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Punters beware as draw bias is switched on all right-hand tracks 30/03/2011
Chris Cook
The draw change brings Britain into line with the practice in other racing countries

Punters beware. The numbering system for the starting stalls at Leicester on Thursdaywill be the reverse of what you are used to and, if the draw is something you take into account, you will need to adjust your thinking when betting at right-hand racecourses from now on.

The change is aimed at bringing Britain into line with the practice in other racing countries, where stall one is normally closest to the inside rail. Here, this has only been true at courses that bend to the left. At tracks with right-handed bends, like Ascot, Sandown and Kempton, stall one has been furthest from the inside, but no longer.

That means punters will have to perform some mental gymnastics when assessing races at Goodwood and Beverley, courses with notorious draw biases. And I would imagine that some gamblers are going to be caught out by it, since news of the change is only just filtering into the weighing room.

"I thought I was really well drawn in stall one for the maiden," William Buick told me in reference to Thursday's 4.50pm race at Leicester, "but no, I'm in the middle of the track."

The British Horseracing Authority has decided to take no action against Nicky Henderson in response to his claim that he had backed himself at 16-1 to train no winners at the Cheltenham Festival. In the event, the bet was a loser, as he had two winners, but Henderson drew a blank on the meeting's first three days.

"If the bet was placed, it was ill-judged and inappropriate," said a BHA spokesman. He added that no rule had been broken but added that the rules would be amended to ban such bets.

Gold Cup winner Long Run is an intended runner in Aintree's Martell Cup next Thursday, according to Henderson, who also plans to step Binocular up to 2½ miles in the Aintree Hurdle.