Horses For Courses: Cliché Or Cash Cow?

| April 9, 2018 | Reply

It’s fair to say that ‘horses for courses’ has become a bit of a cliché, used regularly even outside of the racing world…

It’s also fair to say that people can give too much credence to this school of thought, with the prominence of the ‘C’ on a race card up there with the string of finishing positions as a shortcut to a bet…

And away from horseracing, it’s also true that home advantage in football is generally overbet – I’ve made a very nice amount this season, largely by backing away sides in the Premier League who aren’t big guns but are playing weaker teams (fun fact: Burnley have won more away games than home games this season).

So, ‘horses for courses’ is nonsense then? Or at the very least of no betting value?

Well, not quite.

Specialise

It’s probably my most used word when I’m giving out betting advice but it really is that important…

If. You. Want. To. Make. A. Consistent. Income. From. Betting. You. Need. To. Specialise.

In the case of horses for courses, that means working out where a particular advantage is overbet and where it can still give you an edge, rather than just using it blindly.

There have been two great examples of that this sporting year, one which you’re probably too late to take advantage of and one which you’re not…

I’ll start with the former.

Those great European nights at Anfield

It might sound like another cliché but it really does hold true that Liverpool have a greater ratio of impressive European nights then their peers (by that I mean the likes of the English and Italian clubs, not behemoths like Barcelona and Real Madrid).

Not convinced? Let’s take a look at their last eight Champions League campaigns…

2017/18: Currently 3-0 up after the first leg of the quarter-final (currently 3rd in the Premier League).

2014/15: Knocked out in the group stage (finished 6th in the Premier league that season).

2009/10: Knocked out in the group stage (finished 7th in the Premier league that season).

2008/09: Knocked out in the quarter-finals (finished 2nd in the Premier League that season).

2007/08: Knocked out in the semi-finals (finished 4th in the Premier League that season).

2006/07: Runners up (finished 3rd in the Premier league that season).

2005/06: Knocked out in the last 16 (finished 3rd in the Premier League that season).

2004/05: Winners (finished 5th in the Premier League that season).

So that’s a win, a runners up spot, a semi-final, a quarter-final, a last 16 spot and whatever happens this season (minimum quarters and big favourites for more than that) from a team that only finished in the top two of the Premier League once…

Furthermore, the only group stage knockouts were when finishing a pretty dismal 6th and 7th in the Premier League.

These were, in the main, inferior sides to, say, Arsenal and yet the Gunners have made it past the last 16 (getting knocked out in the quarters) just once in their last eight attempts…

Even Manchester City, with their vast resources, have only made one semi-final and one quarter-final (if they are knocked out by Liverpool tomorrow).

At the start of the season I advised a 32/1 bet on Liverpool to win the Champions League to my Betting Rant Premium members and that selection is now a best priced 6/1.

There’s something in the air

Maybe it’s a Merseyside thing, because the second example I want to give you is Aintree racecourse, whose three day festival kicks off this Thursday.

Aintree, of course, is home to those unique Grand National fences and, perhaps unsurprisingly, horses with a good record, or even just experience of those fences, tend to do very well.

They’re not overbet either.

Let’s take a look at my record in the Topham Chase (a race run over the Grand National fences but not at the marathon distance).

2017: 5th place at 10/1. The horse had won a similar race at the track a few months before and had finished 7th (of 29) in the Topham the year before. The 66/1 third that year had run over the National fences three times before.

2016: Winner at 22/1. The horse had run in the race twice before, finishing 3rd on the first occasion.

2015: Winner at 10/1. The horse was having his third start at Aintree.

2012: Winner at 11/1. The horse had won the race the last two years.

2011: Winner at 14/1. The horse had won the race the previous year.

2010: Winner at 22/1. The horse ran third in the race the year before.

And that’s just one race…

Last year I had just two selections for the Grand National, one of which was Saint Are who finished 3rd at 33/1 in his fourth Grand National (he was also 2nd on his second appearance).

So that’s the great thing about betting at Aintree…

Horses go back there and do well time and time again…

And they also tend to be at whopping big prices!

There’s a free tip for you for this week then…

But if you’d like to receive all of my exact Aintree selections, including a giant priced fancy for the Grand National, you can sign up to receive them here.

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Category: Betting Opinion

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