The Common Sense Approach

(Last Updated On: August 19, 2012)

I have something a bit different today. For once I am going to stop talking about making sure you can deal with the emotional side of betting, bankrolls and more for a different look at the problem of finding winners in racing. In fact this can be related to finding winners in any form of sports betting.

This is something that is incredibly powerful.

It is what the majority of punters lack!

Actually, you can make a profit by implementing this, and this alone!


Common sense is not something that usually goes hand in hand with punters in a betting shop. I would go as far to say that common sense seldom enters a betting shop. Anybody who has a decent grasp of horse racing should be able to employ common sense to, at the very least, break even.

Common sense tells us…

  • We can’t win every bet even if we want to
  • We aren’t going to make thousands of £ per week starting with £20
  • It is possible to make a profit

What do I mean by a common sense approach?

I mean that we look at a race intellectually and stop our emotions from getting involved. Easier said than done I know, but if you can then you can change your fortunes almost overnight.

And, best of all. It can be applied to any race!

The first race on the day I am writing this is at Dundalk All-Weather. It is a 5 furlong race with 6 runners of low quality.

We don’t need any more information than that and immediately we can deduce…

  • It is a sprint race, so speed will be more important than stamina
  • It is low quality and therefore quite open

Do we want to bet on horses that have never won before in an open race?

Absolutely not! Not unless the market is telling us we should very strongly.

That immediately removes two of the runners leaving us four horses.

Next, we ideally want a horse who raced well or won on the same All Weather ground over a similar distance. That removes another runner leaving us just three horses.

Of these two have not performed well recently, leaving us just one strong runner and two potential followers.

Our strong runner came first and one of our other two placed!

Did we do anything special or use some kind of special knowledge?

No. We just used common sense.

You are probably wondering why I have not included any screenshots. This is not because I have forgotten but because I don’t want you to take away that this is an exact method to replicate.

The purpose of this article today is to show that if you just use common sense then you can find winners.

  • Think about what a horse is going to need most to win this race e.g. speed, stamina etc…
  • Find out which don’t have it and remove them.
  • Don’t bet on horses who have never won unless there is a very good reason e.g. very strong in the market)
  • Find the horses that have the strongest factor required to win the race
  • Find the horses that have shown they can win on similar conditions
  • Look for horses that have been improving
  • Don’t be looking for just one horse. Betting on two, three or even four is absolutely fine as long as they make you money!

Take your time, don’t rush and use common sense and I guarantee you will see your profits increase almost immediately.

Michael Wilding

Michael started the Race Advisor in 2009 to help bettors become long-term profitable. After writing hundreds of articles I started to build software that contained my personal ratings. The Race Advisor has more factors for UK horse racing than any other site, and we pride ourselves on creating tools and strategies that are unique, and allow you to make a long-term profit without the need for tipsters. You can also check out my personal blog or my personal Instagram account.


  1. hi im new to betting on horses, great post and makes sense, but where do i find horse rating and all there qualities? thanks

    1. There are many places you can get ratings and they all measure different things. You may want to start with the free ones available at the Racing Post first.

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