Top of the form - Class 1 Racing win 2019 Toptipsters' Challenge
Although suffering a last-month scare, Class 1 Racing secured the 2019 Toptipsters’ Challenge with a twelve-month profit of almost 82 points. Leading the table since July, Class 1 entered December with an advantage of 86 points over nearest rivals, Pinpoint. That cushion seemed ample, particularly as the first couple of weeks saw a steady string of winners, but Pinpoint never gave up and closed impressively to finish just 23 points adrift of the champions. Sandbets fared best of the older established services, finishing third with 14.80-point loss, one point ahead of another newbie, The Numbers.
Class 1 Racing joined Toptipsters’ in June, posting a modest debut-month loss. A 105-point profit the following month propelled them to the top of the table, a position that was retained to the year’s end. Handsome profits in August, October and November looked to have put the title to bed, an impression that was maintained well into December. Thanks to winners of the calibre of Brains (10/1, Kempton, 4 December), City Tour (10/1, Kempton, 11 December) and Repititio (8/1, Cheltenham, 11 December) Class 1 ended 13 December 71.34 points up for the month. The lead at that point was more than 125 points, but a dramatic surge by Pinpoint, thanks primarily to the wins of 12/1 Steal The Scene (Wolverhampton, 16 December) and 8/1 Vive La Difference (Wolverhampton, 18 December), slashed Class 1’s advantage. By the end of play on 22 December, Pinpoint were narrowly ahead – an astonishing turnaround. But Class 1 recovered with a strong Boxing Day performance.
New Year’s Eve dawned with Class 1 Racing less than 12 points ahead of their rivals. And, thanks to the Warwick victory of Manofthemoment (5/1), Class 1 were able to post a 5.75 yield on the day, while Pinpoint’s three selections all lost. It meant that Class 1 Racing ended 2019 with an 81.80-point yield, while Pinpoint’s final tally was 58.69 points.
Pinpoint’s emergence during the final two months of the year has been eye-catching to say the least with a 24.48-point November yield followed by December’s 34.21-point return. Restricting bets to all-age handicaps on the Flat, Pinpoint’s selections are value based with prices averaging around 7/1. Still early days, but this service is a welcome addition to the Toptipsters’ portfolio.
2019 was a curious year for Sandbets. Following fourth placings in the Toptipsters’ Challenges of 2017 and ‘18, this year saw an improvement of one place, yet the overall results were a disappointment – a 14.80-point loss in place of the sizable profits in the earlier two years. Once a by-word for consistency, Sandbets have found the last fifteen months to be a struggle, yet a table -topping effort in November followed by the smallest of losses in December indicate a change in fortune.
The Numbers, The Tipster League and Inside Information On Horse Racing have yet to show their true ability while Sprint Specialiser also suffered a year to forget, surrendering an 86-point lead at the top of the table after four months to finish down the field. Nevertheless, as a long-established service (winner of the Toptipsters’ Challenge in 2016 and placed the following two years), Sprint Specialiser are more than capable of bouncing back. This service invariably starts the year strongly: in 2016, by the end of April, the profit was 176 points. In 2017, the same period produced a 162-point haul, followed in the last two years by January to April returns of 132 and 151 points.
A new year: best wishes to all followers and good luck to all Toptipsters’ services.