Thursday, 29 September 2016

He's Backed Every Favourite Since 1974

When you make a decision it seems natural to think you have weighed up all the factors. Let's say you considered a bet. You think the horse has winning form. It likes the ground. Good jockey. The price is better than you thought and looks value. Job done. Well, that's the logic, hey. However, research suggests there may be a problem. Our decision making is mostly unconscious. Now you may consider that is a load of old rubbish. ''I know what I think!'' But  consider how these aspects may influence your ''decisions''. 

Are you influenced by what others say? The paper favourite? What does that bloke from the Racing Post have to say? You maverick doing your own thing. In an instant you can appreciate how social validation plays its part.  The difficultly is that so much of our ''decision making'' is ingrained, habitual, implicit that even trying to make it conscious is no easy task. As Sigmund Freud would say: ''We are trying to make the unconscious conscious.''

Your past behaviour will affect how you behave in the future? It most likely will unless you can appreciate why you behave in such a way. Have you noticed the bloke in the bookies who only bets on the favourite? Every time it's a favourite. He may try and mix it up a little with a cross the card double (but it's still two favourites). But why? We like to stay true to ourselves and so we follow a personal commitment to do just that. Take a read of our post: I followed That Horse Off A Cliff

Boy, you will be waiting a long time for Uncle Harold to take out his mat and do some break dancing.

Back an outsider? Fu*k Off!!!!!

Free Horse Racing Tips, Click Here!

But what else? Do you follow a tipster even though he has been in terrible form of late because he had a good winner last year. I owe him. Or your mate took your advice last week and he's really keen on this horse  and would you believe it's in the same race as mine. That reciprocity can turn your mind. But so too can your ''decision'' never to trust anyone's advice but your own (talking to myself here).

However, this doesn't mean your thinking is faulty, irrational or bad. It's simply that our conscious mind cannot cope with all the data it tries to process. Our unconscious mind has evolved to do the job. For the most part it does it well. It's not a tyrant trying to teach us a lesson for being a naughty child. It trusts it makes a decision in our interests. That's the ''gut feeling''. 

Probably the best way to appreciating how we make decisions is to keep a diary. Not so much about our selection or bets but how we got to that point. This is much more difficult than it sounds but it can be revealing especially if you notice a pattern of behaviour keeps cropping up. 

What do you think, Sigmund?

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

How Gambling Killed Kenny

Ken Uston, blackjack,
Ken Uston was a professional gambler with a love of blackjack. Born in New York in 1935, his mother a native of Austria and his father a Japanese migrant businessman.

Uston went to Yale University at the age of 16, then studies an MBA at Harvard. He had varied jobs including Senior Vice President at the Pacific Stock Exchange. 

He enjoyed playing blackjack at weekends and read Thorp's Beat the Dealer becoming a genius card-counter. 

In 1983 Blackjack Forum interviewed Uston. He said he became fascinated by blackjack and its strategies after meeting professional gambler Al Francesco in a poker game. Francesco had launched the first ''big player'' type of blackjack card counting team and recruited Uston to be his main team player. A team of card counters would wait until a table became extremely positive and the ''big player'' would place big bets. Uston was promoted as the ''big player''. He later co-authored a book called The Big Player which effectively barred Fracesco's team from playing in Las Vegas. 

In 1978, Uston started his own profitable blackjack team. He was soon barred from casinos in Atlantic City. In 1979 he filed a lawsuit claiming casinos did not have the right to bar skilled players.

''In Uston v. Resorts International Hotel Inc., 445 A.2d 370 (N.J. 1982), the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that Atlantic City casinos did not have the authority to decide whether card counters could be barred absent a valid New Jersey Casino Commission regulation excluding card counters. To date, New Jersey casinos—by statute—are not allowed to bar them. In response to Uston's legal victory, Atlantic City casinos began adding decks, moving up shuffle points, and taking other measures to decrease a skilled player's potential advantage. ''      

Uston adopted a number of disguises to continue playing blackjack. He had an aggressive, flamboyant playing style. 

