Our Finding An Edge At The Track series looks at some of Australia’s best racetracks and asks our pro punters for any tips when betting on them. Today, we check out Sandown Racecourse in Melbourne.
Sandown Racecourse is a little unique given it features two distinct tracks: Hillside and Lakeside.
Sandown is the only Melbourne metro racecourse built in the 20th century and was opened in 1965. The redevelopment that saw the two tracks created was completed in 2001. Along with Caulfield and Mornington, Sandown is operated by the Melbourne Racing Club.
Sandown Racecourse is known as a track for the racing purists as it features free-flowing turns and straights. Together with longer straights, it means more runners are given a chance at victory.
One of the highlights of the racing calendar at the track is the Sandown Carnival Raceday, which follows the Melbourne Cup Carnival at Flemington and traditionally closes the Spring Racing Carnival.
How To Find An Edge At Sandown Racecourse
Champion Bets Melbourne analyst Trevor Lawson regularly bets into both the Hillside and Lakeside courses. There are a few little tricks at both tracks that make them run a little differently and there is an edge to be had if you analyse both tracks individually.
We asked Trevor about how to gain an advantage at Sandown.
Are there any nuances to Sandown that you notice in your analysis?
In general terms, Lakeside suits on pacers near the rail and Hillside suits horses that make their run away from the inside.
Lakeside has a smaller turn from the 800 to the 400, while Hillside has a wider turn. Lakeside suits on-pacers who can kick up the hill on turning for home.
Hillside suits horses that make their runs away from the inside generally avoiding the dip at the 450m mark.
What sort of runner, pace-wise, is most suited and why?
Lakeside suits the runners on the pace. Hillside is good for those horses that settle forward of midfield.
Are there any jockeys or trainers that you really like at Sandown and why?
Not overly, they’re very fair tracks and most can ride them satisfactorily.
What sort of an impact does the weather have on Sandown?
Since the track was re-drained a few years ago it doesn’t get as wet as it had in the past. The biggest factor there is the wind for both tracks. A strong northerly is into their face down the back straight, and it can hinder the leaders chances.
Are there any times of year that are best for betting at Sandown?
Like all tracks, when they’re racing as a genuine Good 3. That’s when they’re at their best. So the warmer months from spring through to autumn.
What tips would you give for your average punter betting at Sandown?
Keep a close eye on where the runners settle. For Lakeside look for horses that settle up on the pace. For Hillside look for horses drawn out slightly who race forward of midfield.
Punt like a pro with Trevor Lawson’s Melbourne Ratings.
As well as a full set of rated prices, speed maps and suggested bets, you can spend each and every raceday with a pro punter: the Melbourne Ratings Live Page gives you direct access to Trev himself to ask whatever you like.
If you're keen to win, it’s the only way to punt.