RA Pro Ratings

(5278 CFR) HORSE RACING RATINGS: The Simple Journey To A 14% Profit

Don't Overcomplicate Profits

Horse racing ratings are an integral part of finding a profit from betting on the horses.

With more ratings for every horse than any other provider in the UK, we began a public analysis of each one in 2020, and are adding to them regularly.

You can see all the ratings in the series here.

Some will perform well and make insane horse racing profits on their own, others will not perform as well but will indicate strong horses and work excellently when combined with other factors.

In this post we’re going to look at the 5278 CFR horse racing rating.

This rating is a combination factor, which means there’s a number of other ratings (or factors) which go in to make this one.

It gives a very quick overview of the horses in the race and how they are likely to compete against each other.

By default this rating is ranking. This means there is no score, the best horse is ranked 1, the second best horse is ranked 2 etc.

Before we dig in and see how it performs, let’s see…


We use a few pieces of information that help us to understand the performance of horse race ratings. Below you will find an explanation of these for reference.


The number of selections that have been found


The profit, or loss, of the selections to Betfair SP with a 2% commission. Where Betfair SP isn’t available we have used the SP odds.


The number of winners found in this sample of selections.


The percentage of winners found from the selections.


Return On Investment. The percentage return made on turnover, based on betting 1 unit per selection.


Actual/Expected. Also known as the PIV (Pool Impact Value). This shows how many winners were found compared to the number of expected winners (based on odds). If this figure is greater than 1 then we have an edge, less than 1 and we don’t!


The chi square is a statistical test which tells us how likely the results are due to chance or skill. 100% means the results are 100% based on chance, we want them to be as low as possible.


Using data from 2018 to the present day, I’m going to start by looking at the top four ranked horses in every race.

Starting with all the top four rated horses in every race, with no conditions applied, we get these results:


SelectionsProfitWinsStrike RateROIA/EChi2


SelectionsProfitWinsStrike RateROIA/EChi2


SelectionsProfitWinsStrike RateROIA/EChi2


SelectionsProfitWinsStrike RateROIA/EChi2

We can see that the strike rate decreases steadily from the top ranked to the fourth ranked, which is as we would expect.

The A/E (PIV) ratio is averaging 0.99, which is also a great start as it means without doing anything we’re almost breaking even.


From this excellent starting point, let’s start by looking at different race types for each rank to see how they perform.


Race TypeSelectionsProfitWinsStrike RateROIA/EChi2
NH Flat900-172.7221924%-19%0.9217%
Chase Turf3660-111.7882623%-3%1.0095%
Flat Turf8662154.10183221%2%1.0179%
Hurdle Turf583714.78137624%0%1.0084%
Hunter Chase9417.303436%18%1.2612%
Flat AW6346104.49136221%2%0.9848%
Chase AW00.0000%0%0.000%
Bumper AW2013.12945%66%1.3329%

We can see in the table above that Flat Turf, Hurdle Turf and Flat AW all have had a good quantity of races. Hurdle Turf has produced the highest strike rate and Flat Turf has had the highest A/E ratio (just).

Flat AW and Flat Turf have actually made a profit, but notice that the A/E ratio is 0.98 and 1.01, so we would expect this profit to be lost over more bets.

Hunter Chase has a great edge, as you can see in the A/E ratio, but with only 94 selections since 2018, we’re not going to get many bets with it.

I’m not going to look at all the ranks, instead I’m going to continuing focusing on just the top ranked.

Since I’m writing this as we’re coming into the flat season, we should be well into the flat season but as the Covid-19 outbreak is raging it’s going to be starting a bit later, I’ll focus on the Flat Turf race type.


DSLGRSelectionsProfitWinsStrike RateROIA/EChi2
>90 & <=180607-129.069115%-21%0.8816%
>180 & <=365125287.2923118%7%1.1012%

This is very interesting. I tend to prefer to remove runners who haven’t performed well recently. That usually means horses with no good race in more than 365 days is removed, and sometimes as low as 180, dependent on the other runners in the race and how recently they’ve had good races.

However, in this situation we can see that the sweet spot for the best performing runners is between 180 and 365 days, with a historic 10% edge. A strike rate of 18%, meaning you’d be losing 82% of all bets, is a bit on the low side, but we can look at that in a moment.

