Mark’s Selections – September 2017

Those on the forum will know of Mark’s selections that he posts daily.

It would be fair to say that he’s getting a bit of a following these days and who can blame them?

September’s results are now in and they are as follows.

Selections   731
Winners      119
Strike Rate   16.9%
Profit       218    (at the price available at the time of posting)
ROI           29%

The largest drawdown was 106 points and there were a total of 108 profit points.

UK Racing, About Much More Than Just The Form

Racing is part of the fabric of the UK, like bacon and eggs, cups of tea and talking about the weather and it is the latter which plays a major part in the sport.

In countries where it is hot for most of the year, the going is not too much of a factor but it is everything in the UK, with four seasons in one day not uncommon.

Horses that have dominated over a period can easily be withdrawn on the day of a big race after a deluge leads to heavy ground, and punters need to be wary of those left in a contest when conditions are soft if the animal favours quicker ground.

Owners and trainers are usually watchful and diligent over this issue as the wellbeing of the horse is of paramount importance, but it can be frustrating for racegoers the length and breadth of the country.

Jumps racing in the British Isles is a huge sport, with the Cheltenham Festival the obvious centre piece as it attracts the best from Ireland to take on their British rivals.

Prestbury Park in the Gloucestershire countryside is another example of the nuances of UK racing, with the undulating course and famous hill towards the finishing line causing the downfall of many a favourite over the years.

While the form of a horse and opposition are clearly vital and should be studied as in any country, overhead and under-hoof conditions are equally as crucial and it pays to make sure you have done your homework on a particular horse’s record at a certain track before parting with any hard-earned cash.

Checking out the bookmakers with the best odds can help in this respect when it comes to the analysis prior to the start of a race.

It is also prudent to watch out for trainers who take one of their charges to a specific course for a random one-off race.

It usually means they have a good feeling that their horse may have an excellent chance of landing the spoils, otherwise they would probably not bother, and so it may be worth the odd shilling or two.

Flat racing dominates in the summer months and the draw can be all-important to the outcome of a contest.

Once again, due to the variables caused by weather and drainage, sections of a track, even over a short distance of five furlongs, may differ significantly and give horses drawn in certain stalls a big advantage.

Quite often the sprinters will split and one side of the track appears faster than the other.

Certain courses in the UK have a draw bias and punters need to take that into consideration when trying to pick a winner.

It is important to make sure you do your research to improve your odds of landing the spoils to go home with extra cash in your pocket.

There are obviously many ways to narrow down your selections to try and beat the UK bookies but some sill still favour sticking a pin in the race card or backing an animal with a fancy name.

It is not recommended but sometimes effective!

Jumping Life 2017-2018

Over the course of the past few weeks I pleased to have made the aquaintance of Martin Gray who runs a small racing club up in the North East of England.

In Martin’s own words, he says “I run a small friendly racing club which provides members with a racehorse ownership experience, regular updates, stable visits, owner’s tickets, other National Hunt information and profitable betting advice from less than £20 per week. The retention of MGR club members is running at over 90% over the first three years.”

More information on Martin’s racing club can be found on the Martin Gray site.

The purpose of this blog post is to share his first newsletter, Jumping Life, which is very much a Horses To Follow publication which is interesting. The reason why I find this publication interesting is, to use Martin’s own words again, “The approach I bring which is slightly different to the above publications is by pulling together all areas, that is horse ownership, bloodstock research, sales ring experience and form analysis on the betting side of the sport.”

The first issue of Jumping Life can be viewed or downloaded here…

Wit’s On Fire!

Wit, from the forum, was certainly on-fire with his b-c-dd-e selections yesterday.

The one that’s of interest here is Ablaze with the excellent five year and one race differential figures as can be seen here.

Ablaze won at 20/1, though the BetfairSP was 38.0, which was nearly double. However, for a long time yesterday morning (and I mean a l-o-n-g time) it was available on the exchanges at 67 which a number of people had been matched at.

So, it can’t be argued that yesterday that Wit was truly ablaze with his selection system.

