Reading Time: 5 mins

SECRETS OF WINNER-FINDING PART 3: DAQMAN LAMBASTS THE HYPE: Daqman has strong views, sometimes controversial, that are needed if you are to define your betting as ‘profitable’. You must look for weaknesses in the horse and errors by your fellow punter. He says: ‘The one thing you must not do is fall prey to hype by the Press and the TV commentators who are looking for something smart to say in this bloggers paradise of the ‘2,000 experts’. Use it in your favour.’

➡️ Part 1 TUESDAY in the Archive: Nearly Horses
➡️ Part 2 YESTERDAY: Form Is Simply What You Beat
➡️ Part 3 TODAY: Hype and How To Ignore It

LOOK OUT for Part 4: The Truth About Trainers. SATURDAY: Clues from the Irish Lincolnshire and NEXT WEEK Ghost Of A Grand National: what do you think would have won? What have been the best winners of the race? Did the change in the race itself spoil your National? How does it affect today’s runners and results?


Real Time 2019 Last Sunday a year ago, I was celebrating 20-1 Western Dawn at the launch of the Irish Flat season at Naas. This time I managed to score with Lemista (WON 8-1) on the opening day, Monday. In the coming weeks, I will be reminding you of your own betting past and helping you create a better betting future.

Cybertime 2020 The Irish Lincolnshire at the Curragh on Saturday is cancelled, of course. But I shall go through the form and find a ‘result.’

The outcome of my analysis will be form well researched as a guide when racing gets going again. Where the winners of this race in the past came from and how they proceeded with their careers could also provide horses to look out for from this year’s batch of leading entries. Watch this space.


⚠️ HEADS UP Poetic Flare (Jim Bolger) and Lipizanner (Aidan O’Brien) were the one-two, clear of the field, in the opening two-year-old race of the Flat season at Naas on Monday.

As ever with Jim Bolger, the Dawn Approach colt knew his job well. Interesting that his only early-closer entry is for a big Sales race at Doncaster in September. I hope we’re racing again before then! And I hope he is, too.

⚠️ HEADS UP Russian Emperor (Aidan O’Brien) became a Derby outsider after getting going late, running green, in the maiden at Naas. His dam won 10 out of 11 starts in Australia. How many others will even see a racecourse before the Classics?

⚠️ HEADS UP The winner of the Gold Cup, Al Boum Photo, remains on a mark of 175, with the third horse, Lostintranslation, demoted a pound down to 172, though beaten only a length and a half, with the neck loser, runner-up Santini, hiked to 173. What do you think? (see article below).


What do these horses have in common? One year there were SIX ante-post favourites for the Derby over the winter and after the trials; none of them won it!

In a race in Ireland in the last couple of weeks, a hurdler scythed through the field and finished too late, second, gaining rave reviews for ‘next time’.

I have in my notebook, a handicapper who was hampered twice, just pipped in his prep run for the Victoria Cup. No wonder he was hot favourite, but he was placed without winning after failing to get a clear run. And he did the ‘exact same’ thing in the Royal Hunt Cup on the same course over a furlong further.

The common factor between the Derby horses, the hurdler and the handicapper is that all fit the category of ‘hyped horses’, those hitting the headlines, and so often beloved of the TV pundits.

Hype is the mug punter’s deadly enemy and your best friend. The hyped horse can help you twice in one race as one to lay and one to create a market which, with him taken out, has a low overround or none at all (an underround with the percentages in your favour), so that any and all other bets are value.

In my story of that Derby market, the more ‘favourites’ there were, the more obvious it was that the Derby of that generation was about a bunch of low-lifes, who headed the betting in turn purely as bookie fodder and punter stimulus.

As for the hurdler, I watched him after the last. His head went sideways and he refused to go past the winner. Such a horse will pass others; can be taught to go upsides and then to overtake.

But he’s a herd follower and you cannot make him lead, except under severe sufferance, and we don’t want to witness that. As soon as he sees daylight in front of him, he goes for the anchor!

And the Victoria Cup ‘cert’? Punters were made to release that the hampered horse, switched in his run, was making his own trouble, trying not to win, in fact. There’s a lot of it about!

I may be hard on him; strictly he’s not yet exposed, after so few races. But I don’t like Santini, most hyped horse in the Gold Cup, subject of Press rave, and of course bags of the Henderson nervous-giggle hype (‘Nicky’s nervous; he must be an amazing horse; like Altior,’ said one newspaper)

As I’ve reported above, he’s the one that’s gone UP in the ratings after the Gold Cup, although he was beaten.

I know the vets are having a field day in the modern world of chasing but two wind ops and cheekpieces first time, yet Santini is hyped as a clean-limbed, clear-winded Altior, and still can’t win.. Pull the other one!

The Racing Post reports: ‘Santini closed all the way up the hill after the last fence and was in front just after the line.’

It looked good but must be attached to the rest of the race reading: ‘slightly outpaced; not clear run; switched right; switched right (again)..?’

In his previous race ‘hit two out’. And at Sandown before that ‘pushed along before two out’, then ‘hard pressed flat, racing lazily, ridden out.’ And the previous March at Cheltenham, he was ‘nudged along 11th, stumbled four out.’

It will all be overlooked again in the hype before the 2020-21 season, but I say now that he will not win the Gold Cup. I say now that something will come along and beat him (watch this space). He has become credible but not a champion.

Champions do not litter their form with mistakes and swerves and switches, and need luck in running and very special jockeyship if they are to overcome that word ‘lazy.’

Granted a clear run (allowing himself a clear run?) in the 2020 Gold Cup, had he got to the front he might well have lazily lent his challenger another chance. As it was, he has had that ‘unlucky’ tag more than once through his own doing. He’s a ‘nearly horse’ for me; second best.

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