Friday, 30 December 2011


Completed a 17-match winning streak when winning the London ATP finals in November. During that unbeaten run his service statistics were particularly impressive. His first serve % points won averaged 83.2%. His second service % points won during this streak was equally impressive at 58.0%. He held serve 93.1% of the time during this period. These are terrific numbers.

As we go into 2012 the question is can he continue this renaissance or will age finally catch up with him? I think he may have one good year left, despite not winning a GS in 2011.

The news that Nadal has a nagging shoulder injury, for which he will take several weeks off in February, has prompted me to lay out a few pounds on the Swiss from our November winnings as follows:

5pts Federer to win Australian Open @ 3/1 with Totesport
3pts Federer to win exactly two GS tourneys in 2012 @ 14/1 with William Hill
1pt Federer to win exactly three GS tourneys in 2012 @ 80/1 with William Hill
0.5pt Federer to win all four GS tourneys in 2012 @ 200/1 with William Hill

Total invested 9.5pts

Djoko is likely to be a huge threat in 2012 of course but Murray has yet to win a set in a GS final so should be discounted (I believe) for yet another year.

Monday, 26 December 2011

King George

Early disappointment in the big race as Diamond Harry has been pulled out leaving only seven runners. No rule4 deduction on our price but now only the first two places for our each-way bet.....

King George VI Chase 15:10 Kempton

The King George is a great race today for each-way bets as all bookmakers offer 1/4 odds 1,2,3 and only eight runners go to post. But which horse is the value?

I have taken a chance with Captain Chris who tackles 3m for the first time.

I have had 1pt ew Captain Chris @ 8/1 with Paddy Power (also available with Ladbrokes) both BOG; and with Coral (no BOG insurance).

Thursday, 22 December 2011


Other than a small ew bet on Strauss nearly a year ago I've not got involved in SPOTY on the blog. That bet was @ 33/1 and he is now 250/1 to win it! So perhaps not much of a chance of a return there. I see that the Racing Post recommended Strauss @ 35/1 for the top3 today and I would not argue with that although only 25/1 is available now as I write.

Cavendish looks a very short priced favourite to me - around the 4/11 mark. I don't think he will necessarily endear himself to the viewing public tonight. I have just laid him @1.43 on betfair - so getting close to 5/2 NOT to win SPOTY. I've even had a little lay bet @1.05 for the top3. That is 20/1 NOT to be in the top3.

I really don't have an opinion on who might win. However, I think it's ridiculous having three golfers in the final ten. Guys who stroll about in sweaters but never break into a sweat. I don't consider them sportsmen I'm afraid.

So these are my thoughts. No recommended bets although the best value is probably a lay on betfair of Cavendish around 1.43 or shorter.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Blackburn Rovers

Blackburn Rovers look like they are in real trouble now. The manager, Steve Kean, said that relegation was impossible just a few weeks ago. He then declared he was looking forward to three "nice" fixtures against fellow strugglers Sunderland, West Brom and Bolton. Well he's lost the first two of these matches - both 2-1 - and now faces a pivotal fixture against the bottom side Bolton tomorrow.

There are constant rumours that he will be sacked - win or lose - after tomorrow's match. The owners - Venky's - don't seem to know what they are doing either and the fans are against them too hence the atmosphere at the match could be very hostile tomorrow. Money is tight and apparently Barclays are seeking £10m to shore up the balance sheet.

Even if Blackburn don't lose tomorrow it will be a barren Xmas with away fixtures at Liverpool and Man Utd on the horizon. I'm going for Armageddon, starting with:

2pts win Bolton @ 11/4 to win at Blackburn tomorrow (Paddy P) - also available totesport, VC, betfred.

And also:

5pts win Blackburn to finish rock bottom in Prem League @ 3/1 with William Hill

Friday, 16 December 2011

UEFA League draws

Our 14/1 Bayern Munich for the Champions' League looks a decent bet given that they have drawn Basel in the round of 16 today. They are now a best priced 11/2. It would be a major shock if they failed to make the last eight, then it's down to the draw again.

In the Europa League, Udinese have been given a reasonable draw but the price we took to win the event is little changed, partly because of the Manchester teams parachuting into the contest.

I think that Valencia, who play Stoke in the next round, represent some value at 14/1 in the Europa League with skybet and VC. The latter will lay me nothing as they refuse to take my bets and skybet's permitted maximum stake was £1.79 win or each-way. The current betfair price is 15.5 so that is just below 14/1 when commission is deducted.

I therefore have had 2pts @ 14/1 Valencia with skybet for the Europa League. (The balance of my bet placed with betfair).

