Another fairly packed post today, dear reader, with news of a new trial, a survey that I really hope you can help with, the last word on the weight for age debate, and a horse for today.
So let's get to it.
First up, regular readers will remember that I asked if you'd be kind enough to help a lady who is doing some very serious academic research into online gambling habits. She's not trying to 'stitch us up' or anything like that. Rather, she's trying to measure the effect of gambling online, as opposed to other forms of gambling (physical casinos, lottery, betting shops etc).
To aid her in her research, lots of readers (somewhere between 125 and 150 of you) were kind enough to offer thoughts when I asked previously. The reason I'm making this request again is because the research phase is drawing to an end, and this is the last chance Caroline has to get some more thoughts on the subject.
Obviously the more data she can collect, the more meaningful and reflective the study will be. Caroline for her part has promised to share her findings with me, so that I can share them with you. It should make for very interesting reading.
Anyway, if you'd like to contribute, just click the link below and you'll be taken to the survey (in another window, so you can finish reading today's blog!):
Next, I want to tell you about a couple of things we've been trialing here on the blog through most of May and some of June, and what's coming next.
First, we'd been looking at a laying service called Lowlay, which had been doing rather well after an atrocious start. Kevin, who had been trialing it, was due to post his final review last Monday. But he's had an arduous week, having been diagnosed with a gall bladder problem. The offending item of anatomy (!) has now been removed and Kevin, I'm pleased to say, is on the mend.
He's promised to try to do the review today: I've obviously told him that there's no rush. So hopefully that will appear on the blog later. If not, you'll understand why.
I've also managed to secure an interesting new trial which will start either over the weekend or early next week. The service is called Racing Trends, and is run by a chap called David Renham, who some of you will know from the Raceform newspaper and his stints on Attheraces.
The service is not a tipping line as such, but rather identifies a selection of meaningful statistical information for the day's racing. I'll say no more for now, except that a) we'll be sampling that over the next fortnight or so, and b) there'll be a free trial offer for you to take up, should you so wish.
Lastly, on the subject of trials, I've been learning a thing or two about FX trading. It's not something I've previously ever been drawn to, but I have to say that Graham's posts on the subject are both informative and mouth-watering. He does an excellent job of leading us newbies (well, me at least) by the hand on a new adventure.
No problem if it's not for you. This is after all primarily a horse racing blog. But I know from the last poll, that more than 1 in 7 of you are interested in FX, so those posts are for you. (By the way, if you haven't taken part in this week's poll question, you can do so by looking top right on this page for the Question of the Week).
The weight for age discussion, which started a couple of days ago, produced lots of excellent debate from varying sides of the fence, and it is perhaps fitting that the last word should go to my buddy, Rob Pacitto. While not quite conceding his point (he never would, trust me!), he has certainly taken on board our collective views.
His comment is recorded below, and the whole discussion can be seen here.
Yesterday's racing was more than a bit frustrating for yours truly. Having passed on a good word for a horse called Arcano in the first at Newbury, I also told you that I strongly fancied Apple Charlotte in the third race.
A small interest bet in Arcano was rewarded at odds of 7/2, but a much fatter wager on the Apple of 'Sir' Henry's eye was lost when a filly in the care of Luca Cumani, called Splashdown, burgled her right on the line for a short head verdict. Dash and botheration... (were two words I was not heard to explete).
Today's racing looks fun with Sandown and York taking centre stage this afternoon. There is a strange draw bias in the 1m4f races at York, where - in decent sized fields - you really need to be drawn in single figures. Those with a wider draw get fanned out towards Harrogate and have little chance (apologies to all Yorkshire readers for my doubtless errant geography).
For that reason, I've sided with Harry The Hawk in the concluding apprentice handicap. It's my conjecture that the bias will be amplified by the young inexperienced riders and, as such, I think Harry - ridden by the very good Slade O'Hara - has a fine chance from the 4 box. Spirit of Adjisa would also be of interest from trap one, with Charles Eddery an effective pilot in this peer group.
The favourite, Joe Jo Star, has a chance from 8, but is plenty short enough in the betting, and not a play for me.
Also racing today is dear old Night Orbit. I couldn't make it to Liverpool this evening, but I will be absenting myself from whichever hostelry I'm parked in shortly before 8.20 tonight.
I make the race a four runner affair, between Quell The Storm, Gonebeyondrecall, Starr Flyer and Orbit himself. To be honest, I reckon the Irish raider, Gonebeyondrecall is the likeliest winner. But I'll be disappointed if Orbit isn't in the three and he looks a very good each way / place wager.
I'm not too keen on Paul Nicholls' Quell The Storm, who is likely to make the market for the others. Incidentally, he's owned by a certain Sir Alex Ferguson, who may just have around Â£80 million to gamble this Summer...
That's it for now. Have a great Friday, and if you've got five minutes to spare, do please help out Caroline with her study. Here's the link again: Click Here to share your thoughts