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System Trials Archive

Systems are initially trialled for 50 bets in order to evaluate their potential usefulness. When a system performs well for its initial 50 bets, the trial will be extended to 100 bets or more.

A wide variety of tactics are tested through the various systems, some of which you may wish to apply to your own personal betting strategy.

Please note that these systems are deliberately trialled using very few rules and results are recorded to SP rather than early prices. The idea is that, should a method show promise in this very basic form, it must have the potential for substantial progress with the addition of appropriate filters and the use of more competitive prices.

 

Topweights System

 

A profitable system which involves betting to win on topweights in all NH handicap races run over a trip of less than 3 miles on a tight track (for a list of tight tracks please refer to the NH Track Matrix).

Qualifying weights include penalties but not riders' claims.

Joint topweights - no bet.

 

Results to £100 win level stakes:

163 Bets

Profit £5,922

To 5 point win bets: Profit +296.10 pts

 

NB. By removing both Plumpton and Wetherby from the qualifying tracks, the profit was increased to £7,322 from a total of 145 bets - see Steve's Blog dated 8 April 2008.

 

System 1: Speed Horse

 

Rules:

Calculate the top speed horse of the day from Dave Edwards' Topspeed page on the Racing Post site (UK meetings only).

The top speed horse is selected by adding each horse's highest overall rating (last 12 months) to its most recent rating, then dividing by two.

In the event of a tie, the selection will have the best finishing position on its last run. If there is still a tie there is no bet.

 

Staking:

Stake 1pt for each full 10pts the selection achieves (e.g. a horse with a score of 65 will carry a stake of 6pts). Maximum stake is 10pts.

 

Logic:

These speed ratings are very good for those who haven't time to calculate their own, and the horse with the highest combined total of the day should be expected to go well, as we are considering its most recent run as well as its best in the last 12 months.

 

Results based on 50 bets:

Total stakes: 191 pts

Total returns: 222.32 pts

Profit +31.32 pts

 

System 2: Unnamed Favourites

 

Rules:

Find the race with the lowest prize money for the winner (UK meetings only).

Bet the favourite to win, but without naming it.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each day's selected race.

In the unlikely event of there being more than one race carrying the lowest winning prize, stake 5 pts to win on each.

 

Logic:

Following the market can be misleading in high value and high profile races. The shrewd money is often masked by uneducated money.

That is not the case in low value races, which are mainly ignored by amateur punters. Following the market in these races tends to be more reliable.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 229.66 pts

Loss 20.34 pts

 

System 3: Recovery Mission

 

Rules:

Bet any horse to win that was a beaten favourite on its latest run (within the last 50 days), provided that it is being ridden by the top jockey at today's track.

The top jockey for this purpose is defined as the one (of those riding today) with the most course winners over the last 5 seasons (as given in the Racing Post) - should there be two jockeys with the same total, there is no bet for that meeting.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

In the unlikely event of there being equal 'top jockeys' for a particular course, there will be no bets at that course for that day.

 

Logic:

Having been expected to win on its last outing but failing to do so, a horse is now being partnered by the leading jockey at today's track in an attempt to recover previous losses.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 231.57 pts

Loss 18.43 pts

 

System 4: Classy 3yo Handicappers

 

Rules:

In any 3yo handicap race, work down the racecard from the top, and bet the first horse you come to which was placed first, second or third on its last run.

In the event of there being no qualifier by the time you are halfway down the card there is no bet.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

3yos at the top of the handicap are improving horses (as opposed to older topweights who may be declining, but are still at the top based on what they did a long time ago). We have already shown that the effect of weight is grossly overstated in most cases, so the official handicapper has saved us a lot of form study by telling us the best horses. We then just need to look for confirmation of current form.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 308.13 pts

Profit +58.13 pts

 

System 5: Horses For Distances

 

Rules:

In any race, bet a horse if it is the only previous winner over today's distance, provided that it is also one of the first three named in the Racing Post betting forecast.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Horses are very susceptible to changes in distance. They may not perform at their best with even a slight increase or decrease in the distance they have to run. If there is only one horse that has previously won over today's distance it may well hold a big advantage over the others.

More than half of all winners are in the first three named in the Racing Post betting forecast, so this qualifying factor eliminates no-hopers whose distance win may have been a long time ago, or in a very low grade.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets):

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 516.96 pts

Profit +16.96 pts

 

System 6: Recent Winners

 

Rules:

On any day, select the horse which has the least number of days since its last win.

If there is more than one qualifier in different races on the same day, they are all bet equally to win.

If there is more than one qualifier in the same race, the race will be ignored.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Horses which are in top form are often likely to follow up a recent win. They are sometimes entered again quickly to avoid big penalties from the handicapper. They are often horses that thrive on quick reappearances, and once they hit form are difficult to stop whilst in the same mood.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets):

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 759.28 pts

Profit +259.28 pts

 

System 7: Against The Short Prices

 

Rules:

In any race where the Racing Post predict an odds-on favourite, bet the second-named horse in their betting forecast.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Short-priced favourites win less often than they are given credit for, and as a betting medium they offer little value in general terms. The true value in the race often lies with the runner which appears to hold the highest realistic chance of the remainder.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (52 bets)

Total stakes: 260 pts

Total returns: 169.42 pts

Loss 90.58 pts

 

System 8: Big Concessions

 

Rules:

In handicap races only, select the horse that is giving the biggest weight concession of the day (the largest weight differential between a top and a second-top weight). Should there be joint qualifiers there will be a bet on each.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

The horse at the top of the handicap is officially rated as being the best horse in the race. Therefore, the horse giving the biggest weight concession is also the horse with the biggest class advantage.

Having already proved that the effect of weight is often overstated, the class advantage can often prove more effective than the penalty.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 108.42 pts

Loss 141.58 pts

 

System 9: Each-Way Value

 

Rules:

In any race with 5 declared runners, place an each-way bet on the second-named horse in the Racing Post betting forecast.

In cases where a subsequent non-runner is declared the bet stands as win-only for system purposes (this provision is made on the basis that bets are often placed early in the day).

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts each-way on each selection.

 

Logic:

As a general rule, I don't advocate each-way betting.

A carefully researched 20/1 shot is only equivalent to a 6/4 winner when placed second or third in an 8-runner race, giving very poor value (a 1pt e/w stake would return 5pts at a fifth odds, making it equal to a 6/4 win).

Contrary to popular belief, the best value for each-way backers is found in races of 5 runners, where the return for a place is a quarter odds. Importantly too, the two places in a 5-runner event account for 40% of the total (only 37.5% for the 1-2-3 in an 8-runner race and a poor 25% or less in races of 16+).

Not generally understood, also, is the fact that each-way betting is more effective at lower prices. The missed profit on winning long shots is never compensated by the poor place returns for those that are narrowly beaten - big prices are always better backed as win-only in the long term.

In races of 5 runners, the each-way value is often found with the second horse in the betting forecast. It holds a realistic chance of winning, whilst also being expected to beat the other three home, thus saving well over 50% of the total outlay when beaten into second place.

 

Results based on 5pt each-ways (54 bets):

Total stakes: 540 pts

Total returns: 586.98 pts

Profit +46.98 pts

 

System 10: Tactical Rides

 

Rules:

1. Find the race with the least number of runners of the day.

2. Bet the horse which is to be ridden by the jockey with the most winning rides at the track in the last 5 years (of those riding in the race).

3. In cases where two jockeys have ridden the same number of winners there is no bet.

4. On days where more than one race has the least runners there is a bet in each of those races.

5. System applies to all UK races.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Jockeys who have proven knowledge and ability on a specific track tend to have an advantage over those who haven't. This is even more apparent in small fields, where races often turn out to be tactical affairs.

I opt for the number of winners a jockey has ridden on the track in preference to strike rate, which can often be misleading - especially when a low number of qualifying rides is evident.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 273.88 pts

Profit +23.88 pts

 

System 11: Long Travellers

 

Rules:

Bet the horse travelling the longest distance of the day, provided that there is only one qualifier. If the longest trip of the day is being made by more than one horse there is no bet.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Horses don't normally travel alone for extreme distances unless they are thought to have a reasonable chance of success. Sometimes, when a stable or training centre already have a few representatives making the trip it isn't a hardship to include one or two more, but sole representatives on long journeys tend to be on a mission.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 303.36 pts

Profit +53.36 pts

 

System 12: Cheekpieces

 

Rules:

Bet the shortest-priced horse (Racing Post betting forecast prices) that is wearing cheekpieces for the first time. If there is more than one qualifier bet them equally, unless they are in the same race in which case there is no bet.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

As opposed to first-time blinkers and visors, which aren't as effective as they are on the second wearing due to many horses running too keenly on first application, cheekpieces, an increasingly popular form of headgear, tend to have a more positive effect the first time they are worn.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 118.75 pts

Loss 131.25 pts

 

System 13: Stamina Specialists

 

Rules:

Look for the race to be run over the longest distance of the day. If more than one are joint-longest, consider all qualifying races together.

Using Racing Post betting forecast prices, bet the shortest-priced horse that is a previous distance winner. If more than one qualifier there is no bet. If there are no previous distance winners in the longest or joint-longest races there is no bet.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

With extra emphasis on stamina, the ability of a horse to get the trip is more important than at shorter distances.

