Wincanton 2-50
Earth Dream 4 11/4
Or Sing Along 7 9
Winsley Hill 10 14
Major Malarkey 10 8
Richard’s Sundance 12 8
Pourdel 12 7
Lordsbridge 13 6
Wun Chai 16 25

Ludlow 4-00
Supreme Duke 2 5/2
Kilrogan 3 10
Black Hills 4 4
Fier Normand 9/2 5

I have backed Kilrogan so far and am slightly tempted by Winsley Hill. Kilrogan has a couple of eye-catching features; his trainer, A B Haynes, is in good form, a high strike rate in the last fortnight of 5w 1p 14l and Kilrogan’s wins have mostly been at about this time of year, a pattern which his recent good prep run supports. The trainer is quoted as expecting a ‘live run’ so I am happy to take the 10/1 early price. My only fear is rain but I will take a chance.

Winsley Hill has the highest best Topspeed figure and is marginally value at 14/1 (value 10/1) – I will think about it though as that race is more open and unclear formwise, not a problem as such, just that I don’t want to wade in (still feeling last Saturday’s debacle :-))

A small example of synchronicity this morning: taking a five minute break between assessing these two races, I switched on the radio seconds before an interview with a real-life gold prospector. It seems the high price of that meatl ($900 an ounce?!) has provoked a new mini gold rush in California. The interviewee had 30 years experience and his biggest find was an ounce nugget which he still has.

In view of my own idea of mining and prospecting being a good analogy for racing, I take that coincidence to be of interest.

That was a damp squib. I might just get rid of the ‘odds cutoff line’ idea. It depends on the race – whether it is competitive, open, whatever – which should, logically, be clear from the odds themselves. Then one just applies the ‘longest price which is value rule.’ Would that have been Wun Chai? Again, one can’t be too strict about the numbers – any set of odds are just rough indications not exact scales of probabilities mapping directly to reality. A basic rule though is that one should be prepared to back any horse which gets a rating i.e. is in with a chance – the exact chance doesn’t matter.

In fact, the rule when rating is to ask if you would back the horse if the price were sufficient. If not, it shouldn’t figure in the line. If it does figure, go for the longest priced which is value.

I’m glad I have cleared that up :-)
These two races are possibly examples of an open race and a more predictable one, looking at the number of contenders and the odds.