I am sure I usually start these musings with how strange the week has been but these past seven days have bordered on lunacy with horse racing at the epicentre.

Whether you do or don’t agree with the new whip rules is an argument for another day but surely no one can argue that their implementation was timed to comedy perfection. One week before the richest day in the history of British horse racing must have been the brainwave of somebody who is presumably in hiding somewhere after we managed to make ourselves the laughing stock with Belgian superstar Christophe Soumillon winning the Champion Stakes on board Circus Des Aigles for France, only to look first bemused and then furious when learning he had broken our rules, will be banned for five days, and lost his £50k or so in prize money! Shooting yourself in the foot was more like a machine gun in this case and although the media have tried to put on a brave face, it did take away from the day which was in itself magnificent.

As a born pessimist I keep looking in the shadows for something to beat Frankel but have never been right yet and long may that continue as he is rapidly turning out to be the real deal. He remains unbeaten after nine races and ran away with the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, but it is next year we can really see his ability when he will need to take on the classic generation of 2012, though I do suspect he will be even better over a mile and a quarter.

As for Dubai Prince (stone cold last in the Champion Stakes), my bets with BETDAQ at 14, 13, 12, and even 11 looked good before the race and pretty darned stupid afterwards. Previously unbeaten, the similarity with Frankel ends there as he was listless throughout and although it was reported after the race that he had breathing difficulties, I seriously doubt he is anywhere near as good as connections once implied. Luckily for me/us, Dancing Rain ran an absolute stormer to win the mares and fillies and those who followed my tips last week will have made a decent overall profit – again. The BETDAQ 8.2 was gratefully snapped up for my win bet though only 2.5 the place wasn’t quite as generous but victory was assured a long way from home, and I do feel she has been virtually ignored thanks to other events on the day.

The football was a little muted this week with my accumulator a disaster as soon as Celtic failed to win at Kilmarnock which does remind me short prices are not always the best thing, but we did collect with a decent bet on Crawley (I got a little 2.1 with BETDAQ, thank you somebody), and they went top of Division Two with a 2-1 victory that never looked in any danger. They are rapidly becoming my favourite team financially at least and seem sure to feature here until they start a losing run if nothing else!

Talking of suggested bets this week, the racing gets trickier as the jumps season starts to take over but Doncaster and Newbury have got two quality cards, even though winner finding will be as tricky as always. Word from Ireland seems that the O’Brien camp are extremely confident about CAMELOT in the Racing Post Trophy from Donnie at 3.00pm. One race and one win makes him extremely difficult to sum up and his price for the 2012 Derby is frankly laughable on what we have seen, but he has been well supported al week by those allegedly in the know and will be my one and only racing bet this weekend.

Football come next and I am going to stick with another short priced accumulator despite last week’s disaster as it is sure to come good some time soon lol? Starting in the Premiership, you would expect highflying Newcastle to be too good for Wigan and at 1.7 or thereabouts they are team one of my fantastic five! As an Everton fan, backing Liverpool sticks in my throat a bit but money is money and the 1.4 or thereabouts should help fill my BETDAQ account to overflowing, and they are (sadly) team two. Add Arsenal at about 1.55 as they look to dismantle Stoke at the Emirates with manager Arsene Wenger having a point to prove this season and we are already sixty percent of the way there. Dropping down a division, Leicester are beginning to play better football and at 1.65 need to be considered to see off Millwall with home advantage, while Rangers, who seem to have the Scottish Premier wrapped up after just eleven games, and look outstanding value at 1.85 to win at fourth placed Hearts.

My main nets this week have some kind of fuzzy logic behind them which may or may not be a positive thing, but fingers crossed as always.

Crystal Palace have had a surprising start and even their manager admits he expected them to take a lot longer to start playing as a team, so it seems to expect them to improve week on week, though other teams will be more wary of them now. That said the 4.2 or so for them to win away at Ipswich is almost an insult, and I cannot resist a small bet at that sort of price.

As mentioned earlier I will be backing Crawley almost every week from now on but am not convinced the 2.3 for them to take all three points away to sixth placed AFC Wimbledon is as big as it should be as there are only five points between the two of them and AFC have the home advantage. I cannot desert them but nor can I have a massive bet so a point will suffice in hope more than with confidence.

Lastly, on Sunday I am hopeful if not confident that Birmingham will have recovered from their European exploits, in which case the 2.6 to win at bottom placed Bristol City is laughable. The Blues are in a false position in the table down in sixteenth but have three games in hand of the majority of their rivals which would leave them in second place if they pick up all nine points. I cannot imagine such generous odds if that were the case which is why they sing out value to me here and are the only match I will be risking a bigger bet on this week.

This week’s selections:

Horse Racing
4pts Win CAMELOT 3.00pm Doncaster Saturday

1pt win Accumulator: NEWCASTLE (1.7) LIVERPOOL (1.35), ARSENAL (1.55), LEICESTER (1.65), and RANGERS (1.85).
1pt Win CRYSTAL PALACE away to Ipswich (approximate BETDAQ odds 4.2).
1pt Win CRAWLEY away to AFC Wimbledon (approximate BETDAQ odds 2.3).
2pts Win BIRMINGHAM away to Bristol City Sunday (approximate BETDAQ odds 2.6).

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