In an article in Blackjack ForumArnold Snyder describes playing with Ken Uston at Circus Circus Las Vegas near the end of Uston's life. He states that Uston was disguised as a worker from Hoover Dam and got away with spreading his bets from table minimum to table maximum on a single-deck game. Since this took place at a time when card counting was well understood by casino executives and managers, and since the primary clue by which casinos detect card counting is a card counter's "bet spread" pattern, most card counters would also consider Uston a genius of disguise, and/or "card counting camouflage".

Uston went on to write Million Dollar Blackjack detailing his winning techniques.

He was the subject of a 1981 segment on 60 Minutes, and in 2005, he was the subject of the History Channel documentary, "The Blackjack Man"

On the morning of September 19, 1987, Ken Uston, age 52, was found dead in his rented apartment in Paris. The cause of death was listed as heart failure.

Monday, 19 September 2016

2:00 Lingfield Racing Tips (20th Sept) BRITISH STALLION STUDS EBF MAIDEN STAKES (CLASS 5) (2yo)

An EBF Maiden Stakes over 1m 1y on standard going.  Ten two-year-olds take part and a fascinating contest.

Hydroxide is a class horse trained by Hugo Palmer and by all accounts a winner without a penalty. Two narrow loses to talented rivals must give a bittersweet taste for connections V I Araci. This son of Lope De Vega cost 205,000G at the breeze-up sales. If this Irish-bred had won on debut, it is very likely we would have contested a pattern race by now and is likely to be heading in that direction. This odds-on shot has to take some beating although there are a few juveniles in opposition who may hold some claims, perhaps more at each-way selections in hope that the favourite comes second best once more.

Balashakh was fancied to go well on debut when finishing fourth at odds of 6/4. This bay colt is an American-bred son of Blame and cost 100,000G at the yearling sales. He will improve for that debut effort and from a statistical point of view has very good win and place claims. Beating the likes of Hydroxide seems a pretty stiff task but if touching each-way prices could well be  abet to nothing and hope this colt is much better than seen or the favourite has a taste for second place. Interesting. 

*Envisaging is another horse who may be capable of more. James Fanshawe is a talented trainer and the betting indicates this Irish bred son of Zoffany could have a fair level of ability. Ben MC Wong's two-year-old cost 110,000G at the yearling sales rising markedly from his price at foal [17,500E]. He was much too keen last time out at Goodwood. He wasn't helped by a small field and ten runners and a wide draw may force the hand of Queally to sit in behind and progress from there. A tongue tie is applied for the first time. At odds of 12/1, he isn't beyond going well and good have realistic each-way claims. 

Bocelli is a home bred from Mrs P Good. It would take a huge effort to win this race on debut although Simon Crisford has been in imperious with his debutantes this season. 

Conclusion: A race to enjoy. Hydroxide will start favourite and on form will take all the beating. He hasn't done anything wrong in defeat although there is always a worry when a horse is defeated that it will become the norm. If defeated, it will be due to a talented opponent rather than a balls up. Balashakh got going all too late on debut but I'd expect a marked improvement here and he could be a worthy each-way alternative. I would be surprised if this colt isn't placed at worst. Envisaging is another horse who didn't go himself justice at Goodwood. He was must too keen but traveled very for a long way. If drifting to huge odds on the exchanges is worth a small each-way bet. If the favourite drifted to even money I would be tempted to have a win on the jolly and half point each on Balashakh and Envisaging. 