Previous distance scorers have already proved their stamina, and their advantage is magnified at longer trips. They are often able to outstay classier opponents who are being upped in distance.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 167.42 pts

Loss 82.58 pts

 

System 14: Hat Trick Attempts

 

Rules:

Bet any horse that has won its last two races, provided that it is not racing in a higher grade than for its last win. If there are any other runners in the same race that have won their last two or more races there is no bet.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

The vast majority of horses never win a race of any kind in their lives, so the completion of a hat trick of successes is seen as a fine achievement. That being the case, preparation for the hat trick bid is thorough, and the confidence that winning brings adds further to the chances of the horse, especially if there is no hike in class and there are no opponents in a similar run of form.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (53 bets):

Total stakes: 265 pts

Total returns: 118.16 pts

Loss 146.84 pts

 

System 15: Last Year's Winner

 

Rules:

Bet any horse (flat or NH) that won the corresponding race last year.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

The most conclusive proof that a horse is suited by the conditions of a race lies in the fact that it won the same event the previous year.

Granted that there may be certain variances the second time around, such as ground conditions, draw, jockey etc, but the horse has already shown a definite suitability to the three most important considerations: class, track, and distance.

Horses that won a race the previous year are often trained specifically with the same race in mind the following season.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (52 bets)

Total stakes: 260 pts

Total returns: 162.58 pts

Loss 97.42 pts

 

System 16: The CD System

 

Rules:

Bet any horse that is the sole previous course and distance (CD) winner in its race, provided there are no other previous course winners in the line-up.

Course winners over other trips do not qualify, even though they may also have won over today's trip on a different track.

System applies to both flat and NH racing.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

This was the original 'cdsystem' after which an early version of the present site was named and built in May 2000. The logic behind it is fairly obvious, in that many horses have their favourite tracks as well as having an optimum distance. If a horse is the only one in the race to have won over today's course and distance it basically has much less to prove than its rivals in that respect.

Obviously there are other important form criteria, such as the class of the race and ground conditions, but the essence of this series of systems is simplicity. It is often the fact that horses are unfancied due to other criteria, but are selected simply because they comply with a basic system, that leads to bigger-priced winners being thrown up when more scrupulous study would often dismiss them.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets)

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 540.47 pts

Profit +40.47 pts

 

System 17: In-form Distance Winners

 

Rules:

Bet any horse that won its last race, provided that the win came within the last ten days, and provided that it has also previously won over the distance of today's race.

Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to both flat and NH racing.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

This system plays on the advantages of in-form horses which were very successfully highlighted in System 6 (Recent Winners), but with the additional option of being able to use more than one selection in any one racing day if appropriate.

The qualifying criteria of at least one previous distance win should restrict the number of bets to an acceptable level, whilst also ensuring that today's trip is suitable for the already in-form runners.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets)

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 596.14 pts

Profit +96.14 pts

 

System 18: Beaten Favourites After A Rest

 

Rules:

Bet any horse that was a beaten favourite in its last race, provided that it has a had a break of more than 30 days since then, and also provided that it has previously won over today's distance.

Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to both flat and NH racing.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Having been expected to win on its last outing, but failing to do so, a horse that may not have given its true running has now been rested with a view to gaining compensation in a carefully chosen and suitable event, and when fit and ready to do so.

This is often a more suitable strategy than rushing a horse into attempting to gain quick compensation when conditions may not be ideal.

The qualifying criteria of at least one previous distance win should restrict the number of bets to an acceptable level, whilst also ensuring that today's trip is suitable.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (51 bets)

Total stakes: 255 pts

Total returns: 255.25 pts

Profit +0.25 pts

 

System 19: First-time Blinkers On Handicap Debut

 

Rules:

Bet any horse that is wearing blinkers for the first time in its career when the race also happens to be its handicap debut.

For the purpose of this method, handicap debut is taken to mean the horse's first run in a handicap of the type in which it is entered today (either turf flat, a/w flat, chase or hurdles).

System doesn't apply to any other form of headgear.

Ignore races in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to both flat and NH racing.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

It is common practice for some trainers to run horses under less than optimum conditions in races which qualify them for a handicap mark. Having achieved a competitive rating for the horse the trainer is then faced with the task of taking advantage of it. He will attempt to do that by selecting the ideal conditions for his runner, in terms of track type, distance and ground.

It is a fact that blinkers, more often than not, work better on subsequent applications than they do the first time. However, on the occasions that they do enhance a performance on their first application the results can be spectacular. A generous rating for a handicap debut and an ideal set of conditions can further enhance the effect of first-time blinkers on the occasions that they do provide this spectacular improvement.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 0 pts

Loss 250 pts

Comment: the way the trialled horses ran under this set of conditions (only two were placed) makes this method ideal for laying purposes.

 

System 20: Tipster Trend Reversal

 

Rules:

In the Racing Post Naps Competition bet the nap provided by the tipster with the longest current losing sequence.

If there is more than one qualifier there is no bet.

As many press tipsters do not operate on Sundays the system will operate from Monday to Saturday inclusive.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

On the basis that the livelihood of these press correspondents is ultimately dependant on the results they produce, long losing sequences can hardly be beneficial to them or to their newspaper.

Tipsters on a current winning run can afford to take chances they may not otherwise contemplate, whilst the main objective of a tipster on a long losing sequence is primarily to end it.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets)

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 524.08 pts

Profit +24.08 pts

 

System 21: Favourites In Big Fields

 

Rules:

Each day select the non-handicap race with the most runners.

Bet the favourite to win, but without naming it.

If there are two or more qualifying races there is no bet.

System applies to UK races only.

System applies to both flat and NH races.

Once the qualifying bet is published it will stand regardless of any late non-runners, either in the same race or in any other.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

There is an old saying: 'the bigger the field the better the favourite' and, as in all old proverbs, there is an element of substance to it - this trial will hopefully prove just how much.

Races with more runners tend to be truly-run affairs, as opposed to those with small fields which often provide no early pace and no cover for the runners that need it.

Races with big fields are also much less competitive, on many occasions, than they first appear. They often contain many runners that have no realistic chance of winning. That applies much more so to non-handicap events, on which the system is based.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets)

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 482.29 pts

Loss 17.71 pts

 

System 22: The Benefit Of Previous Experience

 

Rules:

In races where more than half the field is unraced, bet the shortest-priced runner with previous experience.

For price comparison use Racing Post betting forecast.

If there is more than on qualifier in a race there is no bet for that race.

System applies to UK flat races only (not NH flat).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

The benefit of previous experience is often understated in the betting market. A less talented runner with experience can often beat a more illustrious newcomer who is making its first visit to the racetrack, even though the more talented rival will eventually develop into a much better prospect.

No matter how well a newcomer has been performing at home, there is no guarantee that its promise will be fulfilled when it encounters the hustle and bustle of a race day for the first time.

A runner that has seen it all before is much more likely to show its true form or to improve on what it has already shown.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (101 bets)

Total stakes: 505 pts

Total returns: 642.03 pts

Profit +137.03 pts

 

System 23: Laying Older Handicappers

 

Rules:

In handicap races containing 4yos and above, lay the Racing Post forecast favourite unless it won its last race.

Where there are joint forecast favourites there is no bet regardless of whether any of them won last time out.

System applies to UK flat races only (not NH flat).

 

Staking:

Lay at the Racing Post forecast price to a liability of one point for every consecutive race the selection has lost.

Eg. If the forecast favourite is 5/2 and is on a losing run of 20 then the potential gain is 8 points (20 divided by 2.5) and the potential liability is 20 points.

 

Logic:

The most unreliable type of race for favourite backers is a handicap for older horses. These runners often struggle to maintain a consistent level of form and are unlikely to be on the upgrade. They are often struggling on handicap marks which, because of earlier career successes, are too high for them.

The longer the losing sequence a horse is on the more difficult it tends to be for its trainer to find a winning opportunity, especially if a string of placed efforts means that the handicapper hasn't relinquished his grip. Potential liabilities are therefore in line with the horse's current losing sequence.

 

Results based on 54 bets

Average potential liability (per bet): 5.31 points

Bets successfully losing: 48

Profit +30.51 pts

 

System 24: Forgiving A Poor Run

 

Rules:

Bet any horse that failed to finish on its last run, provided that it won the race before and is priced at less than 10/1 in the Racing Post betting forecast for today's race.

If there is more than one qualifier in a race there is no bet for that race.

System applies to UK National Hunt races only (not NH flat).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Punters tend to place too much emphasis on a horse's most recent performance. As a result, a runner with a valid excuse for failing on its last run is often under-bet next time out, even though it may have been showing some decent form previously.

The price limit attempts to rule out horses that are outclassed in today's event.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 277.50 pts

Profit +27.50 pts

 

System 25: Older Two-Year-Olds

 

Rules:

In any race for 2yos where the number of runners with previous experience is less than the number of places available, bet the oldest unraced horse each-way.

Eg. A race with eight runners, of which only two have run before, would qualify, as would a six-runner affair where only one had previously run.

Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts each-way on each selection.

 

Logic:

Unraced 2yos can be a bit of a mystery but the fact is that some are much more developed than others. Though they all share the same official birthday (1 January), some of them can actually be quite a bit older than others. This can prove a big advantage when unraced 2yos compete against each other.

The each-way element of the bet respects the fact that the runners to have seen a racecourse before, regardless of actual age, have a proven advantage in terms of experience (see System 22).

 

Results based on 5pt each-ways (27 bets):

Total stakes: 270 pts

Total returns: 333.64 pts

Profit +63.64 pts

(This trial ran for only 27 bets due to infrequent qualifiers)

 

System 26: Beaten Favourites With Sights Lowered

 

Rules:

Bet any horse that is competing for less prize money than on its previous run, provided that it was a favourite or joint-favourite on that previous outing.

Lower prize money takes into account prize money for the winner only.

Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to both Flat and NH races.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Lower prize money normally indicates a lower graded or lesser quality race. If a horse attracted enough support to warrant favouritism in a better event, then it should have strong claims against lesser opposition.

