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11/1/2002 edition

Big Winners
Dubious Form Lines?

Have you ever fallen into the trap of taking short odds about a horse after it won by 10 lengths at its previous start? I think we all have at some time .

When a horse wins by the length of the straight you do really have to query the quality of the opposition and carefully assess the merits of the win. Otherwise it is only too easy to back it next start at a short price and do your money.

One way of assessing the merits of the win is to look at the horse's winning time. If the horse ran a fast time, even a track record, you do not need to know who the opposition were! The win becomes even more meritorious if the horse carried a bit of weight.

Last Saturday at Moonee Valley the John Hawkes' trained three year old gelding, Leather Lane, was sent out as $1.40 favourite in a 3YO Open over the Cox Plate distance of 2040 metres following his 10 lengths ' win in a restricted race over 2000 metres at Flemington two weeks earlier. His time was quite good but it was still approximately 15 lengths slower than Northerly's track record.

Leather Lane was up in class and also had the widest barrier, nine. However he had the same jockey and same weight (effectively an increase due to the class rise) - a solid 56kg. after apprentice Brendan Fenech's two kilos' claim.

Punters who took the $1.40 about Leather Lane saw him lead comfortably. He looked home when he appeared to be traveling well within himself and led by two lengths entering the short straight. But appearances can be deceptive. Over the last 50 his strides shortened and he just held on to beat both Monroe and The Creature who were rapidly gaining on him.

That was hard work. Judging by that race he would not have won five out of every seven times (over 70%) which is needed to break even long term. He was clearly under the odds.

At Rosehill in a restricted three year old fillies race over 1200 metres the Gai Waterhouse trained Autumn Night was all the rage. At her second start she won a Gosford maiden 12 days earlier over the same distance by more than seven lengths. But did that justify her being backed into $1.75 favourite? There were a number of fillies in the race with good city form.

Autumn Night was a little slow out. Jockey Chris Munce worked her early to get a position. She settled fourth of nine but folded badly at the business end and finished a well beaten seventh. Fleecing, a last start city winner won starting at $13.00. Those odds were far better value than $1.75.

Next pages
Two year old races - more tips
Unraced horses, big danger
Betting odds, betting odds, betting odds
Future winners at big odds
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Short Priced Tote Favourites

These are losing bets.
Look at the table below and see the percentages lost backing short priced tote favourites compared with the top official bookmaker betting ring prices.

It is just about impossible to get a high enough strike rate backing short priced tote favourites to make up for the big unders on the tote.
If you regularly get poor odds you must lose.

Did you back any of these winners recently?
If you did, see the minimum prices you should have received.
Make sure you do!


Get these prices? Or these prices!! Extra percentage won Extra Profit $100 bet
Banker Under Fire 4.60 8.00 94% $340
Thorns 3.30 4.40 48% $110
Elkabayo 3.00 4.00 50% $100
Ice Dancer 2.70 3.50 47% $80

Back Tote Longshots?


Get these prices? Or these prices!! Extra Profit $100 bet
Rocket Ball 35.70 44.90 $920
Kootenay 8.90 13.10 $420
Crystallion 11.40 15.40 $400
She's Alluring 14.80 18.60 $380

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