Kim Clijsters

I think Kimmy could shorten up significantly. We are already on @ 16/1 and that is no longer available. She is going to Australia next week to acclimatise before playing Brisbane (also Serena's preferred warm-up tournament). Then it's on to Melbourne for the defence of her title. She describes herself as fitter than ever. Let's hope so as I have just placed:-

1.5pts ew Kim Clijsters @ 14/1 for Australian Open with William Hill

Total 3pts invested.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Kempton 7f 18:30; 6f 17:30

Very strange market moves with our selection yesterday. Backed from 11/1 (r4) into 4/1 favourite. Then, close to the off, drifted rapidly on betfair back out to 10/1. Never put in the race/or seen with a chance.

Today my main bet is again in a 7f handicap. I like the look of Forks in 18:30 race. The Timeform top-rated four-year-old was a good winner at Lingfield last time out and the form is holding up well.

I have had 2.5pts win Forks @ 7/1 with William Hill (BOG)

In the Nursery (17:30) I have had 1pt win Sunrise Dance @ 12/1 with William Hill(BOG)

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Kempton 7f 18:20

Just one bet today at Kempton:

2pts win Dunseverick @ 11/1 William Hill (BOG)

Monday, 12 December 2011

X-factor results

Another good result for us with Little Mix winning the final last night. From a betting perspective it has been a very profitable series for us. We had five blogged bets in total: W14/1, W13/2, W3/1, W10/11 and L14/1. Stakes 15.5pts; Returns 58.2pts; Profit 42.7pts.

The quality of acts was probably the worst ever. But this, of course, is of no consequence to us as we are only interested in making money on the event. In fact while the final was taking place I went to see a documentary film about the life and music of Joni Mitchell, an artist that has captivated me since hearing her first album in 1968. I think I can safely say that no-one will be listening to Little Mix in 43 years' time. I hesitate to say even in 43 weeks' time - because with Simon Cowell pulling the strings, they could still be conning the teen market this time next year.

As Paul Weller wrote: "the public gets what the public wants...".

Or do they? What makes the event such an attractive betting proposition is the way the contestants are manipulated by the producers. Everything including song choice, sound production, costumes, running order, judges comments and VT footage is carefully crafted to influence the voting public either negatively or positively. By following these signals one can often read the way the producers are thinking. In the case of the winners, it was clear from around halfway through the series that they would do whatever they could to get Little Mix to the final.


Friday, 9 December 2011

Kimmy is back!

Well perhaps. Been off the track since August and was unable to defend her US Open title as a consequence. Now she has had just one (exhibition) match in which she took out Woza in straight sets. Yes it was in Belgium, but it signals her return to fitness and an attempt on the horizon to defend her Aus Open title. Apparently her serve worked really well, which is crucial.

2012 has been confirmed as her last season and although she wants to do well in the Olympics and at Wimbledon you cannot rule out her defending her Aus title.

In any event I'm happy to get involved with Ladbrokes' 16/1 for the first GS.

I have had 3pts win @ 16/1 Clijsters to win Australian Open with Ladbrokes.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Kempton 6f 18:30; 19:00

Two selections in the last two races at Kempton tonight, both of which are dropped in class. The first, Taajub, actually finished runner-up in the 2009 Gimcrack. Drawn well and ridden by Seb Sanders, who seems to know how to trap fast in these sprints.

The second selection is Slatey Hen, the top weight in the lucky last. The bets are:

1pt win Taajub @ 8/1 with William Hill
1pt win Slatey Hen @ 8/1 with William Hill
0.5pt each way double above prices. All prices BOG.

(Both prices also available @ totesport)

Total 3pts staked.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Southwell 11f, 15:00

X-factor is shaping up well for us now after a poor start. My first selection never made the live stages but Little Mix has turned that around with the each-way bet landed as the final three has been decided. They are now 11/10 favourites to win the event on Sunday and we have a chance of 14/1 and 13/2 returns.

Misha finished fourth as we anticipated thus landing our 10/11 elimination wager.

The racing does not make a lot of appeal today, however I have invested 1pt win Ay Tay Tate @ 6/1 with William Hill (BOG) in the 15:00 Southwell.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Tiger Woods 2012

We made a few pounds when the man was on the way down. In fact the first ever bet recommended on the blog, on 8 December 2009, was 12pts on Tiger not to win a major in 2010, a winning start of course.

Now he looks very much as if he is on the way back so I've had a couple of bets in two 2012 majors as follows:

6pts win Tiger Woods to win the 2012 Masters @ 7/1 with Coral (also available with blue square/888)

6pts win Tiger Woods to win the 2012 Open Championship with Unibet @ 15.0

Total 12pts staked

X Factor elimination

According to reliable sources there will be no sing-off for the next elimination. Therefore you have to think that Misha B will go on Sunday as she has already been in the bottom two on three previous occasions before being saved by the judges. Clearly she is not popular with the voting public.

