Monday, 30 April 2012

Kempton 17:15, 7f

It's very hard to choose between the market leaders here. I'm slightly favouring Intercept but the price has crashed. It's possible to imagine the front three monopolising the inside rail given their low draws. If this turns out to be the case we could have an obvious result.

I have had 6 x 1pt combination tricasts Intercept, Dubarshi and Ducal 17:15 Kempton.

If we land the bet we could cop 40-50 points depending on whether the market gets squeezed any further.

Total staked six points.

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Sunday, 29 April 2012


Looks like Sharapova is in fine form. In particular her serve which can be very wayward is firing well. I've played her each-way for the French Open to complement our bets on Serena Williams and also for Wimbledon. Bets are as follows:

2pts each-way Sharapova @ 12/1 French Open William Hill (1/2 odds 1,2)

6pts win Sharapova @ 7/1 Wimbledon William Hill

Ten points invested.

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Saturday, 28 April 2012


Perhaps I should have stayed on holiday. On return from travelling about in Austria and Slovenia I have managed to come up with three additional horse racing losers. At least the football was a little kinder in my absence. Reading duly won the Championship (@ 8/1 ew) and Bayern Munich made it to the Champions' League final. (Sole CL bet 4pts ew @ 14/1, now 4/9 to take the trophy).

I don't see myself going off anywhere anytime soon other than a short trip to "sunny" Devon. It's festival time at home, with five events over the next few months: Ludlow/Hay-on-Wye/Ludlow/Presteigne/Ludlow is the sequence. Some better weather would help.

On the betting front we've got the French Open, Euro 2012, Wimbledon and the Olympics to look forward to this summer. It's possible I may have a maximum bet (20 points) in the latter. We shall see. Either way I'm relaxed about it as this is my punting wind-down year.

Looking further ahead, having never been to the Arc I'm looking to rectify that in October with a tailor-made package courtesy of the Arc specialists Horse Racing Abroad. Could be fun. Dublin may beckon again after that.

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Saturday racing

A couple of bets in the big race today, one with the sponsors bet£3.65p. Selections in the 3.10 Sandown are as follows:

1pt ew Knighton Coombe @ 33/1 Bet365 (1/4 odds 1,2,3,4,5) BOG

2pts win Major Malarkey @ 10/1 Ladbrokes BOG

Elsewhere one bet at Ripon, 17:10:

4pts win Just For Mary @ 7/2 William Hill BOG

The above selection should relish the ground conditions and is well drawn.

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Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Beverley and Kempton

One wager at Beverley today in 17:05 race:

2pts win Blue Shoes @ 9/1 Bet365 BOG

Back at Kempton the 21:05 is too tempting a race not to play each-way given the eight-runner field. Obviously if there is a non-runner the bets will not look so good. That's a chance worth taking on these two big priced selections:

0.5pts ew Red Mischief @ 20/1 Skybet (1/5 1,2,3)
0.5pts ew Mitie Mouse @ 14/1 William Hill (1/5 1,2,3) BOG

Total four points

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Kempton 19:05, 6f

The horribly named Justbookies Dotnet is the selection in the 19:05 Kempton:

3pts win Justbookies Dotnet @ 17/2 with William Hill BOG

I may have a bet at Beverley too. News to follow

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Monday, 16 April 2012

Windsor 17:00, 5f

Just one horse today:

2pts win Sutton Veny @ 10/1 with William Hill 17:00 Windsor BOG

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Sunday, 15 April 2012

London Mayoral Election

It has just been pointed out to me that Ladbrokes has put up 5/1 for Siobhan Benita to finish third in the London Mayoral Election. She is getting plenty of positive press coverage so is worth a bet at that price.

3pts win Siobhan Benita is third in London Mayoral Election @ 5/1 Ladbrokes

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Saturday, 14 April 2012

Newcastle 17:30, 8f (str)

One wager away from Aintree today as follows:

3 pts win Rosies Lady @ 5/1 with Totesport 17:30 Newcastle

Grand National - final selections

Well we got it all wrong with our prognosis on Monday because contrary to weather forecasts the rain did not arrive. Hence our two mud loving selections have drifted in the betting and are now available at bigger prices than available on Monday. One of them could still win of course and I would settle for a bad value winner rather than a good value loser - like yesterday at Leicester where our 25/1 ew shot finished fourth @7/1!

