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Improving Your Punting – Part II

Last Time Out Winners

There’s just one fundamental objective for punters and that to make a consistent profit. To achieve that objective doesn’t necessarily depend on hours of form study or detailed assessment of each horse chance in the race. Most punters don’t have the time or experience to undertake such tasks.

In the second part of this short series on improving your punting. I’m looking at the most profitable betting angles, involving last time out winners.

Last Time Winners: It’s in the eye of the beholder.

When I began my betting journey, the first thing to catch my eye was seeing 1 or string of 1s in a horse’s form figures. Yet the 1 is just a number and is meaningless out of context.  For example: A win in Class 5 handicap is normally not better than a 5th in a Group 1 race.

But here’s the conundrum, when you look at articles on last time out winners you will see some pundits say, “look out for last time out winners” and they should be the basis of a win betting strategy.

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Whilst on the other side of the coin you will those say, “beware last time out winners” and they are a sound basis for a laying strategy.

So, who’s is right?

Well both are. It’s all down to interpretation and without that, the numbers are just numbers.

Using the ever reliable www.horseracebase.com here are my findings.

Last Time Out Winners – National Hunt

Last Time Out Winners National Hunt

Since the start of 2017 about 21% of last time out winners over jumps have gone onto win on their next start.

Last Time Out Winners – All-Weather

Last Time Out Winners All Waether

On the all-weather it’s slightly lower with just under 20% of last time out winners going on to win again on their next start.

Given we are now heading into the autumn and the curtain is coming down on the flat season. I will be concentrating on National Hunt racing.

Going back to National Hunt last time out winners.

A quick glance at the above table. We can see that last time out winners do better than any other placing.

A near 21%-win strike rate is not to be sniffed at but the profitability of last time out winners isn’t good.

Are there profitable angles for last time out winners?

Here are my two value angles for last time out winners.

  1. Last time Out Winners Returning Within 7-days

The win strike rate of NH last time out winners returning within 7-days of their last run now jumps over 36%.

If we dig further and look at look at market position:

Last time out winners, returning within 7-days and that are sent off clear favourite on their next start.

The win strike rate has risen to 50% and if you had backed all such qualifiers you would have made a decent £42.17 profit to a £1 stake.

Summary: Granted not large number of bets but the overall results show that these horses are being underestimated by the market and are definitely worthy of further consideration.

  1. Last Time Out Winners By Trainer

When a horse wins a race it’s the trainer’s job to maintain the horses’ peak mental / physical condition and to hopefully place the horse in the right race to win again. Some trainers are good at this and get follow up win from their horses, whilst others get the win and that’s job done for now.

Since the start of 2017 there have been a few National Hunt trainers who are stand out in their placement of last time out winners, in terms of win strike rate and even more importantly profitability.

Here are the top NH trainers with last time out winners. All the trainers in the table below have had at least 50 qualifying runners.

Given that we are looking for a decent win strike rate and profitability I have ordered the trainers by A/E.

Summary: Trainers with good follow up records include Martin Keighley, Jeremy Scott, Iain Jardine, Henry Whittington, Peter Bowen & Emma Lavelle.

And here are the trainers with negative record of follow up wins. Again, I have ordered them by A/E with the lowest first.

Summary: Trainer’s whose National Hunt last time out winners are under-priced by the betting market include the likes of Jessica Harrington, Fergal O’Brien, Olly Murphy, Tom George, David Pipe, Joseph O’Brien and Dan Skelton.

Trainer Micro Angle

Peter Bowen

Given the number of runners and high win strike rate,the trainer I want to concentrate on here is Peter Bowen.

Given the trainers runners that won by length or less are 2 winners from 24 runners 8% -12.12 A/E 0.42 7 placed 29%.

It looks prudent to concentrate on those that won their last race by a length or more.

About 1 in 3 of his last time out winners that had won their previous race by a length or more followed up with another win.

Breaking it down further, by focusing on class move.

Upon further analysis the stronger angle would appear to be last time out winners that are either racing in the same class or moving up one level in class from their last run.

Breaking those results by year:

A 37%-win strike rate and healthy profit for Peter Bowen last time out winners, over the last three years using two simple filters.

You may want to add this simple angle to your betting portfolio.

System 90: Back Peter Bowen last time out NH winners, racing in the same race class or up 1, that won their last race by more than a length.

Trainer Micro Angle

For those of you who like to lay horse’s then Jessica Harrington’s last time out National Hunt winners can provide you with some decent profits.

You can improve the profitability by focusing in her 4yo to 6yo last time out winners.

In 2019 she’s 0 winners from 17 runners 5 placed with such qualifiers.

In summary: The most important element of a successful betting strategy is finding horses that win more often than the market expects.

If you are short on time or an inexperienced punter, then last time out winners are as good a starting point as any to finding profitable bets.

You can’t back last time out winners blindly. But as I have shown with the stats there are some great angles to help you identify winning bets.

In part three of the series on improving your punting, I will be examining ‘misleading stats’.

Improve your punting – I

Improve your punting – III

Improve your punting – IV

Improve your punting – V

Improve your punting – VI

John

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