Graham has asked me to look at a piece of horse rating software called Form Wizard-Pro, which comes with a very good (claimed) record for finding good running horses.

On payment of a reasonable outright purchase fee, you are directed to a site to download the program where you will also find a very comprehensive selection method which can be used in conjunction with Wizard-Pro, if desired. There are several suggestions for using the software profitably as well, which have been sent in by existing users. There is also a link to an instruction manual to get you started.

On opening the program, you are presented with the initial ratings form. At first sight, this looks a little dated, but it works well enough. Here, you fill in the details of the race and the horse’s record, then click a number of boxes to indicate various aspects of its previous form. When finished, you click Next and a rating appears. You carry out this process on three or four horses at the front of the betting in the RP forecast. There are two ratings forms which can be used, depending from where you are sourcing your form information.

Due to time constraints, I chose to use the simpler of the two to find the best bet for the day. Having rated a number of races, I chose the horse with the biggest gap in the figures. Today, this occurred in the 14.20 at Ascot, where Alainmaar had a gap of 30 points, by far the largest. Somewhat to my surprise, it romped home by 6L, at 2.62SP. Not a bad start at all.

I don’t think it’s necessary to give regular results for this, because it isn’t a service which feeds you selections, it is simply a tool to assist a certain selection process. It’s fair to say that it appears to be a rather good tool for that purpose, provided that you use this type of selection method to find your bets.

I’m sure most punters will be familiar with the sort of method I mean, both in horse racing and football. You draw up a form sheet with a number of columns in which you assign a score for each aspect of form which you regard as important – or, in the case of football teams, previous results against today’s opposition. At the end of this process, you add up the overall score and compare it with other teams or horses. This is what Wizard-Pro does, you provide it with lots of relevant information about the previous performance of the horse by ticking boxes and it assigns a rating. You carry out this process with all the horses in which you are interested and compare their ratings. You find the information you need in either a daily paper, or, for a more comprehensive process, the ubiquitous Racing Post.

Many people will already be using this method, laboriously drawing up the necessary tables each day and to those people this program will be a real boon. The method has much to recommend it for those who like to study the minutiae of form; personally, I prefer less time-consuming methods. However, I can’t deny that if you do have the time, it does seem to point up at least regular place bets, since I have seen one winner and three placed bets in a mere four days.

On this basis, then and because it’s quite modestly priced, I feel that an Approved rating is indicated.

You can  get Form Wizard-Pro here: