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16/4/2004 edition

Why Alinghi Has Cost Punters

On Saturday, April 3 Alinghi was plunged from $2.10 to $1.70 in the $3 million 2YO Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes run over 1200 metres at Rosehill.

From barrier nine in the field of 13 Alinghi had a tough, wide run and finished third, one length behind the Gai Waterhouse trained Dance Hero. Punters who put thousands of dollars on Alinghi for the win missed out and lost their money. Mind you it wasn't so bad for racing's winners - all the wealthy connections in the Alinghi camp - who pocketed $300,000 for being a loser.

Because of Alinghi's bad luck, punters were prepared to forgive the filly and sent her out as $1.30 favourite nine days later at Randwick. The track was officially Dead. Alinghi had never raced on a surface worse than Good. The distance of the race was also 1300 metres. The furthest Alinghi had raced was 1200 metres. So there were at least serious queries to start with when taking the very short odds of $1.30.

But backers of Alinghi felt at ease with themselves as the filly got a soft run behind the leaders in this field of 14. At the 200 Alinghi set off after the $10.00 leader, Crimson Reign. To the shock of punters who took the shorts about Alinghi, she failed to catch Crimson Reaign, and finished second, comfortably beaten by three quarters of a length.

In the Golden Slipper Alinghi defeated Crimson Reign by over three lengths. But Crimson Reign had no luck in that race from barrier 11 and was never on the track. Maybe Crimson Reaign was looking for that extra distance, while Alinghi was not. Maybe also Crimson Reign was looking for the sting out of the track, as the filly was also a Dead track winner.

The fact is that in both races Alinghi was under her true odds and should not have been backed. When you can raise a number of serious queries, you know a horse should not be odds on. At her most recent start $1.30 was way too short a price.

This edition of Punt to Win:
Why Alinghi has cost punters
Get those betting odds!
Betting favourites in small fields
Money talks - Randwick, Caulfield betting tips from the track
Handicapping tips - weight and class
Future winners - unlucky horses
Punt to Win 9/4/2004
Punt to Win index

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