Expert Horse Racing Tips | Melbourne Cup Day 2020 | Reading The Play

Melbourne Cup Day 2020

Melbourne Cup

My top 5:




#18 ASHRUN @ $23

#21 TIGER MOTH @ 8.50

Looks typical Cup with many chances, speed and tempo looks interesting as many drawn the inside gates will likely look to sit and settle so hopefully we see a few drawn wider take it up and we get a reasonably run race and not the farcical sit and dawdle we saw last year.

#7 VERY ELLEEGANT she has such natural ability, she does so much wrong reefing and pulling in races yet still wins, won last two key lead up races, all class, slight question on drier track

#12 PRINCE OF ARRAN seems to thrive in Australia, close last yr then great run in Caulfield Cup and Jamie Kah is riding in sublime form, maps to get lovely run

#13 SURPRISE BABY looks a sneaky if not questionable prep (probably to avoid any weight penalty), taking on trust that they have trained the miles in to her legs, has enormous ability and Craig Williams to ride big plus

#18 ASHRUN European runner who won Saturday to get entry, had it drawn a better gate think it would go very close, astute trainer (trainer past winner Perfectionist) peaking at the right time and loves 3200

#21 TIGER MOTH would be east to discard on stats and Cup history but for the fact the trainer and stable are freaks at finding the right lightly raced 3 yo’s to bring out and win this race, drawn wide (needs luck) and needs fast tempo

Win Bets – Recommended Betting Plan for $103 outlay

My to 5 (in number order)

Spend $103 to back all 5 this way if one WINS you will show a profit of $117 or more

Flemington R7

Formal bets for subscribers

5.1 unit outlay

If one wins we will show an approx. 5.9 unit profit

Runner Price Bet Return Profit RTP Stake
#7 VERY ELLEEGANT $11 $20 $220 $117 1.0 unit
#12 PRINCE OF ARRAN $10 $22 $220 $117 1.1 units
#13 SURPRISE BABY $9 $25 $225 $122 1.2 units
#18 ASHRUN $23 $10 $230 $127 0.5 units
#21 TIGER MOTH $8.5 $26 $221 $118 1.3 units
$103 5.1 units

Based on Fixed Price

I have used FIXED prices as for this exercise as we are backing 5 runners and I’d rather lock in the price and the possible outcome than the risk of any major price fluctuation prior to the race and we end up with a scenario that doesn’t balance.

Best way to play exotic options on the race?


Finish 1st and 2nd in any order
$20 outlay would provide all numbers boxed for a single collect of the dividend

Box up #’s 7, 12, 13, 18, 21

Any of these 5 numbers to run 1st and 2nd (this is called an Exacta)



Hard as there are many chances to win and fill the placings, but I have done the following –
as a guide a Flexi ticket $100 spend will get you approx. 8.33% return on the final dividend
if we get it right.

1st:  7, 12, 13, 18, 21

2nd:  1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 24

3rd:  1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 24

First 4

If you wish to play a First4 (or play a First4 instead of the Trifecta option) – but a far more expensive option due to the extended number of combinations I would recommend this same approach and add the same numbers for 2nd, 3rd and 4th and then select the amount you wish to bet/outlay as a flexi bet % option. With flexi betting option you will need a minimum 1% bet to place a ticket which would costs an approx. $200 outlay

Further thoughts for the Flemington program are listed further down the page.

Best Bet Selections

Flemington  R2 #3 TWAIN’S EXPRESS x 5 units Win $4.00

Loved the last start run and rating, 3 wide the trip on tight turning circuit yet lengthened on straightening to just get beat a lip by good horse, big filly with big stride will love 1400 at this track, keen

Flemington  R4 #10 YULONG RISING x 1 unit Win $15.00 1 unit Place $4.20

2800mtr race looking for those that have form around the distance, Galieo bred UK import into second prep with Hayes stable, multiple runs last prep won and placed 2500+ inc close up in Adelaide Cup, open race looks value chance

Flemington  R6 #6 OUTRAGEOUS x 2 units Win $11.00 2 units Place $3.50

Resumes first up for astute Hawkes stable on major carnival day positive lead, runs last prep high quality and also luckless, has trialled well, open race, good gate and map, Pike rides

Flemington  R9 #15 CORDILLA x 5 units Win $4.40

Drew 16 settled well back then super run home running fastest last 1220 and individual splits on the day, draws and maps well here, loves dry tracks and looks the one finishing hard down the middle

