It’s rare to get a look behind the scenes at what a professional punter does in preparation for a race meeting. But that’s exactly what we got when Melbourne racing analyst Trevor Lawson hosted a webinar to take punters through his process for rating a race.
There’s plenty of detail about how a race is rated and analysed. Here are five of the main takeaways:
We got to have a look at Trev’s database interface, and it really is amazing how much info is in there. The amount of statistics, times and other data is massive, and really drives home what you need to be taking into account to bet successfully these days.
Trev has mentioned in the past that there are some very big syndicates crunching data on Melbourne racing, and that his advantage lies in the knowledge of the horses. But that shouldn’t underplay how much data he is also across himself via Southcoast Database. It really is an information-rich game these days.
Forget the carefree, glamorous lifestyle that many might associate with the professional punter. You can rest assured there are countless hours required in front of the computer and the screen required to do this properly and produce professional, profitable ratings. Just seeing what goes into doing one race – and that’s without taking into account the reviews of past races and times – is a real eye-opener.
Reviewing past ratings and bets isn’t something many punters do, but Trevor spoke of how often it needs to be done, especially when you think you got a race or a meeting wrong and need to work out the reasons why. It was interesting to hear Trevor say how he uses periods with lighter workloads to review his past work – a good example of managing time to ensure you’re properly on top of everything. Trevor’s reviews also focus on finding blackbookers to keep an eye on for their next start.
This is one that gets spoken of a lot, but really needs to be driven home. You simply can’t get too hung up on the results of one race, or a meeting, or a week. Trev spoke of how you can have down weeks, months and even quarters – it’s just the way that variance works. Results can be in peaks and troughs and you have to try to ride out both and keep your emotions in check. What really matters is what you can achieve over the course of a year – and hopefully multiple years!
The race we reviewed was one where Trev backed a couple of horses, including the winner at over $40. I noticed how Trev said that when he did the race and finalised his rated prices he came out different to the market – he wasn’t that keen on the favourite. You have to be confident in what you’ve done and back yourself to get it right because if you have a long-term winning process, you’ll get it right over the journey.
Even though the market gets things right over the long-run, there are errors in it, and those are the races that Trevor tries to target. If you’ve put in the amount and quality of work, you need to be confident enough to take on the market.