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Old 16th October 2020, 05:10 PM
walkermac walkermac is offline
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 741

This is going to be a tough week.

There's only two Group 1 races - both of which have $5 favourites - and two Group 2s, including one race with 3 runners at $4-$5, battling for favouritism. The balance of the card is 6 Group 3s and 10 Listed/Handicap races. The score estimates for everyone is quite flat. The final tally will separate the lucky from the not-so-lucky, but I doubt there will be huge moves made up the leaderboard. Sadly, Round 1 is now looking like it was pretty vital - and that's where I made a misstep.

I've only got an estimate of 169 points this round (excluding captain's double points and jockey's score), far lower than the preceding two. It's concerning me slightly that it appears better to have 3 runners in the same Group 2 than to try and spread my squad around the Listed/Handicap races. That seems contrary to what a "natural" player would do so, if it works: yay, me. But my team is going to get crushed by the stable owners who nail each of those Listed/Handicaps.

Here's my stable for this round:
Alfa Oro (c)
Classique Legend
Perfect Jewel
It's Me
She Shao Fly
Let's Karaka Deel
Emergency: Yatton

Alfa Ora winning a Group 2 is a greater chance of me jagging a Group 1 winner, so she gets the captain's legband.

The main chances in The Everest are all too expensive and decimate the rest of the squad, so I'm just having one shot at the winner with Classique Legend.

I actually don't spend the entirety of my salary cap, so can afford a $100k emergency. Of those under that threshold, Yatton is the best already not selected; from the perspective of potentially earning money, anyway. It's unlikely, given she's at $18 and has to win a G3, but I'd be kicking myself if she did - and there's plenty more at longer odds in that race to save her from last (and me from losing $25k).

If I were going for points, in case one of my selections was a late scratching, I'd instead go for Rainbiel; she's only in a Handicap though, so no chance of me increasing my cap.

Had I my system in place for Round 1 (or not messed up my manual selections), I'd have a further $100k to spend right now. Let's see how different my stable would be....

...not terribly different, actually. She Shao Fly and Let's Karaka Deel out, for Pretty Brazen and Rainbiel in. I'd switch my Emergency to Miraitowa. Not a huge improvement on the estimate though, just an extra 2 points.

For my jockey, I'm going with James McDonald. I see him slightly ahead of Ben Melham this week, who is in turn, slightly ahead of Kerrin McEvoy and Jason Collett.
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Old 17th October 2020, 08:26 PM
walkermac walkermac is offline
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 741

Estimated 169 points (without jockey or captain score) and ended up with 172. As close as the totals were, the individual results themselves were quite up and down. I really got hurt by Alfa Oro's 4th placing. There was only about 1.5 points between the estimates of him and my second likeliest candidate Classique Legend. Had I gone the latter over the former as captain, I would have finished 3285 places higher this week. Oh well. In scrolling my way through the results to get to that factoid I saw a lot of huge ranking improvements. That seems to indicate that the success those stables saw this round may not be via a sustainable method. There was only a little movement in the top 10 though, so it's encouraging that good handicappers are being rewarded.

Final score of 190 saw me drop nearly 300 places overall. And I'm now 131 points adrift of the leading stable.

The big movers were the stables that had both the Caulfield Cup and Everest winners, and captained either of them. I only got one of those and captained neither.

My fictitious "perfectly played team" would have scored 12 points less than I actually did this round. Still would have had me on 771pts, in 210th spot overall and an extra $100k in the kitty.

My salary cap went up $50k this round, either way, but I'm still at around $200k less than the value of the highest-value stables.

Next round looks tough too. Just the two Group 1s again, though a few more Group 2s. It's also across Friday and Saturday, so hopefully a few stables ahead of me miss that! I wonder if they'll have a rolling lockout... If not, the Emergency might be more important than usual.
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Old 23rd October 2020, 03:56 PM
walkermac walkermac is offline
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 741

The Friday start didn't fool me, but the kick-off time almost did. I thought if it was "night" racing then it should be far dimmer outside before I had to worry about it

Here's my squad this week:
Trekking (C)
Russian Camelot
Dirty Work
Cherry Tortoni
Incredulous Dream
Portland Sky
Young Werther

Emergency: Sneaky Five
Jockey: Mark Zahra

Pippie, Diamond Effort, Arcadia Queen, Homesman, Armory and Shared Ambition are runners I would have liked, but the budget didn't work out. I still have an extra $25k left over; it was a close run thing between Incredulous Dream and the $25k dearer Written Beauty for that final spot in my stable...

I'm estimating a score of 186 (before taking Captain/Jockey scores into account). There's only two Group 1s this weekend, but a few more Group 2s than last round. I'm a little concerned about having multiple runners in a couple of those races, but I'm being "dumb" and doing what the computer tells me.

There were a few good candidates for jockey this round. Mark Zahra was narrowly ahead of the pack, but Craig Williams, Damian Lane, John Allen and William Pike are all good choices.

My fictitious "perfectly played team" had an extra $100k to spend and I would have dropped Thermosphere for Diamond Effort (for very little improvement: just the one point!). It took forever to come up with a solution here; there must have been plenty of close calls...

Best of luck, all!
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Old 24th October 2020, 07:35 PM
walkermac walkermac is offline
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 741

Had a good week. Estimated a squad score of 186 and ended up with 212. Adding a favourable captain score and a not-so-favourable jockey score, left me with a total of 247 points. That was ranked the 265th highest of the week.

First scratching of a runner from my stable and I was fortunate that my Emergency won their race. Not such great luck for my "perfectly played" team: it would have had two scratchings, though only would have missed out on the piffling 6 points that Thermosphere earned instead.

My salary cap has gone up $75k (would have been $100k, but Incredulous Dream came last and is my first stable runner to lose cash).

Originally Posted by walkermac
it was a close run thing between Incredulous Dream and the $25k dearer Written Beauty for that final spot in my stable...
Dang! Would also have had 14 more points and not lost that $25k from my salary cap!

I'm now in 365th overall. Seems a big leap, so maybe plenty did miss the early Friday start....

My "perfectly played team" would have a total of 1012 (and an extra $100k) and have me in 91st.

Next round looks like a big one: 3 more G1s and an extra G3.

Last edited by walkermac : 24th October 2020 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 26th October 2020, 11:33 AM
evajb001 evajb001 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 548

Happens to me every year, I miss a weekend due to various weekends. I don't know why they don't send notification emails as reminders or maybe they do and I have it turned off. Either way that basically ruins the competition for me by missing the weekend.

Good to see the mechanical approach is doing well. Hopefully it continues but would also suck if you end up in a place of 'what could've been' if you continue your rise up the ladder.
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