Sunday, October 31, 2010

Superb weekend...

Perfect Saturday indeed, with all 5 recommendations winning; Madrid, Barca, Arsenal, Everton and Fulham. That brings our strike rate to 19 winning recommendations out of 22 (86%) since the start of my blog. My aim is to reach and be consistently over the 95% rate. As also previewed, Chelsea and Man Utd found it hard to get their 3 points, which validates the previous blog that they were not guaranteed wins.

Being on a winning roll like this, it's tempting to go on a betting rampage; a false sense of invincibility starts to set in, giving you the feeling that everything you touch turns into gold! This is where I have to repeat to myself my first rule of betting: discipline, discipline, and discipline! You can so easily lose those recent winnings by just speculating on a few other bets. By being disciplined, you differentiate and eliminate the hopeful bets from the guaranteed ones. That said, looking at the Monday racing card or football match-ups, I can't see anything to recommend as a sure bet. But there is a big week of Champions League football ahead of us, so there will no doubt be a lot of opportunities to pounce on this week, and I'll keep you posted.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Big Saturday football preview.

Dean Swift was indeed in the frame (came out second), so the last rounds of predictions are rolling in good.

Football Saturday. I say keep following Madrid. I've been recommending them since the start and they're unbeaten, and I see no reason to deviate course. Hercules will give them a game on Saturday, but that won't be enough to beat them. I say follow Mourinho's men again at Draw-no-bet. One day they will lose, but I don't think it's this week-end. Jose will make sure of that. As for Barcelona, they are simply finding it difficult to be as dominating as before, and I think it will be a close contest at the Nou Camp. But Barcelona should prevail or draw; so I will recommend them as Draw-no-bet too to be on the safe side.

In the Premier League, can Tottenham upset Man Utd? This has been trotting on my head a little this week. Redknapp has proven he knows how to beat Fergie's team home or away, and I do feel Man Utd are exposed right now with their flaky defence, and all the Rooney theatrics and absence. Chicharito is good, but he can't lift the team by himself. I won't recommend a Tottenham victory or draw, but I would single out that if ever Man Utd are vulnerable to lose a game at OT this year, it's against Spurs tomorrow. (Plus Spurs have been seriously knocking at the door of OT for the past seasons).

Can Blackburn steal points against Chelsea? Not impossible. I was mentioning in one of my last posts that Chelsea are not as dominating a force as a couple of seasons ago. Maybe Sam Allardyce can hatch a plan to take the spoils here. No recommendation as the result is too close to call, but don't be surprised if this game ends up in a draw.

Arsenal should be too much for West Ham. They both played during the week, and West Ham went to extra time, and Avram Grant is even conceding they are "tired". So Arsenal is another sure Draw-no-bet. I fancy Fulham and Everton to be good Draw-no-bets as well, as they will be particularly difficult to be worn down at home.

Draw-no-bet: Madrid, Barcelona, Arsenal, Fulham, Everton.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Back in it and Friday racing

So, both Sunday Bess and Scented came out second in their respective races as expected. Although I singled them as good Place bets without recommending them, at least it gives me confidence that my picks are back in order after the previously deflating recommendation on Academy. The other thing to stand out from today's meetings is the treble of Dettori. When the guy's on fire, he can really be decisive in the outcome of races. Similarly to last year, Godolphin seem to pick up the pieces at this stage of the season. So it would be of benefit to closely follow their horses particularly where the opposition seems overwhelmed and exposed.

For racing on Friday, I like Dean Swift in the second race at Newmarket. It has a good chance to be in the frame after his encouraging first run. The main question is whether he likes the soft ground or not. I can't recommend him over that question mark. However, if he does not mind the soft underfoot, then he should Place.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Academy flops...but here come the Deep Impacts!

What a let-down with Academy. With all the lauding from the connections, this was supposed to be a formality for the Highclere colt. I couldn't see comments from the Stoute camp to explain the poor show. Nottingham can be a minefield for developing horses, and I wonder if that was the case of it not handling the track. I don't think it was the soft ground as it ran on soft on its first run.

