Crio’s Racing: Something for Santa?

It’s twilight on Xmas Eve and the Best Bets is open in front of me. I guess this demonstrates why a “best family man” certificate mightn’t be under the tree for me in the morning (if, in fact, I’d bothered to put one up)!

A punting prize is equally unlikely at this, the most frantic racing time on the calendar – NSW alone has 11 meetings on Boxing Day and the glut continues thereafter. The Industry makes up for a “race free day” by overloading – like a drunk returning from a drink-drought.

It’s hard to focus on form – and I’m not on the sauce! The truth is that there’s no outstanding meeting and that, rightly, is because racing in the “silly season” is more about wonderful tracks and family gatherings than accrual of stud value for horses owned by the big breeders, for whom Santa (or, more specifically, one of their expensive stallions) comes more than once a year!

To dissect the formguide tonight would be impossible – pointless in fact.

Here’s a strategy inspired by the darts I watched this morning and will fail to emulate on Xmas arvo (we’ve lately discovered it a less strenuous, more “slaking”, post-lunch Yuletide option).

Put the dozens of venues in a hat. Choose a theme, jockey, trainer, number…or just chuck a dart. In any case it might not be the worst financial decision of the week – a brief peek at a shopping centre yesterday has convinced me that blind punting is harshly criticised….try buying crap presents, cards, wrapping, blah blah blah! Punters can hold strong to the hope of some reward…at worst just more confetti to add to the bulging bins of the Xmas excesses.

The traditional Caulfield meeting is out at Sandown on Friday and has been well promoted. It’s Christmas Stakes day and bookies have once again installed recidivist Lord Of The Sky fav. Leave me out. Money Valley has the main Saturday meeting but it’s a lacklustre card and I might go to the cricket instead. Sunday, though, I’ll be down at Mornington – again, not standout fields but a ripper racecourse on a beautiful day.


We used to love having all of Christmas afternoon to prepare for the following day’s races but such dedication, alas, has wavered over time. Instead I’ll have a squizz and hope for others’ input.

As always, comments and tips appreciated.

Good luck!


  1. Memory says that the Mornington meeting over the chrissie break was a benefit for the local trainers. Does the tradition continue?
    Thanks for keeping the racing banter entertaining throughout the year Crio and Co (Oges gets the nod for having the best mail to my eye – you could do worse than just follow the astute DJolly).

  2. Thanks Peter.
    As with most joints, black shorts have weighting… how about an idea that home trainers’ hoops wear black jodhpurs to indicate?
    Ores’ tips are gold…I have already used the “tis the season to be Jolly” tag!

  3. Thanks Peter from Perth. DJ is not only a most astute trainer but a thoroughly decent man and hard worker
    Crio- my concentration levels aren’t what they used to be so its MV races Sat and not the cricket
    I already worked out that I will follow Yendall Boxing Day and have something on DJs in Adelaide especially his runner in the Xmas Handicap

  4. Merry Xmas, Crio, Oges, et al. I’ll be in Corowa on Monday for a 7 race TAB meet. Boxing Day, I’ve scanned the fields but not much has caught my eye; yet. Brian Cox had two at Sandown, but both are scratched, so I need to rethink there. Is Kerang on TV, when does the Sky V TVN spat end ? All this and more will influence my selections over the next few days.

    Froeliche Weinachten,


  5. G day Glen. You cover more ground than I do. Good luck at Corowa. Saw your write up on Yea and have friends there so next year sometimes?
    Good punting and writing and Merry Xmas to you too

  6. stay tuned Glen…we might have one for you up at Corowa

  7. Oges, if you need any valley members tickets I’ve got heaps

  8. Cowshedend I wouldn’t fit in.Are you a starter?

  9. I’ve got one going around at stoney creek saturday, if we dont head down there, will head over for a few races

  10. Crio, i’m all ears and eyes re tips for Corowa. Today i’m trying to ascertain if Kerang is on TVN, as I’ve a few dollar son the old fella De Mars.


  11. Happy to find that De Mars won, though unhappy I could not view the race. TVN, SKY, to put it succinctly, not happy Jan !


  12. busiest race day of the year Glen and Kerang was the hardest to find…I’d rather back a winner unseen than watch another loser!
    Enjoy Corowa – still awaiting an urger to post a tip there.

  13. OGES … Hope your Yuletide fortunes re nag racing is going OK
    While back we discussed putting the $$$$ to better effect at the Great TAB in Collins Street — the ASX
    Just consider. Had u purchased MediBank Private IPO shares on the first day, ‘stagged’ them at the appropriate time in the early afternoon then u would have had a nice little collect.
    I know we did. I seem to recall either IPOs or health shares or summat are/were not ur cuppa tea.
    Pity. MediBank was a sure thing, unlike some of those sad looking nags which go around each and every summer.

  14. Richard-have you checked the price of my “racehorse stock” on the ASX – Alexium ?and its price rise since I posted

  15. Oges, no oxygen for that stuff. You know the races and the punt are not just about blue chip. It is more interesting and has greater characters than ASX. Good to see you at MV today.

  16. Thanks boys for a great day out. I can now go back to being a “woop from the bush”

  17. Was brilliant catching up with you Oges, was also nice to see Crio’s new satchel swinging gig was in Group 1 company

  18. All Captain Crio does at the track is smile and takes the punters dough Cowshedend
    Don’t forget Glens tip Crio?

  19. Crio, i’m about to hit the Frog ‘n ‘Toad. You’ll need to text me.


  20. your email address bounced back…email me contact via [email protected]

  21. OGES … don’t be put off by Crio’s exhortations re the rotten nag racing industry and to forgo proper investing for mindless punting.
    Note: events involving nags are NOT sport. They’re an industry!
    For Gawd’s sake ol’ Crio even likes the Thieves on Wheels, one of the most mindless and boring travesties poor old horses have to endure.
    And more — Crio implores poor souls on this website to follow the fortunes of the aforesaid Thieves. And wager their hard-earned.
    No one cares, Crio !!
    Harness racing belongs to yesteryear. Rightly so.
    God forbid.

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