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Chicago O'Brien was a very famous USA punter who switched mid career from win betting to place betting. He coined the phrase "pick 'em to win; play 'em to place".

Bear in mind that in the States "place" means first or second so the dividends and percentages are different but his message and words are quite thought provoking.

If you have a moment or two, read HIS words

"In racing, there's no such thing as a certainty, though I try to bet on horses I feel deserve that tag. But I am only too aware that a horse can be tried as a good thing but things happen during a race that can knock big holes in the pre race theories."

"A bump, a check, a blocked run or being forced wide on the turn can all mean the difference between victory and defeat."

"I have seen all these things happen to standout propositions which, as a result, have lost by inches instead of winning by many lengths."

"in my early days of racing, one thing struck me and when it did I struck oil. These in-the-race incidents would cause the certainty to lose but not miss the place."

"I started investigating the performance of horses which those on the inside had declared as unbeatable."

"I discovered this amazing fact: my list showed 127 such horses, of which, 52 won but the prices were mostly short and a flat stake win bet showed a loss of 16 units."

"Then I considered the place angle. Of the same 127 horses, there were the 52 winners plus another 63 which finished 2nd..........a player backing each horse for a place would have reaped a profit of 36.5 units"

"That discovery gave me something to think about. For years I had been putting down my money on the nose and I could think of hundreds of times in which I had won or lost in close finishes. It made me realise my blood pressure would have been much better had my bets always been for the place and my bank balance would have looked far rosier."

"So I learned a valuable lesson, one that stood the test of time for the rest of my betting life. If you are in the racing business, be business-like."

"It's much better business to pick up small profits on gilt-edged securities than try to gamble in the hope of big returns."

"(My investigation) proved to me just what a sucker I'd been in the past. I resolved then to never again bet on a horse's nose, not even if it was champion staker against a no-hoper at level stakes"

"From then on, until I said goodbye to gambling, I bet only one way. I waited for the good things, the horses my judgement told me were certain to win, and then I played them for the place."

Interesting thoughts?????



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