horse racing info

Australian Form Guides

All Australian form guides can be found online nowadays at various locations including metropolitan race clubs. Hard copies are available in lift-out form in the centre of most major newspapers in each capital city, although they vary in quality. Some have detailed form, while others simply have basic information.

Depending on what you want form wise, you can go with your main papers, such as the Herald Sun, The Australian, The Age, the Sydney Morning Herald, the Brisbane Courier Mail, or the West Australian newspaper. Specialised form guides are also available but they will cost you a few dollars more.

We are lucky in this country to have a number of racing publications devoted specifically to the sport of kings and we have listed the better ones below.

Best Form Guides for Horse Racing

The following publications are highly recommended form guides for Australian racing.

The Sportsman

If you are serious about your form study then you can't go past The Sportsman, which is widely considered to be Australian's best form guide. The Sportsman is a national publication produced twice weekly, with extra issues produced during all major carnivals. It is around the same size as the Melbourne Herald Sun.

The Sportsman is a detailed thoroughbred horse racing guide and provides comprehensive form analysis for punters, including the latest inside information.

Regular weekly Sportsman features include:

  • Barrier trial results
  • Exclusive camera charts for Sydney and Melbourne
  • Five-state Stewards reports
  • Chartform
  • Sectional Time Charts for Sydney and Melbourne
  • Five-state specials: the best bets from around Australia
  • Trial and Trackwork reports
  • Zipform ratings and latest trackwork times

The Sportsman currently retails for under $6.00 and is great value when you consider how much information they provide for form study. A must have if you are a serious punter. It is generally available in capital cities on Thursday afternoons for weekend racing, and on Friday mornings in outward regional areas.

The Winning Post

While not as comprehensive as the Sportsman, this weekly form guide which is around the same size as the Melbourne Herald Sun is a great form guide if you are after race fields from Friday to Monday in an easy to read liftout format.

Winning Post began initially in 1987 as a fundraiser for underprivileged children in Victoria and was recently acquired by TVN racing media. The tabloid is around 100 pages with full colour throughout and is produced as a series of liftouts. This allows punters the ability to select a particular formguide for a race meeting and use them as a four-page, eight-page or twelve-page liftout.

Winning Post divides neatly into three sections:

  • A twelve-page editorial wraparound
  • A form section covering all major racemeetings from Friday to Sunday
  • Breeding Scene, a supplement of breeding, sales and racing news
  • News/Views and the Winning Mart classifieds

Winning Post's form section has eight-12 page liftouts for the Melbourne and Sydney Saturday meetings. It also provides liftout form for Adelaide and Brisbane on Saturday, plus every TAB meeting around Australia on Friday and the main Victorian and NSW meetings on Sunday.

Each state's edition also contains a formguide for either the Saturday Victorian provincial meeting, the Saturday NSW provincial meeting, the Saturday Gold Coast meeting, the Saturday Perth meeting or the Sunday Tasmanian meeting. Winning Post is the only national publication to provide comprehensive Friday racing coverage and the only one to cover the Saturday provincials in full.

In addition to liftout form, Winning Post provides fields for the Victorian Monday meeting and main-race form for as many TAB meetings as they can fit in, as well as fields for the Victorian non-TABs.

Winning Post retails for under $5.00 and is available on Thursday afternoons in Melbourne, surrounding areas and major Victorian provincial towns, and first thing Friday morning throughout the rest of Australia.

Best Bets

This nifty little form guide has been around for as long as we can remember and is known as the Bible for punters. It is loaded with excellent racing information for a publication so small in size.

The Best Bets is a pocket sized magazine that provides quality details for a horse's last 5 starts, along with specialised comments for Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide racing. Unfortunately, the quality of comments has declined in recent years due to the egos of some of the contributors being bigger than the horses they are commenting on.

Best Bets has less detailed fields and form for regional racing on the weekend, plus other relevant info such as jockey and trainer's premierships. The racing winning margins for each horse is an added benefit.

We thoroughly reccommend Best Bets if you are after a form guide that is easy to use and has a bucket load of racing information for the reasonable price of around $6.00. An added bonus is the small size of the magazine. It allows you to easily keep your copy and file away for future use should you want to check back through previous races during form study.

Other Horse Racing Publications

Practial Punting Monthly is not exactly a form guide but as far as the average punter goes we encourage you to go and buy yourself a copy of this wonderful racing magazine. It comes out monthly and these guys focus is on showing punters how to beat the bookmaker. Information such as money management, punting pitfalls, racing systems, how the professionals beat the bookies, and many more each month all dedicated to improving the punter.

Practical Punting Monthly shows the average punter how they might win at the races, and they also show punters how not to lose money so often by providing quality articles designed to reduce bad betting habits.

A must read magazine if you want to learn more about punting on the horses from racing journalists who have punters best interests at heart.

Australian Horse Racing Information

If you would like to know how to read and understand a typical form guide then please visit our Horse Racing Form Guide page where we explain all you need to know.

Check out Australian Track Ratings to learn about how Australian race tracks are rated for the many weather conditions found in this country.

If you are unfamiliar with how to join an online bookmaker and place bets take the time to read our Betting Online page which explains it all for you.

New to racing? Find out about Racing Bet Types available from online Australian bookmakers, while our Horse Racing Glossary provides all of the most common terms for Australian horse racing.