Tomorrow I see Sunday Bess is running at Lingfield. Daughter of Deep Impact, the Japanese superstar. According to Andrew Black, her owner, she "goes extremely well on the gallops." If that's the case, she could win on her debut among this really average lot. I can't recommend her based solely on the owner's remarks though, but if you see the market moving for it, then it might be an indication that connections are serious about the horse. I am keen to follow how the Deep Impacts do.

I like Scented in the 7:20pm race at Wolves. Richard Hughes who's making a late charge for the jockey's championship takes the ride. I think this horse has a good chance to be in the frame among this weak opposition. Since it has yet to win, I can't do a sure recommendation on it, but I can see it being at least placed.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Loving draw-no-bet and wednesday racing.

Madrid drew, and that is one more reason that I love the draw-no-bet (DNB) option. Sometimes when the ball just won't go in the net despite a 90-minute long domination (I watched the game and I think they out-shot Murcia 18 to nil), it is good to have insurance through the DNB option and have your bet refunded. The returns might be smaller than for an outright win, but at least a draw result (however improbable) does not go against you.

Tomorrow racing at Nottingham, I like Academy in the 2:30pm race. He will be in the Top 3, and probably will win. However, the Godolphin runners can always provide solid opposition, so I will recommend a Place bet on Academy.

Place: Academy

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tuesday 26th October preview

So Top Care and Peligroso won pretty easily. Although I hand-picked them as winners as I described, I just could not outright recommend them. It's a matter of discipline that I try to maintain (and it's hard, believe me!). Even though I am confident in selecting potential winners, they have to be below a certain level of risk before I recommend them. This kind of discipline works well for me. But if any of you felt those 2 highlighted runners were worth the risk, I'm happy for you.

Tomorrow Tuesday, Real Madrid seems another sure winner. The team has been warned by Mourinho not to repeat last year's debacle in the King's Cup. With Ronaldo in the line-up, Madrid should go on and beat Murcia. Because it's a Cup game, and Madrid won't field their entire first-team, you can safely bet on them as a draw-no-bet winner.

Draw-no-bet: Madrid.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Weekend catchup...

Chelsea, Barcelona and Madrid all won during the week-end, so this put the tally to 14 good bets out of 16 since the start. Christiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are on a tear right now, so the 2 Spanish sides are to be watched very closely. I watched Chelsea's game and as expected it was not a walk in the park, but they had too much class for Wolves. Things seem to be rolling for Chelsea these days, but I am not entirely conviced they are a better team than last year. I certainly think Ancelotti has a better understanding of the English game, and they will get more points than last year. I find them edgy on their road travels, and am already thinking about them losing points at Blackburn next week. Anyway, I'll analyze this match in due time.

On Monday, I don't have any sure racing tips. I think Top Care will be in the first 3 in the first race at Southwell, and Peligroso will win the 3 o'clock race at Leicester, but I don't fancy them that much to recommend them. Top Care is the highest-rated among this weak lot, and being by Bernstein should relish the synthetic surface. However, he's only raced at 6 furlongs and is now jumping at a mile, so that's a big ask and seems vulnerable to any improver that will relish the surface on first try. Peligroso should win this 4-runner race on form. However, the heavy surface at Leicester is not optimum for him, and there is a small chance he might not relish the conditions. So I'll abstain from recommending both as sure bets.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Saturday football.

Aargh, Funella Fudge came up 4th... There are no excuses for her run, she just did not stay the trip. It could have been the soft ground that un-did her. Anyway, as long as there was no hard luck story for her unplaced run, I'll accept  it as is, and move on. But losing a place bet because of a 4th place finish is a horrible thing.