* NR [Envisaging]

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Idaho heads final 15 for St Leger at Doncaster

Idaho, horseracing, St Leger,
With the St Leger at Doncaster now just a matter of days away, the final fifteen runners for the famous meeting have now been confirmed, with trainer Aidan O’Brien potentially running three horses, including current favourite Idaho. The recent Great Voltigeur Stakes winner is once again set to be the horse to beat, however Sword Fighter, Housesofparliament, Kellstorm, The Major General, Triplicate and Unicorn also in contention for the champion trainer. The fact that former contender Wings of Desire has withdrawn from the race only heightens Idaho’s chances of claiming yet another win in 2016.

Idaho is the current favourite for victory with bookmakers Betway with odds of 4/5 on, with Muntahaa and Housesofparliament further adrift at 5/1 and 8/1 respectively. With former Dante Stakes Winner Wings of Desire pulling out late on, Muntahaa is the obvious replacement, with the Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum owned former second-best in the ante-post market likely to apply strong pressure among the chasing pack.

Elsewhere, Ed Dunlop's Red Verdon has received plenty of backing thanks to a series of good results at the highest level this season, most notably when finishing second in the Grand Prix de Paris. Despite this, Dunlop has warned against too much expectation on his prized asset, with preparations for the race being far from straightforward due to health issues. In the horse racing at, Red Vernon can currently be backed at 8/1.

Conditions for Britain’s oldest classic are set to be good to soft, soft in places as a result of recent weather in the North of England, with such a track unlikely to provide too much of an advantage to any of the frontrunners. As far as jockeys are concerned for the £700,000 race, title-chasing Silvestre de Sousa and Jim Crowley will lead Ventura Storm Algometer respectively, while James Doyle partners Red Verdon.

With the Irish St Leger taking place at Curragh on Sunday afternoon, Order of St George is undoubtedly the overwhelming favourite at Betway for the race, with the former Ascot Gold Cup winner at odds of just 1/3 on. For those of you looking to back an outsider for the meeting, Bondi Beach and Big Orange could well be worth a shout, with the duo set to provide the fiercest competition if recent form is anything to go by.

5 Top racehorses of all time

Secretariat, morning gallop,
The 5 Top racehorses of all time are not going to be as famous as some of the other famous athletes in the world, even though they deserve to be since they train just as hard as the human athletes that they're competing with on some level. While people who are outside of the racing community are going to struggle to name even a few racehorses, the 5 Top racehorses of all time do have their very devoted fans within the racing community. The top racehorses of all time also do not get replaced all that easily in many people's minds. Many of them are truly one of a kind.

It says something that many of the 5 Top racehorses of all time are still animals that were born in the early or middle of the twentieth century, and many of them are unfortunately deceased today. The strangely-named Citation was actually born in 1945, and he managed to win sixteen races in a row. For forty-six years, no racing horse managed to beat the record held by Citation. He was already Horse of the Year in 1948, and some people might have awarded him the informal title of Horse of the Century following his distinguished career and life.

Horses do not live long, and the people who are celebrating the 5 Top racehorses of all time are going to be greeted with that punishing reality all the time. Seattle Slew is one of the most modern of the best racing horses of all time since he was born in 1974. Affirmed is the most modern of all of them, having been born in 1975. Horses usually do not live longer than thirty years, and race horses often have even shorter lifespans.

Man O'War has a name that truly demonstrates his historic origins and the fact that the pictures of him are going to be in black and white. He was born in 1917, which would make this horse nearly one hundred years old in the minds of people who feel that sufficiently talented beings never really die. Horse racing would not be what it is today without the hard work and constant wins of Man O'War, who truly helped to make horse racing popular again. The 5 Top racehorses of all time owe a debt of gratitude to Man O'War.

Secretariat [pictured] is one of the only names in the horse racing world that has managed to pass into popular culture, which is a testament to the power of Secretariat. He actually was a horse that struggled at first, but he managed to finish strong in the end, which is a good metaphor for a horse race in general.

People can place all sorts of sports bets on the Royal Vegas online casino website. The Royal Vegas online casino is helping people stay up-to-date on all of the great feats of modern athletes. However, it is still a good idea for people to keep in touch with the athletes of the past at some level, remembering what they did and helping people stay connected to the history of the sports that they love. Remembering the 5 Top racehorses of all time can help. 

