Books worth Reading - Australia

Wizard Daily Report and Research - Thursday, 7 December 2023.

  • Books worth reading Australia


Books worth reading - Australia

There have not been many books published that deal with the wagering side of Australian horse racing.

Some of them worth reading are listed below.

I would consider the books market with an * to be the most useful and some of them are, in fact, essential reading if you want to really understand the subject of horse race betting and selecting.


Author: Rem Plante

* Australian Horse Racing and Punters Guide (1969, 1974)

The publication of this book was an important event for those of us who were interested in the analytical and quantitative side of horse race betting in the 1970s. Even today it is well worth reading for its commonsense approach to horse race analysis.


1 Punting is a business

2 Classes and types of races

3 How to read Turfguide

4 Classes of horses

5 Grading horses

6 Grading races

7 Age and Sex

8 Traps on the way

9 Camera charts

10 Measuring margins

11 The rider

12 Racecourses

13 Barrier position

14 Trackwork and trials

15 Improvers & on decline

16 Club Handicapper

17 Weight and distance

18 Accelerating, decelerating

19 Weight handicapping

20 Weight rating

21 WFA races

22 Time-weight handicapping

23 Professional punting

24 not relevant

25 Bookmaker making book 

26 Staking methods

27 About your horse


Author: Don Scott

Winning (1978)

*The Winning Way (1982)

*Winning More (1985)

Winning in the Nineties (1990)

Winning Made Easy (1993)

Don Scott should need no introduction to anyone who is serious about their wagering on Australian horse racing. His books, especially the second and third, are essential reading.

The Winning Way


1 The value revolution

2 Winning facts and fantasies

3 The greatest winner of them all

4 Winning Maxims and Methods

5 Off and Racing

6 The Land of Odds

7 The treasure chest of form

8 The magic of class and weight

9 What every punter should know about class

10 What every punter should know about weight

11 Yesterdays horses yesterdays race

12 Tomorrows horses tomorrows race

13 The wizard of odds

14 Figure wizards opinion wizards

15 To bet or not to bet

16 A winning day

17 Eagleform and the computer revolution

18 In the shadow of the post


Winning More

Chapters: (Basically an update of The Winning Way)

1 The value revolution

2 Winning facts and fantasies

3 Greatest winner of all

4 Winning maxims, methods

5 Off and racing

6 Treasure chest of form

7 Magic of class and weight

8 About class

9 About weight

10 Yesterdays horses, races

11 Tomorrows horses, races

12 Wizard of odds

13 Figure, opinion wizards

14 Bet or not to bet

15 Computer revolution

16 Win or place

17 The exotic

18 Odds and ends

19 Inside information

20 Shadow of the post


Author: Alan Aitken

*Hats in the Ring (1997)

Alan Aitken was a racing journalist for the Sydney Morning Herald before relocating to Hong Kong. An interesting read.


1 Starting from scratch

2 Value showing a profit

3 Race classes

4 The Formguide

5 Betting markets

6 The Tab

7 Bookmakers

8 Race Times

9 Jockeys

10 Trainers

11 Breeding

12 Wet tracks

13 Ratings

14 Sectional times

15 Videos

16 Barrier trials

17 Track bias

18 Race maps


Author: Roger Dedman

* Commonsense Punting: A Mathematical Approach (1987)


Sorry, my copy has gone missing in action.

However, this is an excellent reference for those interested in the mathematics of betting, especially its treatment of the exotics (quinella, trifecta, etc).

Betting to Win (1992)

The follow up to Commonsense Punting and not as useful.


Author: John Rothfield (Dr Turf)

*Dr Turfs Guide to Better Punting (1987)

A bit like its author, a little idiosyncratic, entertaining, and delivers good information and insights.


1 The class system

2 The weight system

3 Factors

  • Weight
  • Fitness
  • Distance
  • Jockeys
  • Trainers
  • Barriers
  • Age
  • Sex
  • The horse
  • Breeding
  • Track conditions
  • Movable rails
  • Equipment
  • Jumps

4 The punt

  • Doing the form
  • Framing a market, getting on

5 Theories of the punt

6 The race tracks


Author: Paul Segar

Horse Racing Theory and Practise (1989)


1 The formguide

2 Class and weights

3 Characteristics

  • Times, pace, maps

4 Photos and videos

5 Wet track analysis

6 Speed handicapping

7 Selection methods

8 Betting methods


Author: Clif Cary

How Professionals Bet to Win

A 56 page booklet, but it does contain some interesting reading.

Quite a bit of the content would have been sourced from Clifs weekly magazine, Racing Review.


Author: Racetrack Magazine

How Smart Punters Win at Racing (1978)

A 72 page booklet. Useful overview of odds and ends.


Author: The Optimist (Turf Monthly publication)

*Always the Optimist (1991)

The Optimist was by profession an academic and that is reflected in the quality of his writing and the thought that went into his work. He was a mainstay of the Turf Monthly magazine for many years.



1 Patience

2 Money Management

5 The TM ratings

6 Lessons learnt

8 Trainers and their ways

10 Photos and videos

11 Condition, keen judges

12 Win percent expectations

13 Racetracks

16 Top rider / jockey

17 Stable rider / jockey

18 Prepost betting

19 Each-way betting

21 Place betting

22 Flat or progressive stakes

27 The AB trifecta

31 Odds on

32 Wet tracks

33 Systems, do they work?

34 Last start winners

35 The parlay


Author: Pat Craven

*Gallopers and Gamblers (1997)

This is not a book about betting on Australian horse racing, but it contains a lot of very interesting and useful information relevant to our wagering.

Chapters: (most relevant starts at Ch 8)

8 Develop. of thoroughbred

9 Breeders

10 Stud farms

11 Breeding methods

12 Badi cenetic concepts

13 Improve thru genetics

14 The breeding process

15 Behaviour of racehorse

16 Conformation, general

17 Conformation, detailed

18 Foot and farrier

19 Gaits of the horse

20 Colours and markings

21 Food and nutrition

22 Health and medicine

23 Life span

24 Pedigree registration

25 Racehorse registration

26 Owners and lessees

27 Viability of ownership

28 Buying and selling

29 Soundness for racing

30 Trainers

31 Viability of training

32 Training

33 Fitness

34 Ability

35 Sex in racing

36 Age in racing


Warren - Wiz-Ed

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