Louis Poised For Strictly Win

Dec 20, 2012 by

Louis Poised For Strictly Win

This series of Strictly has been quite the head-scratcher so it is fitting, in a way, that it is still perplexing us heading into the final. We always seek the value trades here, and at series start we saw enough potential negatives to try and take on the favourite Louis Smith. The cast appeared much stronger on the female side and we were unconvinced Louis would strike a chord with the show’s core middle England vote base.

Around about mid-series opposing Louis looked a shrewd call. There appeared a concerted effort among the judging panel to try and dampen his vote through constant nit-picking of his routines. This was the same sort of drip, drip, drip of negativity that eventually did for Matt Baker in 2010. But Louis bounced back with his Charleston in week 9 and any nagging doubts were as good as erased when the Star vote leak revealed Louis had been consistently topping the pv series-long.

Michael Vaughan looked like he had potential as a ‘journey’ contestant this year. So, briefly, did Nicky Byrne. And with the Star intimating that Lisa was polling at the top among the women, there was a case to be made for her to finish as Top Female, perhaps even Outright winner, so long as she could somehow sneak a place in the final, with Denise said to be struggling on the pv, and Kimberley landing bottom 2 earlier in the series from a position of joint second top on the judges’ leaderboard.

Each week we have watched with dismay as one by one these value betting propositions have been systematically picked off. It really does look like the days of the journey contestant a la Gough and Hollins are as good as over, with the judges hellbent on getting the best dancers into the final regardless of their popularity, or lack of, and the dance-off giving them extra leeway to effectively manage the eliminations in the show’s latter weeks.

The final will be decided by pv only and the last piece in the Louis jigsaw appeared to come with news the judges’ choice for him is his salsa to the Dirty Dancing theme, and he and Flavia have chosen to reprise the Charleston. These are 2 extremely crowd-pleasing routines, and we can only imagine Louis’s showdance will be another entertaining number full of gymnastic tricks and a real feast for the women who cram the BBC studio each week and proceed to give Louis standing ovations. He certainly has the perfect uplifting anthem to dance to in ‘Rule The World’.

All of this tells us the show has probably decided it is happy for Louis to win this series, concluding that his pv is unstoppable. We would have been more concerned if the judges had, say, requested he perform his paso again. A back price on Betfair of 1.8 Louis to win the series looks amazing value but if there is more of a Kimberley ramp-fest from the judges on Saturday, further money for her may see Louis’s price drift.

There are 2 ways of reading the judges inflated scores for Kimberley. One, they have given up on Denise and possibly Dani too, and see Kimberley as the only remaining contestant who could topple Louis on the pv (but the lack of de-ramping of Louis in the last few weeks suggests to us this is not the case). Or two, they have been seriously worried by Kimberley’s pv, so have continued to place her as high as possible on the leaderboard to ensure her safe passage to the final. Certainly that highly dubious 40 for her Charleston last week, which pushed her into 1st place on the leaderboard, hints strongly towards the latter.

We saw little in last week’s edit to discourage viewers from voting for Lisa, so find it difficult to imagine Kimberley topping either her or Louis on the pv last week, and with Lisa now gone, we would expect more of Lisa’s voters to migrate towards Dani rather than Kimberley or Denise.

If it wasn’t for those 2 recent Kimberley 40s, and certain polls such as the one on Digital Spy suggesting Kimberley has gained in popularity and is a genuine challenger to Louis, we would consider Kimberley a prize candidate to finish 4th. Denise has been bottom 2 twice and Kimberley once whereas Dani has avoided the dance-off series-long, suggesting it is Dani who is likely to be polling highest among the remaining women.

In the first round of dances, the judges’ pick, Kimberley will dance a VW to Christina Perri’s ‘A Thousand Years’. It’s certainly a good song choice to sell the romance of this floaty, spinning dance. Given Dani will dance the tango to Adele’s ‘Rumour Has It’ Kimberley has the edge here in connecting with the audience through the music, and rest assured the judges will pull out a 40 for Kimberley regardless of any errors. Louis’s salsa and Denise’s jive have the potential ‘wow’ factor though and we expect to see Denise earn a first 40 of the series barring major slip ups.

