Another week has simply flown by though at times it felt like it was dragging on forever as it does when the bets don’t go your way. Pride often comes before a fall as they say and the rugby certainly panned out that way as my biggest bet of the week on Ireland to beat Wales gave some lucky BETDAQ punters a wad of my cash. My bet went down big time leaving me planning my escape via the racing and then the football in the afternoon. All started brightly enough with a big bet on Strong Suit coming off (thank you BETDAQ layers – 2.8 was too generous) but once again greed was my enemy as I put all my winnings each way on Spiritual Star at 18, 17, and 16 for the Dewhurst Stakes only to see him run far too freely before weakening tamely to finish a disappointing seventh of nine. Other punters may have notebooks of future winners but I keep a list of horses who owe me money lol, and he was written down in block capitals after this disaster!

One more (small) losing bet on Gifted Leader at 50.0 (seriously, I shopped around and BETDAQ was easily the biggest price) did a little more damage in the Cesarewitch, but by now I was convinced Ryan Moore would ride a winner for Aiden O’Brien and joined the plunge on Wading to take the Rockfel Stakes. Like an idiot I wasn’t organised enough to snap up any of the 5.5 early doors but I did “steal” some 4.0 before watching her win easily, giving me time for a smug grin all be it to myself!

As for the football, what happened to Charlton is beyond me (drew 1-1 with Tranmere) and made a hefty dent in my balance but Crawley ride to my rescue once again and are rapidly becoming one of my favourite teams! As their game was televised there was plenty of liquidity in the market and although it wasn’t pretty to watch (as someone said to me, the ball needed oxygen it spent so much time in the air), and did keep me on the edge of my seat (0-1 is never a comfortable scoreline), they held on to the final whistle and made the 2.35 BETDAQ price all the sweeter (better by far than the bookies, must be a lot of Northampton fans out there.

Looking ahead instead of backwards, if you trawl the internet and look around there were a lot of articles about Champions Day at Ascot this Saturday, with more publicity (buses television, even cinema) than I can remember for any other racing day. Some lucky journalists went to Newmarket this week for interviews with Marco Botti, Simon Crisford, John Gosden, Sir Henry Cecil and James Fanshawe, but with more patience than I normally manage, I have watched and read everything I can find to see if anything is of any use to me as a punter. Frankel was obviously the main subject ahead of his tilt at the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes but even I can’t back him at 1.4 or thereabouts and have looked elsewhere for a spot of value. William Haggas is in one of the videos on the Ascot website and he seems pretty keen on the chances of Epsom Oaks winner DANCING RAIN who could be worth a little win and place at 5.5 or so and 2.0 with the intention of laying in running if her price drops. She seems sure to try and make most if not all of the running and if she can get a bit of a lead we could all make an instant profit though my advice to you (which I doubt I follow), would be don’t get too greedy -any profit is good profit!

One thing that jumped off the pages to me was just how highly Simon Crisford and his Godolphin boys rate DUBAI PRINCE who goes for the Champion Stakes at 4.10. He will certainly need to improve on what we have seen so far but is unbeaten and they do say you never know how good a horse really is until he is beaten? They do seem pretty keen on is chances even though the likes of So You Think are in the field, but at 10.0 or thereabouts he has an each way chance if the hype is to be believed, and will be carrying some of my money.

Football is back to a full coupon after the International break and once again, a little soccer may get me out of trouble if my racing bets fall flat on their face. Like all good punters I like to sniff out a spot of value though sadly that also limits my bets but some weekends that’s just the way it goes. I am thinking along the lines of two straight bets and a small short priced accumulator, starting with SWANSEA who look overpriced to me at 3.6 to win at Norwich. They are slowly finding their feet at the highest level and never seem short of confidence either. It may be a bit early to call this a relegation six pointer (I love all those clichés!), but both teams will see this as a must win fixture so I can see an end to end contest and only hope I have picked the winning side? As mentioned earlier, backing CRAWLEY is working so far and I suspect will prove profitable all season and at 1.85 they can see off Shrewsbury at home on Saturday. They have about the strongest (and most expensive) squad in Division Two and should have too many guns again though expect another heart stopper, as I doubt it will be a high scoring encounter.

As for the accumulator, CHELSEA should see off Everton (1.4), Arsenal will surely beat Sunderland (1.5), MK DONS are better on paper that Bradford (1.9), and CELTIC (1.4) and RANGERS (1.3) should both win in Scotland for what I hope is an obvious but profitable five timer!

Summary of this weeks suggested bets:
1pt win 1pt place DANCING RAIN Ascot Saturday (look to lay at shorter prices in running).
1pt win 1pt place DUBAI PRINCE Ascot Saturday
1pt Win SWANSEA to beat Norwich Saturday
2pts Win CRAWLEY to beat Northampton Saturday
2pts win Football Accumulator CHELSEA to beat Everton, MK DONS to beat Bradford, CELTIC to beat Kilmarnock and RANGERS to beat St Mirren (all Saturday) with ARSENAL to beat Sunderland Sunday.

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