I have had 5.5pts Misha B to be next elimination @ 10/11 with Paddy Power (also available with Ladbrokes).

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Kempton 6f 18:30,19:00,19:30

Three selections this evening at Kempton as follows:

18:30 1pt win Perfect Act 9/1 Ladbrokes
19:00 2pts win Fenella Fudge 4/1 Ladbrokes
19:30 2pts win Doctor Hillary 9/2 Ladbrokes

Plus 1pt e.w. treble at the above prices. These are all best odds guaranteed races so if they start at bigger prices we are on at SP.

Total staked seven points.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Venus Williams

I am sure you are all aware that the last time Venus Williams played an official match it was in the US Open. Minutes before she was due to play her second-round match she withdrew from the tournament due to an autoimmune disease with which she had recently been diagnosed.

She returned to the court this week to play an exhibition match against Serena. The form will tell us little but she did beat her younger sister 6-4 7-6. She has given a commitment to play a full season in 2012 starting with Auckland in January (after playing only 11 matches in 2011). Not surprisingly she has dropped to No. 104 in the world.

Can she, like some before her (Seles, Henin, Clijsters) make a successful comeback? Could she win another grand slam? She will play an exhibition doubles with Serena against Schiavone/Pennetta this weekend so this may give us another clue to her well being. Certainly age is not on her side and she could easily be drawn against, say, Kvitova in the first round of the Australian Open.

Nevertheless I have had 1pt win @ 50.0 Venus Williams with Unibet for Australian Open.

She has never won the Australian (or the French for that matter). All her GS wins have come at Wimbledon (5) and the US Open (2). She's not won the latter for a decade but the last of her SW19 wins came in 2008.

I have therefore had 2pts each way Venus @ 25/1 with Paddy Power for Wimbledon

You can get 33/1 Venus with VC for Wimbledon but VC will no longer lay any of my tennis bets and has closed my account. However the important advantage of PP is that it is NRNB: a condition - as far as I know that only applies to Skybet, PP and Betdaq in outright tennis markets. So if she was unfortunate enough to be taken ill again our Wimbledon bet would be refunded

Total staked five points.

Monday, 28 November 2011

2011 Review

A nice 30.5 points overall profit from the Federer tournament win at the O2 yesterday. The Swiss has been on a roll since the US Open and was the clear form player coming into the event. This takes our profit for the calendar year to over 100 points (13.4%).  With a month to go to the year end we still have two good value bets on Little Mix for X-Factor. They are 11/8 favourites as I write. All other unsettled bets should roll over to 2012. Full details of all 2011 betting activity can be found here:

One bet that's not looking so good is Liverpool for Premiership top four. We took a rather skinny looking 11/10 and even after two good performances in beating Chelsea and then drawing with Man City they are available at 13/8 today. Their fixtures in the run up to Xmas look reasonable so hopefully they can move up the table.

Leaving aside the Manchester teams, we are looking at any two from Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and possibly Newcastle to make the top four. Today I have had a very speculative 1pt win Newcastle @ 25/1 for Premiership top four with Ladbrokes. (Also available with Coral and Stan James).

Friday, 25 November 2011

ATP London update - 2

Berdych duly beat Ferrer tonight but not by the score I envisaged. However this means our three outright selections have reached the last four. We only have a small bet on Berdych - one point @ 29/1 - but importantly his presence in the last four means that Djoko is on his way home. In fact in my first post on this tournament I suggested we should avoid the world numbers one, two and three because of their busy seasons and recent injury concerns. Incredibly none has reached the semi-finals.

Even though he has a very difficult match ahead we have to have a saver on feisty Ferrer. He will be back tomorrow to play Federer at 14:00 in the first semi-final. The H2H? Just the 11-0 to the inform Swiss player. The other semi is at 20:00 - Tsonga v Berdych ( H2H 0-1)

Let's first review our potential profits (16pts portfolio so far):-

Federer 12pts @ 3/1 - potential return 48pts; profit 32pts
Tsonga 2pts @ 14/1, subsequent 1pt @ 12/1 - potential return 43pts; profit 27pts
Berdych 1pt @ 29/1 - potential return 30pts; profit 14pts

I have just placed 1.5pts @ 16/1 Ferrer with Ladbrokes. Obviously a Ferrer tournament win now returns 25.5pts for an overall eight point profit on the tournament. (Those of you with Sportingbet accounts can get 18/1 Ferrer however I do not bet with that company).

Our revised tournament profit will now be as follows:

Federer 30.5pts; Tsonga 25.5pts; Berdych 12.5pts and Ferrer 8pts.

