2015 Caulfield Guineas Preview

by David on October 8, 2015

Interesting Historical Factors
11/20 winners had first attempt at 1600m.
16/20 winners last start <1600m.
15/23 drawn gate 4 or inside.
4/23 won from double-digit gate, 0/30 from gate 14 or wider.
1/23 has finished further back than 4th at previous start.
12/22 last start winners.

Speed Map


Like most editions of this great race we expect to at least have genuine speed with Dal Cielo likely to be crossing and leading. It is expected jockey Craig Williams on longshot Kentucky Flyer will allow this to occur as it will leave him in the 1-1.

The map reads very average for a few of the major chances, in particular the favourite Press Statement who is heavily reliant on Snoop & Shards tactics with regards to whether he can push forward in the first half of the field or not. My advice to connections would be to cross and get on the back of Shards and be satisfied being midfield three wide with cover, but Hugh Bowman is arguably best jockey in the country when it comes to finding great positions from sticky maps on paper.

Our Market:
This market is of our systems ‘raw’ prices which is set to 100% with every runner rated >$21 eliminated. CP clients get a market <100% on a wagering sheet which also blends in the public price of each runner to find a wagering edge.

Rated runners:
n1 Press Statement rated $2.61
n9 Bassett $9.68
n15 Tulsa $9.96
n3 Ready For Victory $10.55
n13 Tarzino $11.82
n6 Bon Aurum $12.16
n5 Dal Cielo $12.51
n8 Sovereign Nation $14.03

PRESS STATEMENT – Dominated Stan Fox last start in small field, dashed clear in final furlong. Clear best horse in this race, has 18 Official Handicapper Rating points on next rival at set weights. Map is the query as stated above but Bowman is better than anyone to find a good spot in a position like that. If doesn’t exert too much early energy is the one to beat.

READY FOR VICTORY – Well placed to win guineas prelude but never travelled in the run. Gets the blinkers on he needs, hopefully they don’t get him to refuse to muster early. Strong SP profile this campaign without winning a frustration, is still yet to win since debut. Will appreciate a mile but needs luck being towards back on inside.

DAL CIELO (NZ) – First run in AUS for Murray Baker good in prelude when sustaining a solid speed to the post. Was a bit keen at the front, because of the good run suspect they will try to lead again. Won’t appreciate the mile when comparing to the other chances.

BON AURUM – Got the job done again last start when closing well down middle of track. Was again a surprise to punters. Doubt is capable of improving on that rating here unlike plenty of these because his last two wins have rated so much higher than previous career starts. It’s rare horses can do that for three runs in a row. Coming in off a last start win is a positive factor though.

SOVEREIGN NATION – Too good for them last Fri Night in weak G2. Spiralling performances to date including a run against some of these two runs ago when back and wide and laying in. Map is an issue along with significant class rise. If gets rails run can be in the finish.

BASSETT (NZ) – First up victory good in fast time here. Now 2/2 at track and had no luck when fav behind Press Statement in G1 JJ Atkins as a 2YO. Has the time ratings and natural improvement expected to threaten in this.

TARZINO (NZ) – Liked his win here coming from well back in fast time last start. Coming from well back again will need immense luck. History suggests you need your last start <1600m. Look for him running on as he is an excellent Derby prospect.

TULSA – Missed start and just missed again last start after peeling to the middle of the track, another eye catching run after he was unlucky and strong late two starts back. Draws gate 16 three times in a row, very unlucky. More than anyone will like the mile but just needs some luck peeling out wide from well back.

Recommended Bets:
Back the overlays which are present late in betting, these may change as the favourite is a good possibility of drifting.

Andrew Hannan heads up our Victorian ratings service.


Deane Lester is one of the very few media personalities whose opinions are widely respected by serious punters.

He has a big following from his work with RSN and Sky Channel and is widely respected as one of the best form analysts in the country.

He joins us on the Betting 360 podcast as we continue our For and Against series on finding value and managing your betting bank.

Punting Insights

  • How he relies on both data and years of experience
  • Why he dramatically reduces his bets on wet tracks
  • How and when he bets to his own rated price
  • His best and worst years since he started recording every bet in 2004

Today’s Guest:
Deane Lester @defier1

Deane was also a guest on the podcast in 2014 in our finding winners and value episode.

>> Click here to read the transcript

Dave Duffield: G’day Deane, thanks for joining us again on the podcast. It’s an awesome time of the racing year, how’s Spring been for you so far?

Deane Lester: Spring’s been okay. Turnbull Stakes was a bit of a challenge for most, but if you adjusted to the play of the day you probably got it a bit more right but yeah, it’s shaping up well. I think Sydney’s racing last Saturday was as good as it gets and all roads lead to Melbourne now over the next few weeks.

Dave Duffield: Exactly.
So I wanted to speak to you in more general terms about how you go about it. We’ve had a series running just to explain that people go about it in very different ways. I’ll start of with data versus gut. Do you use a combination of both or do you lean more one way?

Deane Lester: Very much a combination of both. I like to try to grab information from wherever I can. I’m a lot more into the breakdown of a race using actual figures than I probably was five years ago. I used to have notes about high pressure or low pressure races but with the advent of the sectional times through someone like Vince Accardi you get an actual figure that you can place on a race and I’m using that a lot more.
I’ve still got probably the thing that got me into this industry is working before I was in the media is working hands-on with horses for fifteen, twenty years so I wouldn’t want to let that go to waste, that sort of information.

Dave Duffield: If you had to do without one or the other, what would it be?

Deane Lester: I’d go back to looking at the animal, if I had to choose I would go back to what I know about horses and looking at them in the yard because there’s some days there that you go to the races and you’re very confident about a selection and you get very deflated when you see them in the yard, whether they’ve sweated up or they haven’t quite got to the peak that you’ve expected. You can be very disappointed and very rarely do they let you down or run above expectations of what you see in the mounting yard.

Dave Duffield: You have to cover a lot of races for the media work and the other work that you do, but from a betting perspective do you have an interest in a lot of different races or just really load up on a few?

Deane Lester: Through the week I’ll be playing races that I think I can really zero down on and get right. The Saturday’s or the races where you’re probably looking at better quality horses in general, I’m keen to play them. I think the thing that narrows my area of punting down is track conditions.
The one thing I have refined in the last ten years is betting less and less on wet tracks; it’s too much guesswork because there’s too big a difference between the way tracks are prepared and what constitutes a wet track. You’ll see a horse with a W next to it’s name and it might have won on a Summer wet track where there was rain but underneath, the ground was still very firm. On a Winter wet track it’s totally different and they just don’t perform.
The way I probably narrow down my punting over the last five to ten years is certainly track conditions.

Dave Duffield: Do you have a hard and fast rule about whether it’s a heavy ten or heavy nine when you pull the pin?

Deane Lester: I’m quite happy if the track is at a rating that you expect when you’re doing the form. If you’re putting a lot of hours into it and you’re expecting good … If there’s any deterioration in a track by say a good three to a soft five I just don’t know if, especially if you’re on course, if you have the resources with you to accurately access what’s going to happen. A hard and fast rule for me is if there’s a track downgrade I tend to shut up shop.

Dave Duffield: Just in general terms then, so not specifically on wet tracks, but in general terms how heavily do you penalise backmarkers? Because I know that the speed maps play a pretty big role in what you do?.

Deane Lester: Probably my biggest thing with horses is that they’ve got to have good strength. Often horses that steam home you think they’re strong but they don’t have that capacity to race on the pace so I do penalise them more than I probably ever have.
I think races in general I think the punters dissect them a lot more but jockeys probably twenty, twenty-five years ago you had fields that nine times out of ten they were running at a really good speed. There was too much speed and you’d see horses from the back win a lot. Where now, I just think the way race shapes are put together is a lot more refined and jockeys whether it be over-analysis, tend to maybe go too steady in front or are too scared to make bold moves.
We see the hardened and seasoned riders like a Glen Boss or a Jim Cassidy not afraid to make bold moves because they can back what they’ve done for thirty years but I think the younger riders are a little bit apprehensive at making bold moves.

Dave Duffield: Vince spoke a couple of weeks ago about the myth that a really fast pace suits the backmarkers. Do you feel the same way?

Deane Lester: Certainly. There’s a breaking point in a race where the race can break into two and you’ll just see … There’s an example if you go to a race I think it’s late August that Charmed Harmony won at Caufield and when I’ve assessed that race I’ve actually drawn a line at the 800m mark of those in the first group, those in the second group and assessed the second group virtually running against each other because in essence there was no chance that the second group could actually get into the race. They were too far off the speed and they were already chasing. If you’re on a backmarker, you don’t want that extreme speed you’ve got to get that absolute right speed.
The ideal thing for a backmarker which a lot of people wouldn’t get, and I think Vince probably touched on, is a slowing up mid-race where they just track into the race. They keep the momentum going and the leader has to pick up and go again.

Dave Duffield: He did mention that, that’s one of his favourites.
You talked about jockeys before, how important are they when you’re doing the form and how much does that vary depending on the shape of the race?

Deane Lester: I’m not so much a person that penalises jockeys in the A-grade sense whether they are in or out of form. I tend to look at the skill set of a jockey; I’ve got my own opinions on what some of the riders can and can’t do, what their strengths and weaknesses are and have the connections actually matched up the best rider for their horse?
Sometimes you’ll see an absolute high profile rider and they might not be on the right horse because that might be the one little missing link in their skill set. Whether they’re not good on front runners, or whether they’re not good at settling a horse.
The general public would be thinking, well this is a match made in heaven, we’ve got an in-form horse matched with an A-grade rider, but it mightn’t be the right rider for the horse. That’s a subjective thing but that’s something that I think years of experience have taught me pretty well.

Dave Duffield: What about trainers? You’ve worked closely with a few at times, planning horses preparations and the like. How much did that impact your rated price or whether you want to get involved in a race depending on whether it’s a highly known trainer or a less skilled trainer?

Deane Lester: Look I think if the lesser known trainers if they’ve followed a path that’s logical with a horse and they land in a metropolitan race or they land in the right race, as long as they’ve taken what you can see as a logical path to that race, I don’t penalize that at all. I’m interested in trainers … Trainers are very much creatures of habit; if they’ve won a race doing a certain thing a certain way, they’ll go back to try to strike gold doing the same thing. There are very much patterns in leading trainers in all different ways. They don’t have the same pattern by any means, but they certainly have patterns.
The other thing is form within a stable. I do take that notice of that because you can see when the stables have runs. Now whether that’s because if they’re in form they’ve got three or four in-form horses and they can compare their other horses to those by working with them or what they’re doing and that lifts the level of the stable. It can virtually … If the stable’s having a bad run, maybe their best horses are out of form and they’ve got absolutely nothing to compare with and they’re just probably throwing the horses into races a little bit at will and not necessarily with the right thought process.

Dave Duffield: Are you a big believer in weights?

Deane Lester: I was, very much so when I started doing form assessments. We’re talking twenty-six years ago now, and handicapping wasn’t as refined as it is now and there were glitches in the system. One there was a spread of weights a lot more than there is now and two handicapping, for instance in Victoria, wasn’t centralized it was from district to district so horses could get weighted, especially in the provincials, they could get weighted so differently if you went to the North-East or you went to Gippsland. There were glitches the system then.
Now it’s centralised, now horses have ratings. There’s not many that sneak under the system and it’s more about seeing horses that have got that ability to advance through grades because the handicapper can’t really penalise them too much.

Dave Duffield: I know you look at trials and jump outs, how do you use that as part of doing the form considering on the data side you’ve got something to work with but also you’ve got to rely on your own judgement as well?

Deane Lester: Again, it’s a little bit habitual with trainers. There’s some trainers you see them trial them right up and they know that they’re ready to go. One thing you don’t know in watching a jump out as such is what weight the horse is carried. You can sort of make an assumption if you see a rider that you know the style of, if they’re a heavy weight that the horse might have heavy shoes on. There’s little bits of information the stables have still got that the punter can’t ascertain just by watching the vision of jump outs. That’s been a good tool in the last two years, the Caufield, Mornington and Flemington trials have come online the jump out that you can watch. More so, you can get a feel for a trainer if they’re priming a horse for a big first up run or they’re just easing them back into their racing campaigns.
I like to use them. I like to have a visual of what a horse is doing leading up to a race. If it hasn’t raced for six months, having a vision of its galloping action et cetera two weeks out from a race can only be a bonus.

Dave Duffield: Under what circumstances are you interested in a horses breeding?

Deane Lester: Not much. Once they start producing information data that you can assess them at … The problem the only time I’d have an issue with breeding is if you know of a breed that are a bit temperamental. More temperament than what their capacity is to run a distance because there’s too many horses that defy genetics in that regard. I’d be more interested in horses that I think may be a little bit frail mentally, there’s breeds you can tap into that you can see they just don’t quite go to the next level and that’s the only time I take breeding into account.

Dave Duffield: You mentioned before about the better quality of horses, do you get many betting opportunities for the smaller markets? Whether its provincial or country racing?

Deane Lester: Oh certainly. That’s more … You’re not betting race to race but you’ll scan the fields. There might be one that you know that you’ve assessed in a post race situation that … A race that you’re anticipating will be a good form reference, whether it be because of a fast time or the way the race was run. A horse may drop in grade or it might be the first to come out of that race and it’s at the provincials and so you back your judgement in that a race will be coming along that you think will be a good form race. You want to get ahead of the curve in that situation, back your judgement and start winning on them and they might appear at the smaller venues.
I’m certainly not Monday-Tuesday as forensic as you’d like to be later in the week, but with all the races on you’ve got to draw the line a bit. If a horse has come under the radar, popped up in a race, then you try and break that race down and see if you can get a dollar out of it.

Dave Duffield: In terms of staking, have you or do you ever bet level stakes? Or is it more proportionately?

Deane Lester: I bet mainly to a price that I might assess to, and bet to win to my price to a figure. Not to bet to the market price … As long as there’s an advantage, I’ll be to my prices and say bet to win x amount of dollars off my prices and that’s when you get that bit of overlay as you know. That would probably be my staking plan.

Dave Duffield: Does the staking amount vary depending on your confidence level of the race? Whether there’s enough exposed form for example? So basically does your bet size vary or is it always the same percentage of your bank, according to that rated price that you mentioned?

Deane Lester: Yeah, I think the only time a bet would increase is if I’m reading a track right and I’m getting the play right in that regard. I’m pretty standard with my bet sizes, but if I thought I was getting a track reading right and it mightn’t be evident for a couple of races and you might be ahead of the curve a little bit, I probably tend to back my judgement that I’ve got a track right more than anything.

Dave Duffield: We’ve spoken to some people in the past that incorporate the market price in their staking plan. Do you use any kind of market intelligence or do you just look for those overlays as you mentioned?

Deane Lester: Yeah, pretty much overlays. I think if you’re betting race to race, day to day and something just isn’t right in the market, you’ve got to factor it in whether you’re having a quaddie or a multiple bet or you’ve got one you like in the race and something with no form comes up five or six dollars and you think gee maybe I’ve overlooked this, or I haven’t got the intel that’s made this five or six dollars, you’re probably best to … Whether you have a saving bet on that or incorporate it in some way. That’s when I’d use market intelligence.

Dave Duffield: Would you normally back multiple horses in a race? And or go each way on runners that you like?

Deane Lester: I’m flexible on that. If I think I’ve got a race pretty right and I’ve got one of a reasonable quote then I might back it as the strongest … The two main dangers I might back them to break even so that I don’t lose on the race, or conversely if I’m strong on one I’m happy to bet each way but it’s got to be at a fair advantage.

Dave Duffield: Do you have a preference or a sweet spot in terms of the prices that you’re focused on? Or is it really just wherever the value is you’re happy to play?

Deane Lester: Yeah, pretty much. Again, it comes down to you can do all the pricing you want but you have a gut feel for things that sometimes there’ll be a $3.50 favourite and you’re sort of neutral on it, but then you’ll see $1.80 favuorite that you think well, if you’re going on the amount of times it will win this race out of ten, it could win it more than that percentage and it should be $1.50 or $1.40 I’m happy to take $1.80 if I’m getting that sort of over from the anticipated price that I thought it would be.

Dave Duffield: Do you ever bet during the week for Saturday’s racing? Or is it really just on race day?

Deane Lester: No, I’ll bet early. If it looks as though the variables such as weather and an established track position … I’m quite happy to bet early and see how the market unfolds because there’s certainly with the amount of options with corporate betting and the early fixed odds with the TAB there’s certainly good prices to be had if you think you’ve got the variables right, that there’s not going to be a dramatic change closer to the race.