On this basis, Dani looks vulnerable in the first round of dances. The showdances, which we believe will be the second round of dances, could change things. Kimberley is dancing to Beyonce’s ‘Crazy In Love’ and Pasha’s choreography is invariably one of the biggest things in her favour. But does this song choice suggest we can expect something overtly sexual with some booty shaking? If so, this would be a likely negative for Kimberley – don’t forget it’s conservative, middle England, middle-aged women who are the powerhouse of Strictly’s voting demographic.

Dani is performing her showdance to Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody. This certainly has the potential to create plenty of drama in the routine, while early training room VTs suggest Denise is going to produce a real show-stopper with her showdance.

One couple will be eliminated at the start of the results show. Given Denise got no bottom 2 bounce in last week’s semi, there’s an obvious argument to be made that she is a near-cert for 4th. We are less confident as voting numbers will significantly rise on Saturday night and that 2nd bottom 2 appearance could kick start a certain sympathy wave, and get her above either Kimberley or Dani, especially if the judges angle their comments towards how hard done by she has been, and if she nails what promise to be 2 stand-out routines.

Denise is certainly not a value back at odds-on. If your book is like ours and you are banking on Dani making it to the final 3, it is a wise cover anyway to back Dani to finish 4th at a best price of 15-8 with Coral. And Kimberley is simply too big a price to pass up at 7-1 with Paddy Power.

If they get to perform their favourite dance of the series, Kimberley will dance the tango to Prince’s ‘When Doves Cry’, Dani, the jive to Olly Murs ‘Dance With Me Tonight’, Denise the Charleston to ‘Walk Like An Egyptian’, and Louis, also the Charleston, to ‘Dr Wanna Do’.

In terms of entertainment, the Charlestons have it in spades, though on recent form, if Kimberley is still in the competition, we expect her to be given another 40 here. The judges’ scores are, of course, for guidance only and in series 6 it is worth bearing in mind Lisa Snowdon landed two perfect 40s from the judges and still finished 3rd.

In conclusion, other than expecting Louis to win, we are far from confident how it will play out with the 3 female finalists which again suggests to us a value approach is the best way to proceed.

Having previously advised Dani for Top Female and the Louis/Dani straight forecast, our biggest exposure going into the live show is on Kimberley. But unless there is some wild Kimberley ramping, and Louis de-ramping we won’t be backing Kimberley for the win, and her Top Female price is ludicrously short. If you have a similar book pre-show, the best value play is to back the Louis/Kimberley straight forecast at 13-8 with Boylesports.

Given the topsy-turvy nature of this series, and the fact we always favour a value approach, we would also advise a speculative bet on the Louis/Denise straight forecast at 10-1 with Boylesports.

There remains the possibility the BBC will not reveal who has finished 3rd and who has finished runner-up, and only announce the winner when it reaches the final 3 stage. This could cause complications with Top Female and straight forecast wagers, as SCD never releases voting figures. This is another reason why that 10-1 Louis/Denise looks value because if Louis wins and 2nd place isn’t revealed, the bookies will likely have to settle the Top Female and straight forecast markets applying dead-heat rules.

Do you agree Louis is looking good for the win and Denise has a fighting chance of avoiding 4th place? We have our fingers crossed for Dani as much for regular reader Heisenberg who stands to win over 4K should she win the series having staked an inspired £10 win double on her and James Arthur to win X Factor at combined odds of 442-1.

We will update in the Comments section below if we see any other value in the final markets as soon as the high street bookies issue prices.
Rob Furber

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42 Comments

  1. Rob

    Paddy Power are the 1st up with final prices.

    Kimberley at 15-8 to be highest scorer looks the play if you think Denise will finish 4th.

    Wording of PP bet:

    Applies to the celebrity with the highest combined score from the judges for all dances on the final night. Bets void should more than one couple get exactly the same number of judges’ points overall.

    If we assume the judges award marks for the couples’ 3rd dances, whoever finishes 4th is out of the reckoning.

