Feature Doubles- Winter Edition

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Leading into the Sydney carnival I posted an article about simplifying Feature doubles betting and just cutting some of the risks out of a risky bet type!

I am going to re-hash the article with it leading into our Winter carnival and see if I can help a few punters out.

**Feature race betting is in full swing and people have been asking what horses they should be looking at to have in doubles or all ups. So this article is for the punters amongst us, most of us. This can lead to potentially big wins, or to not even get a run for your money! I thought I could give a little article on what I see as some of the factors to take on board when taking on these bet types for the people who have asked what to consider.

First of all you have to realise some races may be 4,5 or 6 weeks away and that is a long time in racing, so you want some decent value about your selections. When I say value, I mean a price you feel appropriate to the risk you are taking betting that far out from a race. (weather, barriers, fitness are all unavailable.) If you don’t think it’s value- Let it go! Simply wait for the day and take the risk of betting early out. Instead look for the one you think IS over the odds, it could only be $4, but that’s value if it’s next to Black Caviar’s name in the Newmarket! (which it was at one point)

I think it’s best to bet as little as possible to win as much as possible! That way you are not betting above your means, and you can have tickets going for a good win.

You need to have heard directly that your horse is targeting the race for starters, whether it is an interview with a trainer, you know people at the stable, it is on a website (ours hopefully) as long as it is on their radar.

Also that it is going to get a run. This is a rule I am a tiny bit flexible on, as sometimes a horse may need to win a lead up to get a run in the feature. If you are keen on that horse sometimes you need to back yourself in as you may get $81-$101 or around that mark, and if you double it with another race you need minimal outlay to have a large ticket going. However I would usually only do this on the odd occasion I think I’ve got a potential star.

Another variable to consider betting a fair way out is if your horse can handle all tracks. Many horses are far better on one surface than another. Why back a horse that can’t run on a wet track over the winter carnival in Brisbane as it is nearly always wet? It is a big bonus if your horse handles all conditions.

So the perfect scenario is

*You see the horse as value.

*You know the horse is targeting the race.

*The horse will get a run (or you think it will win a race to make the race and is value)

*Horse can handle all conditions.

It sounds simple, but it is easy to stray from these principals.

In saying that I thought I would go through a few of the feature races coming up and give an example of what I see as horses that would interest me in doubles or all ups. I have left The Black Caviar races out, as well as the Derby as it is hard to get a guide how many fillies may or may not contest it?

The STRADBROKE Handicap 1400m:

TOORAK TOFF- ($34) This bloke is on the comeback after a throat operation similar to that of So You Think and im pretty sure he come back ok. Rick Hore-Lacy has said the noises have gone and he is very happy with the horse. On his day this son of Show A Heart is in the top few horses over the distance in the country and the $34 in my eyes represents the best value early.

HAY LIST: ($6) Simply the best horse that will run. A superstar who handles all conditions and I see the $6 as value about him.

BUFFERING: ($17) A star on the rise who gets through any surface. He won the Victory stakes Group 2 on the weekend, will get a start in the big one and is on the improve. Lightweight, quality 3year olds have a nice recent record and he fits the bill.

THANKGODYOU’REHERE: ($17) Another quality horse untapped and may beat the handicapper. A little bit more of a risk as he isn’t guaranteed a spot and may need to win a lead up. But I think he is exceptional. Trainer Webster has said he is a horse they take a run at a time, but when right is up to this.

WOORIM: ($26) This is the ‘rule breaker’ He is a dead set dry tracker, but at the handicaps with conditions to suit, the $26 does look inviting as you don’t have to outlay much in a double to get a big return.

The horse that people will say I forgot is SINCERO. That is fair enough as it looks as though he will stamp himself as a force in the coming weeks and get a light weight. I would be happy for people to take him and he might win, but the $6 for me is not value and I am just going to have to take that risk and live with it.

For the out and out QLD’s CAPTAIN SONADOR @$71 is better than those odds, but if he fails in the lead up he risks being retired to stud, so keep that in mind.


GLASS HARMONIUM: ($12) This import for the Moroney stable has pleased the trainer and has competed with the best overseas in the PRINCE OF WALES and other top races, and competed well. If he finds any of that form he should be going very close. Apparently the owners had a stack on it when markets opened too, at $61!