Dave Duffield: Do you do much Pre-Post or future’s betting a couple of months out from the Cups for example?

Deane Lester: Not the cups, because I just find it too hard to deal with the internationals. I’m interested in the Derby, the Oaks, the Guineas because they are Australian and maybe some New Zealand input but they’re pretty much localised form lines and if you think you might just spot a horse early I’ll have a small interest on a runner and hopefully as long as it’s at big odds, that you’re anticipating it might get to a race like the Derby and that starts your market towards a race like that.

Dave Duffield: For exotics betting do you do quinellas, trifectas and the like? And also you spoke about quaddies before and I know you provide one regularly media wise, it’s a massive betting pool. How do you attack, personally, the exotics?

Deane Lester: Exotic-wise I’m a quaddie player, because I’m sort of trying to assess a race at who’s going to win. I think you’ve got to have a different imagination again with the multiples filling places like trifectas, first fours. You’ve got to know your limitations and it’s something that I have tried and I don’t think I’ve got the imagination as good as some players would have to get trifectas, first fours right.
The exotics… I’ll play quaddies and I often play quinellas if I think there’s only two or three chances to try and narrow it down that way. I’ve found trifectas I’ve had a couple of good results but it’s not my strongest point.

Dave Duffield: For your own betting bank, do you revise that or recalculate that on a regular basis?

Deane Lester: I’ve got a record of every bet I have and what sort of bet form it is and that’s why I just mentioned about trifectas, the column wasn’t looking as rosy as it should have in comparison to the amount I’d outlaid in other bet forms. So yes I do, as I said I keep a record of every bet and have a weekly tally of what’s gone on in a week and I keep that as a week-to-week record. I started keeping that in 2004 and that’s what led me to I do it weekly but then I do a monthly total and what I did notice is the Winter months and the wet track months they were just no-go zones. That’s why that’s been phased out of my betting program a little bit.

Dave Duffield: With those results are you focused on the bottom line, being total profit? Or is profit on turnover (as a percentage) a key metric for you?

Deane Lester: I’ve got a figure in my head that I like to try to win every year, knowing how much … My spend has been a slight increase every year over a ten year period but I’ve got a figure in my head that I want to win every year and I try and achieve that. Obviously you try and achieve more but I’ve got a base figure that I try and win every year.

Dave Duffield: Not in dollar terms but in percentage terms, the base figure that you try and win each year what would be the worst year that you’ve had and the best? For example have you had a break even year and a 200% year?

Deane Lester: Yeah, exactly. I had one year in 2011 where I actually had a slight loss on the year which was not the desired result but probably outside influences there probably caused me to not be at my best. Yeah, I’ve had nearly sort of 150-175% years and they’re the golden years. There seems to be about a 45-50% years most years.

Dave Duffield: Excellent. Well I really appreciate you coming on the show, Deane. Keep up the good work and good luck for Spring.

Deane Lester: My pleasure, thank you.

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Weekend Racing reviews – October 3rd

by darryn on October 5, 2015

Flemington review By Ray Hickson

Race 1: Maribrynong Trial Stakes (1000m)

1st Sweet Sherry – Damien Oliver
2nd Kinetic Design – Mark Zahra
3rd Moshway – Glen Boss

Not a bad start for two-year-olds on debut though Manuel was probably the slowest away. Rylea Lass found the lead one off the fence from Tris and Moshway three out. Wimborne sat behind that trio and wider out Sweet Sherry and Brookwater. Manuel had two behind him on settling. Tris momentarily hit the front but Moshway grabbed her at the 300m with Sweet Sherry chiming in. Brookwater couldn’t match them and Manuel was being stoked up down the centre with Kinetic Design going with him and better than him. Sweet Sherry ran to the lead inside the 200m and tended to float a little, with Kinetic Design looking a threat. Moshway was holding down third from Manuel and they broke away from the rest. Sweet Sherry had about half a length to spare and had Kinetic Design’s measure. Solid debut performance from the first two. Manuel disappointed, particularly as an odds-on favourite, though pulled up sore while Brookwater might well come back next prep as a gelding so keep an eye out for that.

Follow: a few nice efforts but nothing really stood out.

Race 2: Poseidon Stakes (1400m)

1st One For One – Craig Williams
2nd Deadly Shadow – Hugh Bowman
3rd Faatinah – Michael Walker

Stoker was a bit slow and crossed them at the back of the field. Deadly Shadow was gifted the lead and One For One moved up into second with Iceflow taking the box seat. Top Me Up was caught three wide around an easing Well Sighted and Dynamic Day while Faatinah was in the clear. No speed on here as Deadly Shadow dictated and One For One was given a reminder to stay with him well before the turn. Iceflow eased out three wide and Well Sighted ran up between him and Dynamic Day at the 400m but didn’t take the run through when it opened. Faatinah emerged down the outside but the leaders had slipped right away, One For One stuck his head in front past the 200m and after a short battle with Deadly Shadow started to just inch away. Well ridden and too strong. Nice effort from Deadly Shadow who is still a maiden and Faatinah held off the fast finishing Flying Light for third. Stoker didn’t do a bad job to run fifth while Well Sighted disappointed. Held up for a while but he was in the clear in plenty of time. Dominated on the speed and the backmarkers had no chance.

Follow: Deadly Shadow will win a maiden anywhere he goes but is obviously city class.

Race 3: Gilgai Stakes (1200m)

1st Chautauqua – Dwayne Dunn
2nd Delectation – Hugh Bowman
3rd Knoydart – James McDonald

A clean getaway for Chautauqua but he settled well back in the field. Earthly Tiger took it up with Thermal Current on his outside and Scarlet Billows on the fence. Churchill Dancer was further out while Charlie Boy was covered up behind the leaders. Knoydart raced widest and kept Chautauqua in a pocket near the tail. Chautauqua was being niggled to try and push Knoydart out of the way and start to chase but he was’t going anywhere and Delectation came across Knoydart’s heels to stride up and ensure Chautauqua couldn’t get out. Scarlet Billows had dashed clear while all this was going on, Charlie Boy was in the clear but one paced and Churchill Dancer tried to run on as well. Chautauqua had to switch back inside Churchill Dancer to get into the race and Knoydart and Delectation were swooping down the outside. Scarlet Billows was still in front 100m out but you could see Chautauqua coming and he burst through and made it look pretty soft at the finish. Delectation continued his good straight form to grab second over Knoydart while Scarlet Billows was just denied third after giving a huge sight. Every chance Churchill Dancer.

Follow: none outside the winner who was a class above them.

Race 4: UCI Stakes (1800m)

1st Ayers Rock – Darren Gauci
2nd Tivaci – Damien Oliver
3rd Alkaashef – Dwayne Dunn

Ayers Rock jumped okay from the inside alley and was dug up to hold the fence and the lead. More Than Perfect crossed to sit outside and Alkaashef landed in the box seat inside Overstay. A couple to Iron Boss and Tivaci together in a strung out field. Ayers Rock and More Than Perfect opened up a decent break on them a long way from home and Overstay was being niggled at as far out as 800m to run. Alkaashef still travelled okay and Iron Boss followed him. Tivaci was first tom make a move and whipped around Overstay while Colosseum King got onto his back. Zapurbly and Invincible Knightwere in that bunch and Etymology was under the whip in midfield trying to get into the race. Ayers Rock got away from More Than Perfect early in the straight and Tivaci sprinted quickly to join him. Iron Boss ran up behind the leader and Alkaashef pulled out to make ground. Etymology was wider out and a bit one paced. Tivaci could only get within about a neck from Ayers Rock who kept fighting on and outstayed him. Alkaashef battled on well to hold third while from the back Pay Up Bro ran home without threatening. Even run from Iron Boss and Etymology was only fair. The Derby picture wasn’t made any clearer after this race but hard to knock the winner.

Follow: Iron Boss was okay up in class and has some upside.

Race 5: Edward Manifold Stakes (1600m)

1st Badawiya – Damien Oliver
2nd Sacred Eye – Michael Walker
3rd My Poppette – Mark Zahra

Pearl Star was one of the best away and handed straight up to Air Apparent and Sailing By while My Poppette worked into fourth pretty easily from the wide gate. Thames Court followed them then a couple to Badawiya and Sacred Eye. Don’t Doubt Mamma was next and Bengal Cat found herself out three wide. Not a lot of change to the turn with Air Apparent and Sailing By still having it, My Poppette pulled out and ran on while Pearl Star and Thames Court had to wait. Badawiya loomed at them quickly inside the 400m while Sacred Eye had to ease and get off the inside and around Badawiya’s heels. The leaders were struggling by the 200m and Badawiya cruised up with My Poppette and sprinted very sharply. Sacred Eye balanced up and set out after her, closing the margin a bit in the last 100m. My Poppette stuck on pretty well for third and Sailing By also battled on nicely to run fourth. Nothing really made any ground from the back half of the field and the winner was far too strong.

Follow: Sacred Eye is coming along nicely and looking for 2000m.

Race 6: The Bart Cummings (2520m)

1st Let’s Make Adeal – Dwayne Dunn
2nd Our Ivanhowe – Ben Melham
3rd Hawkspur – Hugh Bowman

A mad charge to the first turn with seven of them across the track and it wasn’t until the 2000m that Wexford Town was able to cross. Cafe Society worked up to second with Let’s Make Adeal right in the firing line too. Our Ivanhowe held the inside running with Crafty Cruiser outside him and Bold Sniper trapped deep. Maygrove and Foundry were the next pair. Kapour made a move three wide and De Little Engine got onto his back. Wexford Town wasn’t overly pressured along the back straight until Kapour made it up outside giving Bold Sniper some cover and Cafe Society the box seat. They bunched right up on the turn and Kapour was under pressure to go with Wexford Town. Let’s Make Adeal had worked into the clear with Our Ivanhowe trying to follow her. Cafe Society dropped off and De Little Engine made a bit of a dash early in the straight. Let’s Make Adeal cantered to the lead at the 300m and went for home. Our Ivanhowe started to wind up while wider out De Little Engine and Maygrove were battling. Wexford Town was also struggling and getting up behind him from last was Hawkspur. Let’s Make Adeal had established a winning break and raced into the Melbourne Cup with an easy win. Solid effort from Our Ivanhowe giving her 6kg and Hawkspur ran his best race for a while getting up for third. Maygrove was next with Renew making some good ground and Precedence also ran on when it was all over.

Follow: none of these can win a Melbourne Cup.

Race 7: Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m)

1st Preferment – Hugh Bowman
2nd Royal Descent – Glen Boss
3rd Set Square – Luke Currie

Volkstok’n’barrell assumed the early lead in a bunch with Weary, who jumped with them this time, Magicool and Set Square. Protectionist and Dandino were handy while Royal Descent was looking for a spot. Amralah and Happy Trails were inside Rising Romance while Preferment raced in the clear. Weary took over the running midrace from Volkstok’n’barrell and that left Dandino three wide while Magicool and Set Square had nice trails. Royal Descent had a three wide trail around Protectionist and Happy Trails. Volkstok’n’barrell got to Weary at the 300m with Dandino still there. Set Square was having trouble getting a clear run while Royal Descent started her run. Anyone’s race as far as 100m out as Royal Descent hit the lead and Set Square finally got a run on the fence. Dandino was still fighting while Preferment was the one closing off late. Running on from the back were Hartnell and Rising Romance while Extra Zero darted between them. Preferment arrived in time to down Royal Descent, another Group 1 second, while Set Square might have been a bit stiff just ahead of a very brave Dandino. Extra Zero and Hartnell were’t far away but it was another bunched finish with Amralah, Volkstok’n’barrell and Happy Trails all in that clump while Gust Of Wind was right on their heels. Plenty to digest here. The first four were excellent, Hartnell a pass mark but a worry that Extra Zero finished better, Rising Romance had no luck and another nice run from Gust Of Wind. Jury’s out on Happy Trails and Volkstok’n’barrell and, sadly, Protectionist just isn’t the same horse that won the Cup so easily last year.

Follow: Set Square, Dandino, Rising Romance.

Race 8: Blazer Stakes (1400m)

1st La Passe – Michelle Payne
2nd Manageress – Chris Parnham
3rd Jessy Belle – Damian Lane/Lucky Lago – Mark Zahra

Hazard flew out from the outside alley and crossed to the fence very quickly. Tycoon Tara sat behind her early on with Satya and La Passe up handy. MadamGangster found herself three wide near the speed with Cathy’s Mark on her back. Girl In Flight was three back on the fence and Manageress around midfieldHazard was niggled at on the turn as Tycoon Tara went with her and they kicked away. Madam Gangster and La Passe seemed to be battling to get to them at Satya ran up behind the leaders on the fence. Hazard looked to get away from Tycoon Tara at the 200m but she challenged again and La Passe warmed to the task and made a line of three, finishing off the better. La Passe broke a length or two clear and they were swarming behind her as Manageress burst through to snatch second from Jessy Belle running on down the outside and Lucky Lago also diving late to share thrd while Madam Gangster just weakened. Hazardand Tycoon Tara were swallowed up after looking likely to fight it out. Atlantis Dream was never really sighted. Solid effort from the winner who did a lot of chasing.

Follow: Manageress has come back well and is a real Flemington horse.

Race 9: Paris Lane Stakes (1400m)

1st Worthy Cause – Luke Dittman
2nd Turn Me Loose – Opie Bosson
3rd Lord Aspen – Matthew Neilson

Worthy Cause pounced on the early lead from Guest Of Honour with Turn Me Loose coming over from a wide gate. Lord Aspen landed in fourth and the leading quartet broke a couple clear ofScream Machine inside Ulmann. Orient Line and Gamblin’ Guru, who was last out but improved quickly, were midfield. Worthy Cause did it pretty well to the turn with Turn Me Loose outside him and the first under pressure behind them was Lord Aspen and he hung a bit on the turn. Guest Of Honour got out from underneath him while wider out Ulmann and Orient Line had pulled out to run on. But the leaders kicked right away as Worthy Cause and Turn Me Loose fought it out to the line with not much between them and just a margin to Worthy Cause. Lord Aspen was all over the place but stuck on behind them and just held on for third over the fast finishing Setinum who launched from the back. Ulmann had every chance and was once paced while Chivalry also made a bit of ground without ever looking likely.

Follow: Turn Me Loose made a promising Australian debut.

Specials from the meeting: Iron Boss, Sacred Eye, Manageress, Turn Me Loose.


The Turnbull Stakes has been run and won for another year, and it was won this year by a horse who is defying the trend of VRC Derby winners not to go on with the job. Preferment, winner of last year’s Derby, has now made it two on the trot, and has confirmed himself as a genuine Cups horse.

My tip in The Turnbull was Rising Romance, and she has to be described as disappointing. I’m always inclined to forgive good horses one bad run, so that’s what I will do with her, as she was trapped deep for the race, but still didn’t really seem to put in as I had expected.

The question mark for me over the Weight For Age racing this Spring so far is that every time we are seeing them go around, there are several horses within a few lengths of one another, which does make it difficult to really pin point too much from a future view point.

All the same, this race, as it always does, will prove to be a key race for the rest of the Spring, with some nice runs coming from it.

I’ve already commented on Preferment, my word of advice if you are a fan of his is to stick with him wherever he goes. Of the Australian horses in The Cups, he currently has to be seen as the one with the runs on the board.

Dandino is a horse I have mentioned in a few articles lately. His age doesn’t seem to bother him, nor his previous injury. He was arguably the run of the race here after being trapped wide. Look out in The Caulfield Cup.

Set Square was good after a nice run in transit, and could be a lightweight Cups chance, but I think the market has her too short at the moment and I am looking elsewhere.

Who Shot Thebarman is one I have been following through it’s Sydney form, and I feel it is a key run out of this race. He will be better suited over further distance and in Handicap conditions, he hasn’t firmed up a great deal in terms of Cups markets, so could still be the value runner.

There were a number of runners that I feel dented their future Spring claims through not standing up in this race.

Many will suggest the Hartnell was a big run from last, but given the winner wasn’t too far in front of him and ran away from him in the straight, and Extra Zero went to the line a little better than him, I couldn’t talk him up too much. Way too short in the market for the big races I feel.

Happy Trails was the other for mine that I can’t give a wrap to. I think he is past his best and was entitled to do more here. Any thoughts of a Cox Plate are not possible in my opinion.

Volkstok’n’Barrell hasn’t made the grade for mine and will continue to run around and be a few lengths behind them unless they find easier races.

Amralah is the hard one to assess. Didn’t do a great deal but also didn’t really seem to be pushed out that hard in the straight. I’d like to see it again.