    Still expect potential 40s for Denise’s first 2 dances, & a possible tie between her & Kimberley.

    A saver on Denise at 9-4 is the way to go if you think Dani will finish 4th, or there’s a chance Kimberley could finish 4th.

  2. Heisenberg

    Hi Rob,

    Really appreciate your advice here (also Boki).

    Before I make my play do you think Kimberley’s absence from the Strictly tour has any bearing on her chances of victory? Maybe even more reason to ramp Louis to high heaven on Saturday given that it makes more commercial sense to have your star performer and show winner as a selling angle for successful marketing of the tour. It would be like going to see the X-Factor tour with no James Arthur (maybe a good thing depending on your taste).

    As you rightly point out, Louis’ dance choices would certainly suggest this is the case. I recommend re-watching his dirty dancing salsa routine from earlier in the season to show just how rapturous the atmosphere will be after his first dance on Saturday (and probably the point at which his odds shorten to about 1/3).

    Your thoughts as always much appreciated.

    Cheers.

  3. hemsby

    Informative article,as ever Rob.

    Complete novice to betting on this show,and have enjoyed reading your thoughts all series.I would also like to take the opportunity to praise you for your integrity in not “forgetting” about previous suggestions which haven’t been successful….very commendable.
    Your record on betting on these type of shows is very impressive,and it would be very easy to highlight winners,and ignore losers.
    FWIW my plays this week are Kim to be eliminated first,and Louis/Denise and Louis/Dani s/f’s so I was pleased to see you in some kind of agreement….good luck and thanks for all the articles this series.

  4. Rob

    It’s a very good point about the Strictly tour, Heisenberg, & a potential big negative for Kimberley’s winning chances.

    Difficult to know where the market will go on Saturday – been surprised by just how short Kimberley’s odds have already gone, but Louis’s salsa will surely go down a storm assuming he gets through it unscathed.

    Thanks hemsby – sometimes things go awry with tv betting & this series of Strictly has been as tricky as X Factor & very difficult to trade the Outright into the ‘all green’ ideal. Again, it has been the weekly markets that have proved most profitable.

    If you take a value approach to these markets it can often be a case of close but no cigar, but firmly of the view it’s the best approach because if your trading analysis is sound & strong, you will make your value trades pay & always turn a profit in the long-term despite the odd setback along the way.

  5. Guildo Horn Forever

    Just as I switched betting allegiance late in the day in the X Factor, here too I’ve jumped on the late developing bandwagon of the contestant I like least.
    I’d backed Dani at all prices down from 14/1 for top female, but have given up hope on that happening and have covered Kimberley in that market with such a blanket of bets (at 1/2), that in fact Dani is now my cover bet!
    Interesting the speed at which moods shift (I hope!):
    http://www.mirror.co.uk/tv/tv-news/strictly-come-dancing-kimberley-walsh-1443664
    I think one of Denise’s biggest handicaps is her partner James.
    Am very worried at reading the comments above that believe Denise could finish top female. Too painful to contemplate for me!
    Many moons ago, I took the 6/1 Corals initially and briefly offered for Louis each way, but have placed at least five times the amount of the win part of that bet since on a series of bets for Dani to win outright. All told, my ideal scenario is a Louis-Kimberly one-two; or a Dani win.
    I think the goodwill Dani accumulated from the public due to the on-line jibes about her shape has been undone by her insistence on describing herself as a size 6 (UK sizing). Understandable she should react with such a claim but it took a little of the wind from her sails, I think.
    I dance a poor rumba myself, but Lisa’s effort the other week was useless. I never considered her a challenger and think her popularity has long been on the wane.
    Denise, though likeable, is too desperate to win and James’s is a vote-losing partner if ever I’ve seen one.
    For future Strictly betting will be careful given’s Rob’s notes on dead-heat settling.
    The link below might help explain the over-scoring of Lisa most of the series long:
    http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/news/lisa-riley-to-star-in-stage-show-strictly-confidential-next-year-8422381.html

  6. Guildo Horn Forever

    One other thing: I am worried by the Lisa Snowden comparison; but am hopeful that Kimberley is thought of more in terms of Alesha.