Doomben  R7 #1 SCATHING x 5 units Win $3.40

Rose through the grades quickly last prep with two wins then two very credible close up 4ths in Group 3 company, returns from long spell, has won 2 from 2 first up, gets 2kg claim and drops back to Cl4 midweek company

Doomben  R8 #5 JAMI LADY x 4 units Win $4.20

Flys fresh winning 3 of 4 first up, three runs last prep all in quality or Listed company inc two wins, has been given two trials in readiness for this, good gate and forward map, can give this a shake first up

Other notes for today:

Flemington  R2 #3 TWAIN’S EXPRESS

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 2, 3, 4, 8, 7, 11

Flemington  R3 #1 HARD LANDING

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 11


Flemington  R4 #10 YULONG RISING

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13

Flemington  R5 Fav #2 looks very hard to beat but no vale at even money, look on race or play a boxed multi

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 2, 3, 5, 8, 9, 11


Flemington  R6 #6 OUTRAGEOUS

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 1, 2, 6, 8, 11, 12

Flemington  R8 #15 PURPLE SECTOR

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 1, 3, 8, 12, 13, 15

Flemington  R9 #15 CORDILLA

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 2, 3, 4, 5, 15

Flemington  R10 #17 THE ASTROLOGIST

Exacta/Tris no’s boxed – 2, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 15, 16, 17

Flemington Quaddie

Two options for the first leg (Melb Cup) either go short with the top 5 or wide with longer list of numbers, the last leg is a very tricky straight race sprint so have also gone a little wide. A small flexi bet option for the quaddie can give you an interest across the final 4 races of the day.

R7 – 7, 12, 13, 18, 21
R7 – 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 24

R8 – 1, 3, 8, 12, 13, 15

R9 – 2, 3, 4, 5, 15

R10 – 2, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 15, 16, 17

Staking and Results


All bets will be recorded as the Fixed price advised at the time of publishing unless otherwise noted (then best tote).

We list recommended staking in Units so as to allow subscribers to tailor their betting outlay to suit their bank.


Results are recorded based on the price quoted, less any deductions should they occur on race day with final fields. The price quoted is based on what is available across the broader market at the time of publishing and direct advice to all subscribers, we do not cherry pick the best price from one or two operators, it is the current market price on offer to all. Should for one reason or another this price change or move quickly at the time our bets are nominated by sms we will in fairness adjust and update the recorded price to what was then more commonly available. We do not quote boosted or inflated offer prices Most weeks we have subscribers report obtaining

Why talk in Units?

Everyone chooses to bet in different bet sizes, from differing betting banks (the personal funds they put aside for betting), some will bet $20 per bet, some $200 per bet. So as to keep things simple and clear for everyone to follow we then talk in bet units. Our advice is to decide what size betting bank (per week) you are comfortable with and then unit size (per bet) is likely to work for you – and then call this your betting unit (divide your total weekly bank by 30 units). Each week on average we will outlay approx. 25 to 30 units for horse racing selections, this will cover our main day Saturday and any additional bets (maybe one or two) during the week (that you may also run the risk of losing). Each bet will be nominated in betting units between 1 to 5, this staking number is also a reflection of and guide to the level of confidence that our analyst has in his nominated bet (1 being lowest, 5 being highest).

Conservative Approach

For those who would prefer a more conservative approach, given the high % of placings achieved by Matt Thompson with his selections you might consider a 1 x 2 or 1 x 3 staking method, staking 1 unit the win and 2 units the place for all selections regardless of the market price. Your longer term returns will be less but still very profitable, but this approach will even out the run of win outs when they occur and assist in maintaining your longer term betting bank.

What does Matt Thompson do?

Matt is old school and has always been a win bet only punter, so what you see from our results is exactly how he has approached it.

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Horse Racing Best Bets each week for our Reading The Play subscribers.

Matt Thompson provides expert Horse Racing Best Bets each week for our Reading The Play Horse Racing subscribers. Matt is a highly experienced punter, breeder and long-term form student who brings a meticulous approach to his work and selections, refined over many decades of professional punting. His approach is very selective with a likely 4 to 5 selections each week with Saturday’s his main focus.

Educated, well reasoned winning best bets and horse racing tips for Australian horse racing.

Matt Thompson spends countless hours each week analysing form, times, video and other statistical criteria critical toward providing quality horse racing tips and winning long term on Australian horse racing. In addition to his own assessments, video review and form assessment Matt Thompson also has a strong network of industry contacts – all of which contribute to the framing of his final recommended horse racing best bets and tips for Reading The Play subscribers.

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