This set of circumstances often indicates a retrieval mission, with connections attempting to recoup previous losses. An easier task is often chosen for the horse when this is the case.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (203 bets):

Total stakes: 1015 pts

Total returns: 1009.11 pts

Loss 5.89 pts

 

System 27: Trainer/Jockey Combinations

 

Rules:

Bet any horse which meets these two conditions:

1) The trainer has had more than 100 runners on the track over the last five seasons, showing a level stakes profit.

and:

2) The jockey has had more than 100 rides on the track over the last five seasons, showing a level stakes profit.

 

Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to both Flat and NH races.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Contrary to popular belief, strike rates are fairly meaningless on their own. A trainer or jockey may have a high strike rate at a particular track, but if the runners were mainly short-priced favourites we could say that they were expected to win in any case.

Another trainer or jockey may have a low strike rate, but if those horses consisted largely of rank outsiders then we would not have expected them to win.

In other words, for strike rates to be meaningful they need to be linked to prior expectation, and that expectation is reflected in the prices of the horses.

Basically, if a trainer or jockey returns a level stakes profit at a particular track then their runners have been underestimated in the market, meaning that they have attracted a bigger price than their true chance demanded.

However, we must beware of small samples, which can distort the picture completely, hence the provision for more than 100 results for both trainer and jockey individually (not necessarily as a team), over the last five seasons.

If both have made level stakes profits at a certain venue with such large samples of runners, they must be of interest when they combine in the same race.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (150 bets):

Total stakes: 750 pts

Total returns: 758.25 pts

Profit +8.25 pts

 

System 28: Older Sprinters Hitting Form

 

Rules:

Bet any horse which meets these five conditions:

1) It is running over a trip of 6 furlongs or less.

2) It is aged four years old or more.

3) It finished in the first three last time out.

4) Its latest race took place within the last 30 days.

5) It finished out of the first three on at least three consecutive occasions immediately prior to its most recent run (e.g. form figures of 146892 would qualify).

 

Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Of all the different types of racehorse, perhaps the most prone to alternating sequences of good and poor performance are older sprinters. They can be out of form for a considerable time before suddenly producing one run which sparks a resurgence. This improved level of performance may continue for a short while before the sprinter begins another decline. The secret is to catch these older sprinters just as they hit one of their purple patches.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (101 bets):

Total stakes: 505 pts

Total returns: 490.22 pts

Loss 14.78 pts

 

System 29: Jockey Upgrades

 

Rules:

Bet any horse which meets these four conditions:

1) It was a beaten favourite last time on a racecourse.

2) It was ridden last time out by a jockey who was claiming a weight allowance.

3) It is ridden today by a jockey who isn't claiming a weight allowance.

4) It isn't stepping up in grade today (by grade I refer to the class of the race: 1, 2, 3 etc).

 

If a horse's last run was in a race which didn't have a designated class (perhaps because it was run abroad), it will not qualify as a selection.

If a horse's last run was under a different code (chase/hurdles/flat) than today's contest, it will not qualify as a selection.

Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

System applies to both Flat and NH races.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

The horse was expected to win last time out, when ridden by one of the lesser experienced or least successful riders in the race. That lack of experience and/or proficiency may well have contributed to its defeat. Today, in an event of equal or lesser grade, it is ridden by one of the top riders in the race, who doesn't need a weight allowance to compensate for any shortcomings in experience or ability.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (150 bets):

Total stakes: 750 pts

Total returns: 804.66 pts

Profit +54.66 pts

 

System 30: Sole Representatives

 

Rules:

1. Take each each race card in turn and check out the Top Trainers list, showing performance statistics at the track for the last five years (for trainers who have runners there today).

2. Of all the trainers to have shown a level stakes profit at the track over the last five seasons, identify the one with the most course winners during that time.

3. If that trainer has only one representative at the track today, bet the horse to win.

 

If there are two or more profitable trainers with the same number of course winners, there is no bet on that particular race card.

System applies to both Flat and NH races.

System applies to UK races only.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

For betting purposes, there are several ways of defining a successful trainer. A trainer who sends out plenty of winners but fails to return a level stakes profit isn't providing any value. A trainer who returns a level stakes profit from just one or two winners doesn't provide a convincing long-term record.

However, a trainer who provides a fair number of winners, together with a level stakes profit, has established a solid record in terms of both success and value. If he/she takes the trouble to send just one representative to the track in question on any given day, there are grounds for taking interest.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 141.03 pts

Loss 108.97 pts

 

System 31: Winning Flat Sires

 

Rules:

1. Identify the top three Flat sires, in terms of races won by their progeny during the previous calendar year. For example, if using the system in 2008, check the Flat Sire stats for races won during the whole of 2007.

2. Identify the progeny of those sires running today.

3. Bet them all to win, unless there is more than one in the same race, in which case there is no bet for that particular race.

 

System applies to UK Flat races only.

 

The top three sires, in terms of races won by their progeny in 2007 were: Danehill Dancer, Sadler's Wells and Pivotal. They therefore provided the qualifying bets for the system trial which commenced on 16 April 2008.

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

Some sires are responsible for providing many winners whilst a large percentage produce very few or none. In 2007, a total of 911 sires had progeny running on the Flat in the UK.

During that year, 25.26% of all Flat race wins (1111 of 4398) were the responsibility of just 20 (2.2%) of those sires.

Meanwhile, 442 sires (48.52%) failed to provide a single Flat winner during the year, although it is true to say that many of them had very few runners.

Three sires were each responsible for 75 or more Flat race successes during 2007 (Danehill Dancer 95, Sadler's Wells 87 and Pivotal 75). They represented a mere 0.33% of sires with Flat runners that year, but they were collectively responsible for 5.84% of all Flat race wins (257 from 4398). It is worth noting that individual strike rates for sires are misleading because two or more progeny often compete against each other in the same race.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (151 bets):

Total stakes: 755 pts

Total returns: 835.36 pts

Profit +80.36 pts

 

System 32: Course/Distance/Jockey Combinations

 

Rules:

1. Identify all previous course/distance winners running today (denoted 'CD' on the Racing Post race cards).

2. Select only those CD winners that have been partnered to at least one previous CD success by today's rider.

3. Bet them all to win, unless there is more than one in the same race, in which case there is no bet for that particular race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each selection.

 

Logic:

When a horse/rider partnership is familiar with a particular track, they already know what is required and how it should be achieved. This applies even more so when the partnership have already scored over today's course and distance.

These potent combinations are often underestimated in the betting markets, going off at bigger prices than they should on many occasions.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (103 bets):

Total stakes: 515 pts

Total returns: 451.25 pts

Loss 63.75 pts

 

System 33: Fully Focused Rides

 

Rules:

1. Taking each of the day’s meetings in turn, consult the ‘Top Jockeys’ list on the Racing Post website (under ‘Racing/Cards’).

2. Check each of the top five jockeys on the list, to see whether any of them are visiting the track for just one ride that day. If so, make a note of the horse.

3. Repeat the process for each of the day’s meetings.

4. Bet each qualifier to win, provided it isn’t opposed by another qualifier, in which case there is no bet for that particular race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Top jockeys usually have multiple engagements on a card, which means they have to make tactical preparations for each in a fairly short time. When a top jockey has just one engagement at a particular venue, he/she can concentrate solely on the tactics for that one ride. They are therefore fully focused on a particular race and their visit to the track has just one specific purpose. By using the ‘Top Jockeys’ listing for each individual track, rather than an overall ‘Top Jockeys’ list, we are ensuring that each bet will be ridden by a jockey who is proven at that particular venue.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets):

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 154.96 pts

Loss 95.04 pts

 

System 34: Value Favourites

 

Rules:

1. Using the newspaper selections provided at the side of each racecard on the Racing Post website, note those runners to have attracted more selections than all the other runners in their race put together.

2. Bet to win on those that are priced at evens or above in the Racing Post betting forecast.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Well-touted favourites generally offer little in the way of value, but this method attempts to uncover some of those that might.

Even money represents a 50% chance of success. A horse that attracts more than 50% of the total selections, yet is forecast to return at evens or better has the potential to provide some value.

 

Further comment: Under live conditions it would obviously be advisable to use actual market prices rather than the forecast prices used for this trial.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (57 bets):

Total stakes: 285 pts

Total returns: 203.44 pts

Loss 81.56 pts

 

System 35: Stables Hitting Form

 

Rules:

1. Using the Postdata section to be found underneath each race on the Racing Post website, note those runners with more than one tick in the Trainer Form column, indicating that the yard has hit top form.

2. If more than one horse in a race satisfies the above condition, there is no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Stables hitting top form can often be the source of spectacular profits within a short period of time. The fact that a stable’s horses are running so well means they can sometimes land races they might not otherwise be expected to win. When that happens, the rewards, in terms of price, can be quite lucrative.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (105 bets):

Total stakes: 525 pts

Total returns: 419.86 pts

Loss 105.14 pts

 

Comment: The final result of the trial understates the potential of this method because, during the trail, there were placed horses at 50/1, 33/1, 25/1, 16/1, 14/1, 12/1. and 10/1 (twice), as well as many others at single-figure prices. Using 5 point win stakes, had just a couple of the bigger prices won instead of running close seconds or thirds, the final table would have been transformed (eg the 50/1 bet, which finished second after being hampered, would alone have added an extra 255 points to the returns, ensuring a significant overall profit.

 

System 36: Weight Reductions On Uphill Tracks

 

Rules:

1. Concentrate on races with the words ‘handicap’ or 'nursery' in the title, which are taking place on tracks with a significant uphill section (see ‘Tracks - Flat’ and ‘Tracks - NH’ in the left-hand menu, using those tracks with an indicator in the ‘Uphill’ columns).

