Once upon a time, dear reader, I was a wannabe journalist. I aspired to write about sport in my small part of the world at that time (Bournemouth), and had numerous articles published in the Daily Echo (the local rag) during a summer placement there.
Alas, when it came to applying for an internship, I messed up my interview big time, and was put off journalism for a very long time. It's only now, through this little bloggie, that I get to exercise my wordy whims.
One of the great frustrations of that time was phoning through a piece of copy that I'd written (usually match reports for the Bournemouth Poppies, a very low non-league unit), and seeing it appear in the paper nothing like the way it had been transcribed over the phone.
The intervention of the sub-editor was a terrible thing. All my research and loquacity (verbosity?) was condensed into 150 words of summary. Now of course, in fairness, this was to do with space issues on the sports pages, and the fact that only about four people in Bournemouth were actually interested in Poppies' performance.
My point in this painful trip down memory lane? That the publisher and writer / researcher are not always the same person.
I strongly suspect that this is the case with Project Betfair, and is the reason why the selections being touted in promotional emails by the Project Betfair team are different from those horses who actually qualify.
In short, the South Africans promoting the product cannot follow the rules of the system that was researched by someone else on their behalf.
Now at this point, I need to say two things:
1. I could be completely wrong in my conjectures above.
2. Even if I'm right, this doesn't in itself detract from what might be a promising system, based on common sense.
I have double checked the runners from yesterday, and am confident that those I nominated on the blog yesterday are the correct horses.
For those that are unsure, Rio Cobolo ran in a Nursery, which is a handicap race (these are the races we're dealing with here); Nobelix and Royal Amnesty both qualified in the same race (this is explicitly allowed); and Loom we both had.
Of the other two quoted by the Project Betfair emails (Character Building and Possol), neither qualified on the weight stipulation in the manual.
So... if you want to know which horses to lay, stick with me for now!
8.50 Princely Hero (note, this is not a qualifier. I inadvertently included this)
I've just heard that both Cheltenham and Lingfield are abandoned, so there are no runners there.
All four qualifiers on the list yesterday were beaten, so it was a very promising start. Of course, these things are a marathon and not a sprint. Nevertheless, early signs are good.
The sales page, from where you can get a copy should you so wish, is here.
The weather has decided to show itself to be a damp squib today, causing the abandonment of the best race of the season to date (Boylesports International Hurdle) amongst other high class races across both Chelters and Leafy (Lingfield).
[A squib incidentally, for those of you who ponder on such things, is a small firecracker that makes a hissing noise but does not explode. Hence a damp one would make little hiss and no fizz...]
So, after yesterday finally got me off the punting 'cold list', when Garde Champetre won again in the novelty race at Cheltenham, and Captain Cavendish ran a gallant 3rd at 16/1, I'll have to look to the sand again for my wager of the day.
Although it won't make you rich, Racketeer in the 12.40 Southwell looks a better than even money wager trading at slight odds against. He ran green on his first and only outing over seven furlongs at Wolverhampton, and ran on well when he found a rhythm to dead heat for second.
Over an extra furlong today, and with Southwell's deeper surface expected to suit, he should go in.
I'll double him up with Thundering Star in the 1.05 at Doncaster. He's turned out quickly, after seemingly being outpaced on the run in at Taunton on Thursday by Clova Star.
There's nothing much in this race to be afraid of, and he'll have to win today to secure his future at Paul Nicholls' Ditcheat yard.
Finally, look out for Leslingtaylor in the 1.40 at Donny. He's been horribly out of form this season to date, and has dropped down the weights a few pounds as a result. But a win at the track over none other than Tidal Bay (!) last season means he clearly has the talent if he consents to put best hoof forward today. A small each way wager may be rewarded...
Soggy Saturday to you.