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Tipsters, Betting Guides and Preview Nights


Tom Segal and Paul Kealy remain amongst the most influential tipsters in the UK and Ireland because their views change prices. Even at Cheltenham. Their influence has been maintained imo the introduction of the RP Youtube tipping programme 'In The Know.' with the lovable Ross Brierley.

Other pundits e.g Tony Calvin on Racing Only Bettor, complain that Tom no longer suggests at what prices to back his selections. Its a fair point. TC is big enough to apologise when he is on a poor run. Personally, I don't think that the Pricewise prices are as important as are made out to be. We are all well aware that Segal's tips will be shortened and we are all big enough to make our own decisions on 'value'. Sometimes it's even better to wait until just before the race, when his tips may drift. Some other nameless tipsters show Profit and Loss columns based on prices no ordinary mortal is ever going to get.

One issue I would take with the Racing Post blurb in 2024 is that they are pushing the 'fact' that Mr Segal has made a profit at every one of the last five Festivals. Maybe I've missed one or two but I personally would question that. Would suggest that if true, the profit cannot be a big one?

Tony Calvin, Daryl Carter, Johnny Dineen and Rory Delargy would also be amongst the most influential tipsters. Those six mentioned get plenty of air time with podcasts and youtube channels. Johnny is different than the rest, he mostly bets favourites, absolutely nothing wrong with that. That's the value as he sees it. Met him in the Leopardstown ring 28th December, nice to chat, what you see is what you get. Bets in bundles of money which need to have elastic bands on.

Amongst those who don't have that backing, I must recommend my friend He's very good, all for free. And like Hugh on ATR, he really does shorten prices in a hurry. He must be doing something right if he has over 48000 people on X/Twitter hanging on his every word! His site is Results to be checked on JJ does great work for charity all year round and doesn't live that far from me. Lovely lad.

Both Mr Segal and Kealy do a lot of Cheltenham Antepost Tipping in the RP and the Weekender. Johnny Dineen spent an awful lot of time last year on the Preview Circuit and had a column each Festival Day. I know the Festival is only a snapshot of their tipping year but it is the week when the Racing Post will sell most papers. They always put the price of the paper up on Cheltenham Monday. So, it's showtime, boys.

So how was the 2023 Festival for Tom, Paul and Johnny?

This is where I have difficulty with the RP pricewise blurb. According the each daily paper I counted Tom with 31 tips including the Antepost. Two antepost winners Corach Rambler 12s, A Dream To Share 11/2. Nothing on any of the day of race fields..

Johnny Dineen's column sometimes gives very sage advice. Tuesday last year, 'been at Cheltenham since 2004, first as a bookie and then as a punter. One thing I've learned in 18 years is that the best two days for punters are Tues/Wed. If you're in dire straits Thursday morning, the chances of you coming out of the week in front are slim. Thurs/Fri are a bookies bonanza.'

And that mirrored his tipping. His two Dineen Diamonds went in Tues Wed El Fabiolo and Energumene. Tipped Corach Rambler, Impaire et Passe and Delta Work. And that's where it stopped and went horribly wrong. He was laying Honeysuckle since Christmas, the 'banker of the week' was Mighty Potter.' 0 from 15 in bold type Thurs/Friday. No favs won Thursday, only Lossiemeouth and Galopin Des Champs on Friday, unsupported by Johnny in his column. However, I find him an absolute delight to listen to on Upping The Ante.   

2022 For Tom, hmm. Tipped 19 horses antepost. One winner Flooring Porter at 6s. Tipped him the year before at 16s. On the week itself, it wasn't a classic. 16 tips over the four days. Brazil on Tuesday covered his loses, L'Homme Presse was only 9/4f due to the late defection of Bravemansgame, then nothing til Banbridge at 12s in the Martin Pipe helps him out of a hole. If he backed nothing else, he's just in front. 2021 his only two winners all week were Mount Ida and Porlock Bay. The latter, live, he gave a lot of credit for listening to Jane Mangan. Good man.

2020 was similar for him. 18 antepost selections, Sharjah, Discorama 20s and Pileon 12s (none of which he advised ew) might have provided a return for you, if I'm generous. On the days themselves, he headlined with Imperial Aura (6s when tipped) and Dame de Compagnie (8s). Then Concertista (8s) Bob Mahler placed (25s) and Chosen Mate (7s available) on GC day. He's had better Festivals.

Like 2019. Probably his best ever year in the history of Gaultstats. Again, including antepost, he tipped 41 horses over the 4 days. Glory days with antepost 25/1 Espoir D'Allen, City Island 33s, Topofthegame 8s, Aso ew Ryanair 33s, Ch'tibello 12/1, Anibale Fly 50s ew GC and Early Doors. Made at a profit of over 60pts level stakes on the week. Good luck to him. It's never easy.

