In this series, we're looking at a collection of systems that you may consider gold or simply fool's gold!

They come from various sources and I feel that each deserves some amount of consideration.

Last issue, we looked at the 10K System, The Bookie Basher and the Curtis Rating Plan.

The interesting one among those we'll look at this month is called The Bird System. It's named after the famed British professional punter Alec Bird.

One of these days, I will definitely write an article or two about Bird's sensational betting exploits in the UK - great reading.

He really was an amazing character, and one of the few really big punters who, like Phil Bull, kept his winnings and lived a life of luxury. (Alex Bird's autobiography, The Life and Secrets of Alex Bird, is still available from Internet bookshops.)

The system is referred to in Bird's book (incidentally, said to be the world's best selling racing book EVER).


  1. The type of races best suited is Maidens for 2Y0s and 3Y0s, though it can be operated on any class of races.
  2. Bet only on races with eight to 16 runners, inclusive.
  3. The favourite must be at an odds-on price.
  4. The selection to bet is the SECOND FAVOURITE.
  5. The bet is each way, irrespective of odds.

So, there it is, a system from the pen of the late and great Alex Bird.

Of course, it was predicated on the basis of UK racing, so it will need to be investigated as far as Australian and New Zealand racing is concerned. Bird was an astute follower of "arbitrage" betting in the days when there was no betting tax in Britain. When it came in, arbitrage betting was more or less dead and buried.

The above system is simply a matter of the punter taking on odds-on favourites. I think it has great potential.

The next system is called The Recent Days Plan and it's an easy to follow approach that may appeal to those who like plenty of action.


  1. In any race, select the horse which has the LEAST number of days since its last win. Remember: This rule is "since its last win" and not its last start.
  2. If there is more than one qualifier, no bet.
  3. The staking is 5 units to win on each selection.
  4. An extension is to pick the bet of the day. Look at every race on the card, and the ONE horse to bet is the horse with the least number of days since its last win.

We have, then, two aspects to the system. The first is to use it in every race, or whichever races you wish to bet on.

The second aspect is to use it t( get the -bet of the day"; that is, the horse out of the entire meeting with the least number of days since it last win.

A British website which features this system says it had 100 bets at 5 units (win) each and made a profit of 259 units. If true, this is an extraordinary return.

I must point out that it restricted its operation to "bet of the day" action only.

The next system is one that's been touted over the years as being perhaps the "most successful racing system ever" which is certainly a big promo!

I'll go so far as to say it has potential, so take a bit of time and see how it goes.

The website that put it up on the Internet some time back commented that it will throw up "good priced winners" and said its main attribute is that it's quick and simple to find the qualifiers.


  1. Bet only on races with six to 12 runners (inclusive). All races can be bet.
  2. To become a selection a runner must have been placed lst, 2nd, 3rd or 4th at least four times in its last SIX runs, and it must have at least ONE win in those six starts.
  3. A contender must have run at least twice in the current season and MUST have been placed (lst, 2nd, 3rd or 4th) in at least one of the two races.
  4. A contender must be a course winner or a distance winner, or both.
  5. A contender must be trained by one of the leading 10 trainers at the track at which it is racing.

Well, an interesting system that will intrigue those systemites among you who like to delve and burrow when you are sorting out your selections.

Finding a selection requires a bit more work than most of the systems we've been looking at, but maybe the work will prove more than worthwhile?

If a system is a winner, who cares how much work it takes to track down a selection? It's work well spent.

Our next system for evaluation looks at prizemoney earned as a determinant of potential.

The use of prizemoney earnings has always been regarded as a key component of analysis for a horse's overall form record. And why not? The more money a horse has won the more races it must have won or been in.

Occasionally, things go askew when a horse has a flash in the pan win in a major race.

It might win $400,000 but then its form tapers off and it never gets near that form again, and yet the punter will see that its prizemoney earnings are very high.

Keep this in mind when you use the following system, and also in any general form analysis.

The system is called The Earners Plan. I think you'll find it reasonably easy to follow. It definitely will throw up its fair share of value winners.


  1. The aim is to find the top five prizemoney earning horses on a day's card. That is, looks at all races at the meeting and mark down the top five prizemoney earners.
  2. A contender becomes an each way bet if it is on the first 2 lines of favouritism at 211 or better.
  3. If a contender does not meet Rule 2, it becomes a bet if it is on top or 2nd on the newspaper tipsters'poll (at least four tipsters required).
  4. Any contender that does not meet the requirements of Rules 2 and 3 should be backed for a PLACE only.

There you have a very neat system, and I'm indebted to reader Tom Maynard, from Ashgrove in Brisbane, for sending it in to me. Tom, who is now well into his 70s (so he tells me), has sent me a treasure trove of systems over the last 10 years and my intention is to put the best of them together in The Maynard Collection for publication in PPM.

I think The Earners Plan has a great deal going for it.

You will be looking at backing well-performed horses who are fancied in the betting, or with the tipsters.

And the big thing they have going for them is that they have already proven themselves, witness their big earnings.

In the next part of this series, I'll be bringing you the final three systems in this series. All of them are interesting approaches and one in particular, The Red Zero Plan, is a beauty!

It looks at the advantages of being among the top four in the betting and applies some excellent  elimination rules.

What you are left with are some really prime selections.

I can assure you that The Red Zero Plan is one of the best I have come across for a long time, so make sure you don't miss the third part of this series.

One thing to remember about the systems in this series is this: It's always prudent to check them out on paper before plonking down your money.

We present the systems simply as "ideas" for your betting, and although all have potential, it will be sensible for anyone who intends using them to take the time to run some tests.

Sometimes, a system will work in another country and fail in Australia, and vice versa.

Click here to read Part 1.

By Peter Travers