Monday, 5 September 2016

4:35 Leicester Racing Tips (6th Sept) BRITISH STALLION STUDS APOLLO EBF MAIDEN STAKES (Plus 10 Race) (CLASS 4) (2yo)

Main Sequence,
An EBF Maiden Stakes over 7f on good to soft going. 

Thirteen two-year-old colts take part.  Five juveniles with race experience. Plenty of renowned trainers taking an interest in this Plus 10 contest with win prize money a shade over £5,000.

A big old field but plenty of interest. 

Roger Charlton fields *Zafferino. This son of Frankel is out of a once-raced mare. This home-bred is owned by Saleh Al Homaizi & Imad Al Sagar. He started 8/15f in a four-horse race but couldn't hold the late challenge of Seniority. Zafferino was a touch keen on his racecourse debut but held in high regard by connections. With that initial experience, this February foal should go well and has sound each-way claims.

For more reading material around horse race betting, be sure to check out Bethut's horse racing tips.

Sir Michael Stoute should always be respected in the latter part of the season and he has sent out a few nice two-year-olds over the last few weeks. Elucidation is a homebred racing in the familiar silks of the Niarchos Family. This son of Oasis Dream was the lesser fancied of two horses representing Stoute on debut at Newmarket. Perhaps that was the reason Elucidation was sent off at odds of 16/1. However, he showed ample promise, staying on in the closing stages to finish third. The winner, trained by James Tate, ran on with verve after being fancied to go well at Yarmouth behind the very smart Salsabeel. Law And Order [Tate] had exceptional win and place statistics that day and it was not surprising to me he was a powerhouse. I had my eye on the runner-up. Rummani, who is a talent, which boosts the likelihood of Elucidation. I would keep an eye open for Mandarin, who disappointed that day but was heavily backed and I know for a fact is held in high regard by Marco Botti. Elucidation looks the type to improve for that racecourse bow and has strong each-ways claims if priced 13/2 & less SP.

Adamant is similarly trained, owned by Highclere Thoroughbred Racing. This grey colt is a son of Dalakhani who was purchased as a breeze-up purchase by John Warren for 130,000E. The mare, Attima, won three times in her career racing in France and America, winning at Group 2. The best guide to this debutantes chance is the betting. The majority of Stoute's debutantes win when priced 13/2 & less SP. If outside this betting guide I would take a watching brief. 

To add to the heat, *Naval Warfare comes here after finishing fourth and second, respectively. This bay colt, a son of Born To Sea, put up a bold front-running performance over seven and a half furlongs at Ffos Las to be worn down in the closing stages by Math's Prize. It was a fair effort to beat Prerogative, who has been a model of consistency. I can see this bay colt leading and should appreciate this softer going. 

Luca Cumani doesn't have the biggest string of two-year-olds but a trainer who should always be respected on their second start. It is worth noting that Presence Process races in the second colours forSaleh Al Homaizi & Imad Al Sagar. This bay colt is a son of Dansili and half-brother to Justineo who race up to Group 1 class. Presence Process was relatively fancied on debut at 10/1 but a long way behind the first three, which included Law And Order. On a form line, he has to find a good few lengths to beat Elucidation. I would take  a watching brief unless seriously backed.     

Ed Dunlop has a couple of runners both making their racecourse bow. Alemaratalyoum is an Irish-bred son of Lope in the ownership of Mohammed Jaber. He has a couple of fair juveniles with the stable in Apex King & Al Nafoorah. He cost 85,000G. Dunlop's debutantes are best judged by their starting price. They have a fighting chance when priced 14/1 & less SP. If weak in the betting I'd take a watching brief. 

