Paul Dyson works as a Chartered Statistician
and has been involved for nearly 20 years in the computer
modelling of customer data for business clients including
several blue chip companies.
Over recent years he has turned his modelling
and forecasting expertise to the construction of horse
Paul’s technical expertise and Dave’s
knowledge of sprint races have been combined to produce
a set of ratings for all sprint handicaps since the
start of the flat season in 2003. These have been provided
to Drawn2Win members as a part of Dave’s daily
Over the last 12 months the models have
been developed and improved and we have now reached
the stage where extensive research has identified a
number of profitable ways in which the ratings can be
used both for backing and laying horses.
I have been developing ratings for sprint handicaps
(5f / 6f / 7f) since 2003 with Dave Renham's help. These
ratings are based on a number of factors (including
of course, draw bias) and have been developed using
data covering the last 4 years.
Behind the ratings is a complicated mathematical modeling
procedure exact details of which I obviously wish to
keep close to my chest.
Members of Drawn2win have been receiving the raw ratings
for some time now as part of the ongoing research aspect
of the site.
Having monitored these ratings over the last year,
and after analysing the historical data, we have identified
what we believe are a number of profitable ways of selecting
horses from the ratings to back and lay.
The ratings are designed so that the average is 100
and the range is roughly 60 to 140. The ratings reflect
a horse's chance of winning - the higher the rating
the better the chance - and they are a combination of
ability, form, race suitability, trainer/jockey form
and draw bias.
As an example, here is an analysis of the ratings for
5f handicap sprints (on grass) over the last 4 years:
You can see that most horses have a rating in the 90-109
range, but you can also see that as the rating increases,
the likelihood of winning also increases.
In this way the ratings can be used as another tool
in the analysis of a race helping to eliminate those
horses with a very low rating and identify whether one
horse stands out or whether a number of horses have
a good chance.
However we also wanted the ratings to identify bets
for us that would be profitable over the season. One
approach is to back the top rated horse in each race.
For 6f handicaps, backing the top rated over the last
4 years would have produced 157 winners from 773 bets
(strike rate of 20%) and a profit of 96pts (12% of total
staked). However this is a lot of bets with a relatively
low profit rate and we felt that restricting the bets
further should produce better returns.
As an example, only backing the top rated horse
when 10+pts clear of second rated produced 35 winners
from 90 bets in 6f handicaps over the last 4 years.
This generated a profit of 54pts or 60% of total staked.
From analyzing past results, we have found 3 types
1. Win bets - horses to back with a 1pt stake
2. Reverse forecasts - pairs of horses to back in a
1/2pt reverse forecast
3. Lays - horses to lay
The first two are straight forward but the lays need
a little more explaining. Initially our analyses showed
that laying horses more than 10pts behind the top rated
horse was highly profitable. Even if we added a 20%
premium to SP (when you lay horses on exchanges such
as Betfair you usually need to offer more than the SP)
the profits were still high.
However, monitoring these horses showed that it was
very difficult to lay long-odds horses within 20% of
SP. For instance horses at SP 20/1 often have to be
laid at 30/1 (+50%). Longer priced horses attract an
even higher premium sometimes double the SP. This could
seriously affect the profitability of laying if one
or two outsiders won in a season.
We therefore decided to restrict the laying approach
to horses at 10/1 or shorter since we felt it would
be possible to lay these up to 20% above SP (we have
subsequently monitored the exchanges and found this
to be generally the case). Hopefully most can be laid
well within the 20% premium.
Since we will not know the SP of horses when the ratings
message is sent out in the morning, we will list all
possible horses in a race and suggest that any are laid
if possible at 13.0 or lower on the exchanges (this
is 10/1 + 20% = 12/1 plus the extra point for decimal
We will be looking at different staking plans including
- 1pt lay per horse and 6pt risk per horse. For instance,
laying a 9/1 horse at 10/1 on the exchanges would produce:
1pt lay per horse: 1pt profit if it loses, 10pt loss
if it wins
6pt risk per horse: 0.6pt profit if it loses, 6pt loss
if it wins.
The most profitable staking plan will depend on the
SP of the losing lays - if most are shorter prices 1pt
per lay will make more profit, otherwise the constant
risk approach will be best.
Ratings Bet Update 24 Sept 2004
The following is a summary of the results
since the ratings bets went public to service members
in April 2004.
Win bets –
top rated horses 10 or more points ahead of 2nd rated
are recommended as win bets. This produces a decent
profit rate but only a few bets – roughly 2 per
week. Current profit level to 1pt stake is 5.5pts or
14% of total staked.
Reverse Forecasts – when
the 2nd rated horse is 5 or more points ahead of 3rd
rated we recommend a half-point reverse forecast. This
is more of a speculative bet with the opportunity for
an occasional big win. Historical analysis suggests
that profits should be made, but with only an expected
10% strike rate patience is needed. There have been
9 winners from 95 bets over the 2004 flat season but
we are currently showing a loss of 9.9pts.
Lays – analysis shows with
the ratings that it is difficult for a horse to overcome
a 10pt gap (i.e. beat a horse rated 10 or more pts higher).
Lays are based around this rule and any horse 10 or
more pts behind the top rated horse (and also outside
the top 3 in the ratings) is selected as a possible
lay. However we also apply a rule based on the SP –
the horse must be 10/1 or shorter (this avoids profits
being wiped out by big priced winners). Unlike the first
2 types, lays produce a high volume of “bets”
with interest in most rated races.
Lays are currently 110pts in profit !
(News Date 24-9-04)
All the above bets are available to members as part
of the Drawn2Win members package.
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