This weekend's coming up with some great football match-ups to get over that losing bet. I cannot see Chelsea lose to Wolves. I would usually have them as Win, but since they just played away during the week, you never know about the recuperation aspect of the team. So, I'll have them draw-no-bet. In Spain, Barcelona and Real Madrid will win. So I'll have those as Win bets. Mourinho is undefeated in home league games for the past 8 years, so you've just got to pile on Madrid whenever they host weak competition. Barcelona are playing the worst team in the league, so that's an opportunity for them to pile the points, and for you to reap returns as well.

Win: Barcelona, Real Madrid.
Draw-no-bet: Chelsea.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Friday racing preview.

Man City just finished winning their game, as predicted.

On Friday, I like Fenella Fudge in the first race at Ayr. She is a Group horse with the highest rating, and it would take massive improvement on the other horses to beat her. One of the debutants is Patriotic, which will probably relish the soft ground being by Pivotal. Still, I can't see him or any of the newcomers posting a higher rating of 90 on their debut, so Fenella Fudge will definitely be in the top 3. Although for others, there might be more value with going for the outright win at odds-on, I will play it safe and use the sure Place option.

Place: Fenella Fudge.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

More football on Thursday

Barcelona and Man Utd won as expected, so now the first 11 recommended bets out of 12 have won. That's the kind of strike rate that I am looking for. Let's keep rolling... Man City will have too much firepower for Lech Poznan. A draw-no-bet on City is a safe bet.

Draw-no-bet: Man City.

Without Rooney, Man Utd will win tonight.

So much press on the Rooney saga since yesterday's bombshell. What I know is that Man Utd will unleash itself against Bursaspor tonight. True, they hardly had the best preparation with all the talk about Rooney leaving, but I cannot see them losing to the Turk champions. With the recent spat of meltdowns in the league, I can see them starting to cut out the defensive mistakes. Or-else Sir Alex will have heads rolling. It's Man Utd Draw-no-bet tonight. Small returns may be, but sure pay-out.

Draw-no-bet: Man Utd.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

On a roll... and Wednesday preview.

All recommended 3 bets won yesterday, so we are on a roll...

Football. Barcelona to beat FC Copenhagen. The Spanish champions are starting to get their football back together, and it won't be surprising if they start accumulating the wins. I can't see Copenhagen coming up with a surprise win here. Can they draw? With huge luck yes. But I think the risk of going for a Barcelona outright win for this match are worth it.

Racing. I like Gay Mirage for the Kempton 8:50pm race. It comes back after 5 months of rest and I think it will be in the top 3. It's always like rolling a dice when betting on horses that come up after a long layoff. That's why I don't think it's a sure place bet. For that reason, I won't outright recommend this bet, but for those of you who fancy some risk, this might be a place bet that might pay out.

To recap:
Win: Barcelona 

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tuesday 19th October punts

Football. I can't see how AC Milan can go and win in Madrid on Tuesday. If they are lucky, they can escape with a draw. Ronaldo is on fire, and Madrid is in really good form. Mourinho practically never loses in a home game. It's true that the last time Milan went to the Bernabeu, they won, but that was an entirely different scenario. Madrid at Draw-No-Bet is a certainty.

Racing. The first race in Yarmouth should go to Aneedah. Here again, a punt each-way on the Gosden horse will pay for sure. He will probably win as well, although I can't make much on any of the 4 newcomers. When I encounter such cases where it's hard to figure out the first-time runners, I opt for the more prudent approach, and look for the sure each-way payout.

Moonsail, in the second race at Yarmouth is another sure each-way bet. He will be in the top 3. If it were not for the presence of Makheelah and Mohenian Lady, I think he will have been a good win bet. Let's take him at sure each-way money.

Draw-No-Bet: Real Madrid.
Each-way: Aneedah, Moonsail. 

Sunday, October 17, 2010

First results...

