic Prospect, 3rd/11, 11/2 --- 5/1

On we go and let's see what the weekend brings. Next update will likely be on Sunday night, let's hope we're celebrating a profit packed couple of days!

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

We've had better days!

A large contrast from yesterday, where we were 1 for 1, today we were 0/6. Ironically 1/7 is about what we expect (around 15% s/r) so these things will happen, but still, not pretty!

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)

2.10 Haydock Springfield Raki 0.5pt 7/1+generally inc. 8/1 Lads/Hills&others
3.30 Warwick Septos 1pt 11/2+generally inc. 6/1 Coral/Totesport&others
4.05 Warwick Ripoff 1pt 15/2+generally inc. 8/1 Bet365/Totesport&others
4.15 Hereford Take Of Shoc's 1pt 5/1+ generally inc. 11/2 BetVictor
4.25 Haydock You Know Yourself 0.5pt 7/1+ generally inc. 8/1 Bet365/Hills&others
5.15 Hereford Bathwick Junior 1pt 10/1+generally inc. 11/1 Coral/Totesport 12/1 Lads/Hills

Springfield Raki went off at 15/2 and ran well for a long way, and was bang there as they turned for home, but faded out of things into fourth.

Septos was well backed into 3/1jf but put in a very flat performance; staying on at the end but long after the winner had got away from them.

Ripoff started at 8/1 and travelled ok for a decent portion of the race but ran out of steam and was well beaten.

Take Of Shoc's went off at 9/2 and had a lot of his opponents on the stretch as he set a strong pace. The tactics worked to a large degree, with just one opponent able to grit it out with him, with Cruise In Style, stealing a few possibly crucial yards on the inside as they turned for home. Despite rallying close home, Rebecca Curtis' 8yo went down by less than a length.

You Know Yourself started at 5/1 and was up there and mixing it with them until fading some way from home.

So it was left to Bathwick Junior to see if our day could be rescued, after going off a well supported 4/1 (although the price also brought down by by two non-runners during the day), and again we watched as a selection raced prominently before tiring near the end, although John Flint's 5yo did stay on into third.

Confirmation of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Springfield Raki, 4th/7, 8/1 --- 15/2
Septos, 3rd/6, 6/1 --- 3/1
Ripoff, 7th/9, 8/1 --- 8/1
Take Of Shoc's, 2nd/8, 5/1 --- 9/2
You Know Yourself, 6th/8, 8/1 --- 5/1
Bathwick Junior, 3rd/10, 12/1 --- 4/1

So we brush ourselves off and look forward to tomorrow!

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Super Saffron

First of all, we had no selections yesterday.

We put up today's selection, Sea Saffron, earlier in the month, and he was well out of touch before staying on strongly towards the end to almost snatch third. Today we had him again:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)

5.00 Exeter Sea Saffron 1pt 8/1 + generally inc. 9/1 Hills/Totesport 10/1 Bet365/Coral

Today's race was over a furlong and a half further, and Susan Gardner's 11yo was well supported to record his first win over hurdles. Always travelling nicely, he moved up to join the leader with three left to jump and soon had the race in safe keeping. He was heavily eased on the run-in and just for a moment it looked like Matt Griffiths had been a tad too calm, but he got there by half a length, and value for a good deal further.

Confirmation of result with prices (advised --- SP):

Sea Saffron, 1st/8, 8/1 --- 13/2

So a good winner, which leaves us 11.81pts up for the year so far. From our last 77 selections, we are +27.75pts (ROI +42.49%), which is a good upturn and hopefully the start of a long overdue sweep back towards strongly building on earlier profits.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Weekend update

Not a good weekend, with 4.5pts dropped.

We'll start yesterday where we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.00 Newcastle Scotswell 1pt 8/1+generally inc. 9/1 Totesport/Betfred maybe some 10/1 BetVictor
4.15 Newcastle I Witness 1pt 9/1+generally inc. 10/1 Boylesports/Stan James/SportingBet
5.00 Uttoxeter Bring On The Judge 1pt 9/2+generally inc. 5/1 Lads/Bet365&others
5.20 Newcastle Glaced Over 0.5pt 10/1+generally inc. 12/1 Bet365&others 14/1 Totesport/Betfred/Stan James

Scotswell was prominent but got left behind as the action heated up but stayed on into third, after going off at 8/1.

I Witness, opened on course at 11/1 but was backed again, into an SP of 9/1, led for a long while but also couldn't quite go with them when the principles took the race by the scruff of the neck, and finished 5th.

Bring On The Judge went off at 4/1 and was going along well enough before appearing to stumble in running and wasn't right afterwards.

Glaced Over ran no sort of race after going off at 16/1.

And then today we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
1.45 Newton Abbot She's On The Case 1pt 9/1+generally inc. 10/1 Coral/Totesport/Bet365 &others 11/1 Paddy Power

Who ran poorly, pushed along all too early and getting pulled up, after starting at 9/1.

