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=========================================   Friday, November 2, 2001
More on Horse Betting and Roulette Quiz

Hello everyone,

During the newsletter of March 23, 2001, that you can access at:, we started talking about horse betting and the different important elements that one should consider.  On March 23, we talked about the Class element.  This newsletter will cover the other two elements, which are weight and fitness.  The information is provided by the famous Lothar Christ, that you can contact directly by email at:

Weight will stop a train, goes the old adage, and so it is true in horse racing. As good punters, we should all know that the time taken to run a race, is reduced by one length in distance for every 1.5 kilos in weight. This being used for all distances from 1000 metres up to 3200 metres. Unfortunately this presents a falsehood in our methodology.  Races run over the longer distances, and I suggest anything over 1200 metres are run in a tactical manner, with the real speed not presenting itself until near the turn into the home straight. Races up to and including 1100 metres are sheer speed tests, where a poor start from the barrier will end the chances of that horse, in most instances.

A horse carrying 60kg over 3200 metres, in a tactically run race, will find the weight a great burden, whereas in a sprint race, say over 900 metres, a horse will certainly feel the weight, but the impost is not as great, due to the shorter distance being travelled. Try carrying 5kg of spuds for 100 metres, and then carry the same weight over 500 metres. With this practical demonstration you will soon notice the difference, horses are no exception, they feel the weight.

Knowing this, a good punter can really cash in on those horses carrying around 57-60kg in races up to about 1100 metres, using the methods of Andy Beyer.   These horses tend to race consistantly, and race times can be gauged against horses that have run similar distances at the same track, or tracks where racing conditions are similar. We can make an approximate adjustment of the times of horses in this type of situation. We could easily recalculate race times of horses, by  averaging each horses time to a common weight. Any weight could be used, but I use 55kg as it is the median and prevent too great a variation at the upper or lower ends of the weight scale.

I also say that the adjustments are only approximate because when a horse is asked to carry more weight, his time will be slower, there are times when this rule is broken due to class or sheer improvement, but they are rare. One the other hand, when a horse carries less weight than its previous start, there is no guarantee that his times will actually improve. Because of this fact we should treat any horse, with caution, if it has never carried the higher weights in previous outings. If the horse has carried the weight previously, without performing well, caution is also advised. Irregardless, they should never be completely ignored, but compared against the abilities of the other runners in the race. The ability of the jockey should also be taken into account.

As the distances of the races increase, pure speed becomes less of a factor, as races are tactically run. This is where the weight factor has a different bearing and the points considered, evaluated in a different manner. Where I said horses in speed races should be treated with caution, if they had never carried the weight before, in the longer distance races over 2000 metres, I don't consider them. They should first prove they can carry the weight. If they have carried the weight before, without performing, they are unlikely to improve on that, unless they enter very low restricted races where the company is even worse.

If all things were equal, but they aren't, the handicappers would be dealing us dead heats race after race. This doesn't happen, for varying reasons, and weight is a major factor here. Horses aren't machines and can't perform like them. I only consider horses carrying the same or less weight, unless the class factor changes dramatically. Even then I'm cautious on placing a wager on these horses. The longer the race, the more steadfastly the conviction is held. Horses are then considered on past performance. Apprentices used to gain a weight allowance are rarely considered, as experience is necessary in a tactical race. How often are they beaten into the minor placings?   Should you be a place only punter, then you may wish to consider  these  horses, but I'll warn you now, the dividends will be very small in most instances, and a place strike rate of around 85% would be necessary  for the level stakes punter. There are many considerations in selecting winners, and there are other factors to consider. I hope this has left you thinking about your next bet.

We've looked at class and weight, the third major factor in form is to assess a contenders fitness. In many systems and betting approaches the hard and fast rule is to eliminate horses that have not had a run in the last 7, 14 or 21 days, dependant on the system used.

With races up to 1200 metres I tend to agree with the 14 day rule, when looking at peak fitness. We should however take into account as to how hard the run was. An example of this being, a horse winning by 4 or 5 lengths, and easing at the post, may well be fit for another race in three to four days. Should the same horse have had a head to head duel over the final 200 metres of the race, then a longer recovery period may well be warranted, anywhere up to 21 days. In this case we should not forget the unfortunate horse that finishes second, for should he race within seven days, he may not have fully recovered. Many races can be counted where a hot favorite races within a week of a hard race, and fails miserably, or if in the finish tires within 200 metres of the post, at his next attempt.

