There are several well known people that find their winners by watching replays of races, and two in particular are very successful using it. These two are Pricewise and Patrick Veitch. Both use replays to fine tune their selection process and go about selecting their wagers.
It’s a very diverse method, and extremely subjective, but to get a true angle on how to use it we need to break down exactly what it is we are looking for.
One of the best places to start is to utilise, in the first instance, the free footage available on both the Racing UK website and the At The Races website. The At The Races website have a very handy tool that we can implement for free once our analysis is complete. More on that later.
During this post I’ll use an example to clarify the key points you should be following in order to get the most out using race replays as a selection process. If you haven’t already then I strongly recommend you grab a pencil and paper and take some notes as we go through.
This can also be used as a powerful aid in solidifying any opinion you may have on a selection that has been found using another approach.
As you may know, I personally specialise in handicaps. What you probably don’t know is that I always spend part of my working day watching maiden races. This is very important as it allows me to keep an eye on any future handicap debutantes.
Okay, so let’s look at a race from today.
For this example I’m going to use the 5.45 at Wolverhampton on the 8th March.
Looking at the race card you can see that the favourite was Euro Charline a horse trained by Marco Botti. It’s only previous race was a maiden over course and distance so, it was straight to the video replay of which you can watch below by clicking on the link.
(you will need an account to log in and watch, but it’s free to sign up on the website: www.attheraces.com)
Head over and watch the race now, and then come back here.
Now that you’ve watched it for the first time, turn off the commentary and watch it again.
Although commentators give us an accurate account of what is happening as it unfolds, it can cloud our personal judgement. You will have noticed that the commentator in the video suggested that Euro Charline runs a bit green, which to an extent is correct, but as a single phrase it sticks in the mind as a negative. But if you hadn’t heard that, then I’m sure you would agree that the turn of foot shown by the run in would increase confidence for her in her next race.
Never forget that rule 1 of watching race replays is to turn your sound down so you can’t hear the commentary.
Okay, now that we’ve seen the video that’s great. But the bigger question is…
How do we translate this into an effective method of picking a winner?
To do this you need to take notes of the following factors while you are watching the race:
- How the horse settled in the race
- Its position in the race, was it happy to sit off the pace or did it like to lead
- How many other horses were in the race
- The speed at which it picked up at the end (turn of foot)
Now watch the video again but this time make notes on these four factors for Euro Charline. You may need to watch it a couple of times to get all your notes.
Mark off your notes to see if you got similar information to me.
Euro Charline was right up there with the pace, and settled well despite pulling very slightly half way around. That was just a sign of inexperience. There were eleven other horses in the race and this didn’t phase her. Finally she showed an impressive turn of foot to comes away and win by several lengths.
Okay I’m going to be hones, I watched this race as part of my daily routine just a few hours after it took place and then, using the At The Races tracker, I was alerted when she was next running. Which was on…
…the 8th March!
So now we’re looking at the race on the 8th March and we have to determine whether Euro Charline looks to be a good bet.
To do this we need to think like the trainer. After all, they’re the experts in knowing where to place their horses.
In this case we can see that she was running at the same distance, same track and with eight other runners. The conditions where the same as last time except this was a better class and she’d been put in as joint top weight.
Looking back through her last race and weighing up conditions today, she made a good bet at 3/1. The market agreed, and she eventually went off 5/4 favourite and won by 9 lengths.
What you’re looking for is whether you agree with the conditions of the race the trainer has put the horse in, based on the information you discovered when you watched the replay.
Put this horse in the tracker in At The Races as your first horse and it will alert you to the next time she runs. When you get the alert, check the race conditions to see if you agree with the trainer’s placing of her and then, depending on how the handicapper has treated her, she could be a good bet. Of course, it’s possible that she could now be over-bet based on her last two performances which would mean a lay bet for us.
This is a very effective method of finding selections using race replays, and it always will be because very few punters are prepared to spend the time it takes watching past races.
I would strongly recommend that you have a go using this approach, it continues to pay dividends to those that do!
Look at replays of horses that are running in Maidens and, even if they don’t win, analyse the way the horses have run and ask yourself questions about whether it would need a step up in trip or if would suit a smaller field?
Then those runners that you think have potential note in your tracker so that you get the alert when they’re next running and you can follow this process to decide whether they are making a good bet or not.