I spoke last week about the SP and its importance to our betting. This week then I was going to talk about jockeys. Probably one of the most vital components in a race it’s something that we should be looking at as part of our research. However over the years it’s amazed me how many people blame the jockey for the horses failings. Don’t get me wrong there is of course plenty of occasions where the pilot could well be to blame but that’s not the whole picture.
I was recently introduced to the delights of internet forums and how friendly and polite people where 😀
Of course I’m being sarcastic as I find a lot of the forums are full of venom and people wanting to blame everything else apart from themselves! As I was looking through some of the most popular posts I noticed that some of the busiest threads were that of jockeys. A lot of praise but mostly blaming the jockey for a horse failings. It got me thinking of all the characters I’ve met over the years on and off course and in and out of betting shops. Two guys stick out in particular. Although they never knew each other they could have been twin brothers. Both guys would study the form, the usual approach, going, horses runs over distance, horses for courses etc.
The race would start and all bets were on. The horse would lose and there would be this charge over to the papers on the betting shop wall to check who was riding the horse. “Bloody [jockey’s name here] cocked that up. Shouldn’t be allowed to ride the w…..”
What used to amaze me though is having conversations with them is that they never even looked at the jockey when deciding on what to back so how could they blame them? Then you have the other guy. He blamed the jockey all the time as well but the difference with him was that he only backed a horse because of the jockey. He’d pick out a certain jockey and then back all of his mounts for the day. When they didn’t oblige then it was all the jockeys fault!
So you see my point here. The jockey although of course extremely important can’t be blamed for a losing bet. There are exceptions of course and there’s a race that springs to mind. Connections had been waiting for a particular race for one of their horses and had booked the services of a well known jockey. Conditions were ideal on the day and the rest of the company in the race looked beat on the form book. The gamble was on. Opening up at 5/1 and going off the 15/8 favourite it looked to be a good day for the betting bank. The jockey was advised to sit at the back just off the pace and then produce the horses incredible turn of foot 2 furlongs out. They left the stalls and he dropped in right at the front and took them on at a blistering pace. 2 furlongs out he kicked for home only to be headed on the line by 4 other horses and ended up 3rd. I was fuming and it was one of those rare occasions were I knew it was the jockey’s fault. He’d ignored our instructions.
So my point here is that although in extreme circumstances we can blame the jockey he really only makes up part of the puzzle and we need to either except that we made the wrong call or overall in the whole picture there are lots of other elements that effected the outcome.
I’ll be back next week with more thoughts on the world of racing but until then have a great week and weekend.