Betting Articles

Nick's Punting Diary

Nick's Punting Diary To say my life is hectic is an understatement on a par with saying the Charge of the Light Brigade was a “slight military misjudgement”. However, in a perverse way it has helped my betting profitability no end.  I will reveal all another time, but, for now, this week is no different - with my boss away in the USA I have to do his work as well as mine (although I could make a strong case that this is no different from any normal week).  Planning ahead I had decided that this week I would concentrate on football and one competition alone – the European Under 19 Championship. I have long since held the idea that there is a steady income to made from betting on football.  However it took me many years to realise that my ability to determine a teams’ ability to score and concede far outweighed my ability to determine a teams’ ability to win, lose or draw.  I have since been concentrating almost exclusively on goal markets. The youngsters from Portugal (7-0 and 4-1), Austria (3-0) and Denmark (5-0 and 5-0) duly obliged and a few coppers were added to the betting bank with minimum fuss. On to Saturday and I get the inevitable half a dozen texts from friends who will be at the Chester meeting asking for tips.  I always feel obliged to do my best so I get stuck into the card. I have already mentioned that I’m a big fan of Franny Norton when he rides at Chester.  In the opener he has been booked by Richard Fahey to ride once-raced Salford Red Devil.  Unfortunately he is drawn so wide he could easily be lining up at Haydock, so it has to be a no bet. In the next I’m quite happy to put up Roker Park and Bubbly Ballerina at 8/1 and 18/1 as each-way selections given they have both run well here (previous course winners).  I have a couple of my own hard-earned £’s on them for good measure. Onto the 3.20 and the one I like is the ultra-consistent Calaf. Barry Ellison’s 5 year old was pulled up on his last hurdles start and was reported to have bled from the nose.  It’s a slight concern, but that is compensated for by the 20/1 on offer and another each-way tip is winging its way to my friends at the meeting with the cautionary proviso of “should give you a run for your money”. Which is my way of saying he probably won’t win. In the following race, Isdaal would have been another each-way selection at double figure odds but, with the original field of 8 reduced to 7, I decide not to get involved or further risk my reputation as a tipster (if, indeed, I ever had one). The 4.30 is quite an interesting race and to break the monotony of my each-way tips I decide that a dutch on previous course winner Alejandro and Frog Hollow is the way to play.  The latter makes his debut for David O’Meara who has an uncanny ability to pick up average horses from other yards and then improve them first time out.  I bet this race myself and take 8/1 on both. Secret Look in the 5.05 is a straightforward selection, meeting my criteria of Franny Norton on board, course and distance form and a fairly decent last run.  Too simplistic?  Maybe, but we’ll see what happens.  15/2 will do for me. On to the lucky last and by now I will already be a hero or a villain, so my advice is to simply back the favourite.  Barring any late gambles, this will either be Finesse or Dutch Mistress and I expect the winner to come from these two.  I put my money where my mouth is and dutch them both at 5/2 and 7/2. With my £40 ante-post bet on Serena Williams to win the French Open @5/2 being played out today I decide my work is done and the rest of the day will be spent being a full-time Dad (with half an eye on the racing of course). True to form, Salford Red Devil defies his wide draw and wins at 4/1, having been available earlier at 5/1.  I take it all in my stride knowing that I made the wrong call.  David O’Meara wins the second but unfortunately for me it’s with Lucky Numbers and not with Roker Park who finishes fifth. Calaf runs a cracker but loses second spot inside the final furlong and third spot at the line, finishing where all good 20/1 each-way shots finsh………………….in 4th. My quote of “you should get a run for your money” is about as near as I am to getting a winner today.  My spirits are lifted when news filters through of Serena’s 6-4, 6-4 win in the French Open but I hardly think my Chester-bound mates would be too chuffed (not unless I FedEx my winnings through to the track and tell them to “have a drink on me”). My reputation takes a further bashing with Frog Hollow and Alejandro finishing 6th and 10th respectively in the 4.30pm and I only have three “tips” left covering the last two races.  Make that two as Secret Look runs no sort of race in the 5.05pm.  In the not-so-lucky-last Dutch Mistress gets collared on the line and it’s game-over.  Cue abusive texts and tipster jokes for the remainder of the evening. I like to have a bet on a Sunday.  It’s usually just one or two horses and I treat it as a bit of fun, keeping stakes fairly small.  Sunday racing is usually poor at best but one man worth following is Hugh Taylor from At The Races.  This is hardly an original angle, but if anyone can find a decent bet on a Sunday it’s HT. A quick check of the ATR website and I see he has put up two today at Nottingham; Demora in the 3.45 @11/2 and Odeliz in the 4.15 @5/1.  As usual the prices have collapsed within a nanosecond and the best I can get are 4/1 and 3/1.  I back both to win and also can’t resist a little each-way @10/1 on Pigeon Island in the Perth Gold Cup.  I was at Cheltenham in 2010 when he won the Grand Annual and he’s a horse I’ve always liked.  Luckily for me, HT is much more accomplished at finding winners and both his selections oblige while Pigeon Island trails home a distant 7th. Lesson learnt this week – leave it to the Professionals!      

Nick's Punting Diary
Sir Henry, Frankel and Royal Ascot plans...


There are no comments yet. Be the first one to leave a comment!