The market should detail the chances of Nigh Or Never who is trained by Tom Dascombe. This January foal is a son of Excelebration out of a Galileo mare and cost 100,000E at the yearling sales. Dascombe's juvenile is presently priced at 20/1, which suggests he will be better for the race or the competition is strong enough to make this a test. The stable can win at bigger odds although their brightest prospects are priced 7/1 & less SP. If in that guide should be feared.

I always take a second look at John's juveniles owned by George Strawbridge. They often prove a fair combination. The stable have their share of debut winners, especially if fancied in the betting. Jupiter Light is a son of Lonhro out of a seriously good mare who won on debut and runner-up in the Fillies' Mile. An exceptional filly who achieved a highest OR 113. The betting suggests he will be better for the run but if backed to 13/2 & less SP have respectable each-way claims.

Charles Hill has a few fair juveniles in his string. *Farook hasn't been seen for over two months since finishing behind Apex King. This son of Raven's Pass was relatively fancied in te betting but disappointed. There may have been an issue that day. Hamdan Al Maktoum stuck his hand deep in his pocket to buy this roan colt at the yearling sales for 420,000G. It would be a surprise to see this colt backed. He doesn't hold any significant entries but one for the shortlist is the money comes.  

Al Mansor hails from Richard Hannon's stable. I find this stable difficult to assess with their debutantes because they are difficult to call. In general, they are better for their debut. This son of Dark Angel  cost 95,000E at the breeze-up sales so should come here with fitness and wisdom.     

The stable field Sporting Times who is a home-bred. The betting suggests this youngster is best watched.

Time To See & Quinteo are best watched. 

Conclusion: A tough race to be too dogmatic with a handful of horses which have shown promise if no undoubted ability. I was impressed by Elucidation on debut when starting at big odds. The form of that race is solid and any improvement would make this juvenile go very close. Zefferino will have his supporters with the Frankel tag, which probably means he will start little shorter odds than deserved. However, it is difficult to assess the form of that race but Charlton has very good win and place claims with horses fancied on their second start and if difting to each-way prices wouldn't be a bad bet at all. If Adamant is priced 13/2 & less SP it would be significant. Farook cost a lot of money and may have sustained an injury or problem on debut. He could be backed from big odds and may be worth an anticipatory gamble. 


Friday, 2 September 2016

Godolphin's Dubai One Makes Debut at Kempton for Saeed bin Suroor

6:30 Kempton - 

For many race fans the excitement of enjoying two-year-old racing is the appearance of a very talented horse. A horse that wins impressively on debut but competes at pattern class and heralded as a future Classic winner. 

We may  have one such two-year-old making its debut today.

Dubai One is trained by Saeed bin Suroor for the mighty Godolphin. This chestnut daughter of Exceed And Excel, out of a relatively poor-winning mare, who was trained by Michael Bell. The reputation of Dubai One proceeds her because she is even money favourite to take this evening's maiden at Sunbury.  

She is bred to start over this 6f and races from stall 6, ridden by James Doyle. 

Of the form horses Hathfa, showed ability on debut when seriously backed but, perhaps, slightly disappointed next start at Newbury, although that was a decent contest. This is definitely one of the better juveniles in Richard Hughes string.

Etikaal is another live threat for Simon Crisford in the silks of Hamdan Al Maktoum. This son of Sepoy has a wide draw which isn't ideal on this turning course. However, Crisford has been an example to just about all this season when it comes to preparing a debutant to shine on its formative start. 

Conclusion: Dubai One will be the focus of many racegoers and pundits alike. This filly takes on a field of colts [two other fillies, too] but she is expected to win. Saeed bin Suroor has a fantastic strike rate at this course. Debutants can be a tricky betting medium, especially on a turning course over a sprint distance, but this filly should go well. If she is a class act I very much doubt Hathfa will be good enough, although his race experience is positive and he is proven to have ability. Etikaal is a worthy opponent and could be a tough horse to beat if not suffering too badly from his wide draw. A fascinating race.