2. Bet any horse partnered by a claiming rider provided it has at least one vote in the ‘Tips’ column of the Racing Post racecard.

3. If there is more than one qualifier in any race there will be no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

The effect of weight is grossly overstated on tight and downhill tracks, but it does have a more significant effect when a horse has to run up a hill. A claiming rider effectively lowers his/her mount's handicap mark, and the fact that the horse has also attracted support based on its form criteria makes it a potentially attractive proposition.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (52 bets):

Total stakes: 260 pts

Total returns: 136.25 pts

Loss 123.75 pts

 

Comment: In a similar way to System 35, the final result of the trial possibly understates the potential of the method, which looks to have the potential of being useful as a place-only system. Over 40% of the qualifiers won or placed, with the placed horses outnumbering the winners by 16 to 5. There were quite a few decent-priced placed horses including 18/1, 16/1, 14/1, 14/1, 11/1, 10/1 and 9/1 whilst the winners were all shorter than that. It is logical to assume that the claiming riders, despite their mounts enjoying a weight advantage, are weaker in a finish and the results of this trial certainly seem to bear that out.

 

System 37: Targeted Races

 

Rules:

1. Bet any horse whose trainer has won the corresponding race two or more times in the last ten renewals (going back a maximum of ten years), provided he/she has just the one runner in today's race.

2. If more than one trainer has won a race two or more times in the last ten renewals, and is represented today, there is no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Trainers often target specific races for some of their horses. The fact that a race has been specifically targeted, rather than a trainer merely finding a potential opening for a horse that is ready to run, signifies a greater level of intent.

In addition, a trainer who has successfully lifted a particular prize on two or more occasions is more likely to know what will be required to do so again.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (54 bets):

Total stakes: 270 pts

Total returns: 186.86 pts

Loss 83.14 pts

 

Comment: There were 12 winners at a strike rate of 22.22% but five of them were odds-on, with the top winning price being 6/1. It is apparent that this method produces qualifiers that generally go off at too short a price, probably because trainers who have winning records in certain races are very often highlighted in the media.

 

System 38: Front Runners In Small Fields

 

Rules:

1. Concentrate only on races containing seven runners or less.

2. In such events, check for horses to have previously made all the running to win a race in the same code as today's (Flat or NH). To avoid confusion, the term 'made all' (or 'made virtually all') in the Racing Post comments-in-running is the key factor, unless it is otherwise obvious from their commentary that the horse led from start to finish.

3. Ignore any race in which there is more than one qualifier.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Races with only a handful of runners often develop into tactical affairs with a slow to moderate early pace. In such cases, the place to be is up at the front and many of these races are stolen by prominently ridden horses who get first run on their rivals. When only one of the field has ever made all before, there is a fair chance of that runner enjoying the advantage of an uncontested lead.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets):

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 681.74 pts

Profit +181.74 pts

 

Comment: A very satisfactory trial. The strike rate was 27% and, in addition to the 27 winners, there were 27 runners-up which meant that 54% of the qualifiers finished in the first two home. The runners-up included a couple of 16/1 shots and a 20/1, so the overall profit could easily have been much higher.

 

System 39: Laying All-Weather Handicap Favourites

 

Rules:

1. Concentrate only on handicap races to be run at either: Great Leighs, Lingfield, Kempton, Southwell or Wolverhampton.

2. In such events, check for horses which are clear favourite in the Racing Post betting forecast.

3. Then, check each of these in turn to see whether it has ever run on the track before.

4. If not, lay the horse as per the staking instructions below.

 

Staking:

Lay at the shortest price that can be matched, to a liability of 5pts for each qualifier (for the purpose of the trial results, the Racing Post betting forecast price is used).

 

Eg 1: If the target lay price is 7/4, lay a bet of 2.86 pts at 2.75.

Calculation: 5/(7/4) = 2.86 pts at: (7/4) + 1 = 2.75

 

Eg 2: If the target lay price is 4/7, lay a bet of 8.77 pts at 1.57.

Calculation: 5/(4/7) = 8.77 pts at: (4/7) + 1 = 1.57.

 

Both above examples give a potential liability of 5 points.

 

Logic:

If a horse has never run on the all-weather before, there are obvious concerns regarding its suitability to the surface. Even if it has previous all-weather experience, but on a different track to today's, there are still concerns as explained below. In some instances these concerns can be outweighed by the price but, in the case of handicap favourites, that is less likely.

 

Most backers, although they are aware that Southwell has a Fibresand surface whilst the others have Polytrack, aren't fully aware of the big time differences that exist between these tracks.

If five horses of identical ability set off to run 6f (one at each of the all-weather venues) at exactly the same time, this is what would happen:

 

The Lingfield horse would beat both the Kempton and Great Leighs horses by 6 lengths (those two would finish in a dead heat). The Wolverhampton horse would finish a further 7.5 lengths behind (that's 13.5 lengths in total behind the Lingfield horse).

The Southwell horse would finish last, 4 lengths behind the Wolverhampton horse, 12 lengths behind GL/K and fully 17.5 lengths behind the Lingfield runner.

 

Those very significant differences apply to the straightforward sprint distance of 6f, at which almost all races are run at a true pace. It is easy, therefore, to see that much bigger differences can apply at longer trips, especially with many of those races being run tactically.

To give a simple example of the effect that a change in tracks can have, a horse that runs an end-to-end gallop at Lingfield, and just about gets the trip, would have no chance of winning a similarly run contest over the same trip at Wolverhampton because it simply wouldn't stay.

 

Further notes:

1. Even though Kempton and Great Leighs have the same stamina requirements, they are left in the trial because the former is right-handed and the latter left-handed and there can often be a preference in that regard.

2. Favourites in all-weather handicaps are more likely to be opposed by runners already proven on the track than is the case in non-handicaps, hence the use of handicaps for the trial.

 

Results based on 50 bets:

Average potential liability (per bet): 4.69 pts

Bets successfully losing: 34

Profit +5.55 pts

 

Comment: The system held its own without producing spectacular overall results. However, 13 of the last 15 lays were successful, producing a profit of 25.42 pts during that latter sequence and suggesting that perseverance could well pay dividends in the longer term.

Perhaps the most significant trend involved the odds-on favourites. There were 11 odds-on favourites during the trial and only 4 of them managed to win, which is well below the expected win rate for those prices, although that sample is too small to be defining in any way.

 

System 40: Powerful Connections

 

Rules:

1. Obtain the necessary data: The Racing Post site provides a 'statistics' link for each meeting of the day. These 'statistics' links provide performance figures for trainers, jockeys and owners, in terms of winners over the last five seasons, at a particular track (where applicable, ensure the appropriate filter for either Flat or Jumps is selected).

2. Use each of these 'statistics' links in turn to identify horses whose connections (trainer, jockey and owner) are all listed within the first five in their respective categories.

3. Repeat the procedure for each meeting of the day (UK meetings only).

4. Bet to win on each qualifier, provided there is not more than one in a race, in which case there is no bet for that particular race.

5. Should a trainer, jockey or owner appear in the first five listed, despite recording no track wins, any horse representing them will not be a qualifier, nor will its presence prevent any other horse being a qualifier in the same race.

 

System applies to all Flat and NH meetings held in the UK.

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Trainers, jockeys and owners who have proven records of success at a particular track are of obvious interest on an individual basis, but when the three combine at the venue they represent a particularly potent force.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (101 bets):

Total stakes: 505 pts

Total returns: 590.64 pts

Profit +85.64 pts

(please see comment below)

 

Comment: During the course of this trial, the data provided on the Racing Post 'statistics' links was changed. For the first 66 bets of the trial, the data was restricted to the top five per category, based on winners over the last five years, whether or not they were involved today. From bet 67 onwards, the 'statistics' links were amended to show five-year figures for all trainers, jockeys and owners involved today. The trial continued using this new data.

In retrospect, and having discovered that the original data is still available, I am of the opinion that anyone playing this system should use the original data, rather than that now provided on the 'statistics' links. The data which was used for the first 66 bets can now be found by clicking on the individual meeting names (on the page which summarises today's racing) rather than on the 'statistics' links.

The profit after 66 bets was 160.86 points.

Using the original data, this system looks to have strong potential.

 

System 41: Handicappers Down In Class

 

Rules:

Qualifying criteria is as follows:

1. System concentrates on handicap races only (including nurseries).

2. A qualifying runner must have the clear highest official rating (OR) in the race.

3. It must also have finished in the first four home on its last run.

4. Its last run must have been in a UK handicap of a higher class than today's race.

5. Class to be indicated by the Class number (ie 1, 2, 3, 4 etc, where a lower number indicates a higher class).

 

System applies to all Flat and NH handicaps held in the UK.

For NH handicaps, a qualifier's latest run must have been in the same type of event (ie hurdles or chase) as today's.

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Whilst factors like track type, distance, ground etc are all important, class is the single most important consideration. Even if a horse is perfectly suited to today's track, distance and ground, it won't win if it is outclassed.

This system aims to locate handicappers who are not only clear highest rated in a race, but who have also proved themselves to be competitive at a higher level in recent times.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets):

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 477.88 pts

Loss 22.12 pts

 

Comment: A marginal loss of 4.4% but, overall, this looks a solid system which could be improved upon with one or two more filters. The vast majority of qualifiers are topweights, so filters to emphasise tight and downhill tracks should prove effective.