  7. Guildo Horn Forever

    Had to share this fascinating article link:
    http://www.mirror.co.uk/tv/tv-news/strictly-come-dancing-tess-daly-1499486

    I take heart from the continuation of the fabulous pimping of Kimberley; Louis is given mostly positive comments, I feel; but poor Denise is damned with slights and inferences throughout.

    I particularly liked this comment:
    “Denise was favourite from the beginning but now Kimberley has steamed ahead as the judges’ favourite for the past two weeks in a row and she’s really popular with the public too.”

    A direct appeal to potential DVO supporters to vote for Kimbo is my reading.

    Finger crossed!

  8. Rob

    Thanks for posting the link, Guildo.

    Quite amusing Tess says it beats XF cos SCD is not manipulated – think seasoned followers of Strictly would disagree with that statement. XF is more manipulated, certainly, but SCD is also manipulated.

    Not sure we can read too much into her comments – she seems to talk throughout mostly in platitudes. Perhaps of most interest, from a betting perspective is this info:

    “I get to wear not one but TWO fabulous frocks for the final, one for the main and one for the results show.

    “I’m planning on wearing an Ashish sequinned gown and I’ve had three fittings with Suzanne Neville for the other dress-and very kindly, she indulged the odd suggestion of mine when it came to the design.”

    Can we do some detective work on Ashish sequinned gowns & land a coup on Paddy Power’s ‘colour of Tess’s dress’ market?

    Have only found this so far, & it was a design from 2011 so probably not Tess’s choice. Further investigation required.

    http://inofashion.com/full-length-sequin-gown-ashish-january-11-2011-1400/

  9. Guildo Horn Forever

    “Paddy Power’s ‘colour of Tess’s dress’ market?”
    I bet on the colour of the Queen’s hat, but this market was news to me!

    For my Sherlocking contribution I present this:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2205122/London-Fashion-Week-Ashish-sees-scrunchies-silver-quadratic-equations-Spring-Summer-13.html

    I guess for the final Tess will want to be almost debuting the latest designer nonsense, and London Fashion Week from three months ago is the latest Ashish show I can find.
    So is the bright orange number (featured by the skeletal figure on the left hand side of the second pair of photos down) a contender?

    Or will Ashish have created and reserved a number for Tess that is different from anything in his present or recent back catalogue?

  10. Guildo Horn Forever

    I think this link (which is the first result displayed by a Google Chrome search) partly explains why silver is 5/2 favourite.
    http://www.net-a-porter.com/product/49949

  11. Rob

    Top sleuthing Guildo!

    Can definitely picture Tess in that silver gown. 5-2 probably value given it appears the only Ashish gown on the market atm.

    Danger is, as you say, he may have created a one-off especially for her. But perhaps a hint also that the price is discounted – there’s a recession on & the Beeb needs to appear thrifty, or Tess clocked it as a bargain 🙂

  12. Boki

    Rob, I’m also triggered by Heisenberg’s comment about Kim not doing the tour. Also, isn’t it strange that they have chosen ‘A Thousand Years’ for her which put her to bottom2? It’s the last one I would expect to be honest…

  13. Rob

    The argument goes, voting figures likely very low in those early weeks, Boki, & maybe it wasn’t so much the dance that resulted in viewers not voting for Kimberley but mere apathy.

    Can see the judges waxing lyrical about the romance of it. Should not be hard to execute well, & expect another Kimberley 40.

    In a way you could argue this floaty ballroom routine will differentiate her, certainly from the high energy Latin routines Denise & Louis have. But her not going on the tour has to be viewed as a big potential negative, & in a final my view is the audience really wants to be entertained, and most viewers will be more easily pleased by the fast Latins.

  14. Heisenberg

    Well, I’m very encouraged about Dani’s chances of finishing at least 2nd after watching last nights ‘It Takes Two’ – great relationship between her and Vincent (who is very popular), easily the most endearing celeb/pro partnership this series, if not ever.