Enjoy the semis and the final. Let's hope for that Paris repeat - Federer v Tsonga final!

ATP London update

Good news from O2 last night as Tsonga defeated Nadal to progress to the semi-final alongside Federer. We still have a chance of all three of our players making the last four. Berdych plays Ferrer this evening and will go through to the semis if he wins in straight sets. He can also go through if he wins in three but that will depend on the outcome between the two Serbs this afternoon.

I would have gone skint a long time ago if I'd always backed players or teams that "needed to win" against those that didn't. However if Berdych was to win the first set against Ferrer tonight (an even money chance) there is the possibility that Ferrer might then take his foot of the gas with Saturday's semi in mind and a certain place therein. For these reasons I have had 3pts win @ 5/2 Berdych to beat Ferrer 2-0 sets with William Hill. (Sportingbet has a slightly higher price of 3.6 if you are able to get that).

Once the final four is known late this evening I will look and see whether we need to place another outright bet to protect our 16pt investment in the outright market.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Kempton 18:40, 19:10

Two small bets at Kempton today. in the 6f race, 18:40, 2pts win Sweet Ovation @ 5/1 Skybet (also SJ and Coral) and in the 7f race, 19:10 1pt ew Roninski @ 14/1 William Hill (BOG)

Total 4pts staked

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Big Jo

I was impressed with the way Tsonga played today, particularly in the second set. This court is certainly very slow and you could argue it suits someone like Tsonga who has so much power to hit through his opponent. Good serving too with a 140 mph serve included. If he beats Nadal in his last match (11/8?) he should qualify for the semis. If he should qualify alongside Federer there would even be the chance of a repeat of the Paris indoor final and, of course, a repeat of the opening match here in London which Fed won 2-1.

All that's a long way off but I have taken a further 1pt win Tsonga @ 12/1 to win the tournament with Paddy Power. Price available with several other firms.

Our bet on Berdych to beat Mugray is of course void as the Scot has just retired from the tournament.


Mugray looked in a bad way during his straight sets defeat by Ferrer. If he is to continue in the competition he will play Tomas Berdych Wednesday. The latter was beaten in a final set tie-break against Djoko last night. He held a match point during the match but could not convert.

There is a possibility of course that Mugray could retire during his next match if he does not retire beforehand. The H2H is 4-1 Berdych who has won the last four encounters.

His serve looked very poor against the Spaniard so I have had 8pts @ 11/10 Berdych to beat Mugray with Ladbrokes. It is important to have the bet with a bookmaker that requires one point of the match to be played for the result to stand. To my knowledge these bookmakers are Ladbrokes, Blue Square, 888 and Coral.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Mix-ed results

Well I guess I underestimated Airdrie United's fire power. Went up to 8-0 correct score but incredibly they won 11-0. Glad it wasn't 9-0 that would have been worse.

Elsewhere there was more hyping of Little Mix on xfactor. I note the producers even got David Walliams to declare that they are his favoured act. They are 3/1 second favourite as I write so we certainly have value punts at 14/1 each-way and 13/2.

Federer starts the defence of his London crown this afternoon. The 3/1 and 5/2 has long gone and he is no better than 15/8 before a ball is struck in anger.

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Recovery mission!

The correct score double bet is already a loser as it is 1-1 after 20 minutes in the Partick game. This follows hot on the heals of New Leyf being caught on the line by Fallon to deny us a decent pick up last night at Kempton.

Airdrie kick-off at 15:00 so there is an opportunity for some some small singles as follows:

Airdrie 5-0 16/1 Ladbrokes 0.5pt
Airdrie 6-0 33/1 Boyles 0.25pt 
Airdrie 7-0 40/1 Boyles/Bet365 0.25pt
Airdrie 8-0 80/1 Ladbrokes 0.25pt

Total 1.25pts staked.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Scottish FA Cup

Could be some cricket scores in a couple of the Scottish FA Cup matches. Airdrie and Partick are both 1/6 to win their respective matches tomorrow so I have played a speculative correct score double bet with Ladbrokes as follows:

5-0 16/1
6-0 25/1
7-0 33/1
8-0 80/1 

Odds apply to both Airdrie United and Partick Thistle winning their respective matches by the scores shown.

The bet is 16 x 0.25pts correct score doubles with Ladbrokes.

Total staked 4pts.

Kempton 6f 17:05, 17:35

Our 25/1 selection was on the premises a furlong out at Kempton yesterday but quickly dropped away.
Two more selections today at Kempton as follows.