Summary of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Saturday March 17th 2012

Scotswell, 3rd/10, 8/1 --- 8/1
I Witness, 5th/16, 9/1 --- 9/1
Bring On The Judge, PU/10, 9/2 -- 4/1
Glaced Over, PU/17, 12/1 --- 16/1

Sunday March 18th 2012

She's On The Case, PU/15, 10/1 --- 9/1

March's in profit, but we'll certainly be hoping we can really push on and end it strongly.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Not so Lucky William

Just the one selection to finish off the festival, in the very last race.

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
5.15 Cheltenham Lucky William 0.5pt 16/1 generally

Lucky William went off a 14/1 chance and was in midfield, when he blundered and unseated his rider at the 8th fence, so we'll never know if we were going to end Cheltenham 2012 on a high! Safe to say he would have had to have performed a terrific display to finish in front of the Nicky Henderson combo who finished 1-2, well ahead of third.

Summary of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Lucky William, UR/21, 16/1 --- 14/1

It was a shame to see Kauto Star pulled up today, but at least he's healthy and can now surely look forward to a long and happy retirement. In terms of our Cheltenham competition, he was a popular choice among those members who entered, as was Long Run of course. Syncronised had a few supporters, one of whom has won first prize, and the £50 Amazon voucher, with AOC coming with a late charge to nab Supreme Novice and Frannie on the line! The other two named share second place, so congratulations also to them, £25 Amazon vouchers each coming their way.

Cheltenham Festival Betting Market Analysis Day Four

Here's our analysis of today's betting markets so far. Again, not designed as tips as such but perhaps some useful pointers ahead of the final day of action! All the best for a great day.

1.30 JCB Triump Hurdle

Baby Mix is solid at the front of the market at 6/1, while most of the other principles are easy to back. The exception is Balder Success, with 8/1 the best price available about Alan King’s unbeaten 4yo. Elsewhere, with the layers pushing many horses out in price a little, the price for Darroun at 12/1, is stable.

2.05 Vincent O’Brien County Handicap Hurdle

The field down to 27 with Master of Arts a non-runner, and there is a lot of support for most of the fancied contenders, in particular Citizenship with Coral and Totesport among the firms to shorten from 8/1 into 6/1. There is still the odd bit of 7/1 available at the time of writing. Pricewise selection Olofi is another being supported, into a best priced 9/1, while Raya Star, Snap Tie and Magnifique Etoile are others being backed, and are best priced 10/1, 14/1 and 16/1 respectively. One of the reasons for these shortening is the opposition to Moon Dice, who is on a significant drift. Generally a 9/1 chance first thing, Paul Flynn’s 7yo is now as big as 14/1. At bigger prices, virtually all are easy to back with Sailors Warn and Desert Cry the two whose prices are holding up best.

2.40 Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle

Boston Bob is a very solid favourite, with the Irish raider shortening with a few firms and a best priced 11/8. Elsewhere, Brindisi Brreze is being nibbled at in places and a best priced 10/1, while Sivola De Sivola is another being supported, with 20/1 available in a just a handful of places after being as big as 25/1 with Hills this morning.

3.20 Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase

There can’t be many people in racing who wouldn’t love to see Kauto Star regain the crown, whether they’ve got money on him or not, but he is very easy to back so far, out to as big as 5/1 with a couple of firms. Long Run is also weak in the betting, and a general 2/1 chance now. Pricewise selection Synchronised has seen lots of support, over and above what we would even expect Tom Segal and a Non-Runner (Quel Esprit) would do to the markets, and is now a best priced 9/1 chance. Burton Port is also being nicely backed, and is a best priced 7/1. At bigger prices, Diamond Harry is the one of most interest from a market perspective, with 28/1 about Nick Williams’ 9yo the best price in most places.

4.00 Christie’s Foxhunter Chase

A fairly quiet day so far in the markets here, with Salsify (best priced 6/1) the one with the most widespread support. Elsewhere little bits of interest for Merchant Royal (14/1).

4.40 Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys Handicap Hurdle

Notable support for Bourne in the face of two Pricewise selections, with any 11/2 or 6/1 around the morning now long gone for Donald McCain’s 6yo (best priced 5/1). PW pair Toner D’Oudairies and Grandad’s Horse have both shortened in price with the later attracting the most eye-catching support of the two of them. They’re best priced 7/1 and 16/1 from 8/1 and 25/1 generally. At bigger prices, many are on the drift with quite a few firms, with the excpetion being Tim Vaughan’s Ski Sunday, 2nd in the 2009 Fred Winter, and beaten six lengths in the County Hurdle last year from a higher mark and a best priced 40/1, and Bocciani, who is generally a 33/1 chance.

5.15 Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase Challenge Cup

A pretty brutal getting-out stakes, with 21 going to post for this handicap chase over the minimum trip. PW pick Slieveardagh has been nicely backed into a best priced 11/1, but of potentially more interest from a market perspective is Lucky William, who has been well supported on his handicap debut, into a best priced 16/1 after being as big as 22/1 in places this morning. Elsewhere Kid Cassidy is pretty solid at the front of the market, while Tara Royal has been nibbled at in a place or two.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Not today, and Interview link

A disappointing day after yesterday's success, with Buena Vista not justifying notable support at Cheltenham, and our other today failing to do the business at Hexham.

