Solving the two-year-old puzzle…

The Flat season is distinct from the Jumps season: quite apart from the obvious, with the Flat season, we have the draw bias ( is a great start here for more info) – wait for the Chester May meeting to see the mother of all draw biases – and we also have the two-year-old puzzle…

The two-year-old puzzle is to do with the abundance of two-year-old horse races where there is no form. These races are usually Novice or Maiden races…

Today I’d like to show you how to potentially solve the two-year old riddle. If there is no form, how do we make an informed decision? The market is the key.

Try this out tomorrow…

The 13:45 Ripon is a two-year-old Novice stakes race. Access the race at \tomorrow. Go over to the odds section and you will see this screen below. Only two of these horses have actually ran a race. How on earth do we know how good the other horses are?

It’s all in the odds versus the Betting Forecast.

You will see the Betting Forecast at the base of the race. This is the Racing Post journalist’s idea of the likely odds for the horses in this race.

Wait until the bookmakers’ odds become available. Once they do, compare the bookmaker odds with the Betting Forecast odds.

If a horse’s bookmaker odds are considerably shorter than their Betting Forecast odds, this may signal confidence behind a horse.

Why? The Betting Forecast does tend to be an accurate representation of the bookmaker odds.

As an example, Juniors Fantasy is 20/1 in the Betting Forecast. If that horse’s bookmaker odds open up at 14/1 then drop to 12/1, for example, I would see that as a potential sign of confidence behind the horse. I would back the horse each way.

Here’s another example… Let’s say Good Tyne Girl is 6/1 in the Betting Forecast, but opens up in the bookmaker’s market at odds of 2/1: that could signal confidence.

Tomorrow there are two-year-old races at the following times: 13:45 Ripon; 14:15 Leicester; and 17:45 Doncaster.

Try comparing the Betting Forecast for these three races with the live betting market, and remember, if the live betting market odds are significantly shorter than the Betting Forecast odds, then it might signal stable-confidence or bookmaker-caution behind horses who (remember) have no form to guide them.

Try out this little niche this Flat season. Keep track of shortened bookmaker odds and see how the horses do.

And it’s not just the Flat season that excites this summer. Remember the tennis too! Your key to success here? Wait and bet in-play.

Like the above strategy, where our focus is on two-year-old races, with the tennis, focus on the world’s top 10 (you can find their rankings at

Simply wait for them to make a complete balls-up (excuse the pun) of an easy-to-win match, then wait for the Roy-of-the-Rovers recovery, and hey presto, you could be backing a World Number 7 at 200/1 and winning!

Solving the two-year-old puzzle…

David Goffin was a set and 5-1 down and won the match. This kind of a recovery is not as rare as you think, and tends to be confined to world-top-ten men and women (rankings via the ATP and WTA tour websites as well).

Give these niches a go this summer and tell me how you get on.

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