 

System 42: Using RP Forecasts As True Chance

 

Rules:

1. Identify any race priced up early by bookmakers.

2. Convert the Racing Post betting forecast prices into percentage chances.

3. Add together these percentage figures.

4. Then divide each percentage figure in turn by the total percentage figure (from step 3) and multiply by 100. This provides a new set of percentage chance figures which add to exactly 100%.

5. Convert bookmakers' early prices into percentage chances.

6. Now divide each of the new percentage figures obtained in step 4 by its corresponding percentage figure from step 5 and multiply by 100. This gives a value index for each runner. A figure above 100 indicates value.

7. Bet to win on the horse with the highest value index (provided it is over 100), taking the early price offered.

8. Should two or more runners have exactly the same high value index, there is no bet for that race.

 

NB1. The formula for converting prices into percentage chances can be found on the Useful Formulae page.

NB2. Although fairly straightforward, all the above calculations can be carried out quickly and easily using the Price Finder betting tool.

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

The main difference between an amateur and a professional is that an amateur sets out his/her stall purely in an attempt to unearth the winner of a race, whereas the professional is primarily concerned with quantifying the chance of each runner.

 

The amateur loses in the long run because he/she will take the best price available for their selection without appreciating its true chance of success, whereas the professional will only bet on a horse that he/she perceives as having a greater chance than the available odds imply. That can only be done by quantifying chance.

 

Using the Price Finder betting tool to make all the necessary calculations quickly and easily, this trial sets out to assess the accuracy of the Racing Post betting forecast in expressing true chance.

 

NB. Although any race with a live market can be analysed in this way at any time of day (not necessarily well in advance), only those races priced up early on the evening before racing are covered in this trial.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (101 bets):

Total stakes: 505 pts

Total returns: 662.50 pts

Profit +157.50 pts

 

Comment: This trial attempted to establish whether the Racing Post betting forecast is effective in expressing true chance. The qualifiers were all significantly shorter in the RP forecast than in the early live markets and most of them were outsiders.

The 101 qualifiers produced 8 winners at early prices of: 50/1, 20/1, 20/1, 12/1, 10/1, 8/1, 11/2 and 5/1. Their corresponding SPs were: 28/1, 12/1, 8/1, 14/1, 17/2, 4/1, 11/2 and 4/1. So 6 of the 8 SPs were significantly shorter than early prices, indicating that the winning qualifiers had indeed provided good value.

In addition to the winners, 15 qualifiers finished second or third at early prices of: 100/1, 20/1, 12/1, 12/1, 10/1, 10/1, 10/1, 8/1, 7/1, 6/1, 11/2, 5/1, 9/2, 4/1 and 3/1.

Significantly, only 18 of the 101 qualifiers returned an SP bigger than its early price, confirming that overall value was indeed obtained throughout the trial. Such a rate of price contraction would also be of interest to the exchange traders, who would easily have been able to lay off many of the qualifiers at far shorter than early prices.

 

System 43: Developing Horse/Jockey Partnerships

 

Rules:

1. The horse finished second on its latest outing.

2. The jockey on board that day was partnering the horse for the first time.

3. The same jockey rides again today.

4. No bet in races with more than one qualifier.

5. System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

A horse/jockey partnership can be more significant than some punters realise. Many horses have quirks or certain ways of running that are only fully appreciated by jockeys to have ridden the horse before.

If a new partnership was in action for the first time recently, the race should still be fresh in the jockey's mind. If the partnership went close to scoring on that first occasion, the experience gained could be enough for the jockey to get the horse home in front next time.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (57 bets):

Total stakes: 285 pts

Total returns: 267.97 pts

Loss 17.03 pts

 

Comment: It was touch and go whether to let this trial run for a further 50 bets as the first 50 came out more or less level. There were 12 winners and a further 12 placed from the total of 57 qualifiers (42% in the first three home). The trial results were based on SP but it is very likely a profit would have been made using early prices.

 

System 44: Penalties On Tight Tracks

 

Rules:

1. Identify all meetings to be held on tight tracks, as designated in the 'Tracks - Flat' and 'Tracks - NH' tables to be found in the Pro Betting Guide (main menu).

2. Identify any horse running under a penalty at these meetings. Horses running under a penalty are indicated on the Racing Post racecards by the penalty followed by an 'x' (eg. '6x') shown after its name.

3. Bet each to win, unless there is more than one qualifier in the same race, in which case there is no bet for that race.

4. System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

We have already seen how the effect of additional weight is greatly negated on tight tracks. Horses incurring a weight penalty have shown good recent form, hence the penalty. If the effect of the penalty is negated by the type of track on which today's race is to be run, the horse can be given a greater chance of upholding its recent form than if the race were to be held at a more testing venue.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (150 bets):

Total stakes: 750 pts

Total returns: 806.22 pts

Profit +56.22 pts

 

Comment: A solid 28% strike rate combined with an acceptable profit. This is a method that should continue to at least hold its own over a long period of time.

 

System 45: Value From Long Absences

 

Rules:

1. Identify any runner returning to the track following an absence of 200 days or more.

2. Note the trainer of the horse.

3. Check the Racing Post Stats for the track and identify any of the above trainers who have achieved either a level stakes profit or a strike rate of 20% or more.

4. Bet to win on any qualifying horse.

5. If there are two or more qualifiers in the same race there is no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

One of the factors that tends to put punters off backing a horse they may otherwise support is a long absence from the track.

The ability of proficient trainers to ready a horse following a long absence tends to be underestimated and many of these horses go off at bigger prices than they should, purely because of over-caution and uncertainty on the part of punters.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (150 bets)

Total stakes: 750 pts

Total returns: 765.52 pts

Profit +15.52 pts

 

Comment: This one required some patience but it got there in the end. With only a 13/8 winner to show from the first 42 bets, things looked bleak. Then a remarkable transformation saw a profit of 212 points made from the last 108 bets, and that doesn't include a disqualified 10/1 winner which would have added a further 50 points. The overall strike rate was modest at around 13% but the SPs of some of the winners (22/1, 20/1, 20/1, 10/1, 9/1, 9/1, 8/1, 15/2) showed that they were indeed greatly underestimated in the market.

 

System 46: Course Specialists

 

Rules:

1. Identify all runners to have won over the course and distance of today's race (indicated by the abbreviation 'CD' on the Racing Post race card).

2. Check each one in turn and identify any to have won on the track more than once. Course wins need not all have been over the distance of today's race provided at least one of them was.

3. Bet each qualifier to win, provided there are no other qualifiers in the same race, in which case there is no bet for that race.

 

Notes:

Turf and all-weather tracks at the same venue are classed as different tracks.

All race types are treated collectively.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Many horses raise their performance levels when returning to their favourite track, to the extent that recent form at other venues becomes insignificant  This means they can often be underestimated in the market.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (102 bets)

Total stakes: 510 pts

Total returns: 488.14 pts

Loss 21.86 pts

 

Comment: A marginal deficit. Of the 102 bets, 19 won (18.6%) with a further 30 hitting the frame. A total of 49 were therefore placed (48%). With qualifiers hitting the frame at 10/1, 10/1, 8/1, 8/1, 7/1, 7/1 it is clear that a further trial of similar length could easily produce a reasonable profit, particularly if filters regarding class and ground conditions were introduced.

 

System 47: Recent Form

 

Rules:

1. Use the Racing Post Ratings (RPR) links to be found directly underneath each race card on the Racing Post website.

2. Look only at the two columns on the far right of the 'Last 6 RPR' section. These figures are the ratings awarded for a horse's two most recent runs.

3. Identify any runner with two ratings that are both higher than any achieved by its opponents.

4. Bet all qualifiers to win.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Racing Post Ratings, despite placing too much emphasis on weight (see blog dated 14/6/08), still provide a much better guide to recent performance levels than bare form figures do. Any horse whose last two ratings are both higher than any achieved by its rivals on their last two outings clearly has an edge in terms of recent form.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (106 bets)

Total stakes: 530 pts

Total returns: 488.49 pts

Loss 41.51 pts

 

Comment: This method produced a healthy 36% strike rate and showed a continuous profit for the first half of the trial before dropping away somewhat towards the end, The main reason for the later decline would appear to have been an increase in qualifiers running under different conditions than those under which they had achieved their top ratings (for example, horses moving from turf to all-weather or vice versa, or switching between chasing and hurdling).

This kind of change can easily be spotted by looking for ratings given in italics. These signify that there is a fundamental difference between the race rated in italics and today's contest.

It is suggested, therefore, that if either of a qualifier's ratings are in italics then the race should be discounted and no bet made. This filter should significantly improve the performance of what had otherwise looked a promising method.

 

System 48: Profitable Favourites By Track & Race Type

 

Rules:

1. Find the Racing Post web page which summarises today's racecards.

2. In turn, click on the 'Favourites' link for each meeting.

3. Ensure the appropriate statistics for today's racing are selected (ie 'Flat' or 'Jumps').

4. From the '£1 stake' columns, find the highest individual profit figure for the day (don't include the 'Total' figures).

5. Now, look for the races in that category (for example: 2yo non-handicap etc) which are taking place at that particular track today.

6. If there are no races for that track/category, move on to the next-highest profit figure for the day until you find a qualifying race.

7. Bet the favourite to win, but without naming it.

8. If the highest qualifying profit figure applies to more than one race, bet on all qualifying races.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Notes:

1. When searching for qualifying races, use the link entitled 'Show all racecards for this meeting on one page' and then use the top-line race title/descriptions to establish race types and qualifying ages.

2. Take care with the age 'plus signs'. For example, the statistics for '3yo' refer to 3yo only (not 3yo+).

3. When racing takes place on a particular track over consecutive days, the favourites statistics will update overnight. However, due to time constraints, the published qualifying races for the trial are taken from statistics available the evening before racing.