The obvious one I haven’t mentioned of course is Royal Descent. She always is there about, but you are a richer person by leaving her out of the win ticket in most of her races so I don’t see any reason to change that approach.

In summary, I feel the race has told us not to ignore Preferment at this level. That Dandino is a classy galloper who deserves to be followed, and that Who Shot Thebarman is just looking for the right race and will get the job done. Is that race one of the Cups?

The Spring rolls on….


Randwick review by Todd Burmester

Race 1

1st Capitalist – Blake Shinn
2nd Detective – Hugh Bowman
3rd Prized Icon – Tye Angland

The first two-year-olds of the season got us underway on Epsom day 2015. Cohesion got running from out wide and looked to cross but Samadoubt kicked through to lead and One Strike was up outside of it. Cohesion had to ease and wanted to fight the jockey. Caprera had a nice run back on the fence behind the speed and the short priced favourite Capitalist was back behind them with Detective. Once they spun the bend and topped the rise, Capitalist was let loose on the outside and Detective took the run in the middle. Thereafter it was a one act affair as Capitalist looked super smart going away for an easy win without much pressure being applied. Detective did a good job in second as did Prized Icon to run into third. Cohesion didn’t have a lot go it’s way and could be forgiven.

Follow: Capitalist was super impressive

Race 2

1st Calliope – James McDonald
2nd Jeannuea – Blake Shinn
3rd Slumber Party Tommy Berry

The baby girls and their go in the second event and Calliope was sent out short in this race and supporters were worried early when she missed the kick clearly. Candela had any amount of pace from out wide and crossed to lead. Rather Sweet and Angharad were in second and third. As they approached the turn Calliope was still well back and being hooked to the outside. Candela topped the rise in front and was then asked for the effort. Favourite backers went for the whip as Calliope started to make ground big time. She hit the lead with a bit more than 100m to go and came away for an easy victory. You have to admire the effort for an inexperienced two-year-old to miss the kick and still find the line in this manner. Jeanneau also did a good job in second after not having the clearest running in the straight. I note that the win of Capitalist in the first was much quicker from an overall and last 600m point of view.

Follow: Jeannuea

Race 3

1st Ambience – James McDonald
2nd Wudang Mountain – Hugh Bowman
3rd Land’s End – Brenton Avdulla

They raced over the mile in race three with Cracklin’ Rosie running to the front from Wudang Mountain. Land’s End settled third from More Than Fabulous who was over on the inside. Mid race the pace didn’t look strong and there was no change in the order. They ran the bend without anything making a run, although Land’s End was pulled three wide and Ambience was coming around its heals. At the fulong Ambience looked to be the one you wanted to be on as it joined the leaders with no pressure applied whereas the others were asked for some effort. Thereafter James McDonald gunned Ambience and it raced away for a nice win. Horses with a turn of foot like this generally go places so stick with her.

Follow: Ambience

Race 4

1st Exosphere – James McDonald
2nd Zoutenant – Blake Shinn
3rd Japonisme – Hugh Bowman

Japonisme was drawn wide and raced across to lead them up in the Roman Consul. The Queenslanders Le Chef and Wicked Intent raced in second and third. The long odds on favouriteExosphere went right back to second last. Into the straight and heading up the rise Japonisme had a big lead and looked to be doing it ok. Plenty of them were under pressure, but Exosphere was pulled to the outside and was making ground of his own accord. They got up the rise and then James McDonald asked him for the effort and it was lovely to watch him stretch out and make the rest look second rate. Zoutenant claimed Japonisme for second who may have raced a bit fresh today but was much improved on its flat effort last time. The winner is clearly high class and going places.

Follow: Exosphere a future champion?

Race 5

1st Terravista – Hugh Bowman
2nd Rebel Dane – Brenton Avdulla
3rd That’s A Good Idea – Glyn Schofield

There was plenty of pace early on in The Premier Stakes as you would expect. Tiger Tees had it momentarily before That’s A Good Idea ran to the front. Hot Snitzel kicked up along the inside with Tiger Tees staying one off the fence. The favourite Terravista was content to get well back. Generalife had a wide run. As they topped the rise, the orange colours of Terravista were slicing through and he hit the front at the furlong and looked all over a winner. In the final part Rebel Dane did a very good job to make ground on the winner but was never going to catch him. This was yet another example of class rising to the top, which seemed the theme of the day.

Follow: Rebel Dane

Race 6

1st Complacent – James McDonald
2nd Hauraki – Joao Moreira
3rd I’m Imposing – Tye Angland

They began well in The Craven Plate with the favourite Complacent rolling to the front before Celtic Prince decided he wanted a piece of the action and ran past Complacent to take it up.Gallante was pulling in third spot outside of Sense Of Occasion. Mid race the pace looked ok as the first few stretched out a bit, particularly the leader who put about four lengths on them before the 600m mark. Around the bend, Complacent carted them up to the leader and Hauraki came with a nice run also. Once they topped the rise, those two cleared out and settled down to fight it out. For all money it looked like Hauraki was going to get the better of Complacent, but the favourite kept digging deep under the urgings of McDonald and gained the day in the shadows of the post in what was not a bad effort given it did the work to take the field up to the runaway leader.

Follow: Complacent, Hauraki

Race 7

1st Winx – Hugh Bowman
2nd Ecuador – Glen Boss
3rd Sons Of John – Jeff Penza

The great racing just kept coming with The Epsom being race 7 on the card. Entirely Platinum took it up early but Hooked was up on its outside and Ecuador was up three deep. Hooked eased and let the other two go in front and they had a gap early on over the rest of the field. Winx was not as far back today but was caught three deep. Before the bend you were happy enough if you were on Winx, but just on the point of the turn, Kirramosa came with a quick run and put Winx in a pocket and she checked a couple of times and could have just about come down. Up the rise, Bowman extricated Winx to the outside, with the question mark being how much had the scrimmage on the turn taken out of her? Soon after that question was answered brilliantly as she showed a fantastic turn of foot at the furlong and raced past Sons Of John who had done his best to find the front. In the run to the line, you had to be in awe of Winx who put over two lengths on them. Ecuador did a good job in second, Sons Of John peaked a bit on its run in third and Messene hit the line nicely in fourth.

Follow: Winx the Cox Plate winner

Race 8

1st Speak Fondly – Tommy Berry
2nd Honesta – Tye Angland
3rd Perignon – Hugh Bowman

When they got going in race 8, Sophia Rosa was deliberately taken back to the rear. Flamboyant Lass came out running and went to the front with Speak Fondly up into second spot. Those two ensured a genuine pace with a couple of lengths break over Lauren’s Magic in third and Sempre Libera in fourth spot. They looked to slow up a bit in the middle stages but there was no change in the order until just before the turn where Sempre Libera came three wide and Honesta came four wide to be ready to strike. Up the rise, Speak Fondly was lengthening out and still had the front. Sempre Libera and Honesty were putting in their challenges and Perignon was coming through back inside of Speak Fondly. In a very competitive finish, Speak Fondly just kept digging and managed to hold off Honesta and Perignon and it wasn’t far back to Pearls who finished her race off nicely enough.

Follow: Pearls

Race 9

1st Magic Hurricane – James McDonald
2nd Beaten Up – Glyn Schofield
3rd Havana Cooler – Joao Moreira

The Metropolitan for 2015 finished off a great day of racing and it was a nice level start. Orbec led them up with Bonfire rolling forward to sit on its outside. Maurus took the trail in third, and after being wide early, Beyond Thankful found a spot one off the fence. Beaten Up and Magic Hurricane got nice runs midfield. Almoonqith who found good support in betting got back to last. As they came to the turn and around it there were plenty of them making runs, but just back in behind them you could see the blue colours of Magic Hurricane stalking its way into the race. Once they topped the rise he sprinted to the lead and looked all over a winner. James McDonald pushed him out and made a good thing of it in what as a pretty impressive win off the back of a lovely ride. Beaten Up took second continuing its solid form, and Havana Cooler looked better today over this distance. Almoonqith found the line ok, but realistically wanted another lap. The more forward riding tactics seemed to suit Orbec who plugged away ok into fourth.

Follow: Beaten Up might pinch a race

Specials from the meeting: Capitalist, Jeanneau, Ambience


Race 7 – 9:45PM G1 Moir Stakes (1000 METRES)

Speed Map


As expected in almost all sprint races at this track there is very good speed on paper with three runners wanting the lead. Is more than likely that jockey Damian Lane will be adamant to cross and be the leader or be an equal leader to the outside of either Buffering or Ball Of Muscle. A fast first 400m sectional is expected.

Few runners drawn a little wide may have to shuffle back and settle further back than desired.

Our Market:
This market is of our systems ‘raw’ prices which is set to 100% with every runner rated >$22 eliminated. CP clients get a market <100% on a wagering sheet which also blends in the public price of each runner to find a wagering edge.

n13 Petits Filous $3.11
n12 Fontiton $4.03
n1 Buffering rated $4.20
n6 Ball Of Muscle $12.41
n7 Angelic Light $15.15
m4 Flamberge $21.96

Only current overlays:

BUFFERING – Is first up off an injury which left him missing the autumn/winter. Won this race first up last preparation beating Lankan Rupee in small field. Will want to lead but is likely to be crossed, is much more pressure here than last year. He is an extremely tough horse though and unlike the 3YO fillies in this race we know he can produce the winning rating required.

FONTITON – First up. Produced some excellent wins as a 2YO, in particular Blue Diamond Prelude. Was then short Blue Diamond favourite and suffered setback in the race. No trials/jumpouts into this interesting. Has shown she has an excellent turn of foot and has a very sharp sprint on her. With age improvement she can win well.

Recommended Bets:
We will be backing the overlays present in the race using excluding Angelic Light, who is expected to drift with the bandages on first up.

More information on the Melbourne ratings service.


Will Wilde is a London-based maths graduate who is the head trader at Football Form Labs. They provide soccer betting software that allows you to analyse a treasure trove of data across 50 different leagues.

He’s on the podcast this week to share his betting insights and experience.

Punting Insights

  • How to use past data to identify profitable trends
  • Why he bets into some of the biggest markets in the world
  • Exactly how he stakes his bets and manages his money
  • His expected strike-rate and profitability

Today’s Guest:
Will Wilde

>> Click here to read the transcript

Dave Duffield: Good day Will. I haven’t had you on the show before so maybe you can just give the listeners a brief rundown on your background.

Will Wilde: Sure, I’m the head trader for Football Form Labs which is betting software to help people bet on soccer. We’re based in the UK, but we cover leagues all around the world. We run our own strategies, we let users create their own strategies in the software and also give them advice on how to be a better punter through editorial output which can be simple as a recommendation. Or it can be a lot further in depth of how markets are formed and how people bet.

Dave Duffield: And has some of that come about from your maths background. I believe you have a maths degree?

Will Wilde: Yeah, I’ve studied maths. It’s heavily data driven, but we also like to present it in a format where we can give users the tools to make their own decisions on data. It’s not going to be as simple as saying, this has happened in the past so this will happen in the future. We’ll drill down further into statistics and try and work out which ones are relevant to an upcoming fixture or other sporting events.
Currently we’re covering a lot of the Rugby World Cup and have a huge game weekend, but with the same tactics that we use to analyse football matches we delve into other sports predominantly rugby, tennis, cricket, golf, NFL, baseball. We cover a large range of sports where we can get a comprehensive database of past results and use that to try and predict what’s going to happen in the future and make some money.

Dave Duffield: So we’ve run a podcast series here the last few weeks with some fairly standard questions amongst Australian racing and harness punters . This one will be a little bit different in that I’ll just only ask the ones that are moreso relevant to the work that you do. The first one is probably an obvious answer in that we’ve been chatting to people about whether they are more data driven or gut instinct and experience. It sounds like you’re heavily focused on the data.

Will Wilde: We are massively focused on the data, and I think a key thing is having experience with markets as well. I think most good gut instinct comes from a lot of practice in the markets. I think it’s probably a bit harsh to call it gut instinct. It takes years of practice to get that good to know when the price is wrong. I think even gut instinct is driven by data even though maybe people aren’t aware of it at the time that data that they’ve accumulated even if they’re not actually tracking, even if they’re not keeping records all of the time.
We use a data driven approach, we try and look at trends in the past that will be reproduced in the future. Maybe if they won’t be reproduced in the future if there’s a reason a team may change their behavior. A lot of the time in football just the introduction of a new coach can massively change the way a team plays. Over here we’ve got a team called West Brom in the Premier Leagues, they’re now managed by Tony Pulis.
He’s done some remarkable things at other clubs keeping them up in the league, but he doesn’t play a brand of exciting attacking football because a lot of his games tend to be pretty dull affairs. He actually was involved in a 3-2 thriller on Monday, but apart from that most of his games are pretty dull, whereas before he took over at West Brom they were a very pleasing team on the eye with more goals in their games but maybe less effective. Whereas under him, they should stay up comfortably , which is the goal isn’t it?

Dave Duffield: How do you find trends in the data that it likely to continue, because there are some untrained people that would look at very recent performances, and probably small sample sizes, and the backfitting and all that type of stuff. How do you avoid any of those pitfalls?

Will Wilde: I think the key really is finding value. How is the market going to be priced up? Is the mark going to be priced based on how well the team’s are known, for instance in the Champions League tonight we’ve got Man City playing away. That game looks like it’s being priced up as a standard non-Bayern Munich German team playing at home against the English champions-elect.
Now, anyone watching Man City know that they’re not playing anything like that at that level, certainly at the last couple of weeks. Mainly because they’ve got some big injuries in their sport. Their key man David Silva is injured again tonight, and without him they lack creativity.
What we’ll do, we’ll go back and look at the game to where David Silva hasn’t played for Man City and how they’ve done without him. That’s how we would approach that game, and try and model that one against the prices available tonight.

Dave Duffield: You talk about the Champions League there, do you tend to concentrate on big games and big markets like that where I’m sure you can get on for massive volume if you so choose, or you more looking to cherry pick nice smaller leagues and less widely bet games?

Will Wilde: I think that’s a very good question. I think a good answer to that would be the evolution of a standard bettor. If I was recommending someone getting into betting now, to really make money from it you’re going to have to beat the most liquid markets in the world. Now, the most liquid markets in the world are priced up by some of the best brains in the world, but that’s to say that value won’t exist at some point between the price opening and the price closing or even in play.
If you could understand why markets are modeled as they are you can take advantage of the times where they might be wrong, because the price will move up and down in any liquid market, and at some point it’s a back for someone and at some point it’s a lay for someone. I think if you’re disciplined enough to say, okay I’m going to back Man City tonight at 2.2, should they ever get there, but I’m also going to lay them at 1.8 to have a decent range, at some point there’s a good … That bet might get hit.
I think our strategy is certainly to beat the most liquid markets in the world, the toughest market but also the most popular markets. We do that for a few reasons really, some are commercial. A lot of people will be more interested in the Champions League tonight than the League One game last night that maybe 10,000 people are watching compared to a couple of million maybe that watched Chelsea last night. I think commercially, it makes sense to try and analyse the toughest games.
From a professional punting perspective, there’s little point in analysing the smaller games because you can’t make that much money off of them. At some point liquidity dries up in the lower leagues, and if you’re going to turn this into a job in itself it’s got to pay for itself. The only way you can do that is by being with the biggest leagues.

Dave Duffield: Do you tend to bet early when markets aren’t fully formed or maybe there’s some information in the market that isn’t widely known, or do you bet once all the objective factors are known and you can be pretty confident that there’s no late injuries, weather, anything like that?

Will Wilde: Yeah. I think that certainly the biggest change is the starting lineup. One problem that gamblers have got is that the market will move once the starting line up lineup is known. And someone will know the starting line up before you do. Our approach typically is we use a predictive team lineup method where we have experts in every league that we cover. They will between 2 and 4 hours before the game give us a predicted lineup based on their expert knowledge and their information from all the teams in that leagues.
While that’s never going to be 100% accurate, what it does allow us to do, it lets us feed our model, which is a player ratings model, with predicted team lineups. We can get on before the price moves. We can’t get on much before that because there isn’t too much liquidity more than 4 hours before the start of the game. That’s where we operate at the moment, before 4 and 2 hours before the game.
Certainly, prices are more wrong the earlier they are available. The reason for that is that bookmakers cover every game and every market within that game. They haven’t got the resources yet to say okay, we’ve got to be on the ball, searching Twitter every second, Preston North End say, give a press update that one of their players might be injured. They put those prices up there but they’re limits are going to be a lot lower because there’s a lot more uncertainty in the market.
As soon as the teams are announced, and certainly when the game goes in play everything changes completely. Liquidity goes up a lot more, markets will follow a similar trend in every match, which would be based on the activity in that game. I think that that’s a great time for punters if they had seen something in-game or they know the teams have maybe a different tendency to the norm in-play, that they can get a great opportunity, but for us we tend to bet between 2 and 4 hours before the match.

