[AusRace] FW: From the archives - 14 observations on the punt

Tony Moffat tonymoffat at bigpond.com
Thu Dec 27 15:56:31 AEDT 2018

There were 1684 runners entered yesterday, across 167 races, with 277
scratched and 104 entered for Happy Valley. The oldest was Knucklemanna,
11yo, who did not run. 
1. When this was written,(The Observation), he, presuming Butthead is that,
meant strategy for both stances, hedge and arbitrage (where he worked)
2. Nothing new as you say. Is there a case for full disclosure now, all
runs, private or not, should be exposed, if the argument input is that
betting drives racing, then this information is important.
3. I'm not sure, meaning I don't know, certainly there is a sameness that
rating comes back to the observable good runs. Times pick fast horses,
weight ratings pick the same runners type of thing.
4.He, head, worked the distance races, jumps, etc especially, although he
filtered every runner, every run. 
5. Seems that way. Personally, me, alone, have trouble with Qld, whereas a
friend specializes there, and lives there now and bets into a specific class
and above there, although backs Qn everywhere
 6. Really
7. I'm not sure, meaning I don't know, again.
8. Same as 7
9. I work on other than settled strategies - presently $5 on a runner with a
win within two runs after a spell , follow for three runs (fit, and
10,11, & 12 Favorites, the perceived best runners in the race -there is a
veritable library of writings about these, all true, most wrong on
An idea I had some years ago, a maxim, theorem, truism, axiom (without
bashing the thesaurus at all), was the theory of the quiet shortener, a
runner which may, or may not, ascend to fav. This activity applies to 9 also
- in addition to a set bet I may have an interest in the runner which
announces itself as the quiet shortener.
13 & 14 - no new information offered.

There is good and sufficient reason to not bet. Owners, trainers, others,
are part of the subterfuge to enable a runner to win a race set for it to do
so -the reason for betting perhaps, and the remainder of us can get stuffed,
to misquote a jockey recently. I am aware of two incidents, and have written
of them, when a horse was set for a race, to be gazumped by another, also
set. Nothing corrupt or seemingly gangsterish existed, both runners beaten
had good form, good times, good riders, right distance, right track,
everything was in their favour, or not detrimental to them, or any runner

Butt had good racing knowledge, seemed to, in several mails to me. His
address bounces now, pity. He was going to try HK.


Subject: Re: [AusRace] FW: From the archives - 14 observations on the punt

Not snipped for completeness and reference

First of all, greetings and salutations to all. I hope you have all had a
great Christmas time with friends and family and the same for New Years Eve.
As I am awaiting Caulfield I thought I would comment on the posting from
Tony. I will do this with the RKOZ: interjection below

Criteria for a successful selection strategy has evolved to  At least 150
selections over 12 months  Remove the best result from every 20 winners
Produce 10% POT flat stakes (and this is now eked to 1-2%) And I still don't
understand that.

Fourteen observations on the punt

1. The market is efficient - like the stockmarket, there is no strategy that
is better than the market over a large number of selections (although there
may be people who hedge and arbitrage the betting market - bookies?)

RKOZ: The word "strategy" is incorrect, I feel< and it should state the
market order is efficient, that is, favs win more than 2nd favs who win more
than third favs etc

2. Like the stockmarket, the real players use information that is not
available to the wider market and not reflected in machine generated ratings

RKOZ: Agree to a certain degree. Unknown info is an insiders market but I
think it is more the use of public information and how you use it that makes
the difference. An expert in distance does better, perhaps, than a punter
who studies breeding as the first is based on history whereas the second is
based on supposition yet the same info is available to all. Other areas of
the punt i.e. days since last raced or jockeys are the same.

3. Machine produced ratings perform best with races 1000m-1800m and are
biased to horses that run on the pace.

RKOZ: First part disagree but certainly favour those who race near the lead.

4. 2yo, jumps, firstup, greater 2000M are not harder than other forms of
racing but seem to require specialist skills.

RKOZ: Contradictory. It must be harder if you need specialist skills,
surelyl!!  All aspects of the punt require special skills

5. Ratings perform as well in metro, provincial and country racing

RKOZ: All depends on GIGI (garbage in, garbage out) but I don't use ratings
so don't know if there is a difference or not.

6. It is easier to pick horses that will lose than horses that will win

RKOZ: That's no great insight.

7. Plus 50 units is as good as it gets for any reasonable selection strategy
- 150+ selections over a  12 month period - maybe for any selection
Perhaps plus 100 units is as good as it gets for anyone anywhere except the

RKOZ: Just not enough stats there to understand the whole premise but I
guess the suggestion is winning 50 units on 150 outlay. Gee, rack it up for
your next house buy if you can do this.

8. Strategies with large numbers of selections - >10% of available races
tend to 0% POT over time with a plus/minus 15% over any 12 months.

RKOZ: At all odds of selections seems right as the longer the odds the less
chance of winning.

9. Personal selections add at most 5% to any rules based selection strategy
over time

RKOZ: Assume means on top of a computer generated system.  Would agree.

10. The easiest strategy appears to be based on identifying a couple of
hundred true favourites a year

RKOZ: Yes, agree. Hard to do but they are there.

11. Most identifiable true favourites are widely identified and are the late
mail and firm into favouritism if they aren't already.

RKOZ: Don't really know.

12. Reasons true favourites don't win -10% over-rated/20% bad day/30%
jockey/40% others under-rated

RKOZ: Seems reasonable.

13. Money management - best price/cost averaging across TABs is worth 5% and
using a bookie maybe worth another 5%.

RKOZ: Don't know about an extra 10% overall but yes plus 5 is certainly

14. There are many many other selection strategies that may or may not

RKOZ: So what. Dumb comment - means nothing.

Posted by butthead originally

RKOZ: Not sure about the rest.
>From my point of view the author isn't really saying anything most solid
punters do not already know. The better punters have researched their areas
of interest (Len with jockeys as an example) and know those over and
underbet and those who are poor back in a field It would be the same with
Re computer generated ratings: what a waste of time for most punters simply
because of time and so many races. It would be far easier to tackle the
first four favs with the finest of microscopic investigation. AT least some
of the ratings work has been done by the price assessors and then by race
time others have added their knowledge. From there it is a matter of whether
you agree and if you are good enough you win.

Lunch is ready!!


Roman Koz

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