1pt win Gap Princess @ 14/1 (17:05) with Ladbrokes (BOG)

2pts win New Leyf @ 13/2 (17:35) with Ladbrokes (BOG)

0.5pt ew double at the above prices (Ladbrokes)

Total 4pts staked.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Kempton 6f 17:50

I am not particularly keen on the racing today. However am rather surprised at what a big price Sonko is trading at in the Nursery at 17:50. I guess it's possible he may not break quickly from his low draw which could then be a problem. However at this price I could not resist 1pt ew @ 25/1 Sonko with Will Hill (BOG)

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Southwell 1m 4f 15:50

I think it's possible that Gosforth Park could oblige under top weight at Southwell in the last. Won comfortably enough at the venue on 10 November and there has been some support today.

I have had 2pts win Gosforth Park @ 11/4 with William Hill (BOG)

Little Mix

We already have a nice little each-way bet on the xfactor girl band at 14/1. They continue to be well supported this week and are as low as 5/1 in some places.

In the circumstances I think it is worth an additional 1pt win @ 13/2 Little Mix with (or Blue Sq). In what is increasingly looking like a poor year it is possible now that they could win.

Saturday, 12 November 2011

ATP World Tour Finals - London

The early prices have just been released for the men's final event of the season. It's an interesting market not least because three of the major contenders, Djoko, Mugray and Nadal have been carrying various injuries. I would be particularly worried about the world No1 Djoko and would stay well clear of the 7/2 or shorter put up by the major firms.

The holder, Federer, is a worthy favourite having won Basel indoors and is set to play the Paris indoor final tomorrow. He is therefore my main bet. I have added two small bets on outsiders who have both played well recently. My portfolio is as follows:-

  12 pts win Federer @ 3/1 with Bet365 
  (5/2 is next best with Ladbrokes and W Hill if you cannot get this).
  2 pts win Tsonga @ 14/1 with Stan James (also available with Bet365).
  1 pt win Berdych @ 30.0 with Unibet.

Total stakes 15 pts.

England v Spain

No horse racing bets today so I have taken an interest in tonight's friendly international.

Capello seems to be willing to take a few chances with an experimental England team. He will be heralded as a genius if he pulls it off and beats the world champions. Far more likely I think is that Spain will take England apart. I have had a couple of small correct bets as follows:

Spain to win 2-0 = 0.5pt win @ 8/1 William Hill
Spain to win 3-0 = 1pt win @ 18/1 Ladbrokes
Unquoted* score on betfair correct score market = 1pt win @ 10.5 Betfair

(*This bet will win if either team scores four or more goals)

Total staked 2.5pts

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Kempton 6f 19:50

I like the look of Qubuh in the final race at Kempton tonight. I have had 3pts @ 13/2 with Stan James as I think the price could contract.


The Italian economy is on the edge with the debts approaching the point where the debts are not sustainable. Who know what's going to happen but you have to think that they are very likely to receive a Euro/IMF bailout. If they don't then surely the economy would collapse and they could then exit the euro.

I've therefore had two bets as follows:

Next country to receive EU/IMF bailout: Italy 8pts @ 2/1 with Stan James
First country to leave the euro: Italy 2pts @ 14/1 with Stan James ( 12/1 PP but only 7/2 WH).

Total staked 10 pts.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

X-factor - Little Mix

We have landed our 3/1 bet on Little Mix to be top group as the only other group still in the competition - The Risk - has been sent home tonight having finished bottom in the public vote. Our selection was given the "pimp" slot last night which clearly showed that the producers were intent on making them the favoured group.

The outright price of 14/1 we took each-way is now around half that price. May not be winner material but a strong chance of finishing in the frame as the producers would probably like a group in the final three and further promotional assistance looks likely.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Han - again

Paul Hanagan has all but won the the jockeys' championship. As I write he is seven wins clear of S de Sousa with a couple of races to go at Wolverhampton this evening and then Friday and Saturday racing to close the season. He did us a big favour last year landing several bets up to 40/1. This year, as reigning champion, he was of course a much smaller price. However we have landed substantial wagers at 9/2 and 7/2 to increase significantly the 2011 profits.

I have updated our 2011 results with Paul H winnings. You can find the details here:

It means we are running at 10.92% profit in 2011 and an even more respectable 45.88% accumulatively since the blog bets service began in December 2009. We have won over 650 points in this time frame.

WTA - Bali - 2

Well Vinci was rubbish today so that's one of our outright bets gone. The other one plays tomorrow afternoon (12 noon our time).

Ivanovic was fairly unimpressive in putting Vinci away (40% first serve success rate). I am going to take a chance and back the lump to beat the looker in the semi-final.

I have had 4pts win Petrova to beat Ivanovic @ 6/4 with Stan James. Their H2H is very close. Some sites say Ivanovic 6-5 whereas betfair stats say Petrova 7-5. What's not in doubt is Petrova has won the last two meetings. Therefore 6/4 is fair value to down the defending champion.