Dave Duffield: Have you found soccer to have more or less betting opportunities because of the low scores. Obviously the there’s some variance there. What’s the average score in a game? Maybe 2 and a half goals or similar to that.

Will Wilde: 2 and a half goals, I think it means there’s a lot of luck involved. Most models now have a certain high luck dependency. They expect variance in terms of the number of chances that you convert really. I think a lot of sports are best modeled because there are more points. For instance, tennis, you got a reference point every minute whereas in football you’re only going to get 2 or 3 a game.
Surprised that football is so popular as an in-play betting sport because of that. I think before the game it’s an opinion. You get an opinion, but the nature of a game changes so much in football when a goal is scored. Whereas is in other sports, like in NFL, it’s until you get very late into the game the pattern of the game is very similar.
Variance is a huge thing in football but equally it’s a very liquid market so if you do something the more you can do something because there are so many games covered, so many leagues around the world that you can bet on. You can have enough bets in a year to negate that variance. We place 3000 bets a year. On one game you might get very unlucky but over the course of the year you hope it would even out.

Dave Duffield: What about in-play? You mentioned that it’s a very popular option. What percentage of your overall betting volume would be in-play?

Will Wilde: I think a very small percentage. One of the reasons for that is that the football models are very efficient now and the value that I can get pre-match won’t necessarily improve in-play unless there’s something I’m expecting to happen in play, which if I could predict that there was going to be a goal in the 30th minute for the Away team and then I wanted back the home team, why would I take a pre-match position anyway unless it was backing the home team and expecting them to come in in-play.
The reason we don’t be a lot of time in-play is that if we make something value pre-match it’s very rarely going to be value on the opposing side in-play. It would be a bad bet to hedge any of our positions and because we’re having so many bets a year we would lose a large chunk of our edge by just greening up and just having a guaranteed profit. I think trading generally as a way to circulate your funds and reuse them and work for a better position it should in a sport where you might have a lot of positions in one match, say a 20/20 cricket match. It makes perfect sense. You’re going to have a lot of entry and exit points.
In football because, as you mentioned, with the lack of goals it’s very rare that your opinion is going to change if you’re betting on a model. The model is always going to say that the home team is value whether they’re 3 nil up, whether they’re 3 nil down. Whatever the marker is it’s going to be wrong by a similar amount that it was at the start unless there’s been something in-play to massively change your opinion.
I think because models are so efficient in football and liquidity is so large you can always use an opinion-based approach rather than a model-based approach in-play because the market isn’t that wrong in the first place. You’re betting against an efficient market so if you think you’ve got a small edge why not take it in-play?

Dave Duffield: In terms of your staking and the money management, how do you determine what sends me back to bet and also is that influence by the size of the overlay? Is there any aspect of the Kelly Criterion price herein involved?

Will Wilde: Certainly is. I think the more value you’ve got the more you should stake for sure but Kelly is based on knowing the chance of every outcome available for which in sport is impossible to get, so I think a certainly limited Kelly is the best approach.
We bet actually solely on the Asian Handicap, for any listeners unaware, is a way of turning a proper market from a 3-way market which includes a win, draw or loss into a two-way market where one team is given a number of goals advantage at the start of the game in increments of a quarter of a goal.
One of the reasons we use the Asian Handicap is because it’s very liquid, but another is that the odds are normalised to, on average, even each side. You’re probably betting $1.98 / $1.98 the best prices would make.
You’re never going to get a situation where you make a 3/ 1 shot 6/4, so you’re going to have a lot more on the 3/1 shot. It’s what we make our handicap, the supremacy that we make it compared to the actual handicap. While we have a Kelly part of our stake it’s a very standard staking system because the returns are … You’ve already got a standard return-based staking system. You haven’t even tried to make it by that just because it’s the Asian Handicap that you always get a binary payoff.
We’re very cautious in our staking but we average 0.7% of our bank. I think in terms of how anyone should work out their stake going forward I think when you’re learning to bet and when you’re new to it I think it makes sense to have a higher staking system, even higher percent in your bank because you don’t necessarily have this physical betting bank. If only when you start taking it very seriously you’ve floated a bit of money to your bank, and not much higher, but I can imagine 2% or 3% is going to be a good way to test the system.
Also, have it matter enough that you’re going to give it enough attention when you’re learning. When you take it to a professional level, you don’t want any result to have a huge bearing on your annual results. We have about 0.7% of our bank on every bet, but the reason we have such a low amount is that we place a lot of bets every year so I think you still want to turn over a large enough percentage of your bank to make a good return over a year. If you don’t do that then the profit you’re going to make is going to be very small, and maybe you don’t give it enough attention because you don’t have enough turn over.

Dave Duffield: At $1.98 for the Asian Handicap what would you expect to win as a winning strike or a percentage of your bets?

Will Wilde: The market is very good. If we won 55% of our bets in a year we would make 1000% return on our bank. It’s not going to happen. We’d be looking at 52% strike rate against the market that’s going to be paying you out, let’s say, a 49% market. It’s like 2% over around and we try and make 52% or 53% but a very small amount over that many bets. It’s a good market, and it’s a tough market to beat.

Dave Duffield: Then how do you manage your bank? Whether you’re winning or losing do you adjust the size of your bet?

Will Wilde: Yeah, I think it’s a good question of when you should adjust the size of your bank. I think it’s good practice. If you’ve got a profitable system then compounding the bank is going to make the returns better. In a perfect mathematical system you would rebalance your bank every bet. That’s not practical at all whenever you’ve got a lot of bets going on at the same time over a short period. It would also mean that the most recent bet has a lot more influence on your bank than previous bets if you’re on a good run.
We re-base our bank every quarter. On average, that would be every 750 bets and we turn over our bank 5 times.
I think you want to do it at least every time as maximum for every time you turn over your bank. Say you got a bank of $10,000 when you place $10,000 in bets have a look at what you’ve got in your bank and then re-base that to your standard stake, but I wouldn’t do anything less than one full turn over of your bank. We do it around five.

Dave Duffield: All right, we’ll leave it there for today. Will I appreciate you coming on the show, definitely a different perspective to what we’ve heard before. All the best, also I believe your speaking at the Matchbook Trader’s Conference?

Will Wilde: Yeah, yeah, it should be a great event. If you or any of your listeners are over in the UK in London on the 14th, be great to come and join us and we’re hoping it’s going to be live-streamed. It’s a really good list of speakers so it should be great day, and hoping Scott can make his dream work.

Dave Duffield: No worries Will, all the best, appreciate that.

Will Wilde: Thanks a lot.

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Weekend Racing Reviews – Sept 26th

by darryn on September 28, 2015

Caulfield review by Ray Hickson

Race 1: Pancare Foundation Plate (1100m)

1st Afleet Esprit – Dylan Dunn
2nd Japhils – Jackie Beriman
3rd Pilly’s Wish – Damien Oliver

A few of them wanted the early lead and Beach Front tried to cross Japhils with Lesley’s Choice just easing out of it. Afleet Esprit worked into a good spot with Atmospherical handy and Catch That Cat stuck three wide. Pittsburgh Flyer settled three back on the fence. Japhils won control and Beach Front was hard pressed to stay with her coming to the turn. Afleet Esprit was waiting for a gap and Atmospherical was held up behind Beach Front. Pittsburgh Flyer was checked at the 300m by Atmospherical and lost ground. Afleet Esprit found clear running and set out after Japhils. Beach Front was sticking on which caused trouble for Atmospherical and Pittsburgh Flyer looking for runs. Lesley’s Choice couldn’t go with them while Pilly’s Wish started to make ground down the outside. Japhils and Afleet Esprit had cleared out at the 100m and it came down to the bob of the head which Afleet Esprit did at the right time. Pilly’s Wish ran into third and Pittsburgh Flyer eventually got going again and made ground ahead a wall of them including Fiftyshadesofgrey, Catch That Cat and Matilija, who was never in the hunt.

Follow: Pittsburgh Flyer should have finished a lot closer.

Race 2: Inglis Cup (2000m)

1st Firehouse Rock – Dwayne Dunn
2nd Gloryland – Mark Zahra
3rd Bondeiger – James Winks

Gloryland rolled to the lead and Muraqaba was happy to sit up on his outside. Braces and Hell On Earth enjoyed good runs early while Kansas Sunflower appeared to not be settling. Sloane Rangerwas on her inside and Loved Up raced in the clear. Gloryland really controlled things up front and that flushed out Kansas Sunflower, who really wasn’t settling, and she strode forward midrace to take over. Loved Up ran off the track at the 800m as Kansas Sunflower ran clear of Gloryland and that put Muraqaba under a bit of pressure. Hell On Earth and Braces had done no work and were waiting. Gloryland had a shot at Kansas Sunflower on the turn and he regained the lead past the 200m. Firehouse Rock emerged from the second half of the field after tracking Braces and Bondeiger was also starting to wind up from the back. Gloryland went for home again but Firehouse Rock claimed him and despite having a think about it did enough to beat a very gallant Gloryland and Bondeiger ran a much improved race for a close third. Braces wasn’t far off and a big gap to Kansas Sunflower, very disappointing.

Follow: none.

Race 3: Le Pine Funerals Handicap (1100m)

1st Sabatini – Kerrin McEvoy
2nd The Monstar – Blake Shinn
3rd Kuro – James McDonald

Craftiness sprung away and took up the running quite easily over Hard Stride and Kuro, who came across from out wide without much effort. Rock Royalty improved along the fence to the box seat andThe Monstar was behind him. Unanimously found himself three deep around Durendal about midfield. Craftiness really ran them along and Hard Stride was pushed along to stay with him. Kuro came off their backs and sprinted quickly while Rock Royalty batted. Sabatini was starting to wind up from the 300m out wide while The Monstar and Unanimously squeezed Durendal out, though he was under a bit of pressure. Kuro hit the lead over Craftiness inside the 200m but the chasers were coming and Sabatini swamped him in the closing stages, with The Monstar doing his best but just failing. Kuro just held on for third in a bunched finish. Tristram’s Sun and The Quarterback made some late ground to be just behind the placings from the weakening Craftiness. Fast run race suited the winner, whose best races are when she can settle back and hit the line.

Follow: none in particular.

Race 4: Harry White Classic (2400m)

1st Black Tomahawk – Glen Boss
2nd Excess Knowledge – Kerrin McEvoy
3rd At First Sight – James McDonald/Ethiopia – Patrick Moloney

Excess Knowledge was one of the best out but didn’t want the lead and let Epsom Hill and Lord Durante come across. Black Tomahawk landed outside him and Shenzhou Steeds found himself three wide and kept improving. Albonetti was on his back around At First Sight and Ethiopia. Plenty of shuffling in the first 1000m and Epsom Hill held them out but Albonetti got up into second with Shenzhou Steeds slotting into the box seat. Excess Knowledge and Lord Durante wound up a pair back. Little to no pace in the middle stages so Black Tomahawk whipped around them quickly and was in front at the 800m. Renew tried to get onto his back but couldn’t go with him, Albonetti ran into second with Lord Durante. Epsom Hill was put under some pressure and Excess Knowledge found himself in a bit of traffic as a few runs came around him. Black Tomahawk took off again around the turn and left the immediate chasers standing. Excess Knowledge eventually got to the outside to wind up but had conceded a start. That head start proved decisive and Black Tomahawk held off Excess Knowledge, who may have been a shade unlucky, and got away from the rest. At First Sight finished on okay to grab a share of third with Ethiopia running his best race in a long time, just ahead of Albonetti who had to do far too much work.

Follow: he’s no Cups hope but Excess Knowledge can pick up a race along the way.

Race 5: Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m)

1st Miss Gunpowder – Craig Williams
2nd Payroll – Jim Cassidy
3rd Jameka – Damien Oliver

Miss Gunpowder wasted no time in getting across the field and top a fairly easy lead. Jameka ran up to second with Alaskan Rose between them early and Super Cash just behind the leader. Don’t Doubt Marley was just ahead of midfield with Payroll wide and Pasadena Girl on the fence. Stay With Me had cover behind Payroll. Miss Gunpowder was getting things largely her own way so some runs came well before the turn with Payroll dashing up to join her, Sagaronne and Stay With Me also tried to get going and that caused some shuffling inside with Alaskan Rose and Pasadena Girl losing their spots. Miss Gunpowder kicked back to head Payroll again at the 300m, Super Cash was looking for a run behind them and Jameka was under hard riding. Pasadena Girl had traffic issues and didn’t get into the clear until the race was all over. Stay With Me just battled and Alaskan Rose dropped out. Miss Gunpowder responded well and edged clear again late to beat a much improved Payroll and a game Jameka. Super Cash had her chance while Pasadena Girl was the eye-catcher. Stay With Me stuck on fairly and the rest were well beaten.

Follow: no knock on the winner but Pasadena Girl looked unlucky.

Race 6: Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m)

1st Bon Aurum – Kerrin McEvoy
2nd Tulsa – Ben Melham
3rd Dal Cielo – Opie Bosson

Tulsa and Spieth were eased from their wide alleys. Plenty of them contested the early lead and Dal Cielo eventually won it with Moher and Metallic Crown further out. Mr Individual, Snoopy and Dark Steel made another line of three clear of Puritan who was three wide with Strike Force outside him and Manhattan Blues and Extra Choice underneath. Bon Aurum was worse than midfield withOdyssey Moon and Ready For Victory well off the pace. Dal Cielo slipped away around the bend and that let Mr Individual off his back, Dark Steel stayed on for a while but Metallic Crown was gone. Snoopy tried to run on and Bon Aurum put in his move down the centre while Puritan couldn’t come on and Spieth was making ground. Wider out Odyssey Moon and Tulsa were closing. Dal Cielo was paddling at the 100m and while he was fighting he was no match for the finish of Bon Aurum who picked him and and just held off a charging Tulsa. Dal Cielo claimed a deserved third over Snoopy and it was a very bunched finish with another five of them close up including Mr Individual, Odyssey Moon and Spieth. Ready For Victory made some ground but was never in the hunt at all. Blinkers next time?

Follow: Tulsa looks very hard to beat in the Guineas.

Race 7: Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m)

1st Mourinho – Vlad Duric
2nd Fawkner – Damien Oliver
3rd The Cleaner – Noel Callow

Mongolian Khan messed up the start and Contributer was also out the back early on. The Cleaner as you’d expect held the lead. Mourinho sat up handy and Hi World worked over to sit up in second.Volkstok’n’barrell and Fawkner were next with Magicool midfield around Mongolian Khan making up for lost ground. The Cleaner did his thing running along a couple clear of Hi World. Mourinho was on his back and Fawner seemed to have a nice run on the fence inside Volkstok’n’barrell. Fawkner was the first horse under pressure about 500m out as Hi World moved alongside The Cleaner. Mourinho eased out around them and Volkstok’n’barrell and Magicool also peeled out. Fawkner was under the whip with Mongolian Khan while Contributer had worked to the outside at the 300m. Hi World might have hit the lead but it was short lived as The Cleaner fought back and Mourinho claimed them both soon after. Fawkner was starting to respond and Contributer made a dash. In a driving finish, Mourinho stuck his head out to claim a deserved Group 1 over Fawkner (not sure what happened around the 500m but it was costly) and the always brave The Cleaner just missing out. Mongolian Khan ran a nice race second-up and is ready to improve now while the jury is out big time on Contributer and Volkstok’n’barrell. Dandino was okay late along the fence from near last.

Follow: Mongolian Khan is heading the right way for the Cups.

Race 8: Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m)

1st Stratum Star – Craig Williams
2nd Disposition – Damien Oliver
3rd Under The Louvre – Mark Zahra

Gregers beat them out but was taken hold of as Strawberry Boy came across bringing Stratum Star and Rich Enuff over from out wide. Disposition held his spot near the rail but Charmed Harmonycouldn’t muster in time to get near the leas as he likes to do. Leebaz was caught wide around Lucky Hussler and Amorino while Under The Louvre jumped into the three wide line behind Leebaz. Strawberry Boy loped along in front and Rich Enuff sat up on his outside while Charmed Harmony strode forward but wide. That gave Stratum Star good cover around Disposition. Amorino was being pumped along before the turn with Gregers and Under The Louvre worked to the outside of those. Rich Enuff was the first beaten as Charmed Harmony tried to go out after Strawberry Boy on the bend. There was a run for Disposition and Stratum Star forced between Charmed Harmony and Leebaz to start his run. Under The Louvre chimed in wider out. He looked to hit the lead at the 100m but wanted to run all over the place and Disposition and Stratum Star went with him. Strawberry Boy and Charmed Harmony were fighting but beaten off. A tight three way go and Stratum Star’s never say die attitude saw him poke through and claim the Group 1. Disposition had his chance and Under The Louvre probably threw it away. Strawberry Boy ran an honest race, Charmed Harmony had no luck and behind them a very nice run from Lucky Hussler while Fast ‘N’ Rocking and Abidewithme charged late down the outside.

