Horsetalk Tuesday November 16th 2021

Yesterday was a rare day in the life of Horsetalk, with no winning naps reported. Let’s hope today proves more productive.

What do you make of this story about a handful of UK trainers hiring a private investigator to stake out John Warwick’s place? All the concentration seems to be on Warwick and the Irish racing fraternity. OK, that’s a story, and a big one, but what drove these trainers to team up and seek a PI, and what his brief from them, and on what knowledge was that brief based? And what of the NTF? Do they approve of such action? Did they know about it? Plenty of questions to be asked this side of the Irish Sea, although Greg Wood is the only reporter I can think of who might get the latitude to dive deep into this. Let’s hope The Guardian gives him free rein.

Betfair Naps Table

Starting November 1st 2021, Betfair have kindly agreed to provide two tickets each month to the winner of the naps table for one of their sponsored racedays.

Please post your nap each day using the comments section below this thread. All welcome. You need not post every day and can join in at any point in the month, as one big priced winner could win you the prize, which is settled on the tipster showing the biggest profit at the end the month. But, bear in mind that on days your name does not appear on the Daily Naps Results winners list, you’ll be assumed to have picked a loser.

For example, if at the end of the month your name is on the list once with a 25/1 winner, you will have your £250 profit from that nap deducted from assumed losing stakes for each other day. Assuming a 30-day month, your total stakes would be viewed as £300, returns as £260, for a loss of £40. I hope this makes sense. If you can think of a better way or a way to express this more clearly, please leave a comment below.

You need post only the horse’s name, but feel free to elaborate on your reasons for picking it.

If your selection secures a return – EW naps are allowed – please post the result in the Winners Thread stating it was your nap and mentioning the SP.

Profit will be calculated to a £10 stake on each selection. EW selections will be staked at £5EW.

All naps will be settled at SP, so please do not include an early price. This will help maintain clarity and reduce the chances of disputes. We will use standard place rules a la Tattersalls to settle EW naps. Otherwise I need to start checking place offers, non runners affecting it, etc. Doubtless some will suffer because of this, but I think it will even out in the end.

This site

This site is open to all. It’s free and there’s no need to enrol formally, but if commenting, please choose a username when making your comment.

We discuss horse racing mostly, but have a Lounge if you want to bring up any other subject.

You are welcome to enter our Daily Naps Challenge – a fun competition for which Betfair kindly donates two Raceday tickets every month for the winner.

The rules for the site are basic: be kind to everyone, and please don’t swear. We are not prudes, but we do not have a moderator other than me – Joe McNally, and I don’t want to spend a lot of time monitoring the site. If you see something you want to report, you can do so confidentially using the Contact page.

Finally, there are some hardened and skilled tipsters here and each has their good and bad runs. When one starts a good run, it can seem to the less experienced that all prayers have been answered, and a holy grail of winners has been found. But please never make that assumption. It’s not the way things work in betting, for anyone. Sharks flogging baited tips would have you believe that this holy grail does exist. Well, there is a collective punting experience on this site numbering, I’d say, close to 500 years. Not a single tipster here will tell you that reliable profits can be made from betting racehorses.

So, this is not a mild and dutiful problem betting disclaimer. I’ve been in the business since 1971 and have seen any amount of God’s misery caused by betting beyond means. Punting is a brilliant pastime, but a horrible compulsion, a fantastic servant, but a dreadful master. Never bet more than you can afford to lose with a smile … and there’s plenty of big smiles in small stakes.

Good luck



  1. Gregs piece today was his best n some time for me. Its an interesting tale with twists and turns to come. This seems more of an internal Horse racing story than a shock horror Elliot type tale so it’s going to be interesting what comes out. It’s just a shame for the innocent Irish trainers they were passing by the horse whisperers yard when photos were apparently taken. What are the chances?


    1. I think the story will get bigger and will lead to an Independent Commission.
      The Governance around Trainers and Stable Vets will come strongly in to question as their heads are the ones on the line.
      Quackery is everywhere.
      This “therapist” has probably been endured by the stable vets with rueful smiles in the same way Doctors tolerate colonic irrigation.
      Except laws have been broken without oversight.
      Who is actually responsible for interventions that were illegal under a Stable Vets watch is a question the vets regulator will want to know and the adequacy of a whistleblowing culture.