It’s important to also note that the majority of runners fall into the DSLGR category of <=90 days since a good last race, and you can expect these selections to break-even long-term.

I don’t usually like to dig into too many factors historically because we run into the danger of overfitting.

However, in this situation, and with that caveat, I’d like to look at how horses that meet this criteria, and are also in the top four of the betting market perform.

This could be a quick way to increase the strike rate on these runners.


SelectionsProfitWinsStrike RateROIA/EChi2

It did just what we were hoping it would do, it increased the strike rate to 25% which is far more manageable.. However, it also increased the profit and the edge.

An A/E ratio of 1.11 indicates that these runners are performing 11% better than the market expects them to be, and a with a Chi2 score of just 8.82% there’s a 91.18% chance this isn’t due to luck.

There would be just under 1 selection a day on average, and if you spent a few minutes checking to see if the runners were strong under the current race conditions you should be able to improve on these numbers even further.


Based on this investigation, the 5278 CFR rating used under the following situations produces the best results.

  • The top ranked horse
  • Flat Turf races
  • DSLGR >180 and <=365
  • Top four market favourites

Since 2018 these rules have found the winner 25% of the time, had an 11% edge and made a return on investment of 14%.

This blog is designed to show you that finding a profit doesn’t have to use a lot of ratings, and it doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, the hardest part is knowing what type of strategy suits you the most.

Just taking any of the top four 5278 CFR in any race will produce an almost break-even result in the long-term.

From there you can make a profit in whatever set of race conditions you want to.

But you don’t want to over-complicate your approach. Always aim to keep it simple.

If you’re not yet a member of RA Pro, you can register for a free account here.

Even though there’s no racing at the moment, we’ve pioneered a Like-Real Racing platform that’s unique.

The races Aldermist, our Like-Real Racing course, are all based on real data, the horses running are real horses that you will recognise, and the trainers and jockeys are real.

This means that not only does every horse, jockey and trainer have full form and ratings for the race, as well as an entire detailed form history, exactly as you would expect from live racing. The results are also based on a horses true chance of winning the race.

Any system or strategy that is profitable at Aldermist will also be profitable on live racing.

Whilst there is no live racing currently, Aldermist has a race every ten minutes, allowing you to test your systems and strategies in a live environment far faster than has ever been possible before.

If you’re an RA Pro member, I’d love to hear whether you’re already using the 5278 CFR rating in your analysis, or if you’re now going to consider using it.

If you’re not yet an RA Pro member, then please let me know what ratings you currently use, and whether you’d like to have a rating like this in your portfolio.

Stay safe and healthy.

Michael Wilding

Michael started the Race Advisor in 2009 to help bettors become long-term profitable. After writing hundreds of articles I started to build software that contained my personal ratings. The Race Advisor has more factors for UK horse racing than any other site, and we pride ourselves on creating tools and strategies that are unique, and allow you to make a long-term profit without the need for tipsters. You can also check out my personal blog or my personal Instagram account.


  1. Your articles are very good, Michael. There’s obviously deep thinking and experience behind them.
    I have two questions in relation to this article: The final set of factors are RANK #1, FLAT TURF, DSLGR >180 & <=365, TOP 4 FAVOURITES and show a Chi2 of 8.82%. In the Chi2 calculation what group are you using to compare with your final set of factors? Is it the top four rated horses in every race, with no conditions applied but excluding the final selections? And how should one decide what comparison group to use?
    Keep up the good work. I look forward to your articles.

    1. Thank you John. For the Chi2 we use the wins/losses and expected wins/losses for the group of horses that would be contender selections. Let me know if that clears it up.

  2. How does this work in practice re top 4 favourites criteria? By this I mean do you have to wait until a race is literally off to make a selection based on that criteria given how quickly prices change? I struggle with any kind of β€˜system’ that relies on any kind of favourite based criteria and I’m interested how this works practically?

    1. You would need to wait until as close to the off as possible to get the market ranking, or use a bot to place the selections if you can’t watch. Often you can predict the top four at around five minutes before the off, but there are times when heavy last minute betting can change this so it’s preferable to be able to watch the market or use a bot.

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