Before I get into the specifics of finding winning dogs by reading the form I want to just give a bit more background info and talk about a method I used to use when I was full time betting the greyhounds…
Finding the winning greyhound in a graded race is about a lot more than the times it has achieved in the past.
Graded racing is the greyhound equivalent of a handicap race except that greyhounds are not allocated any sort of handicap to slow them down.
Instead they selected to be as closely matched as possible.
The Racing Managers job is to put together races that are as closely matched as possible and to, if you like, create a puzzle for the punters.
On course bookmaking at greyhound tracks is notoriously hard, mainly because when money talks in a small market there are not the opportunities to balance out a book. This is the reason that on course overrounds are huge at greyhound tracks and the reason that the Racing Manager does his best to make the races as decipherable as possible.
Don’t let any of this put you off, though, because winners can be found if you are selective and if the meeting is covered by Betfair then fair prices can be obtained also.
As with any activity knowledge equals power or in this case the more you know the more profitable you can be. The ultimate level of knowledge is to have watched every race ever run by every dog in the race to hand and to know how each has been performing at home. (Many trainers these days have some sort of track at their own kennels).
It is unlikely that you can get inside info on every dog in a race but you can often get to see every race a dog has run. For some years now tracks have supplied videos of all races run to those prepared to pay for the privilege. And the backer who focuses on one particular track can, given time, watch every run of a particular animal. However this is an expensive, although ultimately profitable, approach.
I will briefly touch on the things to watch out for when race watching here and next time we'll get on to a more form based approach.
When watching greyhound racing in the main what you are looking for is
• Dogs that have had a hard race (bumped and blocked) but still performed well indicating they are faster than the time recorded. They are likely faster than the bare form suggests. If you are in the bookies watching the BAGS racing and you see a dog that had a hard race make a note of it and check the results to see what tine it did and estimate what time you think it should have done,. It may be a good bet next time out.
• How a dog breaks from the traps EG do they run straight to the rail, which would cause trouble for the dog inside them but hand an advantage to the dog on their outside. This info can be useful in assessing the chances of the dog in question and other dogs.
• Are they on the bunny! IE doing everything in their power to get in front and win or did they give up easy & just follow the pack home. Chasers, who are not really up for it will win less than their share of races because they don't like to be in front.