Middle distance races 1300 to 1800 metres a break of 10 to 21 days is recommended, again depending on the toughness of the previous start. Long distance runners, especially those over 2600 metres, a break of up to 28 days is not unwarranted. There are few systems that allow a 28 day break for distance horses, but it is essential that these horses run in peak condition if they are to have a true chance. Unfortunately the racing industry is money driven, thus horses are sent out by trainers, due to owner requests, well before they are ready to perform at their best. Horses need runs to reach peak fitness, thus it is up to trainers to select the races for conditioning runs. It's up to the punter to calculate, when a horse reaches or nears peak fitness, so as to risk part of our hard earned staking bank.

Factors including age, sex, jockey engaged and track condition also affect a horses ability to perform. As a race horse gets older, it usually takes longer to come to hand. As a three year old it may reach peak in 2 or 3 runs, but the same horse, as a six year old may well take 5, 6 or more runs to reach peak fitness levels. Mares usually take longer to reach peak fitness, but they hold their form longer than their male counterparts. (How often have you seen systems that require a horse to have had 2 or 3 starts from a spell, before the horse can become a contender in the selection process?)   Horses are not machines, so don't expect them to perform in that manner, they will have off days, or just plain bad luck in running which cannot be overcome, no matter how fit they are. On that point consider the track condition and the weight to be carried. Also the jockey and distance of the race.  If all these factors are unfavorable, then the chances of winning are greatly reduced, if not completely quashed. The jockeys ability must be taken into account, a good jockey may well get a moderately fit horse across the line, whereas a poor or inexperienced jockey may well ruin the chances of the fittest horse. Nobody said being a punter was easy, being able to read the form guide, and being able to use and understand the information, are two completely different aspects, in point of view.

So far, the main form factors have been considered. These are not all the considerations that need to be made, but they are certainly a step in the right direction. Many things influence a horse race, but an insight to the selection process should have been gained.

As always, GOOD PUNTING!

Lothar Christ

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I would like to challenge you this week on a Roulette quiz.  I will be posting this quiz on the discussion forum at:, and you can discuss among yourselves.

I have read some place a quick tip on Roulette.  The tip was the following:

Roulette Layout Random? = 28 Ways To Win  

Layout number combinations aren't always what they seem, ex. betting outside black and even numbers vs black and odds.

Explanation: Most roulette players do not realize when making outside bets that there are more red & even numbers: 28, as compared with red & odd numbers which total: 26; likewise there are more black & odd numbers:  28, when compared to black & even: 26. By selecting black & odds the player is covering 18 blacks plus 10 other red odd numbers. As we are playing black, the player is covering the odds & evens of black, plus by  playing odds the player has covered all the 10 odd numbers in red. So therefore we have a favorable coverage of 28 out of 38 numbers (approx.74%).

The obvious advantage is to make flat bets (no progressions) on red & evens or black & odds.

Now the quiz is the following:

Statement 1: If we consider the above fact and one would bet on Black and Odd, say 1 chip on each even bet, one would cover 28 numbers with 2 chips.   Therefore, chances of winning on this bet would be: 28 out of 38 chances of winning 2 units, 10 out of 38 chances of losing 2 units (on the remaining uncovered 10 numbers) , and 18 out of 38 chances of breaking even if Black wins and Odd loses or vice versa if Odd wins and Black loses.  So the player would have an edge over the casino and on the long run continuous flat bets would make profits for the player.

Statement 2: On the other hand, chances of winning on Odd are 18 out of 38.  Chances of winning on Black are also 18 out of 38, where in both cases the casino has the advantage of 5.26% due to the zeros.  So if you bet on both Black and Odd, it should make no difference.  Chances of winning will still be no more than 18 out of 38.

Which one of the above two statements is true? 

I will follow up on your answers and publish some interesting findings on the next newsletter.

Wishing you all the best,
Until next week,


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