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Favourites have a far better long-term record in certain types of races than they do in others. Additionally, favourites have a far better long-term record on certain tracks than they do on others. The fact that the statistics are based on SP means that these profitable race categories and tracks are supplying favourites which are generally running at bigger prices than they should. In addition, because the average price of favourites is relatively short, the statistics are far less likely to be skewed by a small number of bigger-priced winners. It is always the level-stake profit figure, and not the strike rate figure, which is most relevant in determining potential value.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (51 bets)

Total stakes: 255 pts

Total returns: 250.05 pts

Loss 4.95 pts

 

Comment: 18 winners from 51 qualifiers (35%) provided a break-even performance. This goes a long way to demonstrating that historical profit trends are very unlikely to influence future profit trends. This makes sense because every race is a completely separate entity, a unique set of circumstances both in terms of horses and the betting, which has not previously been replicated, nor will be in the future.

 

System 49: Selection Box Underdogs

 

Rules:

1. Check the Racing Post Selection Box for each race of the day.

2. In races where just two horses are selected, bet the one with the fewest votes.

3. There is no bet for races where two horses are selected with equal votes.

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

The Racing Post provides a list of newspaper tipsters' selections for each race, usually numbering a dozen or more. These lists seem to be very popular tools used by punters when making their own choices. What punters don't always realise, however, is that the collective opinion of these tipsters can be greatly exaggerated.

For example, let's say there is a race where two contenders stand out. There is very little between them, but a particular piece of form seems to give one of them a slight edge. The newspaper tipsters, being experienced form readers, will all pick up on this one factor and give a narrow verdict to the same horse. We then see something like a 12-1 verdict between the two runners in question, which appears to be a very confident majority vote. In actual fact, all the tipsters have realised there is very little between the two runners in question, but one small factor has swayed them all the same way. Punters, unsurprisingly, interpret a very confident majority verdict and the market subsequently reflects their belief. This situation is bound to lead to disproportionate prices, sometimes massively so. Nine times out of ten in these situations, the value has to lie with the bigger priced runner.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 216.26 pts

Loss 33.74 pts

 

Comment: The 50 bets produced 9 winners (18%) and a fairly small loss of 13%. Interestingly and despite the moderate strike rate, a total of 28 bets were placed (56%). After 43 bets the trial was still in profit, so the overall result was marginal and could possibly have reverted to profit had the trial continued..

 

System 50: 7f Specialists

 

Rules:

1. Concentrate on all races run over 7f.

2. This trial uses distance limits of +/- 50 yards (6f 170y to 7f 50y inclusive).

3. In each qualifying race, bet the shortest priced runner in the Racing Post betting forecast to have recorded two or more wins which are listed as 7f in the 'Wins' section of its Racing Post horse history.

4. In races where two or more runners are equal shortest priced qualifiers there is no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK 7f races (turf and all-weather).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Being neither a sprint trip nor a mile, 7f is the distance over which the most potent specialists are to be found. In contrast to failed sprinters raised in distance and failed milers dropped in distance, 7f specialists are made for the job. Forecast favourites who have never won over the trip before may be vulnerable against these specialists.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 232.92 pts

Loss 17.08 pts

 

Comment: The 50 bets produced 10 winners (20%) and a further 14 placed runners (48% won or placed). The loss was marginal (6.8%) and there is scope for improved performance with the addition of appropriate filters to the basic rules.

 

System 51: Topweights On The Flat

 

Rules:

1. Concentrate on Flat handicap races (including nurseries) which are run on tight tracks over distances of between 7f and 10f inclusive.

2. For a list of tight tracks see the Flat track matrix.

3. Round actual race distances to the nearest furlong. Outer limits are therefore 6f 111y and 10f 109y.

4. Bet to win on all clear topweights (ignore any jockey claims).

 

System applies to UK Flat races (turf and all-weather).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

We have already proved in several system trials that the effect of weight is overestimated in the betting markets. This is especially the case on tight tracks, where horses never get into a protracted gallop when weight may become an issue. The distance limits of the trial are specifically chosen to make full use of the bends on tight tracks, eliminating straight races whilst also negating any potential stamina issues.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 86.25 pts

Loss 163.75 pts

 

Comment: The final result doesn't provide an accurate picture and, in retrospect, the trial should have been given a longer run. No less than 10 of the 50 bets (20%) finished second, most of them by narrow margins, at prices of up to 16/1. This is definitely a topic which deserves to be revisited in the future.

 

System 52: Unbeaten Horses

 

Rules:

1. Bet to win on any horse that has never been beaten in any race listed in its Racing Post horse history (including non-UK races and PTP).

2. If there are two or more qualifiers in a race there is no bet for that race.

3. Unraced horses are ignored.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

It is never easy to assess the full potential of a horse that is yet to be beaten. The aim of this trial is to discover whether punters tend to underestimate these horses.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (200 bets)

Total stakes: 1000 pts

Total returns: 1265.02 pts

Profit +265.02 pts

 

Comment: Undoubtedly one of the most exciting trials so far. The 200 bets produced 62 winners (31%) and a further 52 placings meaning that 57% of the bets won or placed. The profit of 265 points from a total stake of 1000 points represented a 26.5% return.

It is clear that punters consistently underestimate the potential of these lightly-raced horses, particularly those from lower profile yards. The trial was based on SP returns so a significantly higher profit could be expected from early prices.

 

System 53: Above The Ceiling

 

Rules:

1. Bet to win on any horse running from a rating which is above the ceiling for that particular race.

2. The ceiling for a race, if there is one, will be published at the top of the Racing Post race card (eg. 0-80 indicates a race for horses with a maximum official rating of 80).

3. Official ratings for individual runners are shown in the 'OR' column on the right of the Racing Post race card.

4. If there are two or more qualifiers in the same race, there will be no bet for that particular race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Having originally been eligible to enter a particular race, based on its official rating at the time of the entries, a horse may then win another contest. The resulting penalty incurred for its interim success may mean that it will now run from a rating which is higher than the maximum intended by the rules of the race. Effectively, the horse is now running in a lower level of contest than it would otherwise be allowed to enter. The aim of this trial is to discover whether punters underestimate this class advantage.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 148.70 pts

Loss 101.30 pts

 

Comment: This trial began well but fizzled away in the second half, due to the very high number of placed horses. From a profitable situation after 28 bets, the following 22 bets contained just one winner together with 13 placings (9 of those runner-up). A re-run could easily produce break-even figures but the runners were generally too well supported to expect spectacular profits.

 

System 54: Quick Reappearances

 

Rules:

1. Bet to win on any horse running within 5 days of a previous outing.

2. Whenever there is more than one qualifier in a race, there will be no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Horses reappearing very quickly normally do so for a good reason. A winning horse may be out again quickly to avoid the handicapper. A losing horse may be out again quickly to recoup losses. A horse may have been given a prep spin shortly before a target race. Some horses thrive on racing and are given multiple entries when they hit form.

This trial will attempt to determine whether punters accurately quantify the chances of horses making quick reappearances.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (103 bets)

Total stakes: 515 pts

Total returns: 461.45 pts

Loss 53.55 pts

 

Comment: This looks pretty much a break-even trend in the long term. The balance swung from profit to loss and back again a few times during the trial with the highest and lowest points never more than about 15% of the total amount staked. Having said that, the trial was deliberately run with no rules at all, other than a horse reappearing quickly. If a long-term break-even situation can be produced at SP without any filters, there must be potential for success when carefully considered filters are applied.

 

System 55: Backing The Best Horses

 

Rules:

1. Bet to win on the horse with the highest official rating at each meeting.

2. When more than one horse shares the top official rating at a meeting there will be no bet for that meeting.

 

System applies to all UK meetings (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Superior class is often enough to pull a horse through, even when prevailing conditions may not be ideal. This simple trial will assess whether punters underestimate class, particularly when other factors may appear to be negative. The horses backed are all, according to the official handicapper, the best on view at their respective meetings.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (103 bets)

Total stakes: 515 pts

Total returns: 594.73 pts

Profit +79.73 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 56: Potentially Underestimated Forecast Favourites

 

Rules:

1. Bet any horse that is clear favourite in the Racing Post betting forecast provided it failed to finish in the first four on its last run.

2. Forecast favourites making their racecourse debut will not qualify.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

A horse's most recent run, be it good or bad, is often emphasised to a greater degree than is wise. A recent run under unsuitable conditions, or with another valid excuse for defeat, can lead to a horse generating less support that it deserves on its next outing.

Also, finishing positions outside the first four can generally be viewed as being poor when in fact they may have been solid or promising runs, and perhaps in better company than today's.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (59 bets)

Total stakes: 295 pts

Total returns: 200.94 pts

Loss 94.06 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 57: Long Trips Back To Winning Venues

 

Rules:

1. Bet any horse travelling 200 miles or more to a track at which it has previously been successful.

2. If there is more than one qualifier in a race, there will be no bet for that race.

 

Travelling distances for each meeting can be found on the 'Today's Horse Racing Cards' page on the Racing Post site (under the 'Signposts' headings).

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Horses aren't usually sent on long journeys lightly. If a horse has previously won at a remote venue and connections decide to send it back there again, it is usually because they have found a good opportunity for another successful visit.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (150 bets)

Total stakes: 750 pts

Total returns: 739.58 pts

Loss 10.42 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 58: Young Handicappers

 

Rules:

1. Bet any horse if it is the youngest runner in a handicap.

2. If there is more than one qualifier in a race, there will be no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Unexposed horses are often underestimated in the market because punters are unsure of their potential. Younger handicappers usually have less experience than their older rivals but they generally possess the greater scope for improvement.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (52 bets)

Total stakes: 260 pts

Total returns: 195.00 pts

Loss 65.00 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 59: Owners For Courses

 

Rules:

1. Consult the page on the Racing Post site which details today's horse racing cards.

2. Select the 'Statistics' link for each meeting in turn (UK meetings only), then filter for Flat or Jumps statistics as appropriate.