THE HOMBRE: ($17) Ran well over a mile on the weekend, and trainer John Bary is very happy with him. The 2020m is perfect for this monster of a horse. He has tactical pace to put himself in a position, and that is all important over this trip.

After those there is not much value anywhere of note. The market has it right but is very thin!! Five horses under $9. I do think one of these are worth doubling up into even at that price.

SHOOT OUT: ($6) He is almost our best 2000m horse in OZ now that So You Think is gone. He ran well second up in Sydney and I do think he will be peaking come Cup time. He would be my top pick at the moment (with a big watch on Glass Harmonium) and he will only have to be somewhere near his best to be winning the Group 1. You must remember he was third fav in a cox plate not too long ago. Quality animal.


The oaks is always an extremely hard race and there always seems to be a filly grow a leg in the weeks leading up to it. So I have tried to find that filly. I also think the Oaks market is very short in many ways this year! But my first two selections SO DIVINE and I WALK THE LINE are close to the mark and decent prices in my mind.

SO DIVINE ($17) This is the sister to Monaco Consol. And she is very promising. She could easily have won her last couple of starts and would be getting spruiked everywhere. She is reported to be coming. Her last start on a slow track over 2000m in a Listed race was super, and she is crying out for the 2400m. Her start before that was a group 3 over 2000m and she also caught the eye there. I have a big wrap on this filly and at that price she seems by far the best value runner.

I WALK THE LINE ($10) Made a trip up here before Christmas last year and won over 2020m by 5.5L. Has since started twice in SYD including a last start fourth behind the very promising RED TRACER, only being beat 2.2L. I think she will very competitive this weekend and stamp herself as the filly that they all have to beat. I think the $10-$12 mark is about the best you will get between now and then.

HEIDILICIOUS ($9) She is the sister to SHERPA TENZING and she is showing a lot of staying promise as well. There is a little query that it may well come a bit soon for her, but she has enough natural talent to take her a long way. At $9, Probably not my top pick, but she is possibly one that could jump out of the ground with improvement over her next couple of runs.

SCARLETT LADY ($7.50) Grahame Rogerson trained top shelf NZ filly. Fool proof and professional. She will make it hard for the others to win if they make mistake she will be off and gone. Again I don’t like the $7.50 and I may hold off with her, but wanted to mention her if she happens to drift a bit, she is a good horse.

SONG SHAN ($31) This is a longshot, but all she has to do to be right in this is run the trip. (and make the field—Rule 3) Everything says she will and I have been following her for a while and she keeps impressing me. Her last start I have put down to a forgive on the complete bog track. Before that she was about the run of the race in the Carbine Club behind Needs Further. She may need to run well somewhere to get a start, so maybe hang off to see where she is starting next and assess from there.

***A bit of a note for punters. Some of the value are horses kicking off prep’s this weekend and if they run well you will have to take some shortened odds. The one’s nominated this weekend are major players too.

TOORAK TOFF, THANKGODYOU”REHERE, SHOOT OUT, GLASS HARMONIUM and I WALK THE LINE are all expected to run. If you are looking at taking some of those I would recommend you back yourself in and take a couple of doubles you want them involved in and hope they run to our expectations.

That way if they don’t you haven’t outlayed a lot as you have taken them at long odds, and you can take others. But if they run well they will probably half their odds and you are holding tickets with great value!

The important thing with doubles are to bet with your head- Responsibly. It is easy to reload each weekend chasing the feature doubles. Once you do that you forget the simple rules, you lose all the value and are betting for no reason. (Go back and read first few paragraphs if needed)

For the people who haven’t done them before (I like to cover it for all different types of punters). If I was to take a $1 Stradbroke-Doomben cup fixed odds double of TOORAK TOFF @$34 – SHOOT OUT $6 you times those odds together and it = $204 for my $1 outlay.

Or for $5 would equal $1020. So as you see it can be a minimal outlay for a big dividend.

And of course you can have the real smarties who try to get three in an all up, for example.


For $1 would return $720. Or $5 = $3600.

Anyway it is a long way out and that is how I am looking at the majors this far out. I thought I would get it up this week. The horses I have named are simply the ones I will be playing around with in my multi’s, but you can use my guide however you like-

I hope I have helped answer the questions from the members who were asking about features doubles etc.

**Looking forward to the Prime Ministers cup this weekend but a shame we got smashed by heavy rain late Tuesday!