WTA - Bali

The Bali tournament starts around 9:30am tomorrow morning. Bartoli is a worthy favourite on current form but I have had a couple of speculative bets on players at double figures.

First of all I have taken 12/1 Vinci who has had a terrific year. She plays Ivanovic in the first round and although the H2H is 4-2 in the Serb's favour, Vinci has won both matches that have been played in 2011. If she wins tomorrow she would play Petrova or Peng for a place in the final.

I have had 1.5pts ew Vinci @ 12/1 (1/3 odds 1,2) with Ladbrokes (also available with SJ).

In the top half of the draw I have gone for Hantuchova who plays Lisicki with whom she is 1-1. Lisicki beat DH in the Birmingham final (on grass of course) but the Slovakian is preferred back on a hard court. If she wins  then she will probably meet Bartoli for a place in the final. Amazingly DH holds a 5-1 H2H with the French woman and that is another reason for taking a punt.

I have had 2pts win Hantuchova @ 12.0 with Unibet.

Total 5pts staked.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Andy Murray

Andy Murray is on a terrific run having won three consecutive tournaments. However today he comes up against a player who has caused him problems in the past. The head to head with Robin Haase is 1-1 but in both matches Haase won the first set. Winning the first set and going on to lose is something that happens to Haase quite frequently.
I think the bet today is 2pts win Haase to win first set against Murray @ 5/1 with (or Blue Square).


Two bets on this involving the girl group, once called Rythmix now called Little Mix

3pts win Little Mix to be top group @ 3/1 with Paddy Power (i.e. to finish in front of The Risk)

1.5pts ew Little Mix to win X-factor @ 14/1 with Paddy Power 1/5th odds 1,2,3.

Total six points staked.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Premiership TGS - it's 25/1 Ba

The two players we've backed for TGS are not doing brilliantly. I've therefore decided to add a third player to our portfolio. One could make a case for one of the Man City strikers as they are scoring so many goals. But which one? The current scores are Dzeko nine, Aguero nine and Balotelli five. I think the latter could close the gap if he's not red carded too often.

Others in the shake up include Rooney (nine, short price) and Van Persie (ten, but never plays a full season because of injuries). 

I think Demba Ba could be thereabouts. He is now on eight (from seven starts) following a hat-trick for Newcastle last night. There was rather an amusing story going around about him. He (allegedly) refused a fan an autograph. I would have more sympathy if his name was Jan Johannes Vennegoor of Hesselink but when you've just got to write "Ba" then it's unforgivable. 

Anyway I have had 1.5pts ew Demba Ba @ 25/1 Prem TGS with Ladbrokes, 1/4 odds 1,2,3,4. 

Three points staked.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Europa League

I've decided to have a bet on the incredibly competitive Europa League. I like the look of Udinese who are currently top of Group I and favourite to win the group now having beaten Atletico Madrid in the last round. The latter are 12/1 to win this cup whereas Udinese can be backed at 22/1 or bigger.

Udinese have started well in Serie A (they won again today), lying third as I write just behind those great names Juventus and Milan. I have had 2pts win, 1pt place @ 22/1 Udinese with Stan James to win the Europa League. If you have a bwin account you can get 24/1 but it's a win only market.

Total stake 3pts.

Friday, 28 October 2011

WTA Istanbul

I've been watching the Istanbul tournament this week and earning a few quid betting in-running on the televised matches. Having watched nearly every match I would be amazed if Petra Kvitova and Victoria Azarenka do not contest the final. They are by far the best players in the tournament.

The final round robin matches take place today. Kvitova plays Aggie today and should win on what we have seen to date. Aggie needs to win a minimum of one set to progress to the semi-finals. I think she might do that despite carrying a shoulder injury. Kvitova can have moments when she drifts out of a match and, of course, does not need to win the match to make the semis.

I have had 1pt win Kvitova to win today's match by 2-1 in sets @ 3/1 with William Hill.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Jockeys' Championship 3

Well now it's a two horse race now as Fallon is out of the running. This is good news for us as he was our third best result after Hanagan and De Sousa. I'm pleased we stepped in with the latest bet of 16/1 De Sousa as he has narrowed the gap to be just five adrift of the champion. Hanagan is still in the box seat of course but you won't get bigger than 5/1 De Sousa this morning (Ladbrokes). One thing which may work against PH is the fact that he is scheduled to ride at Ayr on Saturday. The ground is already heavy with more rain forecast so it's not inconceivable that the meeting could be cancelled.

Talking of rain, I have just returned from racing in Galway where the ground was as heavy as I have ever seen. I was amazed that it wasn't called off.