Follow: Lucky Hussler is moving along well for the Group 1 miles coming up.

Race 9: The Cup Club Handicap (1700m)

1st Kenjorwood – Regan Bayliss
2nd Jacquinot Bay – Michael Walker
3rd Extra Noble – Jake Bayliss

Takenja jumped well and was up handy with Kenjorwood coming over and Jacquinot Bay and Extra Noble slotting in behind them. Diametric got onto heels and checked while He Or She was three wide around Iggimacool. Adorabeel was also wide outside Don Doremo and Zebrinz. Takenja had control though Kenjorwood wasn’t letting her get too far away. Jacquinot Bay looked strong in the box seat while Extra Noble needed shaking up. He Or She and Diametric were next and they opened up a couple of lengths on Iggimacool. Kenjorwood went straight past Takenja on the turn, the leader giving in very meekly, while Jacquinot Bay (inside) and Extra Noble (outside) made their bids. He Or She ran to fourth but couldn’t get near the leading trio at trhe 100m. Zebrinz was running on behind him with Lucky Lucky Lucky making ground from last. Kenjorwood had his big nose rolled head in front on the line to chalk up another win. Game efforts from Jacquinot Bay and Extra Noble. He Or She was fair though he was caught wide and a nice return from Lucky Lucky Lucky. Big disappointment was Takenja who seemingly had no excuses.

Follow: Jacquinot Bay, Extra Noble and Lucky Lucky Lucky were all excellent going forward.

Specials from the meeting: Pittsburgh Flyer, Pasadena Girl, Tulsa, Lucky Hussler.

Rosehill Review by Todd

Race 1

1st Mr One Eleven – Josh Parr
2nd Dance Of Heroes – Glyn Schofield
3rd Herne’s Oak – Brenton Avdulla

Herne’s Oak began like a greyhound in the first, pinging straight to the early lead. Nazir and Loophole quickly moved up to make it a line of three until Loophole pushed on and went clear in front. Nazir moved up to be on its outside and Herne’s Oak got a nice sit behind them. Dance Of Heroes got an equally nice run in the one out and one back trail. Midrace Four Carat took off from midfield and took up the running. Into the straight it was still Four Carat clear in front with Bowman going for home. Nazir struck the front at the 300m mark, but there were chances coming from everywhere. In the run to the line, Dance Of Heroes and Mr One Eleven who came from last were finishing off best. Mr One Eleven was strong in the last part and came away to win clearly. Given he came from last and beat them, you can’t make excuses for the others.

Follow: Mr One Eleven can win again

Race 2

1st Press Statement – Hugh Bowman
2nd Shard Sam – Clipperton
3rd Rageese – Tommy Berry

Press Statement was sent out a long odds on favourite in the small field for race two. Rageese took it up with Winning Accord about a half length away. There was a break back to Shards in third, and a similar break to Press Statement in fourth. Rageese rolled along in front and had over a length to spare as they came into the straight, but Shards and Press Statement were mounting challenges down the outside. Up to the 300m mark, Press Statement claimed the front without being asked for an effort, and soon after when Bowman did give him his head he put the issue beyond doubt. Shards did a good job to get past Rageese to claim second spot, and Fireworks finished her race off down the outside from last to claim fourth. The winner was in a different class here.

Follow: Press Statement is a good horse

Race 3

1st Amelie’s Star – Josh Parr
2nd Bohemian Lily – Tim Clark
3rd Reigning – Hugh Bowman

The stayers went around over the mile and a half journey in race three. When they went to the post the first time there was virtually a line of four, with Bohemian Lily holding up in front and King Kinshasa going up to challenge. Rio Perdido was caught out three wide and pushing forward and eventually took up the running. Up to the 600m mark, Bohemian Lily put some pressure on the leader and King Kinshasa rolled up three wide. While that was going on, Amelie’s Star got a nice cart into it three wide. Early in the straight Amelie’s Star drew to the front and sprinted a length and a half clear. From there, nothing could get near her and she came away to win it by over three lengths. Bohemian Lily did a good job to hold of the rest of them for second. Reigning and Sasenkile closed off ok from the back.

Follow: Again the winner is the one to follow

Race 4

1st Alart – Greg Ryan
2nd Flamboyant Lass – Tim Clark
3rd Ocean Tempest – Glyn Schofield

Gone To Paris missed the kick in race four. When they settled, Alpina had the front from Flamboyant Lass. Way Too Good railed up behind the leader to settle third. Back in the field, Look To The Stars was caught out wide. Around the turn, Alpina still had it but was about to be tackled by Flamboyant Lass. Way Too Good got through on the inside, and Alart came with a strong run on the outside. Further back Tremezzina was running on nicely. In the run to the line, Alart was the one who finished off best and got the money. Flamboyant Lass fought on to run second in what was a pretty good effort. Ocean Tempest also put in a good run for third. Back in the field, Denpurr finished off nicely in the last part.

Follow: Flamboyant Lass

Race 5

1st Vanbrugh – Hugh Bowman
2nd Tatoosh – Tomas Huet
3rd Man Of Choice – Sam Clipperton

The Gloaming Stakes was race five on the card and when they settled, Clash Of Clans had the front from Intrepid Way. Maven Wizz was in the trail third on the fence, and Over The Air was in the one out and one back spot. The field stretched out indicating that the pace was ok. Mid race Clash Of Clans was off and running and when it came to the 600m mark it led by about four lengths and was going for home. Early in the straight, Clash Of Clans still had a clear lead, but Vanbrugh had moved into the race strongly and was coming after the leader and looking the goods. Soon after, it ran to the front. Briefly Tatoosh and Man Of Choice looked chances as they put in their runs, but Bowman got plenty out of Vanbrugh in the run to the line and it went on to win it like a pretty good horse. Tatoosh came away from Man Of Choice for second spot and realistically the rest didn’t do a lot. Clash Of Clans was a pretty decent run given that it set the pace and went for home a long way out.

Follow: Vanbrugh, Clash Of Clans

Race 6

1st Peeping – Sam Clipperton
2nd Two Blue – Paul King
3rd Berry Delicious – Tye Angland

After her impressive first up win, Catkins was sent out an odds on favourite in race six, and after beginning well, she drifted right back in the field. Two Blue led them up from Vergara which gave Arabian Gold and Peeping nice runs behind the speed. Around the turn, Two Blue still had it, and those who backed Catkins were feeling for the rosary beads as Bowmen felt for the persuader. The supporters of Arabian Gold were in even more trouble as she began to drop right out. Whilst all that was going on, Peeping sprinted nicely and went up to grab Two Blue. Two Blue fought pretty hard, but from there on, Peeping had him covered and went on to victory. Berry Delicious was good from the back. Catkins didn’t seem to put in, and Arabian Gold was disgraceful and you would have to question injury.

Follow: Berry Delicious

Race 7

1st Vashka – Sam Clipperton
2nd God’s In Him – Tommy Berry
3rd Messene – Brenton Avdulla

There was a good challenge for early supremacy in race seven with Foreign Prince poking through in the middle, Ninth Legion holding the fence and Vashka out deep. Foreign Prince eventually crossed and led, which let Vashka in closer and gave Ninth Legion a nice trail along with Flamingo Star. The favourite, Akavoroun got a good run midfield one off the fence. Around the turn, Vashka was tightening the screws on Foreign Prince who was being pushed along and Ninth Legion was staying well over towards the inside and had plenty of room to come through. Vashka had the front inside the 300m mark and looked to travel as well as any of them. In the run to the line, Vashka kept finding and held off the fast finishing God’s In Him and Messene who looked to be struggling early in the straight but did find something. Akavoroun was very average indeed.

Follow: God’s In Him

Race 8

1st Music Magnate – Brenton Avdulla
2nd Good Project – Hugh Bowman
3rd Testashadow – Tim Clark

Testashadow was slow to begin in the last. Nevagotavote led initially but Darciwood rolled forward and took it up with Nevagotavote taking the trail and Harry Hotspur settling in third. Good Project was caught three wide and moving forward. Up around the turn, Darciwood had a clear lead which it maintained to the 300m mark, but the cavalry were coming. Good Project was running on well despite being wide all the way, and Music Magnate was putting in a strong run out wider. Good Project had the front at the 100m mark, but the run started to tell and Music Magnate finished off a bit stronger in the run to the line. Frespanol and Ballet Suite were the two best closers. This could be a decent for race.

Follow: Good Project, Ballet Suite

Specials from the meeting: God’s In Him, Good Project, Ballet Suite


This week we welcome back to the podcast Vince Accardi from Daily Sectionals.

We’ve had a long association with Vince and he’s on the show to give his unique perspective on form analysis:

  • Database vs. instinct and experience
  • On-speed vs. backmarkers
  • Big vs. small markets
  • Specialising vs. diversifying

And also how he manages his betting strategy:

  • Level vs. proportionate staking
  • Standard bet size vs. confidence levels
  • Market intelligence vs market ignorance
  • Early vs late betting
  • Favourites vs long shots
  • Each way (or place only) vs straight out
  • Static vs dynamic banks
  • Profit on Turnover % vs Profit only.

Today’s Guest:
Vince Accardi

>> Click here to read the transcript

Dave Duffield: Always a pleasure to have you on Vince and we’ve run a For and Against series for a few weeks now and wanted to get your take on things. The standard opener has been whether you’re working off data or gut instinct and experience. I’m pretty sure you lean towards the former.

Vince Accardi: Yes, it’s all very important. Data versus gut, they both play a role, but first and foremost we need to understand the data. Then from there, we can have our gut instinct which is going to create the opportunity.

Dave Duffield: When you’re talking about relying on the data, what type of data do you place importance on?

Vince Accardi: I’m a very big stickler, as you know David, it’s all about the IVR data and it’s all worked through sectional times. Coming though that derivative of class, having that clarity via that model is what it’s all about for me.

Dave Duffield: What part does gut instinct and experience play then in the outputs of that model, or do you just rely on tweaking and fine tuning the inputs, so that the outputs you don’t really have to second guess?

Vince Accardi: There’s always an element of fine tuning, but the reality is your gut instincts all derive from the confidence level that you get from your information that you are working with, and that’s what it’s all about. The greater confidence you can have from what you’re working with, the better gut feeling you’re going to get towards making something happen.

Dave Duffield: For the data itself, you’ve mentioned this on a podcast or webinar previously, you don’t really adjust that for luck in running or other subjective factors?

Vince Accardi: No, I don’t. But in ratings, there’s always a lot of talk about a horse that was trapped 3 wide or 4 wide. It always comes out in the figures anyway.
The reality is, if you can have that correct profile of the runner, that’s going to give you the crystallisation. Then you can truly understand the true merits, perhaps if it was wide, or it didn’t get a run in the critical last 150 metres, ultimately, a race is at least 1000 metres, or 1200m, or 1400m, or 1600m.
You need to engage in the entire race, not just one portion.

Dave Duffield: Another common question I’ve been asking is, whether you focus on every race Australia wide, and grind away at a profit, or whether you’re focusing on just a few.

Vince Accardi: Yes, that’s a really important point that you make there, David.
There are two types of players as we know, or maybe there’s multiple types of players. I am the type of player, that I like to work on identifying key runners that I like to tag, and work within those parameters.
I’m certainly not one that wants to enjoy working on every single race. It certainly doesn’t stimulate my philosophy. Whilst I might look at every race, ultimately, I don’t like to subject myself to that type of betting activity because I feel less is best for me.

Dave Duffield: A few weeks ago, Nathan Snow said that he really thrives on trying to put the pieces of the puzzle together, and that’s why he doesn’t want to focus on different states and all different races. It sounds like you’re similar?

Vince Accardi: I am similar in the sense that I typically like to focus on Melbourne and Sydney, so I do have a real emphasis on those two areas. The only time, whilst I look at things in a holistic manner, and that’s Australia wide, I only really want to venture outside of those jurisdictions when we are articulating carnival racing. It could be carnival four, five weeks in Queensland, or a couple weeks in South Australia, or perhaps the same in WA.
Then, I will have an interest and a focus. Ultimately, if I was to do every single day, you really then would come down, and the best focus would be one state. I work the Saturday mainly, so therefore that gives me the luxury to work two states. That keeps me extremely busy.

Dave Duffield: The next question we cover is backmarkers versus on speed and the disadvantages often suffered by backmarkers. This is your bread and butter in any particular race shape, so do you just want to explain to the listeners your approach here?

Vince Accardi: This is a really critical part of the game. One of the things we all talk about is pace. Truly understanding, what’s pace really mean? How does that impact horses? Whether you’re on speed, running fast, there’s this philosophy about, that if they’re going fast, it’s going to have tremendous advantage for back markers. That is a bit of a myth. The reality is, when you go really fast, there’s a high possibility that everybody’s tired chasing. When you only have to look at horses like The Cleaner, as an example, to confirm if you can run fast and hard, technically the back markers have very little chance of winning.
By the time they get themselves into the race, they’re tired, and they’re all one-paced.
Then you can have the other reverse situation again, where people have long communicated that perhaps if a slowly run race it’s only going to suit pace runners. That’s also a little bit of a dream as well. You could be going slowly, but if you’re the lead horse, and your last 400 metre sprint, because we get down to a sprint, and you can only sprint 2 or 3 lengths what I consider to be above benchmark. Let’s say run a second faster than standard. If the horse is running last, and he’s tracking the lead speed 4 lengths because we’re all condensed, like Black Caviar, as an example who can go 12 lengths above the benchmark, or 2 lengths faster than standard. It’s just going to breeze right past them all and therefore, back markers can win.
Pace is a very, very important thing. It’s controlled by the riders.

Dave Duffield: Speaking of riders, for a long time they were congratulated for going as slowly as possible in front, but I think they’ve been better educated in recent times. Do you still see that happening a lot there?

Vince Accardi: Yes, but it’s really amazing. Every person, in their own element, they have their strengths and weaknesses, just like horses do. Some horses have their strengths and weaknesses. Understanding the attributes of that through a rider is very, very important.
There are some riders that aren’t bothered at all when they’re on pace, or running from behind, or creating all the lead speed. You could be Damien Oliver, as an example. You could be even Hugh Bowman, as an example. Those riders are more than capable of being able to manage themselves, whether it’s on pace or off pace, or in the middle. They just have that uncanny capability of being able to really feel the speed.
Then you might get some other riders, where they’ve got less experience. By no stretch of the imagination, you look at someone like Tommy Berry, or even Dwayne Dunn, those two riders, they’re outstanding talents. They are equally as good as a Damien Oliver, or Hugh Bowman, in terms of their overall skill sets. But, put them in situations where they are on a lead horse, or a horse that gravitates toward the lead speed. They’ll have the tendency to slow the pace down. When they do that, that becomes a major negative. When you’re slowing down the momentum it’s hard to re-accelerate. When you’re giving the opportunity for horses that are going to seize the moment, and coming off pace.
That is the difference of understanding some of the basic fundamentals. Also, with back mark rider, they miss time their own- Tommy Berry, he’s a world class rider when it comes to off pace. He just has that instinctive capability of doing that. On pace, he doesn’t get the same score.

Dave Duffield: Being a data driven analyst, how do you factor in jockeys to your overall form assessments?

Vince Accardi: Basically, the way I look at it is, I have a very simple approach when I look at that. I don’t turn around and say, ‘I’m going to give you a rating, or I’m not going to give you a rating.’
Whilst I’ve experienced all those things in the past, David, the way I see things today is, it’s very simple. If these are the 2 or 3 runners that I’m on, I look at the profile of the horse. I want to understand does that rider match that profile? Does he understand how to ride that track? Does he understand that today the lanes are going to be in play? Is he that sort of style of rider? Or does he like to hug the fence and that’s not the place to be.
There are things that I look for. At that point in time, they have a big impact on how I’m going to regrade my bet, as opposed to, I’m just going to demote you by a length. I do it all through the grading of my betting.

Dave Duffield: Is that how you treat trainers as well?

