Cheltenham Tips 2013 – Why Backed In 'Favourites' Are No Sure Thing

For anyone that fancies a bet, the next 7 days will be about one thing only: The 2013 Cheltenham Festival – and the best tips to be had to make money betting from it!

As ever, one of the biggest talking points in the coming days will be about the Cheltenham betting market.  I am sure you have already been inundated with a list of the favourites heading some of the major races and top tips about where we should be waging our hard earned cash.

This often translates to much excitement in the 20 to 30 minutes before each race, with fevered debate over those horses who’s odds crash in and rumours of ‘shrewd’ punters wagering huge sums of money on them.

The logical step in these instances is to automatically place a bet on these horses and follow the money in. Yet our research reveals that well backed favourites are actually extremely bad value, despite what some may tell you!  Instead, here at SBC we would strongly recommend that you focus your attentions elsewhere to find the best ways of making a profit at Cheltenham.

As ever, to be successful betting, you have to think differently from the crowd.

Let me talk you through why and how…

Why Backing Favourites at Cheltenham Is A Mugs Game

As part of our free Cheltenham 2013 Tips Profit Pack, we commissioned the experts from ‘The Market Examiner‘ to do some historical analysis of the Cheltenham betting market.

Specifically we asked them to analyse (1) those horses that opened at 3/1 and under in the past 5 years and (2) the profit/loss figures if backing them at level stakes.

The findings were fascinating and as a punter you should stand up and take note, not least because of how unprofitable backing these favourites actually are with a 12.01 pt loss from 57 bets. Check out the full results to different odds ranges below:

All Horses Opening 3/1 and under at Betfair SP (minus 5% commission) Results since 2008:

Cheltenham Tips 2013 Analysis

The Impact Of The Cheltenham Betting Market

So we know that backing favourites can often lose you money (that isn’t a big surprise), but what if we focused on those horses who see strong market support in the final 20 minutes before the race? How do they fare and should you follow the money and place your own bet on them?

Well, based on our analysis of the past 5 years, the answer is a resounding NO.  Of the 35 horses that shortened in price in the final 20 minutes before the race, we can reveal that following this trend resulted in a loss of -7.76 pts.

All Horses Opening 3/1 and under that shorten in price. Results to Betfair since 2008

Cheltenham Tips 2013 Analysis

Contrary to what many may think – the biggest profits actually came from those favourites that drifted in price. i.e. their odds got bigger immediately prior to the race. Although only 13 bets in the past 5 years qualify, 7 of these went onto win to make a 4.75 pt profit.

All Horses Opening 3/1 and under that lengthen in price. Results to Betfair since 2008

Cheltenham Tips 2013 Analysis

These profit and loss figures and not based on a huge range of stats, but still help to indicate a clear pattern to date and one that should make you cautious about following a ‘good thing’ in.

Instead we should focus on those that ‘drift’ in price before the off. This might take strength of character to go against the flow…but ultimately might see you end up on the winning side.

Follow Cheltenham Favourites AFTER The Festival

Backing drifters is not the only profitable angle The Market Examiner uncovered as they also unveiled one very profitable stat based on their Cheltenham findings.

They found that if you blindly backed all the horses which opened at 3/1 or shorter at Cheltenham next time they ran (so, after Cheltenham, in either the UK or Ireland), their record was excellent with a 7.83 pt profit from 55 bets in total.

All Horses Opening 3/1 at Cheltenham – backed next time out. Results to Betfair since 2008

Cheltenham Tips 2013 Analysis

It is also worth noting that 13 of these 55 horses which ran next time also came second, so with a bit more luck this profit figure could be even higher.

It’s no surprise of course, that well fancied horses at Cheltenham are good enough to go somewhere else and run big races. And as I always like to remind myself…a 5/1 winner pays out 5/1, wherever it races!

Taken From Our FREE Cheltenham Profit Pack

You can read the favourite analysis article from The Market Examiner in full via our freely available Cheltenham Tips 2013 Profit Pack

It’s a 27 page PDF, and features free tips and systems from the likes of 3 time Racing Post Naps Champion Paul Jacobs and Cheltenham experts Scott Armstrong and Herbie Fogg.

Make sure you grab hold of your own copy and read our analysis before you start betting at Cheltenham…It could make all the difference!

Pick up your free copy of the Cheltenham Tips 2013 Profit Pack