In horse racing, it usually pays to be a contrarian. Going against conventional wisdom in a micro betting system can benefit punters in the long-term. This month, I looked at whether laying slightly longer-priced favourites could yield a decent profit in a microsystem.
The answer was ‘yes’ after I focused on a specific racecourse and code. However, I uncovered something rather interesting when I looked at the draw. This is especially the case in larger fields. It also transpired that it’s possible to win by laying such favourites to place too. Let’s take a closer look.
The Mini Betting System Rules
- Lay clear favourites to win or place in Lingfield All-Weather races.
- Their win odds must be between 2.00 and 4.00. You will profit from Betfair SP price, but regular SP fares even better. The issue, of course, is knowing when a horse will hit the right range sometimes.
- Only include races between 7f and 1m 4f.
- Focus on races with 8-12 runners.
- Only lay favourites in stalls 1-4.
No question, adding too many ‘rules’ to a system complicates matters and tends to result in back fitting. However, in this case, there is a method to the madness. Lingfield’s track is known for providing a real stamina test, especially on the Polytrack surface (it also has turf races).
Lingfield’s sharp turns and its incline to the end of the back straight, along with the quick turn and descent home, make it a worthy challenge. The 7f and 1-mile races require speed and strength. Races beyond that distance test the horse’s staying power.
There is no draw bias in longer races at Lingfield. In fact, I found that the favourites I looked at drawn in stalls 1-4 performed poorly in races with 8-12 runners. This is likely because they need to jostle for position to stop getting fenced in. Also, front runners tend to find it tricky to make it home unless they possess outstanding stamina.
Anyone who follows All-Weather racing, in general, knows how competitive most races are. It is common to see events where the favourite is 3.00+ with several horses bunched in the 4.00 to 7.00 odds range.
When you follow the rules above, only 24.44% of favourites have won from 2016 to the time of writing. This means you benefit from a 75.56%-win rate when using SP.
Yes, there is a risk but laying a horse at 4.00 is the same as backing a horse at 1.33. Laying a horse at 3.00 is the same as backing at 1.50. If you use the Betfair Exchange, the lay odds will exceed the back odds. Therefore, a horse at 4.00 to win is likely to be 4.10 on the lay market.
The high strike rate keeps losing streaks down. From 266 bets, the longest losing streak is four, and it happened only once. Also, there was only one instance of three consecutive losses.
In contrast, this system has had a remarkable 14 bet winning sequence, along with four other occasions where you would enjoy at least ten consecutive wins.
Laying the place is a bit riskier because the win rate is lower. There is one ten bet losing streak against a maximum winning streak of five, which happened twice. In any case, here are the results from laying the win and laying the place.
By the way, the low A/E is a good thing in this case. It shows that backing these favourites to win is bad value.
Laying the Win – SP Odds of 2.00 – 4.00
Laying the Place – SP Odds of 2.00 – 4.00
The above isn’t the easiest system to decipher, but it makes sense when you break it down. It provides an extremely high strike rate and a very reasonable ROI. Also, laying the favourite to win aspect has earned a profit in each of the last five years. Indeed, the ROI has been in double digits for the last four years. Laying the place has proved fruitful in three of the five years, with a small loss in 2017. This year has also seen a small loss.
Overall, laying the favourite to win provides a better win rate and a higher rate of return.
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