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.05 Chelt Buena Vista 0.5 pt 8-1+ generally, inc 9-1 PP, B365
4.15 Hex Hathamore 1pt 13-2+ generally, inc 7-1 BetV, Lads, PP, 8-1 Tote

Buena Vista, going for a Pertemps hat-trick was nicely supported into 7/1 but after being challenged for the lead for a good while, sadly folded tamely away some way from home.

At Hexham, Hathamore's run looked quite promising for a good while, leading for much of the contest, before fading towards the end to be well beaten, after going off at 9/1.

Summary of Results with prices (advised --- SP):

Buena Vista, 13th/24, 9/1 --- 7/1
Hathamore, 8th/13, 7/1 --- 9/1

So it's Gold Cup day tomorrow, and what a race it promises to be. Long Run's a fine horse but we've got to cheer on Kauto to regain his crown. What a win it would be!

Finally, a plug for an interview carried out recently about the service - Hope you find it interesting!

Cheltenham Festival Betting Market Analysis Day Three

Some very significant pointers yesterday in the markets, and here is our analysis for Day Three.

1.30 Jewson Novices' Chase

Donald McCain's fantastic Cheltenham means Peddlers Cross is being well backed, with the early 7-2 all gone except at Bet365 (at the time of writing). 100-30 is still quite widely available but he's already been cut to 3-1 in several places. There's also some interest in Zaynar, backed from a best priced 28-1 into as low as 16s (Hills) but still 20s in several places.

2.05 Pertemps Final (Handicap Hurdle)

The Pricewise pair of Sargent Guib's (9-1) and Pineau De Re (now best priced 16-1) are both well supported, with the latter in from an early 22-1 with Hills but possibly of more interested is the support for David Pipe's Beaua Vista , who is looking to follow up after winning the race for the last two years. 12-1 has been the biggest price about him but at the time of writing, 9-1 is the best available. Considering the horse was also second in this race three years ago, he is of obvious interest with 10lb claimer Tom Bellamy aboard. Interestingly, JP McManus only bought Catch Me in the last month or so but he has not yet steamed in and the horse has drifted slightly to a general 12-1 so we wait to see if there is a late plunge.

2.40 Ryan Air Chase
Riverside Theatre has been nibbled at but 5-1 has held up in a couple of places. Captain Chris is the only other one attracting notable support, into as low as 9-1 with those firms who went 12s early on.

3.20 Ladbrokes World Hurdle
A fairly lacklustre market early on, with Big Buck's drifting slightly as the big backers become wary of a third champion being turned over in as many days. 8-11 is the best available, which was unheard of a few days ago. Pricewise's choice of Thousand Stars is a best priced 9-1 at the moment, with Coral taking the early hits from their 12-1 and they have run for cover with the industry lowest of 15-2. Voler La Vadette has also shortened in places as punters seek out the each way value.

4.00 Byrne Group Plate (Handicap Chase)

A lively market for this very competitive handicap, with Crack Away Jack attracting a good degree of interest, in a point to a best priced 6-1. Hector's Choice (Pricewise) also being backed as per usual, with The Cockney Mackem another one showing up in the charts, into 16-1 from 20s and some support for Glam Gerry and Gilbarry, of Jonjo O'Neill's, at bigger prices.

4.40 Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase

Pricewise has put up Sunnyhillboy and he is now 7-1 market leader but lower down the list Summery Justice is being well supported to give Venetia Williams her first winner at this year's festival. She has been in good form of late and the move for her's developed quite late in the morning and across the card so worth keeping an eye on.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Gamble Landed

A monster gamble landed today with Son Of Flicka doing the business in grand style in the Coral Cup, our only selection today.

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
4.00 Cheltenham Son Of Flicka 0.25pt EW (total stake 0.5pt) 20/1+generally inc. 22/1 Hills 25/1 Bet365 (pays five places)

Going off a 16/1 chance, Donald McCain's 8yo was always in touch and when asked to go and win his race approaching the last had plenty left in the tank to power up the hill and win by more than three lengths, a fabulous sight. He was as big as 66/1 in a place or two this morning and there's no question that serious amounts of money was down to move the price so much in such a competitive market. From our point of view it was frustrating that we didn't stake more aggressively, but we felt in a 28 runner race it was prudent, on this rare occasion, to go each-way. Hindsight is a wonderful and thing of course, and we mustn't grumble too much, still a great result, and the 25/1 with Bet365 also held for ten minutes too (just) so we can settle at that price, for a decent 7.81pts of profit. Well done to all connections and to Jason Maguire for a great ride.

Our condolences too of course to those involved with Featherbed Lane, who won for us last November, and Abergavenny. A result tinged with sadness.

Summary of results with prices (advised ---SP):

Son Of Flicka, 1st/28, 25/1 --- 16/1

A good couple of days and we'll be doing our best to keep it going tomorrow.