As for today it's an ironic choice of bet. Fallon in the last at Kempton. He is well drawn. Field reduced to nine runners as I write but SJ still offering 9/1 the selection. 1pt win The Name Is Frank @ 9/1 with Stan James.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Yarmouth today

An interesting day's racing today at Yarmouth. All three contenders for the jockeys' championship are in action. De Sousa has his last day in the saddle before his enforced absence kicks in tomorrow. He has ridden three winners since we backed him for the championship @ 16/1 whereas his rivals have drawn a blank. Consequently he is now no bigger than 8/1. It looks like Fallon has the best chance of scoring today. Let's hope he gets no more than one winner. De Sousa is now five ahead of Fallon in second place.

I'm having two small bets here today. 0.5pts ew Little Village @ 25/1 in the 17:20 and 0.25 pts ew Norcroft @ 25/1 in the 16:50 both with William Hill Both races 1/4 odds 1,2,3,4 but unfortunately will revert to first three should there be a non-runner. Total stake 1.5pts.

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Jockeys' Championship 2

Well this is not over yet. Both Paul H and Silvestre de S rode doubles today. Fallon drew a blank at Ascot (not surprisingly perhaps given his mounts). Paul's double was up at Catterick. S de S went to Wolverhampton this evening, after his Ascot commitments, to ride a double there. Interestingly neither PH or KF bothered to go on to the evening meeting. Even more surprisingly perhaps neither PH or KF ride at the only flat meeting tomorrow - Bath - where S de S has a few attractive mounts. Are PH and KF really committed to this race? Or does PH think he has done enough?

The standings tonight are PH 149 wins; S de S 142; KF 140. 

Silvestre has four days' suspension to serve (starting 19/10) and that is partly why he is 16/1 against Fallon's best price of 7/2 despite being two wins ahead of him. The weather is set to change later in the week with Arctic conditions forecast to last up to ten days. Who knows if that's right but any abandoned racing could coincide with Silvestre's ban! We'll see. 

We don't want to finish up losing -12.5pts on this market, should de Sousa pull it off. Unlikely perhaps but to cover this eventuality I have just had 3.5pts @ 16/1 de Sousa to win jockeys' championship with Coral. This price is also available at Betfred as I write.

Our potential profit on this market is now:

Hanagan + 55pts
de Sousa + 43.5pts
Fallon + 23pts

I can relax now knowing we will win on the event. I'm off to Galway for a bit of racing later in the week. I hope it's not snowing there!

Friday, 14 October 2011

Ascot: Champions' day

What a tremendous day's racing we have in prospect at Ascot. Everyone would like to see Frankel win the QE11 Stakes "for the good of racing". However I have been tempted to take him on as we have a "dead eight" field, which is terrific for each way betting - provided of course there is not a non-runner.

I am still cursing myself for not backing Dream Ahead e.w. against the odds on Goldikova in the Prix De La Foret (on Arc day). That day there were eight runners and it was 10/1 bar two. Dream Ahead won @ 7/2.

Tomorrow they bet 1/3 Frankel, 6/1 Excelebration, 7/1 Immortal Verse and 33/1 bar three. My choice is the filly Immortal Verse and I have had 2pts ew @ 7/1 with Paddy Power 1/4 odds 1,2,3.

In the Champion Stakes I like the look of the lightly raced Dubai Prince with Frankie Dettori up. I think this could be one of tomorrow's gambles. I have had 3pts win Dubai Prince @ 8/1 with William Hill (BOG)

Total stake seven points.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Aggie Radwanska

The Polish number one is much improved of late having just won back to back tournaments in the Far East. She has always been seen very much as a counter puncher, and in many ways she still is, although she looks to be getting the measure of some of the top players. She could be in the top five before too long. She may need to hit the ball a bit harder to reach the peak but it all augurs well for Aggie in 2012.

Naturally the bookmakers have reacted by cutting her in price to win the first grand slam in 2012. She is now a top priced 40/1 with skybet for the Australian Open. That could be worth playing however skybet would only lay me 25p ew. Yet another illustration as to why I shall be retiring from this price chasing game. Bookmakers will not lay bets to anyone who has a hint of a successful strategy. There are not many bookmakers betting on the French Open but a few have Wimbledon books.

Aggie has a grass court tournament to her name as she won Eastbourne in 2008 before reaching the quarter final of Wimbledon (where she was beaten by Serena). She reached the same stage at Wimbledon in 2009 and then fell to Venus. I had a small bet just now with William Hill: Aggie Radwanska to win Wimbledon 2012, 1pt ew @ 100/1 and they immediately halved her price. Not a coincidence. Should you wish to follow me in on this highly speculative long term wager the price is still available at Blue Square and as I write.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Newmarket Cesarewitch

An intriguing race with bookmakers going 14/1 the field as I write. Well William Hill is going 14/1 the field anyway. Other bookmakers have cut their prices under pressure from punters backing the Pricewise selections Sentry Duty and Mount Athos. However I am going for the lightly raced Keys despite the potentially poor draw in stall 24. He has been saved for this race following comfortably wins over 2m at Ascot and Newbury in July. With Richard Hughes in the saddle we have one of the best judges of pace in the game so hopefully he can ease his way through the field from his unpromising starting position. I have had 2pts win Keys @ 15/1 with William Hill. In fact I have placed the bet through the Racing Post IPad/IPhone application so in the very unlikely event that Keys wins by more than three lengths we will be paid out at 30/1. Here's hoping!

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Jockeys' championship

Paul Hanagan was a substantial contributor to our 577 points profit in 2010 thanks to bets at 40/1. This year his winning the jockeys' championship could also result in a profitable year for us. However currently we are winning only nine points ytd. Unfortunately I think there is a real chance now of Paul being caught by Fallon who is just seven wins behind. Although the Irishman has a two-day ban next week, he appears to be pulling out all the stops to overhaul the current champion.

With just one month to go I think we need to hedge our position. We have staked 44.5 points on the event (including a 4pt ew handicap bet on PH which is touch and go for a place). We already have bets on the three jockeys that can win. Assuming the handicap bet is a loser, our potential profits stand at:

Hanagan +78.5pts; De Sousa +7.5pts; Fallon -18.5pts.

Therefore I am having a maximum 20pts win @ 9/4 Fallon with Paddy Power. This price is available with seven other bookmakers tonight (only Ladbrokes differ by quoting 7/4). I have chosen PP because of the possibility of a concession (eg if it was a dead-heat they might payout on both in full!). I have assumed De Sousa is too far behind to overtake both his opponents.

The revised position is now as follows:

Hanagan +58.5pts; Fallon +26.5pts; De Sousa -12.5pts.

If you've been following the bets on my website you'll know why it has become much more difficult to win. If you are new to the blog and do not hold the substantial winning positions on Hanagan I would not recommend that you have a maximum bet on Fallon. However he is worth a bet @ 9/4 to a small stake even if you are not involved in the jockey portfolio.

Bet record can be found here:

Bad day at the office

Well it would have been if I went to an office. Sunday a bit of a nightmare with two losers in the Arc. Only considered those drawn 1-6 so rather gutted to miss the winner which was a decent price and nicely drawn in two. Things did not get any better when Melanie failed to get through to the live stages of x-factor despite very good leaks to the contrary (including the Irish Independent). Just a small interest for me on the sand at Southwell (17:50) today. I have had one pt win Needwood Park @ 18/1 Ladbrokes (bog). If you are "lucky" enough to get a bet with bet £3.65p you can get 20/1 as I write.

Friday, 30 September 2011

Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe

Another terrific race is in prospect and as usual there are sure to be be plenty of hard luck stories in what is a large competitive field. It's possible that Sunday's sorry tales could include one or both of the current market leaders: So You Think (drawn 14) and Sarafina (drawn 13). History shows that double-digit drawn horses are disadvantaged. As a result I am going to oppose these top contenders with two well-draw horses. Both my selections should enjoy the good ground which is forecast to firm up in the next 48-hours. I have had 2pts win Masked Marvel (drawn 5) @ 14/1 with William Hill (bog). Sure to get every yard of the trip in what could be a fast run race. Watch the PMU odds as he could start a bigger price in Paris. Also 1pt win Hiruno D'Amour (drawn 1) @ 14/1 with Ladbrokes (bog). Ran a good prep race behind Sarafina in Prix Foy on 11 Sept, his first race since May. Unlikely to be better odds on PMU because of fanatical on-course Japanese support. Total staked 3pts.

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

X Factor

We have it on reasonable authority this morning that Dublin girl Melanie McCabe has reached the live stage of X-factor. Therefore I have had 3pts win @ 14/1 Melanie to win X-factor with William Hill. 

Monday, 26 September 2011

Champions' League

The difficulty in placing bets at advertised prices continues. Today I decided to place 4pts each-way on Bayern Munich for the Champions' League @ 14/1 (1/2 odds 1,2). I have divided my stakes amongst Ladbrokes, Stan James, and skybet. 

In the Bundesliga Bayern Munich started with a shock 1-0 defeat at home (Aug 7). Since then they are 6/6 in the league with 21 goals scored and none conceded. In their three Champions' L matches (inc. premliminary rounds) they are 3/3 with five goals scored and none conceded. Therefore 26 scored none conceded in all nine matches since the defeat.

Bets on now, total stake 8pts.

Full record of bets posted here: