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Should we bet in lower grade handicaps ?

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    • Total Posts 12

    I ran a Twitter poll today asking people whether they think punters faced with low grade handicaps and high grade handicaps should avoid low grade races or embrace them. There are still plenty of people who believe the media numpties who spew out the daily nonsense to either mask their lack of betting nouse or perhaps encourage you to lose more by advising you that low grade handicaps are unreliable betting mediums. ( Currently on Twitter 70% think low grade is OK and 30% think it should be avoided), the media often advise you otherwise, Jim Mcgrath of Timeform has said as much himself ………….. read the rest at
    Lower Class Races Don’t Believe Me Believe Hugh

    • Total Posts 111

    Very interesting stuff OliasOfSunhillow, my view is… stick to the high class diet. Having said that like most people i dont stay with a diet for long. This is because i know there’s also rich pickings at the poor mans table. But it requires a completely different GUMMIDGE head.


    ps “looking forward to reading Hugh Taylor… lateron”

    • Total Posts 26588

    That series ^ was filmed just up the road from where I used to live.

    Better hair cut than most of us right now I’d imagine. :yes:

    value is everything
    • Total Posts 26588

    There’s been a few good threads on this topic over the years, Olias.
    Betlarge wrote a couple and was a great advocate of betting on lower grade handicaps, having evidence to go with his arguement.

    No doubt a punter can make a profit on them if putting in enough work. From memory of Betlarge’s stats, favourites in this grade win at least as often as in higher grades; ie SP 6/4 shots win just as many if not more often. However, whether the early fav (when betting opens) does or not – don’t know. Only a fraction of money is wagered on a low grade race (little money in the book – which is important)… Meaning the money needed to move a price significantly is extremely small because it is a bigger percentage of the book. This in turn makes the market volatile. Aswell as steamers, horses drift more too. Bookmakers needing to push a horse out by big margins when they’ve had a significant percentage of the book for one particular/other horses – so they can make an equal book. Therefore if a punter is a good trader – backing and laying horses off – it may be a beneficial type of race to get involved in… Provided (of course) he/she can identify the value/a good bet. Punters need (by and large) to back horses before they’ve shortened and after they’ve drifted (or lay the opposite).

    Trouble is part of the reasons why horses are in this grade is temperament – more inconsistent. That’s not “nonsense”. You mention Timeform Jim McGrath. Am a subscriber and only need to look at how many horses in the lower leagues are rated with a squiggle; and some of them are on their way to a double squiggle… Added to that; a horse who’s shown little/nothing only needs to improve slightly for victory.

    Then there’s prize money. Only way horses in poorer grades can make a profit for their connections is with a betting coup. So although skulduggery etc is imo exaggerated, there’s more of it in this grade.

    It’s true that by off time the market has got to know the true chances of the vast majority (true chances minus bookies mark up) – but that’s no good for punters.

    Personally I much prefer the higher grades. I find they have more consistent, genuine racehorses which leads to me being able to form a good idea of their fair chances (nowadays often without the need of making a 100% book. Media bias for (and against) one horse or the other also makes identifying a reasonable number of big priced winners easier too… But that’s just me – each to their own.

    value is everything
    Blackcountry Kid
    • Total Posts 130

    The answer to this question isn’t as complicated as first seems but it does require the effort and knowledge to specialize and a different mindset using criteria fit for purpose.
    Personally going back to when I first established my ideas,theoretically,there was no reason why a horse from a lower grade couldn’t qualify …in fact one of the best bets of my life was in a SELLER!
    The horse in question came into consideration after registering numbers way above that needed to win any normal race of that class and being at my local track I went along to watch some of the easiest money I have made.However despite looking at lower class races for a workable way to use my methods it has so far eluded me so now I use only class 3 & above races where the average ability of runners is capable of reaching the required level for potential investments.
    The main difference between the two sets of horses is reliability and therefore how often horses are capable of producing their best form on any given outing,To my mind horses running lower down the scale tend to need a more specific set of circumstances to be successful,thus a much lower strike rate and overall consistency.Working with numbers and specializing has enabled me to concentrate on a relatively small pool of horses and although as some commentators will say ‘take turns to win’ nothing could be further from the truth as far as I’m concerned.The signs are there for which horses are potential bets as Clive Holt (Fineform) puts it “horses with good recent form,preferably winning form,running against limited opposition within their class when at their peak,progressing or improving -do win the majority of races”.I gauge my reliability factor by numbers others use collateral form but lower grade handicaps need a different idea so I don’t believe one should be scared to get involved,just make sure you have the right set of tools for the job being undertaken.
    good luck to all

    • Total Posts 2055

    I do not bet on the lower grade racing as I know that I would end up in the poor house pretty quickly. Fair play to the people who make it pay.

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