    2. When you break the figures down it gets much more interesting. By my calculations the period during which the private investigator took the pictures of trainers’ horse boxes covers 10 consecutive weeks. 56 horse boxes were ‘caught’ on camera, which, over 10 weeks makes it a fairly busy place. But, it turns out that John Warwick lives in England and only goes to his clinic ‘one or two days a fortnight’ (Kevin Blake) Even allowing for the generous side – that he was there two days a fortnight – the makes it, on average, more than 5 horse boxes a day turning up for his services. Yet no Irish trainer or there than Mrs Harrington has admitted to using him. They – blatantly obviously did – so what is it they are trying to hide?


      1. I think the Irish Veterinary Council will be a player as that is arguably the most regulated profession of anyone who regularly visits a yard and therefore held to a higher scrutiny.
        Kimmage, Walsh, Verney and Blake will not let this story go and are tired of rogue lone wolfs.
        At some point they must start asking where are the Veterinary records as under a criminal investigation they will be subject to subpoena?
        Every major Race Meeting in Ireland and particularly come the Cheltenham Festival will be dominated by this story until it gets some closure.
        I think the regulation of the Vets who oversaw the ‘other’ treatments for the Horses involved will be legally obliged to show their record keeping and the ‘freelance hired hand’ argument won’t wash.
        If a Vet is called out by a Trainer to look at a Fetlock and doesn’t ask about what other interventions the Horse has received then that is Professional incompetence.
        If they prescribe say an antibiotic and not think of potential interactions with another agent that is negligent.
        If a Horse is receiving laser treatment on a tendon they have to document it. Their regulator will not allow it to be undocumented in the Veterinary record.
        All regulators have a ‘bringing the profession into disrepute’ clause and I am not sure does this enhance or diminish the public confidence in the Veterinary Profession?


  2. Nap Ayr 1330 Soft Risk
    Bit soft picking this to be honest but its a few days since I chucked a winner in.
    I’m intrigued by this story and just not able to give any sort of an opinion. There’s another one that involves both sides of the Irish Sea and aside from an article in the Sunday Times I’m guessing a lot of people are either sitting on their hands or keeping schtum.


    1. Had a good look at that one but Lucinda has two in the race and I normally tip the one…also just noticed that Largy Fix has been backed into 18s from 50/1


      1. Alan,
        Is Lucinda Russell winning at the win percentage rate you promised us 4 weeks ago?
        Where everything will be Hunky Dory as this was her time of year and she has already paid for the Xmas pressies under tree?
        Now you are telling me a Horse called Largy Fix can spoil Xmas.
        What do I tell Tiny Tim?


      2. Largy Fix is back out to 40/1 now. Someone last night must have noticed that he beat The Bosses Oscar in a PTP – that horse is now rated 150. (Ten pence ion the nose is enough to collapse the overnight markets and have the phone ringing off the hook at Spiv HQ.) As usual, the Largy brand horses are at their best on debut, as the Crawford brothers really get them revved up and ready to go. OK, this one fell which wasn’t the plan, but he made up for it next time and then went straight to the sales. Mouse Morris could make neither head nor tail of him and he was dropped from the Morris academy sharpish. Now Tim Reed is having a go with him – Largy surely needs a handicap mark before getting competitive. I suspect they like him because Harry Reed has come all the way up from the south to ride. He does some miles that lad because he rides plenty for Tristan Davidson too.

        Today’s titbit: Tim Reed trains at Housesteads, Northumberland, right by the best preserved section of Hadrian’s Wall. He takes his Scottish raids very seriously, but these days he is on the hunt for prize money rather than someone else’s beef cattle.


  3. Joe, I propose that yesterday’s blog be deleted from the Horsetalk records. There were 2 less than mediocre cards and yet some of our esteemed tipsters decided to ruin their reputations by napping some nags, without success! Even ESG, who spends spring, summer and autumn napping Lissen’s blue bloods got involved with some fairy related named horse!!
    As for attending Mr Finegan’s wake, as Mr Wogan used to say “give the woman in the bed more porter “…


  4. An EW nap today at Sunny Ayr – was tempted to go to this meeting, didn’t quite get around to organizing myself. iIs Lilys Gem in the 2.15 – about 11s at the minute


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