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Tanya Stevenson

Tanya's Blog - Friday 12th October

Extra fixtures next, and what is the incentive to bet on them, especially on course? Not only less value, but with each-way terms, with bookmakers deteriorating to 1/6 the odds or worse, and now the Tote win pool take out has increased. The turnstiles will stop turning and it will need more than WD40 to get them clicking again! We are led to believe that in the long term inflating the take out by 3% will make it more attractive for international pools to join ours. Forgive me but haven’t we already tried that experiment with France? That really didn’t work as French runners collapsed as our pool, even on Guineas day, wasn’t robust enough to take on a whole country. French raider Makfi had an SP of 33-1 yet paid £12.80 on the Tote two seasons ago, and Special Duty, also from France, had an SP of 9-2 yet paid £3.50 the same year. I grant you there are positives because, had the French challengers not won, the Tote win on all the other horses would have been much greater than SP!

The Pari-Mutuel also struggles at times. Japanese raiders have exposed similar vulnerabilities, with Deep Impact and Orfevre being much shorter than their SP but we are aware of the dynamics of high-profile runners and races on such occasions.

In my opinion there are many reasons why this situation has been brought about, but the most important could be the drop in turnover. With technology updating and improving constantly, there’s the ability to bet in relatively small stakes via all sorts of electronic apparatus including mobiles. The Tote does at least now have an app, a long time coming mind you. Plus the advertising of such has been reserved at a time when they should be banging the loudest of drums. That in itself should and could have raised turnover.

In summary punters have to live with this 3% hike for the duration and it could also be to the detriment of the sport as they will chose to bet elsewhere, or in extreme cases turn their backs on racing and find value in other sports. At a time when our means are stretched and our pockets are threadbare, racing and all who thrive on it should be finding a way to keep the customers, friends and allies it has got rather than chasing those unreachable ideals it will never get!

Now I've got that out of my system its time to check on the racing today with York hosting a tremendous card together with some more of my beloved National Hunt racing live on from Carlisle. Staying on the jumping theme, a heads up that at Chepstow on Saturday Well Chief, Comply Or Die, Imperial Commander and Neptune Collonges will be parading before racing.

Back to Carlisle, Attaglance a winner at both Cheltenham and Aintree Festivals, makes his chasing debut in a very tidy novice chase. I hope he makes a smooth transition to the bigger obstacles and this race will provide a yardstick to his ability.

Then at York, Model Pupil appears to have a great chance in the 2.30, the ground is a concern for Beaten Up. Mijhaar should have done much better this season. Model Pupil was just fended off in the Chester Vase and hasn’t run since. He should love the long straight rather than the tight twist and turns of the Roodee and can kick on from a furlong out.

While investigating to find out who the half-time entertainment is at Wembley on October 28 for the NFL match I stumbled on the fact that Jacksonville will play San Francisco in the 2013 renewal. Well if the 49ers win the Superbowl I’ll purchase a whole row of seats for that match just for myself, the thank you banners to Alex Smith and all the team will be that lengthy!


Today's Selection:

2.30 York Model Pupil

5.00 Carlisle Attaglance


Tanya's Pointers

In 13 rides on Macdillon, Liam Keniry has finished runner-up six times

Nigel Twiston-Davies currently has just under a 33% strike rate

Sam Twiston-Davies has a 33% strike rate at Carlisle

Harry Haynes is unbeaten in three races on Attaglance

Anderiego has won two of his four races at York

Ryan Moore has had five winners from his last 14 Wolverhampton rides


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