The Tom Segal antepost portfolio for 2024 includes State Man 4s CH Hurdle, Captain Guinness 33s ew QM,  Gentlemansgame 25s ew GC, Good Time Jonny 50s nrnb, Home By The Lee 33s nrnb Stayers,  Grey Dawning 9s Brown Advisory Novice, Billaricky Dickie 12s, Jango Baie 16s nrnb Ballymore  No Flies On Him 25s, Tellherthename 10s nrnb Supreme,  My Mate Mozzie 25s Arkle, Ahoy Senor 25s nrnb, Fil Dor 14s nrnb, Ryanair, Salvator Mundi 12s nrnb Triumph, Limerick Lace 5s nrnb Mares Chase, Mares Novice, Gidleigh Park 16s, Captain Teague 12s nrnb Albert Bartlett, Theatre Man 12/1 nrnb Plate, Bowtogreatness 25/1 nrnb Kim Muir, Favour And Fortune 25/1 nrnb County

Paul Kealy, the lead Racing post tipster, had one big winner Ante Post last year. Envoi Allen 20s ew Ryanair. For he had a shocking 0 from 12 on Tues/Wed. Picked Impair Et Passe in Supreme unfortunately. Some sigh of relief when Seddon went in at 20s, well done on the Thursday. Friday no winners, but place returns on Letsbeclearaboutit 16s and Conflated 22s. Probably a bit more chilled. In 2022 selections included Protektorat 20 ew  GC, Vauban 8s Triumph, Alaphillippe 16s ew Pertemps, Frero Banbou G Annual 16s ew, Imperial Alcazar 8s ew Plate. Also gave Allegorie De Vassy 10s Mares Novice. Might be a man before his time. Unluckily tipped Constitution Hill for the Ballymore and L'Homme Presse for the Turners.

In the 2022 RP Banbridge Martin Pipe was Paul's only winning selection on the week. Six win only selections unplaced Tuesday, then went slightly defensive for him and started to tip ew shots. Whatdeawant and Caprond were fine at 18s and 10s respectively but his next four to gain an ew return were short enough pre race and were returned 6/1, 11/2jt fav, 7/2f and 5/1jt fav respectively. He had a decent Friday, mind you, besides Banbridge 12s, place money gained from First Street 18s, Ballygriffin Cottage 4th at 28s and Protekorat 3rd at 10s.

2021. From his Weekender selections 11 tips, no winners. On the days themselves , he gave 24 selections, returning small ew successes, finally finishing with Galopin Des Champs in the Martin Pipe. Was beginning to look like a broken man on In The Know. Seems a while since the glorious 33s on Imperial Aura in the 2020 Novice Handicap Ch.  

Paul's antepost portfolio for 2024 will be found in the Weekender. Slighly defensive in parts this year imho. It includes Fugitif 28s ew nrnb, Ahoy Senor 16s ew nrnb Ryanair, Hunters Yarn 8/1 nrnb Arkle. Gala Marceau 8/1 ew nrnb  Mares Hurdle, Firefox 8s ew nrnb  Supreme, Ethical Diamond 33s ew nrnb Triumph. 8/1 shots ew antepost, really? Has gone a bit mad antepost in the handicaps imho. City Chief 33/1 ew Ultima, Liberty Hunter 12s ew nrnb Grand Annual, White Rhino 14s ew nrnb Pertemps, Lord Snootie 25s ew nrnb pertemps, Under Control 12s nrnb County, Lisnagar Fortune, 10ew nrnb Martin Pipe.

THE REST OF THE Racing Post Team in 2020. 

BIG RACE TRENDS - My nemesis, Kevin Morley, (another picture of a child. He must be older than that?) didn't have a great one. Amouted to Constitution Hill, Gaillard Du Mesnail, Delta Work, and Lossiemeouth. hmmm. 2022Success with Facile Vega, Allaho, Flooring Porter and Billaway. A few winners mentioned as second strings but he only gets one go in bold print. I love his grids. Lots of info. And a gentleman. Gave a donation to Marie Curie.

There seems to be a lot  less tipping in the Racing Post these days, Melrose, Rodway, Birch and Jennings tip one winner each in about 50 selections.

Click on at 6pm the instant after the Pricewise selections are released online most days and you can watch the prices shrink. All bookies shrink prices if they think they are about to be knocked over. Segal selections tend to be well punted Day 1. The longer he goes without a winner, the less frantic it becomes. Also, they will be cut in the morning but both Kealy and Segal selections sometimes drift in the afternoon, especially on the exchanges.

CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL BETTING GUIDES - Matt Tombs didn't produce a Cheltenham Festival Guide in 2020 or 2021 which is a pity because he is very good at it. Did it for Racing TV in 2019. Weatherbys employ Paul Ferguson to produce their own. He took up the baton from Matt and Paul Jones (in front of whom we all kneel). I have every one of the Weatherbys Guide looking at me as I write this. Still enjoy the reads. Each version has many points of which I would never have thought. In his 2019 Racing TV version Matt kindly gave Gstats a full page advert for Marie Curie UK. Another gentleman.

