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3/11/2000 edition

Melbourne Cup Edition 

Watch out for our special Melbourne Cup edition of Punt to Win with form, analysis and tips for the big race. We will aim to be online Sunday evening. 

Track Bias Again

On Thursday night only 38 hours before W. S. Cox Plate Day, the biggest day of the year for  Moonee Valley, and the running of the Weight For Age Championship of Australasia, a very ordinary  meeting crammed with mainly restricted races was held at the Moonee Valley racetrack. The rail was in the True position on the Slow, rain affected track. Of course the track cut up. It was Buckleys to none that there would be track bias Saturday. 
The rail was moved out three metres for Saturday. That was  enough to make the task of winning near hopeless for run on horses. Many owners and trainers referred to the "outrageous bias" in favour of leaders. With a terribly short home straight, coming from behind is a difficult enough task as it is under normal conditions. 

Skalato, a run on horse, was ridden upside down on Saturday in order to win. It settled outside the leader. There is no way that can be predicted. Even with inside information that the horse will settle right on the speed there is no guarantee that the horse will actually perform ridden that way. On a fair track  Skalato was an absolute moral and justified a substantial wager. Weasel Will  was also a powerful bet on a fair track. But it has recently been getting back in its races. At Moonee Valley it also raced right on the pace and bolted in.

That is the real problem with track bias for punters. Even if you can predict the bias the dilemma is to know in advance how horses not suited by the bias will race. When you have even fields full of Carnival standard horses it makes the task even more difficult. Some horses will continue racing in their normal style in which case they have no hope while other horses will adapt their racing style to the track bias. Some horses will handle the change while others will flop. 

What can also happen by the last race on a leaders' track is that such a hectic pace is set up front that a run on horse actually does win despite the bias. Again, hard to predict. 

Next Page
Can Sunline be compared with Phar Lap?
What do we make of the beaten brigade in the W.S. Cox Plate? 
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