Thursday 21st July 2022
A Crazy July
The madness started this month with Bellewstown. Well, technically, their 3-day meeting started on 30th June but you get the jist.
The Thursday and Friday meetings resulted in 5-figure turnover each evening. A tiny profit on opening day was followed by two decent days as the positions we took landed in our favour. On the Saturday our turnover almost matched the amounts turned over in the ring for the first two days combined. The caveat here is we had a pitch in Corporate as well as in the ring.
The thing about Corporate pitches in Ireland is they sound great. But rarely are. You pay a substantial premium to stand in them in addition to all your other costs and you live and die by the punters in front of you. The positioning of the two bookmaker joints each day in Corporate wasn’t great and this is probably an area the INPBA can look at improving by working with tracks. It’s half-galling paying through the nose to stand in an unfavourable location.
The whole meeting hinged on the second last race on Saturday’s card. We took a big position that Hereditary Rule was a lay at 2/1 when all around us were 7/4. Half of the money fielded was from bookmaker hedges and half from punters taking our top price 2/1 in the ring. In the minutes before the off John McConnell’s charge got very weak in the betting before returning 5/2 off-course (11/4 with us). With an average price laid of a little less than 9/4 we were in good. And the result fell our way (4th).
On Monday 4th July we headed south to Roscommon for ladies day. I missed an exit and had to venture through a few random towns. One of those towns was Ballymahon were, only the previous week, I’d spent spent an agonising morning in the local doctors with a scratched cornea before our Center Parcs holiday was cut short with a trip to the Mater Hospital in Dublin.
Our pitch at Roscommon is moderate as was purchased as part of a job lot in the Rory Durkin dispersal (we wanted the Front Line 1 pitch @ Leopardstown). For a change, business was good and the fiver eachways added up.
Killarney, Leopardstown and Dundalk (the week from hell)
Well, the week from hell started on Sunday to be honest.
Sunday 10th half of the team (myself and Mo) went to Fairyhouse and the other half (Dave and Graham) went to Sligo with the latter proving profitable and the former handy for topping up the tan whilst trying to cover expenses. All 4 then travelled from our respective meetings down to Killarney Sunday evening arriving just in time for a curry. Mo rang ahead and booked a table for 4 for 10pm. When we arrived it was empty! An ominous sign. Crap, overpriced food ingested we then grabbed a few pints and a kip.
Note: open a curry house in Killarney. They’re all god awful.
Monday morning started with a trip to a gorgeous, warm watered beach that sadly had more jellyfish than people on it. A diversion to Kells Beach meant less jellyfish but absolutely freezing water. God giveth with one hand and taketh with the other.
Tuesday was a day from hell. In bed at 1:30am, up at 5:45am, flat tire at 6:30am, on the side of the road until just after 9am, then a drive to Dundalk testing our new Galway kit which had a few bugs, lost 5 grand after expenses and lost at Killarney too. My dad flew into Cork from Manchester for a tenner and joined the team in Killarney for 3 days as our luck changed on the Wednesday.
It changed back again on the Thursday as the book lost the guts of 12 grand (cheers Denis) but we did claw back 2 grand at Leopardstown thanks to Dave & Graham who droved up and down the motorway in Graham’s tank – which doesn’t help the expenses! Staffing nightmare these weeks. Friday was very good to us with a sizeable winning day. One of those days were everything goes right and it ensured we won on the week.
The AK Bets ‘Better Prices Than The Corporates’ Handicap took place on Sunday 17th July. We won a few quid on the day to top the week off as well. Race 2 of the AK Bets Summer Series is on 6th August and, in addition to our Twitter tipping competition, we’ll have plenty of free tickets for the meeting up for grabs. Stay tuned to our Twitter page @akbets87 post-Galway for your chance to grab a pair.
Next up is Galway. 3 top seniority pitches and a skeleton staff.
Should be … interesting.
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