    In relation to my bet scenario the tumbling of Dani’s outright odds has really taken the shine off my 442/1 James Arthur/Dani win double. Anyone wanting to win a similar amount on a Dani victory need only stake £200 at current odds, but I am convinced these odds are way off the mark and as you have suggested Rob, Dani represents a fantastic back-to-lay opportunity for in-play trading.

    I remain convinced that Kimberley has already peaked and that her overscoring in the last 2 weeks was more to do with a fear of Lisa making the final rather than pushing Kimberley for the win – as a result I consider her very vulnerable for 1st elimination tonight as I agree that Denise may get some sympathy votes and unquestionable judges support.

    There’s still no confirmation of 2nd and 3rd place will be announced or only the winner from 3, this is from the Radio Times online:

    “Dani, Louis, Denise and Kimberley return to the ballroom one last time and following an elimination, just three couples battle it out for the glitterball trophy. While the votes are counted, there is a performance by chart-topper Robbie Williams, and all this year’s contestants take to the dance floor for a final routine, before the names of the 2012 champions are revealed. Last in the series.”

    So, these are the markets I’ll be playing:

    Louis Outright
    Louis/Dani Forecast
    Kimberley next elimination

    Haven’t decided the splits yet because I don’t want to go large on the forecast until I know that 2nd and 3rd positions will be announced.

    I don’t rate Kimberley’s chances of the win so I may go large on the Louis outright as the main cover for my double.

  15. Rob

    Totally agree Heisenberg – Dani & Vincent came across brilliantly on ITT last night. They have formed an endearing & genuine partnership.

    They also have a possible advantage in the final tonight in that their show narrative & scoring still has somewhere to go. They’ve not received a 40 yet & Karen Hardy earlier in the week was saying their AT deserved a 40. So along with Denise, Dani really should earn a 40 tonight, maybe more than one 40.

    Dani at 5-1 to be TF; Kimberley 4-11, looks far too wide a price gulf given Dani has not been bottom 2. And the 13-2 Louis/Dani straight forecast with Coral is even better value.

    Have my fingers crossed for you – with the right kind of comments & scores from the judges, good VTs like we saw on ITT, & a great showdance, can definitely see Dani being the last woman standing (if 3rd is announced).

    • Rob

      SportingBet has some final markets up – disappointed nothing from WH or Ladbrokes.

      Could have some dead-heat 40s but still think Denise is the one most likely to land 40s if she executes her routines well.

      Denise top showdance – 9-4
      Denise top judges’ choice dance – 11-8

      Kimberley’s showdance – under 38.5 looks value at 11-8

      Would also be tempted by Louis’s salsa – over 37.5 at 5-6

      10s from Darcy & Bruno look likely if he nails it, & 9s from Craig & Len well within compass.

  16. Rob

    This is not the confirmed r.o. tonight but useful reference for all the dance & song choices:

    BBC One, Saturday 22nd December 1830—1955 (Main Show)

    Kimberley & Pasha
    Judges Choice – Viennese Waltz to A Thousand Years by Christina Perri
    Showdance to Crazy in Love by Beyoncé

    Denise & James
    Judges Choice – Jive to Tutti Frutti by Little Richard
    Showdance to What A Feeling by Irene Cara

    Dani & Vincent
    Judges Choice – Tango to Rumour Has It by Adele
    Showdance to Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen

    Louis & Flavia
    Judges Choice – Salsa to (I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes
    Showdance to Rule The World by Take That

    BBC One Saturday 22nd December 2050-2200 (Results Show)
    ** One Couple will be eliminated at the start of the results show on Saturday night – so only three of the couple will perform the below**

    Kimberley & Pasha
    Favourite Dance – Tango to When Doves Cry by Prince

    Denise & James
    Favourite Dance – Charleston to Walk Like an Egyptian by The Puppini Sisters

    Dani & Vincent
    Favourite Dance – Jive to Dance With Me Tonight by Olly Murs

    Louis & Flavia
    Favourite Dance – Charleston to Dr Wanna Do by Caro Emerald

  17. Heisenberg

    Final prediction (combination of heart & mind):

    1st Louis
    2nd Dani
    3rd Kimberley
    4th Denise

    Really hoping the final result is revealed in a clear 3, 2, 1 order otherwise I have several forecasts taking a nosedive!

