Most people think of Crawley as a concrete jungle, a new town, somewhere near to Gatwick Airport, but I see it as the new Gold Rush as they keep on winning and I keep on landing my/our football bets, and when added to my one horse and other football bets we should have all cleaned up (apart from the layers, of course)?

Before we get down to bragging rights after my footie bets last week everything did not go according to plan on the horses, which ought to be a lesson to me to let Daqman pick the horses while I stick to the other sports! As a punter, that is never going to happen (sensible or not), and I cannot for the life of me work out why some of my selections this past week ran so badly and will resort, like many punters, to blaming the new whip rule!

Anyone who hasn’t noticed the good form of the Nigel Twiston-Davies yard need to wake up and smell the coffee, with the big yards such as Paul Nicholls, Philip Hobbs, Jonjo O’Neill and the “Twister” pretty much mopping up at all the jumps meetings. Those looking for value need to look at his horses first with winners at 4/1, 9/2, even 14/1 in the past fortnight, although I will not be backing his runners blindly they do seem to deserve a little more research to see if they have any chance.

The BETDAQ giveth the BETDAQ taketh away may not seem the right sort of terminology for a punting article, but that’s how it felt to me on Saturday afternoon at Doncaster. Once again greed was my problem (suspect it always will be), as after lumping on Camelot at 2.1 and 2.0 on BETDAQ and watching what I suspect was the most impressive two year old display of 2011, I lost nearly all of it just one race later, though I do prefer the phrase “lent” to “lost” lol. On the bright side Camelot is a livewire Derby favourite in my eyes after making these rivals look mediocre with a devastating turn of foot that soon put the race to bed, but I won’t be rushing in at silly prices until we see if he trains on as a three year old.

Naturally, with money in my pocket it was obvious to everyone that Skilful was a good thing in the 4.45, and the world seemed to agree with me as he was supported from 2.7 down to 2.1 on BETDAQ by off time – largely by me! Making most of the running I thought it was just a matter of how far he won by, yet somehow he tied up in the closing stages of this seven furlong event, (work that out, he won over a mile the race before), and was beaten a short head leaving me mouthy open staring at the TV.

Luckily my football bets did a lot better as I stuck with those I gave out last week and although the short priced accumulator went astray again, winning bets on Crystal Palace (4.2) Crawley (2.3), and then Birmingham (2.6) on Sunday made it a profitable week, but I suspect that will mean something new for the house once my partner finds out.

Looking ahead the racing is a bit quiet this weekend to be honest, and if I do have a bet today it will probably be on Miss Lahar at Newmarket in the 3.00. She deserves another win after some decent consistent efforts but there is that worry that she is refusing to carry through with her effort all the way to the line, and with the new whip rules I am just glad I don’t have to ride her.

As you may have worked out, I like to read and watch and listen to every scrap of info I can find be that on the TV, radio, or (mostly) internet, and I have heard that Paul Webber is supremely confident about the chances of Time For Rupert in the Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby Saturday afternoon. A top class novice last season, I seem to remember losing my cash on him in the RSA Chase at Cheltenham last March, but we are all allowed a bad day at the office. His trainer seems to think he is in fine fettle at home and ready to win first time out (goes well fresh and won on his return last season at Cheltenham), and if he has improved, it will be interesting to see how he gets on here.

Other sports look thin on the ground this weekend but we always have football to fall back on and I am determined to land a short price accumulator one day, so I will risk another point and hope for the best.

Manchester City (1.2) should start us off with an easy win at home to Wolves while Tottenham (1.4) should have too many guns for QPR on Sunday, but they are the only two bankers from the Premier league that I can find. With no standouts in the Championship I am forced to move on to Division One where Sheffield United (1.7) ought to see off Exeter, and Huddersfield (1.85) look too strong for lowly Yeovil. Sadly, my new team Crawley are only 1.42 or so to win at home to Accrington so cannot be realistically backed in a single, and if we include Swindon at 1.7, that will do for me this week!

For singles, I think Crystal Palace are massively overpriced at 2.8 at home to Reading and they need to be backed accordingly, while Birmingham owe us nothing, are playing much better than the odds compilers seem to believe, and ought to stroll it at home to Brighton and should be odds on, not 2.25 as they are at the time of writing.

This week’s selections:

Horse Racing
1pt Win MISS LAHAR 3.00 Newmarket Friday
1pt Win TIME FOR RUPERT 3.20 Wetherby Saturday

1pt Win CRYSTAL PALACE to beat Reading 2.8
1pt Win BIRMINGHAM to beat Brighton 2.25

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