To consistently use horse racing entries to pick winners I advocate following a set method of form study. To do this we need to break the down the process into a series of easy to follow steps.
Look for horses that have run at least 5 times and won at least once. This is an important starting point in that we know these horses have the ability to win. Those without a win, perhaps running in maiden races, may be capable of winning but there is an element of doubt. It is best to eliminate as much doubt as possible when analyzing a race.
Check how many times each horse has won (Racing Post Online provides this information) and calculate this as a percentage. For example if a horse has raced 10 times and won once then the percentage is 1/100 x 100 = 10% . The results will show up to four patterns emerging
1. Some runners in the race achieve a win ratio of 30% or more.
2. Some runners in the race have a low win ratio of 5% or have not even won a race.
3. Most horses have won a race or two and show very similar win percentages.
4. A few horses have a high win ratio and the rest are low or without a win.
2. We have now identified 4 types of races to bet in so let’s start with type 4. which should prove the easiest to solve. This type has revealed a few horses that win often and the majority who seldom win.
3. To further eliminate the chances of the poorer horses use the horse racing entries to check their form. Find out how many times each one finished a race within 1 length of the winner. Convert this to a % of the horse’s total races in the same way as we did for the wins.
So for each of the horses with a poor winning percentage in turn, we open their form history and check how many times each horse has finished within a length of the winner. And we work out what percentage of the total horses races this is.
Thus a horse without a win but which has finished within a length of the winner on 2 occasions can be shown as having performed with credit in 20% of its races. If this rises to 50% then include these horses in your calculations for the race.
You should now have a shortlist of possible winners of the race and it would be worth considering dutching these if there are only a few and the prices warrant it.
4. However if we wish to narrow the field even further from our horse racing entries eliminate from your shortlist any horses that have not won or come within a length of the winner for this type of race.
5. Then do the same with the ground conditions to check if the horse has won or come within a length of the winner on similar going. You can even check the going stick rating at the BHA site which will be more accurate than the racecard going report.
You will now have a shortlist of 2 or 3 horses who are most likely to win the race – you can bet them in a number of ways such as in a forecast, exacta, dutching, etc depending on the prices involved. I am indebted to Michael Wilding of Sports Race Advisor for information contained in this article.
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