What's It All About (Introduction)

I’ve been following horses all my life – I used to ride but now just watch.  I was born and bred near Cambridge and have relatives who had (but no longer) connections with Newmarket and racing.  My grandparents had a farm where they would stable horses for Sir Cecil Boyd-Rochfort when called upon and put up one of his stepsons on occasion!  For the past 3-4 years, I have ‘seriously’ studied horseracing for profit rather than just the love of it.  I also have a love of figures (I was the Maths geek at school and am a member of Mensa with an IQ of 157 - although some who know me may find this hard to believe!) so this can be a pretty good combination!

I have reams (or megabytes!) of information that I’ve compiled and updated daily of all the races that I’ve ever studied.  This covers all combinations of the courses, distances, categories and classes of these races over the past few years.  Don’t you just love Excel?!  We’re talking a number in excess of 4800 (I'll throw an anorak party when I reach 5000!) 

Factors, such as course and distance form, jockey and trainer form – recent and specific to the track, draw, going, and endless other factors are all included.  For example, a good jockey is more important at Ascot over the 8f round course than the 7f course or a 8f race at Newbury.  Course experience (horse) is more important at Chepstow than Chester.  Lots of stuff like this.
Added to this, I keep a separate database of the draw advantages for each course and race distance - together with the running style most likely to take advantage of that particular draw.  

Hours of work but lots of information to play with – along with the one big advantage in that it is seriously exactly and utterly precise! Hard fact.  You'd be surprised for instance how some races have a completely different draw advantage than punters are led to believe by the information in books, papers, the internet (and ultimately the bookies?) and don't get me started on the "official" going that is sometimes given out!

There are some variables that can’t be computerised - such as a stable being in/out of form, weight penalties, first run for some while, jockey having a good spell and so on.  This has to be done manually (by a mere human brain!) and in some cases, by keeping an eye on the markets for some clues.  Unless the selection drifts overnight to the extent that one of its legs must have fallen off in it's box then this won’t be too influential, it just means that the layers got it slightly wrong before the market was properly formed.  It's also worth taking a look at the way the horse ran in its previous races - if every time it wins when sent to the front to make all but has been held up the last couple of (losing?) runs, then there's a reason and today could be the day to make all again - often quite likely if it's been blessed with a good draw. 

So it's not as easy as punching numbers in to a computer to throw out winners.  When horses become machines and there's no money involved then it might be but until happens a lot of horse racing knowledge (obsessively gleaned over 3-4 years!) is also required. 

Be assured that I've not picked 'pretty names' or jockeys wearing nice colours or the grey horses (although they may have both sometimes!) - apart from that I'll let the results speak for themselves).

And despite trying to keep this blog light hearted and fun, please don't think that my selections cannot be taken seriously.  I don't detail every thought that passes through the old synopses when coming to my selections as there are plenty of other extremely well written, (dry and hard work to read!) reviews out there if you want that  - but they can also pick losers far more frequently than I can!

Good luck everyone and remember that you should never stake more than you can afford to lose and that my selections are never guaranteed to win (if only!!)