3. Scroll down to the 'Top Owners' section.

4. Concentrate only on the owners who have sent 5 or more winners.

5. Identify the owner (with 5 or more winners) whose runners have generated the biggest level stakes profit.

6. Bet to win on all runners representing that owner, unless there is more than one in a race, in which case there is no bet for that race.

7. Should two or more owners (with 5 or more winners) share the same highest level stakes profit, there will be no bets at that meeting.

8. Should no owner (with 5 or more winners) have generated a level stakes profit, there will be no bets at that meeting.

9. Repeat the process for each UK meeting of the day.

 

System applies to all meetings (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

For varying reasons, many owners tend to target specific tracks with their runners. This method aims to highlight those owners who win regularly at certain tracks, but whose runners also tend to be underestimated in the market (hence the level stakes profit).

 

Results based on 5pt wins (105 bets)

Total stakes: 525 pts

Total returns: 409.28 pts

Loss 115.72 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 60: Well-beaten Favourites

 

Rules:

1. Bet any horse that was a beaten favourite (BF) on its last run, provided it didn't finish within a length per furlong of the winner. For example, if the race was 10f it didn't finish within 10 lengths of the winner.

2. Should there be more than one qualifier in any race, there will be no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

A well-beaten favourite is likely not to have run its race for whatever reason. Due to its heavy defeat, punters' confidence will probably be tempered for its next run and its subsequent price might be too big. It is likely there was a valid reason for a heavy defeat in a race where a horse was thought to be the likeliest winner. Compensation could await at a much bigger price.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (52 bets)

Total stakes: 260 pts

Total returns: 140.55 pts

Loss 119.45 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 61: Top-Rated CD Winners

Rules:

Bet any horse that is clear top on Official Ratings provided it is also a course and distance winner (denoted 'CD' on the Racing Post race card).

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

This trial brings together three factors we have already proved can be profitable. The Topweights System showed the effect of weight to be overestimated by punters, System 16 (the CD System) illustrated how course and distance winners can be bet to advantage, and profits from Official Ratings were demonstrated by System 55 (Backing The Best Horses).

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets)

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 298.86 pts

Loss 201.14 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 62: Stamina For Stiff Tracks

Rules:

1. Concentrate only on handicap races with more than 10 runners to be run on stiff tracks in the UK. Stiff tracks for UK Flat are: Beverley, Carlisle, Leicester, Newcastle and Salisbury. Stiff tracks for UK jumps are: Carlisle, Cheltenham, Exeter, Hexham, Leicester, Newcastle, Sedgefield and Towcester.

2. Bet any horse that has previously won a UK race (under Rules) at a distance of at least a furlong further than today's contest, provided it is priced at less than 10/1 in the Racing Post betting forecast.

3. If there is more than one qualifier for any race, there will be no bet for that race.

 

Notes:

For consistency, advertised race distances in furlongs and yards (a furlong = 220 yards) will be used to determine whether a horse has previously won over a furlong (or more) further than today's race.

The race which a horse won previously (over further) may have been any type of race (under Rules) on any UK track.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Stiff tracks demand stamina, especially when a race is run at a solid pace, which is more likely with bigger fields. A horse that has already won over a longer trip will have no problem with stamina and this advantage can prove crucial in the latter stages of a solidly-run race on a stiff track, when its rivals are running out of steam. The fact that its forecast price is less than 10/1 for a well-contested handicap means it is deemed to hold a solid enough chance to begin with.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 81.75 pts

Loss 168.25 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 63: RTF/RPR Combinations

Rules:

1. Identify all runners with an RTF% figure of 100 on the day's Racing Post race cards.

Note: The RTF% (Run To Form) figure is an indicator which shows the percentage of a stable's runners to have run to form in the last 14 days based on Racing Post Ratings.

The RTF% figure can be found next to the trainer's name on the Racing Post race card.

2. Now check across to the right-hand side of the race card to see whether any horse with a RTF% of 100 is also clear top-rated in the RPR (Racing Post Rating) column.

3. If so, bet to win.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

This is an attempt to determine the effectiveness of two of the key Racing Post indicators when they are combined in a logical manner.

If all of a stable's horses over the last 14 days have run to their Racing Post Ratings (or within the tolerance levels the Racing Post use to determine that fact), then we might expect that today's runner will do the same. If that proves to be the case and today's runner also has the clear top RPR for its race then, logically, its prospects should be favourable.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (103 bets)

Total stakes: 515 pts

Total returns: 292.75 pts

Loss 222.25 pts

 

Comment: There were 28 winners from the 103 bets (27%) but there

were also 27 runners-up (26%) and 14 third place finishers (14%).

53% of the bets finished either first or second and 67% of the bets

either won or placed. The problem was that they were heavily over-bet, hence the low returns. The qualifiers were mainly short-priced favourites and most of them went off at shorter prices than they should really have been. This scenario lends itself more to laying than to backing (particularly laying to SP). Alternatively, taking early prices would dramatically improve backing performance, although probably not to the extent required.

Other observations include the fact that the RTF figure of 100% is awarded when a yard has had just one runner in the last two weeks. This cannot be enough evidence and a filter would be required to ensure a yard has had sufficient runners to justify the 100% RTF figure (ie. five or more within two weeks).

Also, it appears that the RTF figures are updated at random times. Figures of have been noted and have then subsequently changed during periods of time when no racing was taking place. Obviously, the later the figures are noted (before commencement of racing), the more likely they are to be accurate.

 

System 64: Out Of The Doldrums

Rules:

Bet any horse that won its last race, provided that:

1. The race came within the last 30 days.

2. It finished out of the first three in each of its three previous like-for-like races (ie in its last three Flat races when the qualifying race is on the Flat or in its last three NH races when the qualifying race is NH).

3. It has run at least four times in total under the code of today's race (Flat or NH).

4. There are no other qualifiers in the race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

There are many reasons for a horse suddenly hitting form following a period in the doldrums (new yard, low handicap mark, new trip, different tactics, headgear etc). When this happens, the confidence it restores in the horse is often enough to spark a resurgence, even though it may only be a brief one. If the horse is able to run again shortly afterwards, it may retain its new-found form and repeat the recent win.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (250 bets)

Total stakes: 1250 pts

Total returns: 1601.39 pts

Profit +351.39 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 65: Sneaking Into Lower Grade

Rules:

Bet any horse that is running from the ceiling mark in a handicap provided that its last run was in a higher-class UK handicap.

 

Notes:

The ceiling mark is the highest qualifying mark for a handicap (eg a horse rated 70 in a 0-70 handicap is on the ceiling mark). Qualifiers must be on the exact ceiling mark.

A higher-class handicap means a handicap having a lower class number (eg a Class 4 handicap is higher than a Class 5 handicap).

If there is more than one qualifier for a race, there will be no bet for that race.

A qualifier's previous run must have been in a higher-class UK handicap of the same type as today's (eg Flat, hurdles, chase).

System applies to all UK handicap races (Flat and NH) provided that a specific ratings range is given (eg 0-70 etc).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Qualifiers for this system have sneaked into a lower-graded handicap on the ceiling mark after having competed in better company. The worst case scenario for a horse in this situation is to run well without winning. Should that happen, a subsequent small rise of a pound or two would take them back out of the lower bracket. With that in mind, trainers often make more discerning choices when placing these runners.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (100 bets)

Total stakes: 500 pts

Total returns: 350.63 pts

Loss 149.37 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 66: Best Horse Is Best-In

Rules:

Bet any horse that is clear top on both Official Ratings and Racing Post Ratings.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

A horse that is clear top on Official Ratings is deemed by the official handicapper to be the best horse in the race. Meanwhile, Racing Post Ratings are class ratings which are adjusted according to the weight being carried. In other words, if a horse had been carrying more weight, its Racing Post Rating would have been lower for that race. If it had been carrying less weight, its RPR would have been higher.

Qualifiers are therefore not only best-in at today's weights according to Racing Post Ratings, but are also the best horses in their races according to the official handicapper.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (200 bets)

Total stakes: 1000 pts

Total returns: 905.02 pts

Loss 94.98 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 67: Speedy Sprinters

Rules:

1. Concentrate only on races to be run over 6.5f or less.

2. In each race, compare the most recent Racing Post Topspeed ratings for each runner. The most recent Topspeed rating for each runner can be found by following the Topspeed link directly beneath the appropriate race on the race card.

3. Select any runner whose most recent rating is 3 points (or more) higher than the the most recent rating of any other runner in the race (3 points is equivalent to a length at 5f and 3.5 points is equivalent to a length at 6f).

4. All runners in a race must have at least one Topspeed rating otherwise there will be no bet for that race.

 

System applies to UK Flat races (turf and all-weather).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Speed ratings are no use in races which are run at a moderate or slow pace. Sprint races are more likely than longer-distance events to be run at a true end-to-end pace. Also, sprinters tend to hit peak form for short periods of time, so their most recent performances are normally more relevant than their historical runs. Therefore, a sprinter who is a length or more clear of its rivals, based on their most recent runs, must be a major contender for today's contest.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (203 bets)

Total stakes: 1015 pts

Total returns: 907.88 pts

Loss 107.12 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 68: CD Winners Off Higher Marks

Rules:

1. Concentrate only on handicap races.

2. Check out all previous course-and-distance (CD) winners to see whether they have ever won a course-and-distance handicap off a higher official rating than they have today.

