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when the rain buckets down....lay the field

Have only been dabbling on the lay the fields today, doing some races and missing others through no other reason than time available, and wouldn't you know it, I've missed THREE 1.01s getting beaten (two at Wolverhampton, one at Perth). Best I could manage on a race I got involved in was getting a 1.05 beaten.... however my 'jackpot' line was set at 1.04! Still in profit, just no sign of that big result. So while I was setting up for the big cross-country slog at Punchestown, one of the 1.01s gets rolled at Wolverhampton - missed it because the race times were all out of whack on Betfair and didn't look elsewhere to check.

But then the 4m slog in the bottomless bog at Punchestown came good. Only had two matched at 1.34, just the winner at 1.03, but several on the higher bands. If you've no idea what all this means, I suggest you click on the link to the right which covers the lay the field strategy.

When the ground suddenly changes severely (against recent weeks of racing and training), there should be more chance of horses being found out with their stamina as they bust a gut to plough through it. Whether there's any facts behind that statement though is another matter...

Note there is no science to these numbers and liabilities used for this race, as I was a big field on a very wet track, I fancied going with more lines. The field size also made it far less likely than one get beaten at a very short price - with so many runners, the aggressive IR backers don't crush them as much in big fields, partly to do with the market percentage. So here we had six matched at 3.3, five at 2.34, three at 1.56, two at 1.34 and just the one on the jackpot line 1.03. Lydon House went as low as 1.1, and Tally Em Up got to 1.4, so not far off a bigger payout...

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The Lexus Melbourne Cup
Group 1, Handicap, 3200m
AUD 7,750,000
Flemington 1500 local, 0400 GMT
Broadcasters - Network 10 (AUS), Racing.com (worldwide), SkySportsRacing (UK)


1. Cross Counter
Trainer - Charlie Appleby (one previous Cup win)
Jockey - William Buick
Breeding - Teofilo - Waitress
Drawn 5, Weight 57.5kg

Last year's impressive winner who doesn't get the 3yo weight advantage this time. Won first up at Meydan in March but has run fourth, third, fourth in the big set weights staying races in England and Ireland, never quite making it as the next big staying star. While running close behind Stradivar…

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British Stallion Studs EBF Westow Stakes
£50k, Listed & Class 1, 3yo, 5f
York 1605

Soldier's Call - flying machine, winning four of six starts in Britain last season, running third in the Prix L'Abbaye, beaten a neck at WFA then finished sixth as joint favourite in the BC Juvenile Turf Sprint. Has plenty on these on ratings, but life's rarely that simple with unexposed 3yos early in the season.

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