Cheltenham Day Two Market Analysis

What follows is market analysis released to members earlier, not designed as tips, but a short, and hopefully interesting, commentary of some of the main moves of Cheltenham on Day two so far.

1.30 Diamond Jubilee National Hunt Chase (Amateur Riders)

There has been very notable support about for Teaforthree, with Rebecca Curtis’ 8yo backed from a best price 7/1 this morning into around 11/2, 6/1 in places. It is all the more interesting given there is a Pricewise selection in the race, Soll, who has naturally also been clipped in with a few firms, although not spectacularly. He is now a best priced 7/1. Elsewhere there is a little bit of support around for Blenheim Brook, a best priced 20/1 chance.

2.05 Neptune Investment Management Novices Hurdle

Batonnier being a non-runner just after 9am confuses the picture here a little (ironically a PW ante-post selection), but still there are a few attracting notable support. Monksland has seen a lot of interest and is now best priced 9/2, while Cotton Mill is another being backed to keep up a winning run, and is now a best priced 9/1 after 14/1 was available for times this morning. Sous Les Cieux has also seen a fair bit of support, while at bigger prices Secret Edge has been backed into a best-priced 33/1. Favourite Simonsig was fairly stable in the markets earlier on but lengthening with a few firms now and is a best priced 3/1 at the time of writing.

2.40 RSA Chase

All about Grands Crus, and he is very solid at the front of the market with any 6/4 that was about this morning now gone, with the 7yo 11/8 for David Pipe to justify the decision to skip the Gold Cup (although there will be many wondering what might have been of course if he hacks up). Elsewhere barely any support for anything else at present, with First Lieutenantthe runner whose price is holding up best in the face of Grands Crus support.

3.20 Queen Mother Champion Chase

Sizing Europe is solid, and a best priced 10/11 at the moment. He’s been shortened with firms including Hills, Coral and Ladbrokes and any even money around that was available shortly here and there this morning has vanished. Realt Dubh for Noel Meade is being quite nicely nibbled at elsewhere, and is now a best-priced 20/1 from 25/1 this morning in places.

4.00 Coral Cup
Unsurprisingly Pricewise picks Get Me Out Of Here and Silverhand are among the horses who have shortened this morning, and are now a best priced 8/1 and 18/1 respectively (from 10/1 and 25/1). More interestingly perhaps is the level of support around for Son of Flicka.Beaten half a length in the Martin Pipe race last year off a higher mark, he was as big as 40/1 first thing this morning, but now is around half that price if not shorter. Elsewhere, being gently nibbled at, are Act of Kalanisi, Tenor Nivernais and First Fandango, and are best priced 18/1, 33/1 and 33/1 respectively.

4.40 Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle

Gorgeous Sixty is about the most strongly supported Pricewise horse from a market perspective so far today, and is now an 8/1 general chance, after being as big as 14/1 yesterday, and there is little movement elsewhere to take much interest in, apart fromKazlian who has shortened with half a dozen firms including Ladbrokes and Bet365, and is a best priced 8/1, and a little bit of support around for Jackies Solitaire, now a best priced 22/1 chance after some 25/1 was around earlier.

5.15 Weatherbys Champion Bumper

A fascinating market here with a few of interest from a betting perspective. New Years Eveis solid at the head of affairs and a best priced 11/2. Elsewhere the main contenders being backed are Sir Johnson, with 11/1 generally about the best price available at the moment, and Horatio Hornblower who is a best priced 14/1 chance. The New One (12/1)is solid and has been trimmed in a couple of places while Village Vic has also seen some interest and is a best priced 14/1 shot.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Not just Cheltenham today..

So, day one of Cheltenham in the books. What a story Hunt Ball is, absolutely fabulous. Some great action throughout and plenty more to look forward to tomorrow. Most of our attention from an investing perspective was arrowed towards Sedgefield today, and we came out nicely up because of that.

Let's start our latest round up from yesterday, where we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.10 Stratford Early Applause 0.5pt 7/1+generally inc. 8/1 Boylesports/Betfred
5.00 Plumpton Ballyvoneen 1pt 8/1+generally inc. 9/1 Lads&others 10/1 Bet365/Totesport&others

Early Applause went off at 13/2, and was quite warmly supported. Held up at the back, he pulled too hard for his own good, but was making good progress until a bad mistake three out which really knocked his momentum. He tried to come again, and did stay on to not actually be beaten that far in the end and may just be one to keep an eye out for.

Ballyvoneen went off a well backed 5/1 and traded quite low in running for much of the contest, going odds on at stages, but was infuriatingly a bit outpaced as they turned for home, only for him to stay on again at the end going down in second by a couple of lengths. Two other principles in the betting market had earlier fallen and it looked a good opportunity, but wasn't quite to be.

On to today, and we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.55 Sedgefield Dr Flynn 1pt 5/1+generally inc. 11/2 Bet365/Totesport/BetVictor&others 6/1 SportingBet
4.00 Cheltenham Dancing Tornado 0.5pt 14/1+generally inc. 16/1 Bet365/Boylesports
4.15 Sedgefield Teerie Express 1pt 11/2+generally inc. 6/1 Lads 13/2 Bluesq 7/1 SportingBet

Dr Flynn was nicely supported down to 10/3 at the off, and was given a superbly positive ride, to lead from pillar to post. Great stuff.

At Cheltenham, Dancing Tornado was held up out the back in a very patient ride in the cross country, but unseated his rider some way from home. We were sad to hear of the deaths of Scotsirish and Garde Champetre in the race, and our condolences are with connections.

Back at Sedgefield, and Teerie Express ran in snatches a little, but was still there two out with a chance, before fading late on.

Summary of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Monday March 12th 2012:

Early Applause, 6th/10, 7/1 --- 6/1
Ballyvoneen, 2nd/8, 8/1 --- 5/1

Tuesday March 13th 2012:

Dr Flynn, 1st/7, 11/2 --- 100/30
Dancing Tornado, UR/16, 16/1 --- 11/1
Teerie Expres, 5th/8, 6/1 --- 5/1

So it's Champion Chase day tomorrow and plenty to look forward to. Quite an interesting card at Huntingdon too, and we'll be looking closely to see if the layers have taken their eye off the ball anywhere and being taken advantage of!

Monday, 12 March 2012

Cheltenham Festival Betting Market Analysis

What follows is an article we wrote for a Secret Betting Club "Cheltenham 2012 Tips Profit Pack" - which is available via a free download here -

It is an extension of some work we did last year, looking at betting moves in the ring ahead of the races at the Cheltenham Festival, we hope you find it interesting:


Much is made of betting market moves in the last few minutes before each race during the Festival. The Cheltenham “jungle” can be an intense battle ground where backers and layers clash in a desperate attempt to win out, where fortunes can be won and lost. Of course these days it’s all backed up on the exchanges, where tens of millions of pounds will be matched over the four glorious days.

But what about these pre-race plunges, the type which Big Mac and Tanya will revel in during Festival week on Chanel 4, are they actually worth taking notice of? What would happen if you backed at SP every horse which shortens from opening show ?

We at The Market Examiner specialise in looking at the early market moves on any given day’s racing, and have turned nearly 300pts of profit since January 1st 2010 (ROI +17%). Part of the reason for our success is our ability to, on average, beat SP with our morning selections. This crucial edge, the value in our punting, is all important in our quest for profits.

So with this in mind, to mark the success of market moves in purely results by SP is slightly unfair. Let’s first see how they perform compared to relative numbers.

Of the 232 Cheltenham Festival races, from 2002-2011, 889 horses shortened in price in the last few minutes before a race. This is 20.15% of the total horses that raced. Importantly, 30.6% of races were won by horses whose odds had shortened (71 in total). That shows that horses whose odds have shortened have won more than 10% more than the races than they should have been entitled.

But what does all this mean in terms of profits, and can we make the most of this interesting statistic?

The bottom line is, that if were to back blindly every horse whose odds shortened at the Festival at SP, we would be staring at a heavy loss. To be precise, -261.55pts, or -29.42% Return on Investment. There would be plenty of other systems which would return worse than -29.42% ROI during the Festival four days, but still, this, naturally isn’t ideal.

What about looking in more detail at race types?

If you were to just follow the moves in handicaps – you would be looking at -75.5pts (-18.33%ROI), whereas, if you were backing them in non-handicaps, the results are more painful: -186.05pts (-39% ROI).

So handicaps look more worthy of attention.. We’ve drilled down into the data and found two areas which may continue to be profitable going forward.

Interestingly, horses starting at 14/1 or shorter in all handicap chases – who have shortened up on course, have a much better record than those starting at 14/1 or shorter in all handicap hurdles:

Shortening horses starting at 14/1 or lower in Handicap Chases:

Selections: 135

Wins: 19

Strike Rate: 14.07%

Total Profit: +17.5pts (+12.96%ROI)

Shortening horses starting at 14/1 or lower in Handicap Hurdles:

Selections: 113

Wins: 8

Strike Rate: 7.08%

Total Profit: -37pts (-32.74%ROI)

That’s quite something, supported horses at the front of the market in handicap chases outperform their hurdle counterparts by nearly double. Clearly the cavalry charges of races like the County Hurdle are more prone to big priced upsets. So can we take advantage of this?

Shortening horses starting at 16/1 or higher in Handicap Chases:

Selections: 81

Wins: 0

Strike Rate: 0%

Total Profit: -81pts (-100%ROI)

Shortening horses starting at 16/1 or higher in Handicap Hurdles:

Selections: 83

Wins: 4

Strike Rate: 4.82%

Total Profit: +25pts (+30.12%)

A pretty brutal return for “fancied” big priced handicap chase selections, although there were five second placed finishes up at up to 50/1. It’s not a high strike rate among the hurdle selections, but at an average price of more than 28/1, it doesn’t need to be.

So in conclusion, we can say it could be worth looking twice at fancied runners continuing to be backed in the handicap chases events. And what about that unexposed type in the Coral Cup that’s been nibbled from 66/1 to 50/1 – maybe today’s the day..

Looking elsewhere, we thought it would also be interesting to look at the results of those horses which have gone off shorter than even money – and have contracted in price in the minutes before the off.

How have these “Festival Bankers” done over the last ten years?

Surprisingly poorly the answer.

Selections: 8

Wins: 2

Strike Rate: 25%

Total Profit: -4.26pts (-53.25%ROI).

So if Hurricane Fly hardens up from 10/11 on course into 4/5 in this year’s Champion Hurdle – that isn’t a signal that free money’s up for grabs. High profile defeats include Dunguib in the 2010 Supreme Novice Hurdle (4/5SP), Kauto Star in the 2008 Gold Cup (10/11) and Voy Por Ustedes in the 2009 Ryanair Chase (4/5).

Widening it out to include those horses trading at even money up to just shy of 2/1, here are the stats:

Selections: 32

Wins: 12:

Strike Rate: 37.5%

Total Profit: -3.55pts (-11.09%ROI)

An improved strike rate, but still not the gravy train of success we may hope for.

Of course – if we have already backed those 32 likely contenders at 2/1 or bigger, then we’re looking at a different story. Suddenly we’d have a profitable line and market confidence can only be good news.

In summary, market support is a key indicator to success during the four days of Cheltenham, and it could well pay to follow money right down to SP in the Handicap Chases, as long as the horse goes off at 14/1 or lower. Maybe it’d be wise to wait until the last few minutes of such puzzles as the Grand Annual before making a selection or two..


Finally, here's a (non-affiliate) link to a website run by one of our subscribers, which usefully lists all the offers the bookies are running for Cheltenham, which may of interest too -

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Cheltenham Competition

As mentioned on Twitter last night, we're running a small free to enter Cheltenham competition for our subscribers.

Basically we're asking members to chose their "banker", and their "wildcard" for the big race on each of the days during the Festival. We've got a points system worked out, and £100 in Amazon gift vouchers as prizes.

Just thought it might be fun, and it seems to have gone down well, so good luck to all who enter!

On to today where he had one selection, which didn't set the world alight, to put it mildly.

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1/pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
4.40 Warwick Shipboard Romance 1pt 5/1+generally inc. 11/2 Lads

Pushed along all too early, he never looked like getting competitive, finishing last, after going off a pretty easy to back 8/1.

Summary of result with prices (advised --- SP):

Shipboard Romance, 10th/10, 5/1 --- 8/1

Three NH meetings tomorrow to warm us up for Cheltenham and hopefully a nice pre-Cheltenham plot or two has been hatched that we can take advantage of!

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Dover's delight

A good winner today, as the racing world prepares for Cheltenham.

Not so good yesterday, and that's where we'll start with our latest round-up.

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
3.10 Wincanton Might As Well 0.5pt 8/1+generally
4.20 Wincanton Yellow Printer 1pt 10/1+generally inc. 11/1 Hills 12/1 Totesport
5.40 Ayr Desertmore Star 1pt 8/1+generally inc. 10/1 Lads/Bet365/Totesport

Might as Well ran pretty well for a long time, and was still bang there as they turned for home, but a mistake at the last didn't help and he had to make do with third, after starting at 13/2.

Yellow Printer (SP 6/1) was another who ran ok, after being heavily supported earlier in the day. He still held every chance with two left to jump but couldn't quite see the race out and had to make do with third.

Desertmore Star waved the white flag all too early, after starting at 8/1, and blundered his way out of contention in the end.

Today we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.40 Sandown Dover's Hill 0.5pt 7/1 generally 8/1 Skybet/SportingBet
2.50 Ayr Crop Walker 1pt 6/1+generally inc. 13/2 Hills/Bet365BetVictor 7/1 Boylesports

Dover's Hill was a very gutsy winner. He led, jumping really well and surged clear after the second last fence but looked to be there for the taking as Ballyfoy came with a strong challenge. But Mary Hambro's 10yo battled all the way to the line and got there by a neck, after going off at 8/1.

Crop Walker (13/2) ultimately was disappointing after travelling well enough for a while.

Summary of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Friday March 9th 2012

Might As Well, 3rd/6, 8/1 --- 13/2
Yellow Printer, 3rd/8, 10/1 --- 6/1
Desertmore Star, 7th/11, 10/1 --- 8/1

Saturday March 10th 2012

Dover's Hill, 1st/10, 7/1 --- 8/1
Crop Walker, 6th/7, 13/2 --- 13/2

Nice to have a good day today, and we'll hopefully follow up tomorrow as we build up to that roar at 1.30 on Tuesday..!

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Quiet couple of days

Not much to report from the last couple of days, just the one selection yesterday, and none today.

Yesterday we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
4.30 Font Sea Saffron 1pt 6/1+ generally inc.8-1 Tote, 7-1 BetVC,Boyle, 13-2 WHill, P Power

Sea Saffron was outpaced early on and was well behind, before staying on at the end to almost snatch third, after going off at 5/1.

Summary of Results with prices (advised --- SP):

Wednesday 7th March 2012:

Sea Saffron, 4th/12, 7/1 --- 5/1

On to tomorrow!

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Tuesday update

A poor day. We can look at a couple of selections and wonder what may have been but ultimately 2.5pts down and we'll look for better tomorrow.

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)

2.50 Newcastle Battle Honour 0.5pt 10/1+generally inc. 12/1 Lads/Skybet 14/1 Coral
3.00 Exeter Taffy Thomas 0.5pt 14/1+generally inc. 16/1 Lads&others 20/1 Totesport
4.50 Newcastle Safari Adventures 0.5pt 8/1 generally
5.00 Exeter Homer Run 1pt 5/1+generally inc. 6/1 Lads/Hills/Totesport&others

Battle Honour went off 10/1, was rousted along all too early and finished well back.

Much better from Taffy Thomas (SP 14/1), who gave us a good run for our money at big prices. Travelling nicely for a good while he was given a big bump and squeeze as he tried to mount a challenge before the last hurdle, effectively ending any chance, finishing fourth, beaten about six lengths in the end.

Likewise Safari Adventures was having a good time of it out the front after going off at 7/1, but was badly bumped five out by the eventual runner up which led to landing virtually sideways, causing him to lose all momentum and he was soon out of it. Was a long way from home, but he was travelling nicely enough and might be one to keep half an eye out for.

Homer Run stayed on to close on the leaders, but was never going to get there, finishing third, after starting at 9/2.

Summary of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Battle Honour, 9th/11, 12/1 --- 10/1
Taffy Thomas, 4th/13, 16/1 --- 14/1
Safari Adventures, 5th/6, 8/1 --- 7/1
Homer Run, 3rd/8, 6/1 --- 9/2

On to tomorrow!

Monday, 5 March 2012

One of those days

One of those days today! Two selections, and once the first one was beaten a short-head we just kind of knew it wasn't going to go for us.

We had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.45 Hereford Presented 0.5pt 6/1+generally inc. 13/2 Totesport 7/1 Coral/PaddyPower 8/1 Boylesports


3.45 Hereford Romanesco 1pt 11/1+generally inc. 12/1 Lads/Bet365&others 16/1 Totesport/SkyBet

Presented was well backed into 4/1 and ran well. Always prominent he was coaxed a long for a while, but kept responding and was still going pretty well when he was headed going over the last hurdle. He stayed on all the way to the line and just failed, going down in a photo, well clear of third.

Romanesco was backed into around 8/1 but went on an alarming drift in the hour before the race, at one point more than doubling in price in the space of a few minutes. We have had drifters like this run ok before, but normally it's a bad sign, and so it proved today with Alison Thorpe's 7yo prominent for a while and seemingly running well enough before suddenly toiling and allowed to coast home in his own time. He started at 28/1.

Summary of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Presented, 2nd/12, 13/2 --- 4/1
Romanesco, 10th/12, 12/1 --- 28/1

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Good weekend

A good weekend, with one winner from our two selections, thanks to a terrific performance from Handy Andy yesterday, showing a lot of determination and quality to win by a length at Newbury.

Let's start there - we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
4.20 Newbury Handy Andy 1pt 7/1+generally inc. 8/1 Lads/Bet365/Coral/Boylesports/Stan James

Handy Andy was returning to the scene of a C&D triumph last year, after dropping down the weights following some poor performances. Always prominent, he still had enough in tank after pinging the last to get up to deny the joint-favourite Tickatack, after starting at 6/1. A great ride by Joe Tizzard for his dad and a really enjoyable win.

Today we had a couple of selections, though one was a non-runner:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
3.10 Huntingdon Layla's Boy 0.5pt 10/1 generally
4.50 Sedgefield Darkan Road 1pt 8/1+generally inc. 9/1 Lads/Hills/Coral

Not a lot to report here really.

Layla's Boy was a non-runner.

Darkan Road was disappointing, ridden all too early and never really travelling, he ended up being pulled up. Perhaps the ground didn't help, but whatever, it was an altogether poor effort, after starting at 11/1.

Summary of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Saturday 3rd March 2012:

Handy Andy, 1st/15, 8/1 --- 6/1

Sunday 4th March 2012:

Layla's Boy NR
Darkan Road, PU/11, 9/1 --- 11/1

So March springs into profit. Let's hope we can keep it there and really push on.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Low key Friday

Just the one selection today, a small bet on the well supported Marodima at Newbury.

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
2.55 Newbury Marodima 0.5pt 4/1+generally inc. 9/2 BetVictor/Boylesports/Skybet/SportingBet

It was pleasing to see Jamie Snowden's 9yo backed into 11/4 at the off, and as usual he set off in the lead. His jockey made sure he didn't race off too quickly, and he was allowed to have a narrow advantage for much of the way, until three out, when he was joined and quickly passed. He ran his race, but wasn't good enough on the day.