3. If so, they qualify provided there are no other qualifiers in the same race.

4. Races with more than one qualifier are ignored.

 

System applies to UK handicap races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

If a runner is proven over c/d to the extent that is has previously won a c/d handicap off a higher mark than it has today, then it must have reasonable prospects of repeating the success if it returns to the venue in similar form.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 120.00 pts

Loss 130.00 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 69: Claiming Jockeys In Handicaps

Rules:

1. Concentrate only on handicap races.

2. Look for handicap races in which there is only one claiming jockey (a jockey claiming a weight allowance, which is noted after his/her name).

3. Bet to win on all qualifiers.

 

Note: Ignore any qualifiers that are out of the handicap. These, if any, will be listed against a heading 'Long Handicap' to be found directly beneath the list of runners on a Racing Post race card.

 

System applies to all UK handicap races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Trainers often use claiming jockeys in order to gain a weight advantage against the other runners in a handicap. When there are several claiming jockeys riding in a race, their weight advantages are compromised, but when there is only one runner with a claiming jockey, it has a weight advantage against the field.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (200 bets)

Total stakes: 1000 pts

Total returns: 957.91 pts

Loss 42.09 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 70: Backing RP Odds-Ons At Even Money

Rules:

1. Identify all runners priced at odds-on in the Racing Post betting forecast.

2. Bet them all to win at a price of 2.06 at Betfair.

3. Also select the 'Keep At In-Play' option.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

The Racing Post odds compiler has deemed these runners to have more chance of winning than losing. This is a test to see how many of these runners can be matched at Betfair in such a way as to double the stakes (after 5% commission has been taken from winnings).

Due to time constraints I am unable to monitor all the pre-race trading, so bets will only be deemed as matched (for the purpose of the trial) if either the Betfair SP or the highest in-play price is 2.06 or bigger.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (50 bets)

Total stakes: 250 pts

Total returns: 200 pts

Loss 50.00 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 71: Top Non-Pro Jockeys In Their Own Domain

Rules:

1. Concentrate only on races confined to apprentice, amateur or conditional jockeys (when indicated in the title of the race).

2. In each of these races, select the shortest-priced runner in the Racing Post betting forecast to be ridden by a jockey who is not claiming an allowance.

3. Bet to win on each, provided there is no more than one qualifier in a race, in which case there is no bet for that race.

 

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

These races, more than most others, tend to expose differences in ability between riders. They are very often won by one of the more competent riders in the race, even though the winning horse may not necessarily be the best-suited by prevailing conditions. This method attempts to uncover positive combinations of rider competence and horses' perceived chance of success.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (49 bets)

Total stakes: 245 pts

Total returns: 98.30 pts

Loss 146.70 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

System 72: First-Time Hoods

Rules:

1. Bet any horse wearing a hood for the first time (indicated h1 on the Racing Post racecard).

2. Hoods used in conjunction with any other type of headgear do not count (even if the hood is being worn for the first time).

3. If there is more than one qualifier in a race, there will be no bet for that race.

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

Hoods have become more widely-used only in recent seasons and their popularity is growing. A hood is used to help a horse of a nervous disposition relax by blocking out noise without impairing vision. Only a handful of trainers had sent out any runners in a hood just two or three seasons ago but that number is now fast approaching 100, which in itself advertises the perceived value of the hood to certain horses. The most dramatic effect is often seen on first application.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (151 bets)

Total stakes: 755 pts

Total returns: 644.58 pts

Loss 110.42 pts

 

Comment: A rather misleading final result. There were only 15 winners in total (9.93%) but there were a further 31 qualifiers placed either second or third. They included runners-up at 33/1, 33/1, 33/1, 25/1, 18/1, 16/1, 16/1, 16/1, 12/1, 12/1 and a third at 20/1.

There were 10 qualifiers beaten less than a length, including at 33/1, 25/1, 18/1, 16/1, 12/1.

Clearly, had just one or two of those near-misses got up to win then the trial would have produced an overall profit, possibly a very significant one.

 

System 73: Triple Top-Rated

Rules:

Scan the Racing Post race cards for the day in order to locate any runners that are clear top-rated under three different criteria: Official Rating, Racing Post Rating (RPR) and Topspeed (TS).

System applies to all UK races (Flat and NH).

 

Staking:

5 pts to win on each qualifier.

 

Logic:

This trial attempts to find out whether there is any value in supporting runners that have been top-rated in three different ways. Top-rated on official figures means a horse is deemed to be the best in the race by the official handicapper. The RPR is a class rating based on both previous performances and weight to be carried. The Topspeed rating is a speed figure calculated with weight as a consideration.

System Trial 66 considered a combination of official ratings and RPRs, delivering a small 9.5% loss to SP but registering a very high 36.5% strike rate from 200 bets. This trial will find out whether the addition of a speed element (a derivative of which was profitable in System Trial 1) can be effective.

 

Results based on 5pt wins (102 bets)

Total stakes: 510 pts

Total returns: 387.70 pts

Loss 122.30 pts

 

Comment: To follow.

 

© 2000 - 2014 Professional Betting Advice and Strategy from cdsystems

Professional Betting

Portfolio

by Steve Jones

As voted by members of

Secret Betting Club

Never miss the

top early prices

All bets advised the evening before racing


Tue 21 October

ProBets

Lyfka

Won 3/1 to 5/2


Mon 20 October

ProBets

Prince Gagarin

Won 4/1


Mon 20 October

Daily Bargain

Ty Gwr (nb)

Won 5/2


Mon 20 October

ProLays

Pashan Garh

Match 13.34


Sun 19 October

ProLays

Bohemian Rhapsody

Match 18.50


Fri 17 October

ProLays

Henryville

Match 10.27


Thu 16 October

Daily Bargain

Eastern Dragon

Won 7/1


Thu 16 October

ProBets

Alelchi Inois

Won 11/8(r4) to 3/10


Thu 16 October

ProLays

Lord Buffhead

Match 4.26


Tue 14 October

ProLays

Kingscroft

Match 6.90


Mon 13 October

ProLays

Inspector Norse

Match 12.00


Sat 4 to Sun 12 Oct incl.

Short break: No bets


Fri 3 October

Daily Bargain

Marmarus

Won 11/2 to 3/1


Fri 3 October

ProLays

Befortyfour

Match 4.00


Thu 2 October

ProLays

Tasmanian

Match 19.00


Wed 1 October

ProBets

Bravo Zolo

Won 5/4 to 4/6


Sun 28 September

ProBets

Qualify

Won 9/4


Sun 28 September

ProLays

Jalingo

Match 6.00


Sat 27 September

Daily Bargain

Bronze Angel

Won 20/1 to 14/1


Fri 26 Setember

ProBets

Lucida

Won 7/4 to Evs


Fri 26 September

ProLays

Red Galileo

Match 7.83


Thu 25 September

Daily Bargain

Dutch Interior

Won 9/1(r4) to 11/4


Wed 24 September

ProBets

Grandeur

Won 11/10 to 4/5


Wed 24 September

ProLays

Lady Phill

Match 9.60


Tue 23 September

ProLays

Bob

Match 3.60


Mon 22 September

ProBets

Royal Warranty

Won 12/1


Sun 21 September

ProLays

Skint

Match 3.90


Sat 20 September

ProBets

Buthelezi

Won 6/1(r4) to 11/4


Sat 20 September

ProLays

Khelman

Match 14.50


Fri 19 September

Daily Bargain

Roossey (nb)

Won 7.00 to 4.00


Fri 19 September

ProLays

Carraroe Flyer

Match 4.20


Wed 17 September

Daily Bargain

Ajig (nb)

Won 8/1(r4) to 13/2


Wed 17 September

ProLays

Spa's Dancer

Match 8.20


Tue 16 September

Daily Bargain

Royal Rock

Won 9/2

+ Clear Spring (nb)

2nd 5/1 to 11/4

Exacta: £16.30


Tue 16 September

ProBets

Verse Of Love

Won 3/1 to 5/2


Mon 15 September

ProBets

For Shia And Lula

Won 4/1(r4) to 3/1


Sat 13 September

Daily Bargain

Mount Logan

Won 9/2 to 7/4


Sat 13 September

ProLays

Forgotten Hero

Match 10.08


Fri 12 September

Daily Bargain

Saucy Minx

Won 11/2 to 4/1


Fri 12 September

ProBets

Estimate

Won 6/4 to 11/8


Fri 12 September

ProLays

Gatepost

Match 11.50


Thu 11 September

ProLays

Golden Jubilee

Match 11.00


Wed 10 September

ProLays

Tregaro

Match 10.50


Tue 9 September

ProBets

High Church

Won 11/4(r4) to 11/8


Tue 9 September

Daily Bargain

Take A Note (nb)

Won 8/1


Sun 7 September

Daily Bargain

Cosmic Halo

Won 10/1 to 5/1

+ Duke Of Yorkshire (nb)

2nd 16/1

Exacta: £69.30


Sun 7 September

ProBets

Naadirr

Won 7/2(r4) to 2/1


Sun 7 September

ProLays

Chivers

Match 6.00


Sat 6 September

ProBets

Captain Cat

Won 15/8


Sat 6 September

ProLays

Gordon Lord Byron

Match 8.51


Fri 5 September

ProLays

Nassau Storm

Match 8.60


Thu 4 September

ProBets

Rawaki

Won 15/8


Wed 3 September

Daily Bargain

Barnmore (nb)

Won 8/1 to 9/2


Tue 2 September

ProLays

Jungle Bay

Match 7.08