It would have been a perfect start, had Van Der Sar not made that howler against WBA... Anyway, it wasn't a bad start with all the rest of the predictions right on target. The Dewhurst confirmed that Frankel is the best 2-year old this year, but I agree with many that Dream Ahead did not produce his A-game. As I was mentioning, confronting Frankel after only 2-weeks rest at 8 furlongs did not seem the best option for the son of Diktat. After the race, his trainer Simcock vindicated these thoughts saying the race came too soon for him. Dream Ahead could be a very serious horse on sprint distances next year. As for Frankel, of course he is the main contender, but not a certain lock for next year's 2000 Guineas (think St Nick Abbey). Hopefully he can be the next superstar horse. Probably his main rivals will be across the pond in Ireland (think Pathfork, Casamento, or some of the Coolmore 2-year olds that improve dramatically at 3). Anyway, it's still early at this stage to speculate reagarding the Guineas picture next year, and certainly it's not worth having an ante-post bet on Frankel for the Guineas at this stage since the odds are so short. So much can change until then, so I'll leave it at that.

I can't find any interesting or sure bets for Lingfield or Yarmouth tomorrow, so I won't speculate. But there are some great Champions League match-ups coming up this week, and I'm going to post my views very soon. Stay tuned.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Saturday bets

Big races coming up on Saturday. Let's start:

Football. It's never easy for clubs to get their rhythm back or continue good form after an international break. Players have travelled a lot and come back late for a couple of training sessions before game-day. So some caution is warranted. But Man Utd seems a sure-fire bet. True that Albion went on to beat Arsenal at the Emirates, but they faced a really inept Arsenal side. I will go Man Utd for the Win. I will also play Bolton as Draw No Bet. Bolton wins, and you win. If Draw, you get your money back. I love this bet on Betfair. In the other leagues, go with these sure-fire Draw No Bets: Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Bayern Munich.
Big day in racing too. Although I won't bet (because this is too close to call), the Dewhurst should be between Frankel and Dream Ahead. I think Frankel edges this because of the distance. Dream Ahead has never gone over 6 furlongs, and his pedigree suggests the extension to 8 furlongs against the likes of Frankel will be too much to ask. We'll see if Frankel is as good as people think. I just need to see him win again to become a believer.

For the Champion Stakes, I like Twice Over. His trainer is bullish (which does not always happened) and he's the class horse of the race with the best preparation. I will have a hopeful bet on him as Place (or each-way). Gitano Hernando is as good a horse, but coming back only 15 days after his last race (after a long absence) does not bode well for a Group 1 race.

At the last in Cork, Cocozza definitely will be in the top 2. I can see it win unless Coolmore's Quest for Peace is something out of the ordinary. Cocozza to Place for sure. If no hard-luck in this field of 21, should win as well.

To recap:
- Win: Man Utd.
- Draw No Bet: Bolton, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich.
- Each-way: Twice Over, Cocozza.

What type of punter are you?

People have different approaches when it comes to betting. If you read pro-punter Dave Nevison's book (A Bloody Good Winner), you realize he bets on over-priced (long shot) horses, with the aim of big returns. That means that his strike ratio does not have to be huge; a big long-shot win will pay for numerous small losses. On the other hand, popular pro-punter Harry Findley bets big at small odds (sometimes as low as 3% return). His strike rate needs to be close to 100% for him to make money. I think it's important for any punter to know what type of punter he/she is. It's either one of the extremes above, or somewhere in between. I found out I am more the "small-odds, many-wins" type of punter like Findley. In many cases, I see myself backing sure-win favourites, and at odd times, I will have a flutter on the outsiders. It works for me. I see it as the more you win, the more confidence it instills in you. It does not mean that the other extreme doesn't work. Far from that. However, with that approach, you've got to be confident that there is a big payout happening (sooner than later). So what type of punter are you? is a question any punter should ask.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Hi, Welcome to my blog!

Through it, I'd like to share my experiences in horse racing and football (soccer) betting. I am mainly into U.K and Eire racing. But I keenly follow Flat horse racing on a global scale from the Dubai festival to the big races in the U.S. As for football, I'm very much into the top European soccer leagues starting with the English Premier League, Spanish Liga, Calcio etc.

I intend to regularly ramble and give my take on these topics, whether it's a week-end or weekly football match, or on a race in Wolverhampton! Thank you for staying tuned.