Vince Accardi: Trainers, a little bit different. With the trainers, basically, again, we look at the philosophy of how they’re performing in town. That’s the place where I like to play the majority of all my betting. They do play a role, but ultimately, it’s just really trying to get a feel, okay, on the last 25 runners you’ve brought to town. How have they performed? Have they been in the money? Were they ridden poorly? Is your stable just not growing in the same confidence? At that point in time, they will have an impact. It is a little bit less of an impact, as opposed to the rider. I pay more emphasis on the rider than the trainer.

Dave Duffield: So, the barriers. What role do they play when you’re doing the form?

Vince Accardi: The barriers, from my perspective, if you’re in a situation, and you’re at Moonee Valley, and you’re drawn that dreaded one alley as they say, and if you don’t have that natural, tactical speed where you can comfortably put yourself in a lead pack if you need to be, then that could become automatically a ‘no’ bet. If you see that they have to work too hard, and they’ve got to over exert 2 or 3 lengths to find themselves in that position of where the optimum spot is for that race, then it becomes a massive negative.
The same goes for, I have no problem with horses that are drawn wide, particularly if they lack speed, that’s great. They’re going to find themselves shuffling back regardless. They can pretty much pick and choose their moment, as long as they’ve got the right rider on board.
Again, I don’t mind them at all if they’ve got plenty of acceleration, and they’re capable of getting to the lead pack under their own steam as opposed to that urging to get there. This again, is critical around who rides them. Some of the younger riders, they get a little bit hot and bothered, especially in big races. They overcompensate early, where some of the more seasoned riders, again, like a Damien Oliver, they just know how to cruise into that position. Therefore, you’re probably going to get overs.

Dave Duffield: Let’s talk about weights. You’ve been around for quite a while, and in that time, the importance or the perception of weights has certainly changed over many, many years. What are your current thoughts on how you incorporate weights in doing the form?

Vince Accardi: This is an interesting thing. I’ve studied the weight scenario, a lot of people may not know me. They probably saw that I’m just a 100% bent on sectional times. Well, I am heavily focused on that area. I’ve studied the whole weights handicapping for in excess of 10 years. I’ve done everything imaginable that you can.
Ultimately, my theory with weight is, it’s all about what impact it has in terms of acceleration. You can carry a large weight and still be too good. It just comes back down to how you are ridden.
If you’ve got 59 kilos, not you go to 60 kilos, does that mean you’re going to be impacted by length or three quarters of a length, and therefore makes you impossible? I think there are thresholds with some horses. They have the ability to carry weight more than others. Ultimately, I want to know what sort of impact on their acceleration is it going to have?
If I feel that it’s going to be adversely impacted because you may have to carry a high weight, and you’re going to have to run hard and fast, and that could have a big impact. Then it will be dealt with in that manner. It certainly has very little bearing on how I’m going to structure up, okay, well now he should be 7/1 as opposed to 6/1 because he’s got a kilo more than what he carried last time, or 4 kilos, for that matter.

Dave Duffield: Trials, you spend quite a bit of time talking them, but there’s even more variables for trials than there are for races. What part do they play when you’re doing the form?

Vince Accardi: Trials, they’re a really unique beast in their own way. There are players like Dean the Trial Spy for example, he’ll study many, many factors. He’ll look for the quiet, gentle rides as well. I think this is very important.
What I like to look at with trials myself is, I’m very keen on understanding are they showing me any movement in acceleration at any given point? It sort of matches the profile they’ve done in the past. How that matches up on the day. To give me insights to their level of fitness.
I’m always wanting to understand two things from barrier trials. What level are you in terms of fitness? Then, are you showing signs that you’re going to come back as well as last preparation or not? I’ve found many cases, and Pierreo would be one of the great examples. I would look at Pierro coming into trial, he would just be cruising along. He’ll put a 200 metre burst among 10 points for a year. I go, ‘well, you’re on fire.’
When you hit that sort of number, you, firstly, you’re not an ordinary horse, secondly, for you to run that fast, just for 200 metres, you must be feeling fantastic.

Dave Duffield: Wet tracks. I know the analysis you do for a wet track is very different to dry. Again, there’s a fair bit of data involved. There must be some experience and nous that comes into assessing that. Just talk us through how you bet on wet tracks.

Vince Accardi: This is a really interesting one, the wet tracks, David. We see horses, and this is maybe the old age, hopefully with people like yourself, and others, that we continue to try and educate the industry, and the market just because they’ve got a ‘W’ next to their name, or they’ve won on every track. That doesn’t mean that they can necessarily handle a wet track under certain circumstances. If you win on a heavy track on a maiden in Ballarat for example that makes you a automatically a horse that can handle the wet.
What I’ve learned over the years is, I’ve learned to credit what’s called the ‘wet track indicator.’ I look at that through acceleration of speed over any given 200m or 400m through certain parts of the race, to get clarity around what type of acceleration they can produce in the ground with the benchmark.
Therefore, grading the horse, saying that if you’re 3 lengths above the benchmark, the average horse that gets through, and you’re going to, and you’ve got an ‘H’ next to their name, or an ‘S’ next to their name, the average horse is roughly three and a half, or four and a half lengths above the benchmark for that type of condition.
The real big swimmers are the ones that can get up around 8 or 10 lengths above the benchmark, or greater. They are the horses that are true wet trackers. The big myth of the philosophy, you have to be very, very careful when you look at that. Unless horses grade better than 5 lengths, I put them in the basket, that you’re most likely only just handling it. It can be easily swamped by a superior wet tracker.

Dave Duffield: When, if ever, do you care about breeding?

Vince Accardi: I pay no interest in that. Of course, I like to look at who, where it comes from, understanding that, of course, they’ve come from very talented horses. Unfortunately, for me, it has no bearing at all on my decision making process. Zero.

Dave Duffield: You mentioned before that you focus on Saturday racing, and Metro racing. Is that because there’s more exposed form and a better class of animal?

Vince Accardi: Yes. Definitely. One of the things that I’ve learned whilst I’ve practiced all over, and David, I’ve practiced betting everyday, anywhere and everywhere, and making many mistakes. I’m sure a lot of other humans. What I’ve found though, is through the art of working through times is that when you go down in the grades, they’re a lot more even. If they get a bump or a check, it’s no fault of the rider, it’s just the very nature of how they race. They find it very difficult to overcome that one length in terms of speed. They can’t rebound as effectively.
Whereas, when we come to Saturday metropolitan racing, what I find is, horses that might cop that little but of buffeting they can cope with it. They can handle it. They’ve got that 3 or 4 lengths advantage in terms of exercising their burst of speed. We’re still in a winning position. Therefore, giving us a greater chance to hopefully be on the winning ticket.

Dave Duffield: Let’s move on to the betting and money management. Do you bet level stakes, or is it more proportionate?

Vince Accardi: No, I certainly don’t bet level stakes. My view’s always been, and when I say my view, I shouldn’t say always, it’s only been something I’ve learned in the last 8 years, is, I like to proportion my bet within place. I have a ratio, and they’re graded.

Dave Duffield: Can you expand on that? Like you often bet more for the place than the win?

Vince Accardi: Typically, the very lowest denominator of betting I do is half unit by 2 and a half. That’s the smallest play. My majority of betting is all centered around one by 4. So, it’s one unit a win, 4 units a place. As my confidence grows, it could be 2 units a win, 6 units a place. Then, optimum betting for me is 2 units by 8. That’s my optimum betting. There are isolated situations ere I might just have one bet purely at place, or one bet purely a win.
They’ve usually got to do with perhaps, it’s really, really tight, but I want to play. I can’t see any way it can’t be beaten. It might be $1.70 or $1.80. It’s not desirable, but I’m just looking at it purely business, and there’s money to be taken.

Dave Duffield: On a typical Saturday, would you have 3 or 4 bets, or more?

Vince Accardi: Jeez, David. If I had to strike up a scorecard that has more than 5 bets, I ask myself, what am I doing wrong?
I’m a big believer that as good as I might like to feel that I am, I’m like all other human beings. I always use the barometer. The favorites are winning 33% of the time. That’s where your strike rate begins. Even at the level. That means you’re going to lose 67% of the time.
I know from experience, like a bell curve, the more bets you have, the more prone you are to having losing runs. Therefore, you have to have a completely different money management structure in place. Guys like Nathan, they play a very different strategy. There are many other people that will do that. That’s the type of technique then you’ve got to use. I find that too hard for me. I struggle to manage that. I like to keep it very simple.

Dave Duffield: Is there a sweet spot, or typical price range that you tend to operate in?

Vince Accardi: The price ranges are very important. My whole grading again, once I sort of got down to narrowing down this is the horse that I want to be with, and I’m comfortable with the rider, the price does play a role. The role of the price is, first and foremost, I’ve got to have a high level of confidence. From a place betting perspective, we are going to hit the mark at absolute low, be somewhere around a $1.40 or $1.50. We’re really going to be somewhere about $1.70, $1.80, right. I believe to have that level of confidence, and comfort that I am going to strike in that zone.
From a win point of view if I feel that a horse should be $2.50 or $3, totally how I’m feeling, and the horse is $2.50, that may not deter me from betting. I would be still just as comfortable backing it. Again, even if it’s $4, it wouldn’t change my structure. I believe it can aid right then, I’m playing.

Dave Duffield: Yep. What factors make that an A grade bet? You chatted before about the different grading levels, is that a data driven approach, or does it come down to your instinct, and being able to read a race?

Vince Accardi: Personally, I have to have a high level of confidence with the data. I scorecard them all with the rankings, David, so if I feel the race saying, ‘okay, this race here is showing that you need to be forecasting a minimum of 2 lengths above benchmark.’ If I’ve got a runner there that is very strong, and they are 5, 6 lengths above the benchmark, that’s the first critical criteria.
The second critical criteria to that is, the rider’s got to match.
Lastly, of course, we have to ensure that we’re playing on a ground that is suited by the horse with the pace. If those elements are in play, then all I’ve got to worry about is now, what is my price? If they’re $1.10 a place, I’m not participating. When I say I’m not participating, it means that any place betting completely be ruled. It’s a matter of, do I want to engage for a win? If I feel comfortable, and I want to still participate, then I’ll play, but it I don’t, I bypass the race.

Dave Duffield: Do you typically bet early in the week, when the fixed odds go up, if you’re lucky enough to be able get a bet on, or is it just on race day?

Vince Accardi: No. I’m just really focused purely on race day, for a whole range of reasons. Firstly, whilst it’s important, if you can get the $500 on early, that would be wonderful and all those advntages. But because I have a strong propensity around the place, I really am not prohibited to have things the way I want to play out. I could find myself in a lock-in position, which could be a dramatic negative for me on a Saturday.

Dave Duffield: Do you ever bet pre-post? Futures betting?

Vince Accardi: No. It is something that I feel that could have some merit, but at this stage, the earliest I would do would be if it’s a major race, like a Cox Plate or a Melbourne Cup, that’s the only time I would consider possibly something one day out.

Dave Duffield: Have you got one you’re keen on for the Cox Plate?

Vince Accardi: Well at this stage Kermadec is certainly travelling on the right direction. He’s showing all the absolute characteristics of a horse that could be our new star. I would be starting with that horse first and foremost.

Dave Duffield: Thanks for that. Market intelligence is a question I’ve been asking in this series as well. It’s probably more relevant in the lower grade races, or when there’s less exposed form. Does it ever play a part in the staking for you?

Vince Accardi: Probably doesn’t play much of a role from the selection point of view. I do get nervous when sometimes you look at a profile of a runner, a rock solid first-up profile that seems to tower by several lengths over the competition, but you haven’t had any clarity around their trials, because you may not have seen it in play.
Sometimes jump outs aren’t a solid enough guide, then you are going to really have to take the next two factors into consideration. One of them is, what is the mounting yard feedback coming about the horse that’s about to present itself in the race.
Second, if there have been any money involved in terms of performance. Are they going to back this horse? Particularly if there is stable that likes to do that. Then, I feel you have to be governed by that, to an extent.

Dave Duffield: Do you ever bet the exotics?

Vince Accardi: Occasionally I do. Again, it only comes into situations where you really feel you are in a standout position with the runner, and you’ve got a lot of confidence. Then, potentially, I do like to try to marry up maybe one or 2 horses for a second position. I only play an exacta.

Dave Duffield: What about a movable bank? Do you ever adjust your unit size either up or down, depending on how you’re going?

Vince Accardi: No. I don’t make any changes to my unit bank, but I do take money out to make sure that I don’t overcompensate. In other words, if you’ve got a hundred units in the bank, and it’s now 150, well that 50 is gone.

Dave Duffield: As far as a metric that you look at, is it just the bottom line as in dollars profit, or is profit on turnover important?

Vince Accardi: The most important thing for me, very, very simple. That if I’ve got 100 units then I want to know at the end of the year how many have I got? So, if I’ve got 200 units, I look at it and say, ‘well, I’ve made 100% on my money.’

Dave Duffield: So, you don’t care whether you’ve outlaid 500 to get that, or 1000?

Vince Accardi: No. It’s irrelevant.

Dave Duffield: All right we’ll leave it there for now. I really appreciate your input. It’s certainly a different perspective to a lot of the other guys we’ve had on. That’s half the point, really.

Vince Accardi: Yeah. As you would know, David, I like to say it the way it is. It’s good for everybody in the community of racing to understand that there’s so many different ways. You’ve got to work for the style that works for you. There’s no one style that is the holy grail. There’s many different ways to make it happen. Most importantly, you’ve got to be consistent, and persistent. The day you stop, that’s the day that you can’t be a winner.

Dave Duffield: For sure. Appreciate your time Vince. Thanks very much for coming on the show.

Vince Accardi: Thank you David.

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Weekend Racing Reviews – Sept 19th

by darryn on September 21, 2015

Caulfield review by Ray Hickson

Race 1: NJT Plate (1100m)

1st Bassett – Daniel Stackhousse
2nd Keen Array – Damian Lane
3rd Mawahibb – James Winks

Mawahibb broke quickly from the outside alley and Sweet Redemption went with him early but Keen Array gathered speed along the fence to head them. Bassett dropped into a trail behind them withStoker on his inside. Sweet Redemption pulled out of the battle for the lead and left Mawahibb pressuring Keen Array. They broke away from the field by three coming to the turn but came back fairly quickly. Keen Array was the first under pressure as Mawahibb looked to be travelling better but they were quickly reeled in by Bassett passing the 200m and he stretched out nicely late, though he did have a cold sit. Keen Array fought off the challenge of Mawahibb to hold second. A patchy run behind them from Stoker who appeared gone at a couple of stages but kept at it while Ability and Well Sightedwere the only ones to make an impact from the second half. They had their chance to run on.
Follow: Bassett is a promising horse and while he had the best run he has the most upside.

Race 2: Fight Cancer Foundation Handicap (1400m)

1st Good Value – Michael Walker
2nd Rugged Cross – Brad Rawiller
3rd Moonovermanhattan – Craig Newitt

Good Value jumped worst and was hard ridden early on before settling at the tail. Lord Durante headed to the lead and Pago Rock sat up outside him. Moonovermanhattan landed in the box seat andRugged Cross was up handy around Rhythm To Spare. Schockemohle found himself stuck three wide and improved around them, working up to third. Good Value jumped onto his back for a run home and this shuffled Rhythm To Spare back. Lord Durante was being heeled along at the 600m in the lead and Pago Rock was under similar riding. Schockemohle was still there and Moonovermanhattan gained an inside run on the turn to chime in. Good Value and Rugged Cross pulled out to make their runs and Rhythm To Spare was running into dead ends everywhere he went. Moonovermanhattan hit the lead about 200m out but couldn’t hold off Rugged Cross and Good Value in the closing stages with Good Value getting his head down in a deceptive finish (at least if you pay attention to the line on the screen). Moonovermanhattan ran an improved race while Lord Durante battled on fairly. Nice late finish from Scream Machine while Rhythm To Spare was checked out of it in the straight.
Follow: definitely give Rhythm To Spare another chance.