The Grand National remains one of the strongest trend races in the calendar and I'm having two more shots at it this morning. I am cautious of mentioning betfair prices unless there is a very strong market but of course there is plenty of liquidity today. Today's wagers are:

4pts win Chicago Grey @ 26.0 with betfair

1pt ew Killyglen @ 18/1 with Paddy Power (1/4 odds 1,2,3,4,5)

Six points invested.

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Friday, 13 April 2012

Leicester 17:45, 8f

Two potentially good priced selections in the lucky last at Leicester as follows:

1.5 pts win Salient @ 12/1 (and elsewhere)

1 pt each-way The Lock Master @ 25/1 Coral (1/4 odds 1,2,3) 

Total 3.5 pts staked

Getting something

To use that dreadful football expression we will be hoping that Reading can "get something" at Southampton this evening. The two are level on 82 points at the top of the Championship and should Reading draw or win they will be favourites to win the league. This would put us in a good position as we have Reading each-way @ 8/1 (sole Championship win/e.w. bet).

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Weather men

"You don't need a weather man to know which way the wind blows...."

Weather men. Why do I put my faith in them. On Monday they forecast rain every day this week in the Liverpool area. Following two dry days the National course has dried out from soft, good to soft in places to good to soft, soft in places. There is rain forecast for Thursday/Friday but don't be surprised if it doesn't arrive and the course dries out still further.

In terms of our two soft ground selections, which we backed at 16/1 and 14/1, we've not done a lot wrong as the bookmaker top prices are 12/1 on each as I write. Obviously they could drift back out in price if there is no further rain.

Oh well not to worry, I'm off to the Green Cafe for lunch in the brilliant sunshine down by the river. (We are 75 miles due south of Liverpool):

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Hay Festival - good things

The truly wonderful Hay Festival has recently announced its programme for the 25th staging. In my book (geddit?) the best day to attend will be the final day 10 June. Two of my top three authors are on the card - Martin Amis and William Boyd. The former will be launching his new novel "Lionel Asbo" and as I have read everything else he has written I need to check this out.

William Boyd will be discussing his latest novel "Waiting For Sunrise". We are fortunate in that we live less than 25 miles from Hay so day trips are very practical.

And my third favourite novelist? Ian McEwan whom I have listened to previously at Hay - with readings from "Solar".

A magical place, or as Bill Clinton once said, "Woodstock for the mind"!

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Grand National update

It looks very much like the withdrawals from the National will be sufficient for Giles Cross to take his chance. We already have the win bet with Ladbrokes which is insured with the NRNB stipulation. However Paddy Power is offering first five each-way against Ladbrokes' first four without NRNB. So a further bet as follows:

1pt each-way Giles Cross @16/1 with Paddy Power (1/4 odds 1,2,3,4,5)

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Grand National special bets

Obviously the prevailing ground conditions are likely to affect the number of finishers and even the winning margin in the race. We may see heavy ground on Saturday. In the last twenty years there has been one void race, 12 occasions when the ground has been good or firmer, four races run on good to soft and three run on heavy ground. In the three years that the ground was described as heavy the number of finishers were six (1994), six (1998) and four (2001). Curiously the National has not been run on ground described as soft since 1983. The number of finishers in the good to soft years is a mixed bag ranging from nine to 22 finishers.

I think we can be confident that the word "good" will be absent from the going description this year, surely it will be a question as to whether the ground is described as soft or heavy?

The winning distances in the "heavy" years were a "distance", 11 lengths and 1.75 lengths. So perhaps not conclusive.

