We can’t go about deciding on how we’re going to bet in a race until we know which runners are the most competitive.
Which is why I thought I’d show you one way that you can do that. In just five minutes.
Throughout the rest of this article I’m going to use the Official Rating to help me determine this, but you can use any rating you want in exactly the same way.
I’m going to use the 18:45 race at Windsor on the day that I’m writing this. The race card looks like:
We are going to create an average rating made up of the OR for each runners best races. The key, is in how we determine which OR’s we want to use to make up our average.
You could simply use those ratings that the horse had when it achieved a winning run. But, that doesn’t allow for the races where the runner just got unlucky and missed out the winning place.
That’s why my preference is to use a distance behind winner. The distance would be what I would deem to mean the horse has put in a competitive run. Ideally you should change this for different race conditions and distances, but a good distance to use as a base is two lengths from the winner.
Open up the form for the first horse in the race, Al Kazeem, and you get:
We make a note of the OR from whenever a horse won or came within two lengths of the winner. This gives us a list of the following OR’s for this runner.
126, 119, 117, 112, 107, 95
To get a competitive rating for this horse we take the average of these ratings which gives us an average of 113.
Pretty simple. But don’t be fooled by it’s simplicity, this approach is very powerful.
You need to repeat this process for every runner in the race which would give us the final competitive OR level for each horse as…
|Horse||Avg. Competitive OR|
|Bayrir||No OR Available|
|Zambucca||No ratings available within 2 lengths|
|Complicit||No ratings available within 2 lengths|
We have four runners with ratings and three with no rating that we can use. The first thing we notice is that Al Kazeem and True Story have been competitive with a much higher rating than Gifted Girl and Presburg.
Next we need to compare these figures to their rating for the current day.
|Horse||Avg. Competitive OR||Current Rating|
|Bayrir||No OR Available||109|
|Zambucca||No ratings available within 2 lengths||102|
|Complicit||No ratings available within 2 lengths||97|
The average OR rating for this race is 105.
What does this tell us?
We can see that Al Kazeem is racing with an OR way above the average level he has been competitive at. As is Presburg and Gifted Girl.
True Story looks to be racing at a level that he has been competitive at before.
With an average race rating of 105, Presburg and Gifted Girl also seem to be in a race that is going to be outside of their abilities unless there is an improvement made.
That would allow us to not consider these two runners as likely to be competitive in this race.
Next we look at the two runners that have:
“No ratings available within 2 lengths”
If they don’t have any ratings that we can use within a distance that was competitive then, unless the market indicates otherwise, we can safely consider those horses as uncompetitive.
That leaves us with just one other runner, Bayrir. He doesn’t have any OR’s because he has been racing abroad and this is his first race in the UK.
Again, in this situation, we would need to use the market to determine whether he was likely to be competitive. The market has him priced at 14/1 which would indicate he is unlikely to be very competitive and so…
…that leaves us with two runners to consider.
True Story and Al Kazeem are the horses that look likely to be the most competitive. We know that True Story is running with an OR he has been competitive at before, whereas Al Kazeem is racing at a much higher OR than he has been competitive at.
And in just five minutes you’ve found the most competitive runners in the race. All that’s left is to determine how you want to bet on them!