The Changing Seasons

The title of this article doesn’t refer to the change from winter to spring but rather the change from the National Hunt season to the Flat season.

This happens around April every year and means a turbulent time for people who use form as a guide for their selections.

I always think that the change over effect actually starts in March when many trainers are already pulling their best horses out. You can find yourself looking at races with lots of runners, all of whom have doubtful form. This gives you the feeling that anything can happen, which as we know…will!

We have seen this with our own eyes over the last month with a system that we feel is very good. Up until half way through March we were very confident with our selections…But we started to see a shift in the form data that led us to believe we were heading for trouble.

Although we are still ahead on the month we are losing on some races where we should have probably considered making it a “No Bet” day, even if it was our best bet for the day.

The selections I am referring to are at the moment being called Comanche and Apache (although this will probably change).

If you are interested in seeing the results you can download the file here. (this are updated every few days).

Both systems are “Back” systems and are based around the “one a day” concept but Apache is little different because it selects two runners to back in the same race.

We came up with the idea for these two systems late last year and then started recording the results in January.

After recording the results for just over 2 months we were quite pleased and to be truefull a little amazed at the consistency. But as with all systems the way to really see the results, is to make the selections public and to actually play with small stakes.

We always find that subscribers to the Grey Horse Bot ( and owners of GHB-Lite both like trying out new selections ideas and as both versions can bet under the Betfair minimum of £2.00, risks can be kept low.

We also supply the selections in a .csv file which both bots can use to automatically download the selections, as soon as they are available.

So as I was saying we started sharing these around the middle of March and almost immediately we started to see a turnaround in the strike rate, which I always find frustrating because we hadn’t changed anything but as previously mentioned, we did feel that our selections were not scoring as high from our own ratings system as they had previously.

Which brings me to my point and the reason for this article!

You ignore the change in seasons at your peril. You should consider your risk very carefully and even consider lowering your normal stake levels over this period.

It’s hard to give you examples of exactly what to look for but you should consider tired horses which have run many times over the season and really should be resting. Horses that are now being run on the flat after competing in jumps and obviously horses that haven’t run for some time.

These are all unknown quantities and can easily cause a disruption to a race that you thought you were reading correctly.

Reading form is never easy but a quick look at the runners in the races you are considering getting involved with and spending a minute or two just seeing if anything seems out of place, can be really worthwhile.

As for Apache and Comanche they were still in level stakes profit at the end of March so we will have to see what April has in store for them.

Thanks for Reading.


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.
Back to top button