    Good luck to all… and COME ON DANI ££££

  18. Heisenberg

    Final prediction (combination of heart & mind):

    1st Louis
    2nd Dani
    3rd Kimberley
    4th Denise

    Really hoping the final result is revealed in a clear 3, 2, 1 order otherwise I have several forecasts taking a nosedive!

    Good luck to all… and COME ON DANI ££££

  19. Louis's wig

    Just a massive thanks Rob, 100% on the elimination bets where I’ve blindly followed you(to be honest don’t really know what I’m watching). Awesome.

  20. Rob

    Colour of Tess’s dress – silver – landed. Hope Guildo & others followed that inspired gamble 🙂

    Well, they tried their best to throw Dani under a bus tonight, though they did much the same last week & she managed to avoid bottom 2. Fingers crossed for you, Heisenberg, that she makes it through again.

    It has appeared to be Louis’s crowning – pleased to hear you have turned a nice profit Louis’s Wig following the advice here. Good luck all!!!

    • Rob

      Hope everyone who follows the site won nicely tonight. Looks like dead-heat for TF & straight forecast bets involving Denise & Kimberley, as suggested.

      Louis at 1.8, Dani 4th – 15-8, Louis/Kimberley – 13-8, Louis/Denise – 10-1

      All flagged up in final preview. Thanks all for reading & contributing.

  21. Boki

    Great calls Rob, esp Louis/Denise!
    At the end it was a very turbulent 1st season for me, esp with these long term markets but I’m glad I survived (mainly red on Kim everywhere) and made just about a 4 figure profit.
    Cheers and many thanks for all the covering!

    Only one question remains: what’s next ? 🙂

  22. Guildo Horn Forever

    The Louis victory was welcome but am horrified that they won’t be announcing second place – as you suggested in advance, Rob. I think it is a shoe-in that Kimbo received more votes than Denise took.
    A pile of cash on a dead-heat finisher at odds of 1/2.
    Arrrgghh!
    Please say the Beeb will take into consideration the needs of the betting community and release the result! We know Lois received the gold, now hey need to award the silver and bronze, for Heaven’s sake!
    Am really annoyed at myself for not backing Denise in the top female market, at a large price, yesterday. Read Rob’s understanding of what he had read as to finishing order details, but didn’t react.
    Am wondering if I should keep hold of my Kimbo top female slips, waiting to see if the Beeb name who finished second and third.
    Though will feel a banana if I do and it transpires DVO nabbed Silver!

  23. Rob

    BBC say they aren’t revealing the 1-2-3 on SCD as it’s “all about Louis”!

    Not sure Guildo – Star are on the case but bookies won’t take word of Star, & will require official statement from the Beeb. May well not be forthcoming so looking like dead-heat atm.

    Thanks Boki – glad you are nicely up on the series.

  24. Guildo Horn Forever

    More painful reflections on DVO betting.
    She was about 6/1 (the outsider) to be top female yesterday.
    In a race with 4 runners, that bet yields a 6/1 winner for 1st place, an (in effect) 5/2 (I think) winner for 2nd place and a 5/2 winner for 3rd place.
    Plus she was available at evens to be 4th!
    Two bets: one guaranteed winner: either even money; or 5/2 or 6/1.
    Dutch Heaven.

  25. Guildo Horn Forever

    Oh! So long as Lois didn’t finish 4th, that is! Hahaha!
    Even there, a miniscule extra bet on Louis to be eliminated at wild odds would have been a simple way to boost your co-winner bet at 6/1.

  26. Guildo Horn Forever

    Just realised my Dutch Heaven notion is utter nonsense.
    Shall fall silent now and quietly leave the room!

  27. Tim B

    Can anyone please explain what a dead heat actually entails? I was shocked last night to realise that my Louis/Kimberley forecast bet was settled as a win when I was merely expecting to get my money back! So that was a nice surprise. Betfair are also still working out what to do with some of their markets. I was on Kim for runner up and Den for 3rd place. