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  • There is no rest for the wicked at Christmas. Nor is there for footballers.

    We have reached that particularly busy period of the season where the games come thick and fast. Boxing Day can so often prove crucial for managers. Some may be in the last chance saloon.

    Much more often than not the club bottom of the Premier League at Christmas, goes down. So Swansea will need a minor mircale to survive.

    Newcastle got a crucial win on Saturday, as did under fire Stoke manager Mark Hughes. These days it is the scrap at the foot of the Premier . . .

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    By on 23rd December 2017
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  • It's always nice when a NAP lands. They don't always, of course. Some days they fail while other selections win. Deciding which to make my more confident selections, my naps, is always a tough choice. But Claimantakinforgan did the business for VG Tips members on Friday. The 13/8 tip won the Supreme Trial Novices' Hurdle by two and a quarter lengths.

    Divine Spear was our first winner of the day at Ascot. That drifted nicely in the betting market from 6/5 last night to an SP price of 13/8. Each Way NAP Bullionaire finished second . . .

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    By on 22nd December 2017
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  • Welcome aboard to new members Gary and David. And welcome back, Mel. You may have already read my Christmas message detailing the nice message I received from Mel after the winners on Wednesday.

    As I say, it's always nice to communicate with VG Tips members. Some days I am so busy studying form that I cannot get back to members immediately. But I do reply to e-mails. It reassures me that there are real people out there who are paying attention to my analysis and I am here to try and offer constructive help to members, regardless of . . .

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    By on 21st December 2017
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  • Mel returns to VG Tips on the day of 3 winners for Nicky Henderson

    By on 20th December 2017

    Over the years at VG Tips I have grown accustomed to members of my selection service coming and going....

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  • The winning tips last weekend included:- Wolves win at 23/20, West Ham to win/Draw No Bet at 6/4, Both teams to score Man City v Spurs at 15/8, Everton win at 3/4, Bristol City win at 19/20, Cardiff City win at 3/4, Wigan win at 10/11 and Blackburn win at 4/5. While I will personally always prefer an odds against bet, those last five wins all proved to be value bets. It doesn't matter how you go about beating the bookie and making profit, just so long as you do . . .

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    By on 20th December 2017
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  • Last weekend worked out well for members of VG Tips.

    Coming to the last fences it appeared that my two each way tips for the Gold Cup Handicap Chase at Cheltenham would finish as the first two. Then, while leading the race with something to spare, the David Pipe trained Starchitect broke down and, sadly, had to be put down. It was an horrific incident. No fence involved. Not the fault of anyone. Starchitect simply lost his action and it was clear to all watching how bad the injury was.

    It is horrible for those who own, train and love . . .

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    By on 19th December 2017
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  • The weather has been having a say in the well being of racing this week. We lost two fixtures on Thursday and there are inspections planned in England and Ireland over the weekend.

    I would like to salute those who run Newcastle racecourse. When their meeting was cancelled employees of the course took all the pre-prepared sandwiches to People's Kitchen, a food bank at the Alison Centre in the city. Well done to all concerned. Too often bad public relations envelope the sport of racing. That is often the fault of racecourses and the authorities that manage the . . .

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    By on 15th December 2017
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  • So jockey Hayley Turner thinks her three month ban for betting £3000 on races is a bit harsh. Hayley, I'd throw the book at you. She said she made "a stupid error." No. She deliberately and knowingly broke the rules and the BHA are right to ban her. But I would have made the ban much longer.

    Too many people do not trust the sport. Too many punters think all jockeys are on the take, or betting on races they take part in. Until jockeys are hit hard for such actions they know to be against the rules, people . . .

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    By on 14th December 2017
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  • Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho complained about the disrespectful manner in which Manchester City players and staff celebrated their win at Old Trafford. You have to laugh. Pot, kettle, black.

    The first time I came across Jose was when his Porto side beat Manchester United in the Champions League. A victory he celebrated by running half the length of the pitch, along the touchline, and in front of his subsequent friend, the then United manager Sir Alex Ferguson. And I can recall the manner in which he celebrated crucial wins when manager of Real Madrid, including against his arch enemy . . .

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    By on 14th December 2017
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  • Having originally planned to swerve Thursday's very modest racing, I momentarily got excited when there were rumours that the great Cue Card might be taking on Top Notch in the Grade 2 Peterborough Chase at Taunton. That would have been an interesting contest.

    Sadly Cue Card will not be racing tomorrow and another race that used to contain several runners is reduced to just five. It's a shame when Grade 2 races attract so few runners. The winning connections get over £28.000. Surely that's worth sending a horse to Taunton to take on the odds on . . .

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    By on 13th December 2017
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