Just two days after registering his third win in the Hollywoodbets Punters’ Challenge Racing Stars competition, freelance sports writer Gary Lemke scored a terrific fourth victory on Day 20 at the Vaal on Thursday.
The man who authored the story of champion Pocket Power beat the hardknocking Craig Peters and third-place deaheaters Graeme Hawkins and Chase Liebenberg, to bank the daily R500 prize and position himself as favourite to win the Week 3 log, which ends at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Sunday.
While there will always be luck and flashes in the pan when it comes to selecting winners, Gary Lemke’s 20% strike rate in the new fun competition hosted within the Hollywoodbets Punters’ Challenge platform for South Africa’s racing presenters, personalities, commentators and journalists, ranks him as something of a star tipster.
Gary, a lifetime sports journalist, seemed bemused when the Sporting Post asked him to reveal his secret to success.
He did tell us, as a start, that he spends a solid two hours ‘studying’ a meeting. So he is no winging it kind of tipster!
“I spend a fair amount of time looking at the overall card and jockey and trainer stats – and combinations against the background of the form. Some days we get it right – others it doesn’t work!” he explains as he tells how he ‘locked in’ on Ashley Fortune’s favourite Open Highway in the Vaal first race as Aldo Domeyer had travelled up for the ride.
“Based on my idea of that winning, I gave Ashley’s runner Prime Example a skip in the third. That won, as you know. Then a jockey like Kabelo Matsunyane, for instance, has a 10% strike-rate. He was on 15 beaten rides prior to the racemeeting. So I felt that he was overdue – he had just three rides and was beaten on the favourite Wugug in the second. But won on The Mauritian at 20-1. I didn’t include that unfortunately. Then Keagan de Melo has a 20% win strike-rate. I thought he’d have a winner, but had two seconds, which helps to keep the player in the Racing Stars hunt. Denis Schwarz has a solid 34% place strike-rate, so he is always going to give you a run for your money. Hey, it’s all luck and numbers – if it’s your day, it’s your day!” he laughs.
The racing public are reminded that the Hollywoodbets Punters’ Challenge is available on all local racemeetings, as well as Singapore and Hong Kong.
It’s free to enter and is your chance to take on the professionals!
The show moves to Fairview on Friday – the first race is off at 12h25.