Skybet is currently offering 7/4 for under 12 finishers and I think it is worth stepping in at that price even though there are currently no comparative prices. I have had:-

12pts @ 7/4 Less than 12 runners to finish the National with Skybet

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Monday, 9 April 2012

Grand National

The ground is already soft, good to soft in places on the National course. The weather forecast for the Liverpool area is rain every day this week. Consequently the ground could be even softer than it is now on Saturday.

I've picked out a couple of horses that will really appreciate the forecast ground conditions, both of which are starting to attract the cash. Ladbrokes currently offer the best prices on the two selections and therefore it is important to take the prices with them, particularly as they are offering non-runner-no-bet. Giles Cross, one of my selections, still needs some horses to drop out to ensure his participation so this refund insurance is important. My wagers are:

4pts win West End Rocker @ 14/1 with Ladbrokes NRNB

4pts win Giles Cross @ 16/1 with Ladbrokes NRNB

I shall be posting again shortly with some special bets on the race.

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Paul Hanagan

We've already taken the 7/1 Hanagan for the jockeys' championship when in Ireland but I think it is worth pressing up at 9/2 as I don't think the latter price will last. Backing him for the third season running is not a loyalty move. His credentials this year are more about the weakness in the arguments for the other four main contenders: Moore (not bothered), Fallon (too old), Hughes (ban prone) and De Sousa (Godolphin second choice commitments).

Hanagan remains on good terms with his former boss Fahey and will still get plenty of rides from that highly successful outfit. Therefore I have had:

10pts win @ 9/2 Hanagan to be Champion Jockey 2012 with Paddy Power (also available Boylesports)

Yarmouth 15:35, 7f

Not usually a golf fan but enjoyed the final two days. Our three Sat/Sun selections finished first, second and joint third so that maintained the interest through to the finish. Would have been a better winning result if Louis could have held on but apparently god was on Blubba Bubba's side.

One bet today on the flat as follows:

3pts win Viking Rose @ 7/1 with Totesport, 15:35 Yarmouth

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Serena Williams

I cannot believe Paddy Power is still offering 11/1 Serena to win the French Open. Too big, should be 5/1 maximum. I have therefore had:

3pts each-way @ 11/1 Serena to win French Open with PP (1/2 odds 1,2) NRNB

Six points invested

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Sunday bets

Our two Saturday selections for the Masters are both going well and are now first and third favourites for the title. As expected Rory blew up and Westwood dropped back. Peter Hanson leads the field but he looks to me as though he could get nervous if still in contention on the back nine. The unconventional Bubba looks more of a danger to our chaps and is worthy of a small saver:

0.5pt win @ 10.5 Bubba Watson with betfair (8/1 with several bookmakers)

On the racing front just a small interest on the well drawn Rock Canyon in the 4:45 race at Musselburgh. Hopefully he could reach a place for his new trainer:

1pt each-way Rock Canyon @ 25/1 with William Hill (1/5th odds 1,2,3) BOG

Total 2.5pts staked

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Saturday, 7 April 2012

French Open - Ladies

Looks like Serena Williams is coming back to form in time for the French Open. I have just backed her with Paddy Power as they operate on a NRNB basis.

4pts win Serena Williams @ 11/1 with PP for French Open

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U.S. Masters

Tiger has completely gone at the game so I'm now looking for someone else to win the Masters as we reach the halfway stage. Not many had a score in the 60s yesterday but three-time winner Phil Michelson was one of them with an impressive 68. In fact after a shaky start he is -6 for his last 22 holes.

The Brits McIlroy and Westwood head the market but my preference is for Phil at a general 9/1 or a fractionally better price of 10.5 on betfair. I also note that 2010 Open winner Louis Oosthuizen is going well just one off the lead so my bets are as follows:

2.5 pts win Phil Michelson @ 10.5 on betfair (9/1 generally available)

0.75 pts each-way Oosthuizen @ 18/1 with Paddy Power (1/4 odds 1,2,3,4)

Total 4 pts staked

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Thursday, 5 April 2012

Folkestone 15:40, 5f

Our selection today is at Folkestone:

3pts win Haadeeth @ 10/1 with skybet

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