Confirmation of result with prices (advised --- SP):

Marodima, 3rd/6, 9/2 --- 11/4

So the weekend's upon us. The next result update's likely to be Sunday night, have a good one!

February Analysis

Time to have a look back at February, which was of course severely hit by abandonments in the first part of the month. The number of lost days contributed to our lowest number of bets in a month since the seriously weather-smashed month of December 2010.

Let's have a look at the numbers:

Bets: 38
Wins: 5 (13.51%)
2nds: 9 (24.32%)
3rds: 3* (7.89%)
Placed total: 17 (44.74%)
Average odds taken: 7.83/1
Average SP: 7.62/1
Average win odds: 6.5/1
Profit/Loss: +4.5pts
Return On Investment: +17.19%

First things first, it's obviously pleasing that we ended in profit - nothing dramatic, but that's two of our last three months we've ended up. We would have been in profit for January too if it wasn't for the poor performance of our 2pt picks through that month which dragged us down to a small loss.

Without wishing to be something of a stuck record, the significant feature again was the number of seconds, which was again significantly high compared to our average. We had two 14/1 shots beaten just over a length and it's these sort of margins that obviously make quite a difference in the short term. Long term, it all equals out and we look forward to the adjustment coming.

The gap between our average odds taken, and average SP was small, although a little misleading because of the small number of bets and a couple of large drifts (Dinarius 12/1 --- 22/1, and Ski Sunday 11/1 --- 16/1 really affected the figure). Despite this it was good to see that we did beat SP.

On a wider picture, the month was very significant as it was the first where we introduced 0.5pt win bets in certain circumstances. Not a good start for these bets (Selections: 12; Wins: 0; Seconds: 3; Thirds: 2) but very early days and we fully expect these these to be profitable in the long-term.

* We have counted our placed fourth, Cloudy Too, as a "third" for ease of long-term reference.

Thursday, 1 March 2012


We ended February with a good winner yesterday to ensure the month ended in profit. Today we had 0/2 for the start of March.

Let's start yesterday where we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
4.25 Bangor Cloudy Too 0.5pt 7/1+generally inc. 8/1 Lads/Totesport/&Others
4.35 Southwell Cruising Bye 0.5pt 8/1+generally inc. 9/1 Bet365/PP 10/1 Totesport
4.55 Bangor Fishoutofwater 1pt 5/1+generally inc. 11/2 Hills 6/1 Lads/Totesport&others


4.15 Folkestone Upham Atom 1pt 5/1+generally inc. 6/1 Hills/Bet365&others

First up, Upham Atom came with a rattling late run to win the Kent national. Still a few lengths off the front pair at the last fence, he stayed on strongly all the way to the line and was always going to get there once in full flow. A great ride by Liam Treadwell who never gave up on him, after starting a well supported 4/1

Cloudy Too went off at 10/1 and was always there until the pace quickened and he couldn't quite go with them, but stayed on nicely to be placed in fourth.

Cruising Bye weakened out of things in the closing stages, after going off at 10/1.

Fishoutofwater ran well, after starting at 6/1 staying on well towards the end as the majority of the field called it a day, but could only finish a well beaten second, well clear of third.

Today we had:

TIME COURSE SELECTION 0.5pt/1pt/2pt win Bookmaker(s) / Price(s)
4.10 Taunton Arctic Watch 1pt 7/1+ generally inc. 8/1 Lads/Hills/Totesport&others
4.30 Ludlow An Cappell Mor 1pt 6/1+ generally inc. 7/1 Lads/Totesport
5.10 Taunton Miss Brownes Fancy 0.5pt 6/1+generally inc. 13/2 Coral/Paddy Power

Arctic Watch stayed on in the closing stages but was never threatening, after starting at 6/1.

An Cappell Mor (SP 7/1) ran really poorly, struggling early on and finishing tailed off.

Miss Brownes Fancy was a NR.

Confirmation of results with prices (advised --- SP):

Wednesday February 29th 2012

Upham Atom, 1st/7, 6/1 --- 4/1
Cloudy Too, 4th/17, 8/1 --- 10/1
Cruising Bye, 8th/14, 10/1 --- 10/1
Fishoutofwater, 2nd/9, 6/1 --- 6/1

Thursday March 1st 2012

Arctic Watch, 5th/11, 8/1 --- 6/1
An Cappell Mor, 5th/7, 7/1 --- 7/1
Miss Brownes Fancy NR

February ended up 5.5pts up in the end (+17.19% ROI). We'll do a monthly review either later tonight or tomorrow.

Just to say as well, that we have begun a trial which, if successful, could, we believe, lead to something which could be very beneficial to certain members who struggle to get bets on each day, because of work commitments, or any other reason. Namely, we could be in a position to place bets on members' behalf. There'll be plenty more details and thoughts on this in the coming weeks, and it is very early days, but in the meantime, there's some more info here, on a blog written by one of our members: Many members of course would have no interest in this, but for those who may have, we think that this could be a very useful addition to our service. Watch this space!