Royal Ascot Etiquette Guide

Attracting approximately 300,000 visitors a year, the Royal Ascot is easily the most valuable racing competitions in Britain; with a £6.5million prize available for many of the world’s finest racehorses.
However, if you are planning to attend this highly glamorous and prestigious event in 2017, it is important your party is well prepared for the occasion, for there are certain behaviours and general rules to follow, that are applicable, no matter which enclosure you intend to visit.
If you are aspiring to attend Royal Ascot, then going there to experience what the Royal meeting has to offer first hand, simply must be crossed off your bucket list.
Of course, the event is centred on the racing, but it has evolved into so much more than that. With a very strict dress code in place, every year we see fashionistas pushing the boundaries with elaborate dresses, and more importantly, hats. Seeing all of the attendees in their finery has come to be a spectacle and has moulded Royal Ascot into the glamorous event that many fans know and love.
The ‘Royal’ Aspect of the meeting is delivered by senior members of the Royal Family and indeed by The Queen herself who is notoriously recognised as a massive fan of the races. Her Royal Majesty, the Queen will attend the event every year to watch her own horse’s race. She arrives in style, in a delicately adorned carriage, pulled by Winsor Greys. The carriage travels along the race course, through the grandstand and into the parade ring, where she addresses spectators and officially begins the days racing. As she passes the grandstand, gentlemen will remove their hats out of respect to Her Royal Majesty.
Each day at Royal Ascot is dedicated to six specific races, and every one of these days hosts at least one group one race. The most famous day is considered to be Ladies day, which traditionally falls on a Thursday.
Gates Open at Royal Ascot from 10.30 am and visitors are encouraged to arrive as near to this time as possible, in order to be able to fully enjoy everything that this prolific event has to offer.
Within the various hospitality restaurants and facilities, Visitors are greeted with either a champagne or Pimms reception followed by morning tea and coffee. Lunch is served from 12pm, with a full two hours service so that you are able to relax and enjoy the fine selection of food that is on offer.
The Queen traditionally arrives each day at 14.00, before the first race begins at 14.30. The final race takes place at 17.35.
The Royal Enclosure:
One of the most highly prestigious and privileged ways, to attend Royal Ascot is as a member of The Royal Enclosure. Holding a membership to the Royal Enclosure is very exclusive. Those that are members become members by nomination from someone that is, and has been a member for four or more years.
If you are fortunate enough to have been invited into The Royal Enclosure then there are many conducts that must be adhered to. The way that you deport yourself, for example, is very important if you are to be accepted into the fold. Swearing or any anti-social behaviours will never be tolerated.
Dress Code:
Whether your party is visiting Royal Ascot as members of the Royal Enclosure, guests within a corporate hospitality facility, or simply with Queen Anne Enclosure badges, there are specific codes of conduct and dress that must be followed. You are required to be appropriately dressed at all times.
Gentlemen are required to present themselves in a full, three piece morning suit, with top hat and tie. Cravats are not permitted. Shoes must be pristine, polished and black.
The Ladies dress code is even more specific. Dresses and skirts must be, what is considered to be, of moderate length, nothing shorter than just above the knee. Dresses and tops must have straps or sleeves that are greater than one inch wide. Halter necks and spaghetti straps are not permitted at any time. Jackets, wraps and shawls may be worn, but dresses or tops underneath have to comply with the one inch rule. Midriffs must not be exposed at any time. Ladies may wear a trouser suit but it has to be matching, in both colour and in material and must be full length. Ladies are required to wear a hat, although as an alternative to a hat, a head piece with a solid diameter of more than 4 inches is acceptable.
Royal Ascot Hospitality Facilities & the Queen Anne Enclosure:
When you are attending Royal Ascot as part of a hospitality package, or if you hold a badge for the Queen Anne Enclosure, you should regard your attendance as a formal occasion. The usual behaviours that you would display if you were to go to a wedding, for example, would be applicable within the racecourses hospitality facilities, bars, restaurants, and within the grandstand.
The dress code is similar for ladies, as it is within the Royal Enclosure, however, a fascinator may be worn as an alternative to a hat. Strapless or sheer straps on any dress or top will not be permitted in any case. Trousers can be worn as part of a suit or simply with a top that complies with the rules regarding straps. Midriffs must be covered at all times and shorts may not be worn.
Gentlemen are required to wear a suit and tie. They do not need to wear a morning suit or top hat unless they wish to do so.