Race 3: Golden Fleece 150th anniversary Handicap (1400m)

1st So Does He – Vlad Duric
2nd Cross Of Gold – Michael Walker
3rd Bradman – Damian Lane

Kapset was one of the best out and looked like leading early but Izenashark pushed outside him to take it up. One he’d crossed Kapset threw the head up and over raced badly. Jetello slotted into a trail behind Kapset and Coram raced inside Bradman a length or so away. A similar gap to So Does He around Collins Street. Izenashark had them running and Kapset wanted to go harder, which fired up the leader again and he took off at the 600m. Coram and Jetello watched it unfold with Bradman enjoying a super trail in the clear. The runs started to come around the turn and Izenashark was collared quickly by Kapset at the 200m. Down the outside came Bradman and So Does He while Coram was checked out of the race on the inside. Cross Of Gold was the widest runner and he started to wear them down. So Does He had the better of Bradman at the 50m but Cross Of Gold was looming but couldn’t quite bridge the gap. The big finisher from the back when the race was all over was Grand Slam Eagle who made it within about a length of the winner after being last on the turn. Coram finished last but didn’t have any luck. Deserved win for So Does He after some hard luck tales of his own.
Follow: none, but watch Grand Slam Eagle next time.

Race 4: Bendigo Bank East Malvern Handicap (1400m)

1st Kayjay’s Joy – Damian Lane
2nd Danestroem – Chris Parnham
3rd Mossbeat – Ben Melham

Sardaaj was clearly the last out then rushed around to better than midfield but couldn’t get in. Danestroem landed in the lead with Lucky Lago on her outside and Kayjay’s Joy finding their backs. A few lengths to Ungrateful Ellen up very handy and Mossbeat also getting into a forward position. Sardaaj was left stranded on their outside. In the bunch next were Secret Toy Bizness, Sure You Can andPetite Diablesse, who found the back of Sardaaj. Danestroem was much more settled in the lead this week and Lucky Lago stuck with her. Kayjay’s Joy kept stalking as Sardaaj started to move forward, Mossbeat lost a couple of lengths in some shuffling and Ungrateful Ellen ran up behind the leader. Lucky Lago was the first beaten and Kayjay’s Joy made her move on the turn to set out after Danestroem, who had a bit of a kick. Sardaaj was further out with Petite Diablesse and Mossbeat and Ungrateful Ellen finding trouble getting through. She took a while to get there but Kayjay’s Joy ran down Danestroem to win nicely but with all the favours. Mossbeat managed to get through to rack up another placing and Petite Diablesse battled on fairly just ahead of Sardaaj and Ring Da Belle andAlleyoop running on late. Ungrateful Ellen should have finished closer.
Follow: forgive both Sardaaj and Ungrateful Ellen.

Race 5: MRC Foundation Plate (1400m)

1st Don’t Doubt Mamma – Luke Currie
2nd Sacred Eye – Michael Walker
3rd Thames Court – Damian Lane

They seemed to wait a bit to sort out a leader and Pearl Star obliged with Giulietta sliding over into second. Thames Court and Catch A Fire let them go for a trail. A bunch of them a couple of lengths away including Don’t Doubt Mamma between Born Magic and Sacred Eye with Hela Flyer wider out. Pearl Star and Giulietta ran along a bit and coming to the turn Catch A Fire and Thames Court were looking to get around them as they showed signs of distress. Don’t Doubt Mamma became held up behind them and Sacred Eye overdid it on the corner and swung very wide. Giulietta couldn’t get past Pearl Star, Born Magic was getting up on the inside and after a bit of a scrimmage Don’t Doubt Mamma swept down the outside and put the race away, though Sacred Eye did sprout wings late to get every close. Thames Court boxed on nicely for third and Pearl Star hung on pretty well next. Giulietta disappointed, Born Magic was okay and of the others Lazumba worked home nicely when it was all over. Good effort by the winner, have to rate these as the second or third level fillies though.
Follow: Sacred Eye looks a nice type in the making.

Race 6: Testa Rossa Stakes (1200m)

1st Fell Swoop – Damien Oliver
2nd Charlie Boy – Steven Arnold
3rd Java – Ben Melham

Speed from It Is Written and Thermal Current and Fell Swoop eased out of any speed battles. Galaxy Pegasus jumped with them this time and took the box seat. Exodus was trapped wide and was taken hold of while Charlie Boy and Java were in that bunch. We’re Gonna Rock recovered after a slow start to boot through to midfield on the fence and inside The Bowler. Well before the turn Fell Swoop pulled his way up outside the two leaders with Java jumping onto his back for a cart home and Charlie Boy waiting for a run inside Java. On the turn Fell Swoop got onto the wrong leg and lost ground as Thermal Current and It Is Written tried to go for home. Galaxy Pegasus was bailed up behind those leaders. Fell Swoop regained his composure to hit the lead at the 100m with Charlie Boy going with him on the inside and Java still coming. Fell Swoop was there to be beaten but held them off and was edging away again for a super win. Charlie Boy was honest first-up with top weight and Java had his chance but ran well. A couple of eye catchers behind the placegetters from the Moody stable with Ulmann and Royal Rapture hitting the line nicely late first-up just ahead of The Bowler. Winner far too good, hopefully he heads for a break and targets the Oakleigh Plate first-up.
Follow: plenty of great runs, Charlie Boy, Java, Ulmann and Royal Rapture.

Race 7: Sprint Series Heat 2 (1200m)

1st Politeness – Mark Zahra
2nd Griante – Steven Arnold
3rd Jessy Belle – Damian Lane

Hazard jumped well from the outside but went looking for cover, Politeness eased and Tycoon Tara went forward with Girl Guide and Lesley’s Choice on the inside. Wawail sat right behind the leaders early with Written Dash punching up on the fence and Forgeress and Scarlet Billows in that bunch. Hazard wound up four and five deep with Vezelay on her back. Lesley’s Choice held them out to lead Girl Guide and Tycoon Tara stuck three wide and Hazard striding up deeper on the turn. Vezelay followed her with Politeness tracking up while Wawail was held up back in the middle. Lesley’s Choice was being swamped past the 100m and Politeness sprinted quickly down the outside with Griante from well back, Vezelay started to battle and Jessy Belle got a rails run late. Politeness just held off Griante and Jessy Belle poking up on the fence. Hazard was far from disgraced after a wide run finishing close up while Atlantis Dream was spotted storming home closer to the inside and Satya on the extreme outside in a bunch behind the placegetters. Wawail finished second last but didn’t ever get a shot at them. Forgive her.
Follow: Atlantis Dream’s return was excellent but also forgive Hazard and Wawail.

Race 8: Naturalism Stakes (2000m)

1st Magnapal – Luke Currie
2nd The United States – Damian Lane
3rd Genuine Lad – Craig Williams

Genuine Lad made a beeline for the front from a wide gate and made it there pretty comfortably. Kapour also came over but was made to work to get up outside the lead. Prince Cheri and Taiyoo took trails leaving Cafe Society three wide as Magnapal kicked up. Sonntag settled handy with Bold Sniper racing a bit greenly next. Let’s Make Adeal and Ethiopia settled midfield and The United Stateswas in the clear behind them. Kapour took over the middle stages and Genuine Lad came off his back to sit nearby with Taiyoo and Prince Cheri still stalking. The first half started to bunch up quite a bit as far as 800m out and Prince Cheri and Cafe Society made a line of four in front with the leaders. Magnapal was waiting for a run while Taiyoo took the inside run. Let’s Make Adeal was under pressure as was Bold Sniper and The United States ran up behind the leading bunch looking for a way through. Kapour and Genuine Lad shook off those wider out, Taiyoo couldn’t quite reach them on the fence as Magnapal made his move. The United States was getting through inside Genuine Lad at the 100m as Magnapal hit the lead and he couldn’t run him down. Genuine Lad stuck it out well for third. Bold Sniper ran a very patchy race but was strong late and Kapour found the run a bit too tough. Behind the placings Taiyoo had his chance as did Let’s Make Adeal. Out wide Almoonqith charged home late and Our Ivanhowe was’t disgraced.
Follow: none stood out though several ran well.

Race 9: Cove Hotel Handicap (1600m)

1st Tarzino – Craig Newitt
2nd Sailing By – Michael Dee
3rd Etymology – Patrick Moloney

Nobody seemed too keen to lead with Sailing By up there and eventually crossing Multifacets. Del Piero and Del Grappa made their presence felt early on too. Zacada raced in the clear. More Than Perfect was stuck three wide around Salamaat and Assertive Star. The second half of the field were strung out quite a bit in the middle stages. Sailing By was travelling much better than Del Piero and Del Grappa nearing the turn. Zacada ran off the track and caused some trouble for Tarzino and Kentucky Flyer running on from well back. Sailing By skipped away around the turn and Del Piero was doing a good job of sticking on. Multifacets couldn’t do any better while Assertive Star got off the fence and loomed at the 200m. Tarzino was hitting the line strongly further out. He really warmed up late and made it look pretty soft on the line beating Sailing By. Etymology came out of the pack to run into third in a handy effort and Assertive Star battled on.
Follow: some nice three-year-olds here and stick with the first three.

Specials from the meeting: Rhythm To Spare, Sacred Eye, Atlantis Dream, Tarzino.

Randwick Review by Todd Burmester

Race 1

1st Counterattack Jim Cassidy
2nd Haptic Sam Clipperton
3rd Takedown Kerrin McEvoy

In the early part of the first event there was three of them disputing the lead. Haptic held the fence with Zoutenant on its outside and Not A Cherry three deep. Redzel who found good support in betting was back last. Before you knew it they were at the home turn and Haptic traveled well up the rise with Zoutenant pushed along but making a pretty good job of chasing. Redzel got through behind the leader and looked to come into it with Counterattack down the outside finishing well. Haptic held the front until the 100m mark, but from there on it was all Counterattack and he came away for a pretty impressive win. Takedown ran on nicey into third. Redzel was very disappointing, finishing back toward the rear.

Follow: Haptic

Race 2

1st Sadler’s Lake Jim Cassidy
2nd Rudy Kerrin McEvoy
3rd Heart Testa Jason Collett

Heart Testa sprung the gates in race two and led easily from Never Back Down and Dragon Flyer. Sadler’s Lake got a nice run behind the speed in fourth, with Rudy behind it. Around the turn, it was still Heart Testa going along nicely in front. Dragon Flyer and Rudy were pulled three and fourt wide respectively to come with their runs. Up the rise, Sadler’s Lake was presented with a run on the fence and took advantage of it to go to the front at about the furlong pole. Thereafter it had the wood on Heart Testa. Rudy ran on well enough at the end but was never going to pick up the winner. That made it the first two races for The Pumper. There wasn’t much that could be said about the rest of the beaten horses here.

Follow: Rudy

Race 3

1st Kasiano Lad Tim Clark
2nd Dupe ‘Em Hugh Bowman
3rd Wild ‘n’ Famous Winona Costin

In the third event, Northern Lyric came out well from a wide gate as did Oxford Poet from the inside. When they settled, those two led jointly, with Mine Two taking the sit on them and Kasiano Lad racing keenly up three wide, before easing back for some cover. Around the turn and up the rise it was a competitive event with Oxfort Poet and Northern Lyric locked in battle. Kasiano Lad and Dupe ‘Em were coming on out wider and Wild ‘n’ Famous was coming through back towards the inside. Kasiano Lad ran clear inside the furlong, and from there the race was beyond doubt. He put a couple of lengths on Dupe ‘Em who finished second and Wild ‘n’ Famous in third spot. The winner was impressive here.

Follow: Kasiano Lad

Race 4

1st Rebel Dane Brenton Avdulla
2nd Ball Of Muscle Tim Clark
3rd Shiraz Kerrin McEvoy

They found their formaiton pretty quickly here with Ball Of Muscle leading up from Hot Snitzel on the outside and Shiraz taking a sit in behind them. Ball Of Muscle had it its own way in front and led by about a length around the bend as the field packed up. Up the rise, Ball Of Muscle still had the front bit was being challenged strongly by Hot Snitzel and Rebel Dane who was on the scene out wide. Shiraz was trying to make ground over on the inside, but looked to have the job ahead. Ball Of Muscle kept fighting, but Rebel Dane was eating into the margin, and arrived right on the most to win by a narrow margin. Although running second last, Rock Sturdy finished its race off quite nicely. Shiraz was a bit disappointing, but the fence may not have been the place to be.

Follow: Ball Of Muscle

Race 5

1st Pearls Sam Clipperton
2nd Honesta Tye Angland
3rd Kimberley Star Blake Shinn

The Tea Rose was race five and Lake Geneva and Ottoman were easily the best to begin and ran clear in front. Ottoman had the inside and went through to take it up from Lake Geneva with Perignon in third and the pace looked ok. Kimberley Star was back past midfield and looked to be trapped a bit wide. Ottoman still had it up the rise and looked to kick away, but wasn’t able to do so. Perignon was running on as was Kimberley Star and those two had a bump at about the 300m mark. Whilst that was going on, Pearls was putting in a big run down the outside and soon after went to the front. Late in the race Honesta started to charge home, and made the finish interesting but was never really going to get to the winner who held on by about a half a length. Kimberley Star held third but was a few lengths back. Ottoman faded out badly.

Follow: Honesta

Race 6

1st Kermadec Glyn Schofield
2nd Royal Descent Hugh Bowman
3rd Pornichet Blake Shinn

The main event of the day was The George Main, and Lucia Valentina was slow to begin. Hooked on the other hand pounced straight on the early lead from Royal Descent and Pornichet who was out three wide. Kermadec was about three lengths off the lead and also out three wide. Past the thousand, Pornichet rolled to the front, with the pace not looking too fast. Hooked kicked up along the fence and those two had about a half length between them. Royal Descent took the sit on them. Around the turn and up the rise, Pornichet looked to travel big time in front and stole a couple of lengths margin over Royal Descent who couldn’t offer any better and Hooked was also beaten. Up to the furlong, Kermadec was pulled wide and was putting in its run but still looked to have the job ahead of it. Pornichet started to shorten stride and Kermadec lengthened beautifully and ran to the front in the closing stages for a pretty impressive victory. Royal Descent kept trying her heart and out got past Pornichet to grab second. Lucia Valentina and Kirrmosa were both good closing their races off from the back to finish midfield. The rest failed to flatter.

Follow: Kermadec

Race 7

1st Preferment Hugh Bowman
2nd Magic Hurricane James McDonald
3rd Complacent Sam Clipperton

They took a little while to sort themselves out in the seventh with Bonfire taking up the early lead and Complacent going up to challenge as they went into the back straight. Complacent ran clear in front with Beaten Up moving up into second, and Bonfire taking a trail behind them together with Tremec. With 600m to go, Preferment was off around them heading towards the front but very wide on the track. Around the turn, Complacent still had the front and was well away from the fence. Early in the straight there was five across the track, with Bonfire and Beaten Up trying their best, but Preferment and Magic Hurricane had come with strong runs on the outside and basically hit the front together. Those two went head and head to the line, and just when it looked like Magic Hurricane would get the better of Preferment, it dug in and proved too good in the final part of the race. Plenty of them finished in a clump here and it’s a race to watch the replay of to understand all the runs. Who Shot Thebarman and Junoob were both good last start and went well enough again here to be ready soon.

Follow: Who Shot Thebarman, Junoob

Race 8

1st Ruling Dynasty Tommy Berry
2nd Sabkhat Sam Clipperton
3rd Faralitos James McDonald

Candelara led them out in the last with Sabkhat up outside of it and Faralitos settling in third. Duccio was up outside of it with Celtic Prince back on the fence. Around the home turn, Candelara still had it from Sabkhat who was looking to make a challenge and soon after ran to the front. Faralitos was trying it’s best to pick them up, Marenostro was coming down the outside and Ruling Dynasty was finding its way through the middle after being last before the turn. Faralitos looked like getting to Sabkhat, but Missvonn and Casino Dancer were coming strongly on the outside and Ruling Dynasty was finishing hard on the inside. It was Ruling Dynasty that finished best and got the money from Sabkhat who fought off Faralitos. Missvonn and Casino Dancer just peaked on their runs a bit on the outside.

Follow: Ruling Dynasty

Specials from the meeting: Kasino Lad, Honesta


Our ‘For and Against’ series has focused on Australian thoroughbred and harness racing punters in recent weeks, so today we wanted to broaden our horizons with an expert sports punter.

Dan Weston is the founder of Tennis Ratings which is a fantastic resource for traditional (pre-match) and in-play betting.

Punting Insights:

  • Why he trusts the data rather than relying on his gut
  • How to handle incomplete data and accurately assess young improving players
  • When he respects the market and when he’s happy to take it on
  • His preferred betting strategy and how he manges his own bankroll

Today’s Guest:
Dan Weston – Tennis Ratings

Dan will be a guest speaker at the inaugural Matchbook Traders Conference in London next month.

If you’re interested in learning from sports modellers, traders, mathematicians and programmers you can use the promo code TRADERSCON50 to claim a big 50% discount.

