Free Puntology 3.0 Ratings Software Review
Horse racing is an amazing betting medium. There are, literally, thousands of ways to determine which horse to bet. Some people use systems; some collateral form; some speed figures; some colours, jockeys or trainers; and some use ratings.
The great thing about a rating is that it makes the business of backing a horse - or horses - clinical and objective. In other words, it stops us making bets we probably shouldn't. But the big problem is, how do we know if the rating is any good in the first place?
Obviously, if we create our own ratings, then we know the algorithm - or 'secret sauce' - that goes into generating the final figure. When using someone else's ratings, though, we don't have this inner knowledge. We have to take the rating on trust, and hope that it produces a favourable result.
You may very well have heard about the Puntology 3.0 ratings software in the last few days and, if you have, you might be wondering how the ratings are constructed. Well, here's how...
The Puntology ratings are an amalgam of official rating (the number allocated by British Racing's official handicapper), Topspeed (Racing Post's in house speed figure score), and Racing Post Rating (Racing Post's in house rating system).
Each horse's score is derived by adding the deviation from the average for the race for each of the three elements. So, for instance, if the average official rating in the race is 65, and Horse A is rated 70 while Horse B is rated 62, Horse A will have a score of 5 (70-65) and Horse B will score -3 (62-65).
This video, recorded a few years ago (before the software was available), shows how you can manually perform the Puntology Ratings process.
As you can see, it's a fairly drawn out process. In one regard, that's reassuring. After all, if there's little or no science in the calculations, then there's likely to be little or no value in their output.
The Puntology 3.0 Ratings Software does all that manual number-crunching for you, and just provides a final score for each race. Couldn't be simpler. You log into the software (first time only), and all of today's races are loaded up.
Just double click the race you're interested in to see the ratings. Here's the 3.20 from Newcastle yesterday. As you can see, everything is very clearly laid out, and the rating score and rankings are at the right hand side of the page.
Wolf Shield was clear top rated in this event, by ten points. He opened up 9/2 on course, was backed all the way in to 3/1, and won well.
Naturally, they don't always win. But here was a horse with form figures of 6595 - not an obvious selection for those who look at the string of numbers to the left of a horse's name.
The Puntology 3.0 Ratings Software does have its limitations. For instance, in races where there is little known form, it will be unhelpful, as so many gaps will appear in the data, and also horses will be capable of significantly out-performing their previous levels of form.
It also fails to account for key situational factors like ground, class and distance.
But it does have its place, for sure. For instance, if you use it in conjunction with the Race Analysis Reports on geegeez, you can verify a) that a horse is well enough suited to race conditions and b) that it is capable of winning.
Here's Wolf Shield on the Race Analysis Report yesterday:
As you can see, he'd won in the grade, and over course and distance, and he was also ten pounds lower than his last winning rating. So he fitted situationally, although Micro Mission might have been a more obvious selection if just using the RAR.
The combination of rating and RAR is a powerful one, and it's one I'll be using in the coming days to see if it improves my The Shortlist selection methodology.