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Saturday 18 April 2020

5 Hidden Ways to Pick a Winner at the Races

The joy of horse racing can be whatever you want it to be. 

By that I mean it can be a flutter on the gee-gees without the slightest insight, knowledge or facts. Your old auntie may detail that she picked her selection because it has the same name as her pet rabbit, Mr. McGregor. Or that horse, over there, has the same colours as her favourite dress worn for the Queen's Tea Party back in 1966. 

If it resulted in a winner or made for an enjoyable day, then who is to suggest there are better ways to find those elusive winners.

For most mere mortals, following the form is the most constructive way to find a winner or two. 

However, there are other ways of making a quid from, what I may call, lesser-known approaches.

Follow The Owner:

Racehorse owners have varying finances. They go from the piss poor to billionaires. All are hoping to get a winner. 

You will be wise to focus on the owner who is selective with the horses they race. I always remember an owner with R J Williams, Mathews Breeding. Ian Mathews ended up moving to the USA. However, there was something very interesting about this owner. Every horse racing in his silks won. In fact, the majority won on debut as two-year-olds. In my opinion, there was only one reason this happened. Because this owner was very selective to the point they just didn't let a horse get to the racecourse unless it was a winner in waiting. I would suggest there are other owners who have exactly the same approach and they are not racing horses to lose. Keep a select list of owners who do the business because so often they go unnoticed. 

The Owner Likes A Bet:

Once again you need to know whether the owner likes a bet. Now, just because an owner likes a bet doesn't mean it's going to be a winner. The downfall of most trainers is that they have no idea about the opposition which is a major weakness. I remember years ago Dave Nevison either fancied a horse with John Best or owned it, but they clearly fancied their chances and before the race started, Nevison, a wise old stick, asked each of the connections of opposing horses if they fancied anything in the race as a final check before putting his money down. 

I think the horse won. 

Anyway, you need to bet on the course to follow this approach. 

You can easily spot an owner in the paddock, and they have no idea you have your beady eyes on them. Just watch to see if they go to the bookmakers on course and see if they have a bet, especially if it is with one of the rails bookmakers. Now, you may be saying: ''Well, every horse backed by an owner isn't going to win!'' Yes, you're right. That's why you need to watch a few times and see how they fare. I can tell you, without question, when certain owners bet on their horses they run a big race and make for value bets. You need to do a little bit of homework, but if you are a regular at your local course, you can soon work out when a horse is expected to go well or not. 

Know Your Statistics:

As we have seen before from the quote of Benjamin Disraeli: ''Lies, damn lies and statistics.'' Meaning you can make statistics mean whatever you like. Which is true to a point if you wish to deceive. That doesn't mean they cannot be of help for those interested in betting on a live chance. For instance, you will do well to understand how horse trainers work. This varies from one to the other. You will find that certain trainers simply never have a horse win at speculative odds. In fact, you would be amazed at how restricted some trainers can be when it comes to returning starting prices. This data is related to two-year-old horse racing which I study. I have no idea if it is the same for older age groups or other niches. That's the reason why you need to do your own study. In this world of information technology, there is very little you cannot find out if you know where to look and put in some hard work. Statistics aren't the be-all and end-all of finding winners but they are important as they do set the limits and limitations which you may be unaware of. What's the point of betting on a horse if it has little to no chance of winning? 

Find A System:

You may be thinking 'How do I come up with that?' Well, it is possible. You may have seen Eric has posted a few updates about the systems he has investigated. He finds these basic premises from trawling the internet and then looks to improve them with a tweak here and there. This is one of the ways he formulated his back and lay bets which saw over 140pts profit in a matter of months. With this sabbatical of no horse racing, he has been researching even more systems and found a few diamonds in the sand. In fact, they could well be systems to make a £1000 a month for a £10 level-stake bet. So, perhaps it is time to start looking a little closer at other people's rejects because you may be the one to turn something from red to black. 

It Finished Last:

Logic tells you to look at the winner of the race or those placed. Surely, they are going to win the next start. You know the only problem with that idea? It's the same as what everyone else is doing. And here's the next problem, everyone cannot be a winner. The best way you have of winning money at the races is by doing something which seems illogical. That in itself seems a touch mad and probably concerning. How can something illogical make you money? The main part of the illogical (reasoning) is that the majority of the population won't look twice. They will conclude it is illogical so best leave well alone. However, just because something looks illogical doesn't mean it is. It's just the way the mind works. It is in some respects an illusion. Anyway, how many people are looking at the two-year-old (colt, filly or gelding) which finishes last on its debut. You may look at it and say: ''Look at that thing in last'' and quickly move on. But how many people give the horse which finishes stone-bonk last any consideration at all? Not many. I will make a statement that seems to defy logic: ''Often, the worse a horse looks, the better it is.'' I've lost count of the number of times a two-year-old debutante has finished last and run the race of its life next start at huge odds. Now, I'm not saying every horse that picks up the wooden spoon on debut is going to turn into Pegasus but a number feature value on their second start. 

Author: Jason Coote

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