>> Click here to read the transcript

Dave Duffield: Always good to chat Dan and often it’s about specific tournaments, but today I wanted to get a different perspective on a series we’ve been having recently which covers both form analysis and also staking. Your background and your expertise is tennis…. would you describe yourself as a data reliant tennis analyst, or more gut instinct and experience?

Dan Weston:Absolutely completely based on data, I don’t really use gut instincts whatsoever. I’m pretty much a slave to the numbers, I’ll use them pretty much exclusively. I would say that there’s no real situations where you can’t use data. The only time would be if a player just hasn’t played enough matches and then I would leave the match alone, I wouldn’t even get involved with it.
I find that with using gut instincts and lean mentally towards a player, you’re creating the dangers of gamblers fallacy where you remember the significant events of the past. Sometimes because they are significant, or you remember when a player blew a number of match points, or something like that, it tends to stick in your mind and you think that player is vulnerable in that situation. Where it might just be a one-off, but because it’s a notable event it sticks in your mind, rather than all the times they served out to love and didn’t even think about it twice.
So I would look at the data rather than my gut pretty much always. Sometimes the gut is often correct as well. For example, last night in Quebec, Gibbs threw it away again, and she actually lost the match after winning the first set 6:1, having a set and break-lead in the second set, three match points in the second set and a break-lead twice in the third set. I think she traded a very low 1.01, 1.02 kind of price. My gut would have led me to believe that Gibbs was vulnerable as a front-runner, and that’s completely backed-up by the data as well.
For example, like last year with Gibbs against Pavlyuchenkova in the US Open when she just didn’t want to get over the line in the second set at all. Ended up losing on a tie break before finally winning in the third set. She’s no stranger to these low price turnovers. My gut would have said that and the data backed it up, but because I’ve got the data I’d rather use that anyway, you know, it’s there, it’s concrete, it’s absolute.

Dave Duffield: In that situation when you talk about data, are you talking about break-point conversions and match point conversions and actually winning matches where they’ve held match points? Or are you talking about their performance versus say in-play prices from Betfair or MatchBook or the like?

Dan Weston:There’ll be a lot of ways that I’d look at it. What I tend to do for my own trading is I’ll have a kind of a base data thing that I’ll look at, which would generally be performance when leading in a match, or leading in a various facet of a match. For example, if they’ve won the first set, how do they perform by taking the first break of the second set? How frequently do they do that? Are they consistent, do they press home an advantage? Do they struggle under the pressure? Then also, much more importantly for me, would be how they perform when they’re a set and break-up. That gives me an opportunity to lay at a really low price in play.
If a player like Gibbs, it was Rodina last night as well, but she actually did okay, she served it out pretty easily. Rodina is quite week as a front-runner as well from set and break. Gibbs I’ve got here since July 2014, I don’t have a lot of data on her, but she’s not really a good front-runner. She’s lost a sort of low price lead about 60 percent of the time, which is about 15 percent above the WTA average of 45 percent, so she’s pretty weak. You’ve got players like the standard bad servers like Beck and Koukalova that everyone knows about, they’re horrible to take. Front-running they give up leads 70 percent of the time, plus.
The data there- it provides me with a kind of a benchmark to look at a situation. Then I’ve got a number of competence/confidence factors afterwards that I’ll also adapt to whilst staking or to have more confidence on a position or to strike a position out.
For example, with a projected hold of a player because I want to know that they’ve got a low chance of holding serve in a given situation, because if they’re laying on a set and break-up, but their projected hold is very high, then obviously that’s kind of counterproductive. There is a number of other factors as well. I look at quite minute, in-play data, as opposed to the more generic data that you can find about break-point conversions and stuff like that.

Dave Duffield: You said you’re completely reliant on the data, does that spit out a rated price and your backing overlays? How do you then turn good data into likely bets?

Dan Weston:Obviously that’s something I also factor into the in-play pricing, and that’s not a confidence factor that I would look at as well. I can calculate the model price of a given match before the match starts by looking at the deviation between the two players, projected hold percentages. This changes over a sort of tournament style, for example. Looking at ATP for example, a player with an X projected hold advantage over their opponent will have a slightly lower price in a Masters 1000 than they would in a basic 250, because the favourite’s success in a Masters 1000 is a lot higher. Generally you don’t really get tanks and players throwing hissy fits, spitting their dummy out and stuff like that.
It’s more consistent, the better player tends to win more in the higher value tournaments. Which is logical really because the players want the ranking points, they want the financial incentives for doing well in that tournament. Whereas a big name player in a 250 might just be there because he’s got a nice fee for turning up basically. He’s not necessarily that incentivised to do well whereas, obviously in a Masters or a Slam he is. That’s why the favourites tend to do better in those tournaments.

Dave Duffield: How do you handle incomplete data and, related to that, improvement from young players and how likely they are to be able to take that next step?

Dan Weston:This is something that I’ve spent a lot of time on. I would say that the general public, and even people involved in tennis at a very high level, I’m talking about commentators, or agents or sponsors, even player coaches, et cetera. They don’t understand that sort of thing at all. It’s actually pretty straightforward to profile a player when they’re sort of 18 or 19 years of age, and see how they’ll develop by the ages of 22, 25.
You can have a look at players historical data, players who are older now, and sort of back fit it to see how those players would have improved from those different age gaps.
Once you’ve got a big enough sample you can work out the highs, the lows, the averages, et cetera. You can work out where a player is likely to be. That’s why I’m really confident that Borna Coric is going to be an elite level player because his stats, as an 18 or 19yo are at that level where the improvement should be enough to see that the worst case scenario, he’s going to be a top ten player.
Whereas, I think I mentioned quite controversially on Twitter, that Nick Kyrgios is not really at that level. He could be a top ten player. He might be a top five, six player, but I think he’s going to struggle to win Slams. I can see him having a kind of similar career to Milos Raonic, for example, that sort of level, as opposed to an elite player.

Dave Duffield: I was going to mention him because last time you were on the show there was a fair bit of Kyrgios hype, but you just dampened that down a little bit.

Dan Weston:Yeah, I haven’t really seen a ton to change my mind really since I last spoke to you. His return game is not good enough. You need to have a decent return game to win a Slam, it’s that simple. That’s why it wouldn’t surprise me if a player like Raonic doesn’t actually win a Slam.

Dave Duffield: Just moving on to market intelligence. Some people I speak to have a percentage of, more so how they stake their bets, is reliant on what the market is telling them. Maybe it’s different in a 16 horse field. How do you handle it in a two horse races, or a two player race? In particular, I know there are some times in lower grade events where the odds actually don’t make sense, so it might be a massive overlay on all the data that you have, but actually at times there can be other factors in play.

Dan Weston:Well the market is very smart, there’s absolutely no doubt about that. For me, if there’s a big discrepancy between my model and the market price, particularly ATP level, I’m starting to get worried because I’m thinking have I missed something. These 30,40, 50 tick price differentials between models and markets don’t really happen, it’s super rare that that’s logical. There’s usually a reason and it might well be that there’s an issue with the data because the sample is not big enough, or there might be an injury or a motivation issue or something that I haven’t been able to source and take into account.
At Challengers, I would say the lower you go down, the challenges- you probably can get away with it a little bit more. The reason being because the player’s is more un-exposed, people don’t know their level so much, it’s not so well known as your Djokovic and your Federers of this world. A two hundred ranked player is not going to be as well known to the vast majority of bettors as the top level player.
Even so, you’ve got to be on your guard because obviously you all know that occasionally there are suspicious matches at that level. Those matches are typically very easy to highlight anyway because in-play they have an absolute ton of money matched on them in the exchanges. The prices just don’t make any sense in-play at all. I don’t really want to mention names, but there was a pretty well known one last week where a player was 5:2 down in the first set and he was about half the price of what he started.

Dave Duffield: I did see some discussion around that, how often do those players actually get found out and get suspended or kicked out of the game?

Dan Weston:Not as much as they should. At the moment it’s a bit of a source of frustration really, because I would personally rather that all those players were ousted and we had a fair playing field. There’s a bit of a discrepancy between tennis and other sports at the moment. In snooker, for example, I understand that a player can be banned pretty much based on market intelligence and the market movements of the player in various scenarios.
Whereas, in tennis they seem unwilling or unable to use market data to make those proofs. I think that they should because I don’t think that the authorities know how incriminating the exchange data actually is.

Dave Duffield: That comes back to a question I’ve been asking of each of the guests in the series we’ve been running – is your preference bigger markets where there’s plenty of liquidity and are more than likely more efficient, so a smaller edge? Or smaller markets where you’ve got a bigger edge on the market?

Dan Weston:It’s a tough one really. I like low profile matches because I feel like I’ve got an advantage in knowing more about the lower profile players and their tendencies than the average trader and punter. Like I said to you earlier, I kind of know how to adjust Challenger data to ATP data and kind of relate the different tours to each other by working out how much a player’s stats would decline from Challenger level to when they move up to higher opposition quality at ATP. I feel like I have an advantage over the market for the lower profile, less known players. Obviously liquidity is more of an issue, particularly in Challengers as well. It’s a bit of a catch 22 situation, to some extent.
Frequently in high profile matches, like for example, a Slam final, there’s obviously incredible liquidity, really high volume, but there might not be any entry points that I feel will be viable. That was the case for the Djokovic/Federer match the other day. Just before the match, I’m looking at the stats, I don’t really think there’s much opportunity to get involved, whatsoever.
That’s quite frequent for high profile events because the players are very well exposed, market knows their tendencies, and most of those times laying a top player at sort of set and break-half or two sets up in a Slam match, they’re not that weak in those situations very often. You don’t really have those opportunities to get involved there either. It’s a difficult one, pretty much then I’m looking at picking up in-play data to have a read on a player, as opposed to being able to have a concrete script before the match starts. I would say the advantages of liquidity are great, but sometimes they just don’t provide the opportunity to get involved either.

Dave Duffield: Disregarding the in-play for a moment, for the pre-match betting that you do, is your preference to bet early, not long after the prices have gone up? Or to bet late when you’ve got all the information you need, whether that’s latest injury info, weather, anything like that?

Dan Weston:It’s a difficult one. Obviously the market is quick to adapt if the prices are on, like I said earlier, the market is pretty smart, it’s not stupid at all. As the markets open, the limits tend to be lower anyway, so you might not be able to get a huge amount of money on early, once the prices are released immediately anyway.
My research shows that backing big players that have steamed in the market or drifted heavily, has negligible returns either way when you look at the closing prices. The market actually adapts really well in that situation. What I’ll do is I’ll prepare my data at my convenience and then I’ll take a view from there. Once I’ve done that, then I’ll act.
I won’t specifically make an effort to price a match up before the markets open. Personally I don’t have time for that really anyway, I’m too involved with other things. So I’ll do it when it’s ready for me, then I’ll go from there. Usually that tends to be – well it depends on the time zone and the tournaments – but it tends to be, for Far East and Asia I’ll do it night time UK, and for everywhere else I’ll do it first thing in the morning UK.
That gives me plenty of time usually to get on anyway if I want to and kind of prepare a trading script, or look at pre-match positions if necessary. Most of my action is probably in-play as opposed to pre-match anyway.

Dave Duffield: How do you handle your own bankroll? Do you have a maximum amount you’ll ever expose on an individual match?

Dan Weston:Definitely. My background previous to getting involved with sports was poker, online poker primarily. Online poker has a very kind of strict guideline for bankroll management. I would say that that background has really helped me. I used to primarily play six match cash games, eight tabling at the same time. So I’m exposing quite a lot of money over eight tables. However, I would need to have 40 buy-ins at that level to play that stake. For example, if I’m playing $2 or $4 lines, that’s a buy-in of $400 and I’d need to have $16,000 in my account to be able to play that level. I’m looking at 2.5 percent of my bankroll as a stake. I think that’s quite appropriate for betting and trading as well.
Personally I work to about three percent max loss of my bank per bet or trade. That’s a pretty solid strategy. You’re definitely not going to get broke fast doing that. If your entry points are wrong then you’re going to struggle eventually, but you’re not going to go bust in a week, put it that way, especially not betting pre-match. It enables things to be more solid, you’re not going to have really volatile profit and loss, but it’s going to be a bit more smooth. I prefer that, I prefer not to have to deal with mental headaches, to be fair. Definitely I wouldn’t recommend more than five percent.

Dave Duffield: How often would you adjust your bank?

Dan Weston:You can do it at any kind of frequency that you want really. Say for example your bank is a thousand and you’ve got it up to 11 hundred in a week, well I don’t have an issue with adjusting that. For example, your max loss will be three percent of a thousand, 30 in the first week. There’s nothing wrong with adapting that to be 33 if your bank is 11 hundred in the second week. That’s quite a good strategy actually, I feel.

Dave Duffield: For the way you stake your bets, is there any element of the Kelly criterion involved? Do you have more on the bigger overlays, or not?

Dan Weston:Pretty much I don’t because my data kind of shows me that there’s frequently an issue that I haven’t picked up between when there’s such a massive discrepancy between model and market. In-play I kind of have, like I said to you, more of a confidence factor, so I’ll stake a lot more when I’ve got four or five metrics going for me. All the things that I’m looking for are in my favor, then I’m going to be staking a lot more. I guess that is a kind of an extra value perspective, so the more value that I see, the more metrics that are in my favour, then I am going to stake more in-play that’s absolutely right.

Dave Duffield: Excellent. It’s always good to chat Dan and we always get some good feedback when we have you on this show. I wanted to just finish up by giving you a chance to mention a conference you’re speaking at next month, being the MatchBook Traders Conference.

Dan Weston:Yeah, definitely. We’re at the Emirates Stadium, which is in London. That’s the 14th of October, next month. There’s a number of sports bettors and traders and analysts and mathematicians who are all speaking at the conference.
Some very high profile names, especially those people who are on Twitter might know quite a few guys like Will Wilde, Matt Piper, Scott Ferguson. There’s some presentations about Brentford FC and analytics in football.
Obviously I’m speaking about tennis as well. Yeah, I’m really excited about this, should be a great day and I’m looking forward to it, almost from a learning basis as well as speaking as well. I’m sure that with the quality of presentations that are going to be there, I’m going to learn a hell of a lot as well.

Dave Duffield: Yeah, for sure it looks to be a really good lineup, I’m going to try and make it over there myself, but it is a busy time of the horse racing year, so we’ll see how we go. Appreciate you coming on the show Dan and all the very best.

Dan Weston:Cheers Dave, take care.

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Weekend Racing Reviews – Sept 12th

by darryn on September 14, 2015

Flemington Review by Ray Hickson

Race 1: Cap D’Antibes Stakes (1100m)
1st Petits Filous – Damien Oliver
2nd Super Cash – Kerrin McEvoy
3rd Take Pride – Glyn Schofield
Strykum from the inside held the early lead with Take Pride and Petits Filous outside her. A bunch in behind that trio with Super Cash, Lycia, Grey Street and Thurlow, and My Poppette as well. Parcel raced solo on the outside fence but was never a factor. Petits Filous went straight past the other two leaders at the 300m with Strykum the first beaten. Super Cash came off her heels to run on and My Poppette and Serenade were winding up. Wider out Miss Iydillic was the only one making any ground from off the speed. But Petits Filous was untroubled as she broke away and made it four from four in a canter. Super Cash finished on well for second and Take Pride just held off My Poppette for the minor place. Serenade and Miss Iydillic weren’t far away and they were well clear of the rest of the field. The winner was far too good for these fillies and anything less than a win would have been disappointing.
Follow: aside from the winner, My Poppette’s effort first-up was solid and she’ll want 1400m.
Race 2: Girls’ Day Out Handicap (2500m)
1st Albonetti – Dwayne Dunn
2nd Sir Mako – Craig Newitt
3rd Crafty Cruiser – Ben Melham
Sir Laszlo led them up until Ruscello kicked up from out wide and ran to the lead out of the straight. Albonetti landed third, much closer than she has been in a long time, with Prizum and Kareeming next. Crafty Cruiser and At First Sight raced in midfield. There wasn’t a lot of action until about 1200m left when Reigning started to edge around them three wide from the back and he kept going until hitting the lead near the 800m. Ruscello fired up a bit and they went a few clear of Albonetti and Sir Laszlo. Crafty Cruiser started his move forward before the turn putting Kareeming in a pocket. Ruscello fainted early in the straight and Reigning momentarily regained the lead but Albonetti claimed him at the 300m. Crafty Cruiser loomed up as he always does and Kareeming was boxing on. Albonetti sprinted away to score impressively and if she can sit handier in all her races she’ll win a lot more of them. Sir Makocharged from the back through the field and grabbed second from Crafty Cruiser and At First Sight just battling away.
Follow: none.

(Click to continue reading…)