Paul Ferguson has not scrimped with detail in the Weatherby's Festival Guide which is 'The Original.' There are some cracking stats from a very professional production. Also very supportive of Gstats, Rory Delargy provides excellent thoughts with his Bankers and Bust section. He's a busy man now, is our Rory. With the Weatherbys Guide you also get Aintree cover and plenty of Grand National detail. Well worth the £16. As is the Jumpers To Follow produced by Paul at the start of each NH season. Half a book of stats in there which this season identifed Jay Jay Reilly and GA Law amongst other decent priced handicap winners.

The Racing Post have also been good to me over the years. Every year Robin Gibson seemed  to have the space in the surfnturf Sunday Supplement to give a Gstats a very decent write up. 'More nuggets than a KFC in a chicken glut' remains my personal favourite. They do produce their own Cheltenham Festival Guide every year. Every year I buy it, flick through it when it arrives and then never read it. I even carry it in my luggage wherever I may be spending Festival week and still would never turn to it. Why? Well, for one, Kevin Morley's excellent trends will be in the paper each Festival day so I don't need to read them when the guide arrives. A lot of space seems to go on the RPRs. Not for me. Obviously half of the guide will concentrate on the races. But essays on each potential runner can quickly become a bit boring. And by the time it's delivered to me, some info is well out of date, with injuries and changes to planned targets. There are tips in it from everyone, bookmakers, writers, trainers, again some NRs. Sometimes they sprinkle the pages with unknown info. For example in 2020, The New One is the only Festival Hurdle winner for Nigel Twiston Davies since 2008. I like that, it's a bit different. For £16.99, it's just ok for me. (Ballyfitz in the Pertemps). I find the paper they bring out the week before 'The Racing Post Ultimate Guide.' at £4.50, a more useful tool, All entries are there and nice titbits.

IN THE KNOW - Some of the RP staff not that keen on Gstats. In 2022 I suggested Allaho in the Ryanair had another full line of positive stats including 'last six winners all ran at at least two previous Festivals.' Didn't think that a bad one myself, suggests needs Festival experience in this normally tough Grade 1. Hear the views of Keith Melrose, Racing Post guru the night before the Ryanair. Scroll to the 37th minute and watch.

Meaningless, Keith? Gstats Rule No 1. Sure, what do I know. Ah, the fame, to be dismissed by Tom Segal.  Love you, Ross, 'it's insane, the depth'. 

At € 6.99 I must mention the Irish Field Cheltenham Festival Guide. Out about a fortnight before the Weatherbys one, it concentrates on great interviews. Contributions from Matt Tombs, Kevin Blake, Simon Rowlands and even me in the past! Felt very honoured. Support it, it's value.

KEVIN BLAKE is employed by Attheraces, ITV and b
Betfair and has become a extremely well known and very influential voice in GB and Irish Racing. He is a noted breeder and Joseph O'Brien's race planner. Shrewd and worth listening too, if only as a gauge to the response of irish trained handicap marks in the Festival. When Kevin talks, people listen. In the 2021 Festival Kevin hit a nice jackpot with tipping a Thursday treble on ITV's Morning Show. Mrs Milner/The Shunter/Mount Ida. Paid well. Some say he has hardly tipped a winner since. He had a very decent lay at Graham's Belfast Preview Night in 2020 in Carefully Selected who he explained 'jumped like a piano.' Willie certainly improved him to win the 2023 Thyestes! Kevin also makes very imformed comment on ATR. A column I always turn to.


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Man who knows what he is talking about meets a nerd in Belfast, 2nd March 2020. Lovely lad. Kevin, that is.

No more Sean Graham's Belfast Preview Nights in Belfast. A pity, I thought them well organised evenings. The top table always full of the right people. The best preview night panels imho are those full of people who actually know the horses. More than one pundit or bookie can be one too many and I never see the point listening to a jockey/trainer who has no connection to likely runners. Can only add gossip.

March 2022 I took the train south to a mad night in the Harcourt Hotel, Dublin 2 to listen to Gordon Elliott and David Casey. Always like to listen to them. It was crazy compared to how Gary O'Brien could keep order in Belfast. Lots of fun. Over indulged.

In 2023 and 2024, I've been to the Bardic Theatre, Donaghmore, this year Feb 24th, it's one of the early ones so you do get a lot of information that has yet to be released. And with Casey, Keenan, Jennings, Dineen, Robbie Power, Gavin Cromwell, you are getting information and thoughts from the right people. Sold out. Has taken over from the Grahams as the one to go to. Notes on the site somewhere. 

Here's a good man, too.


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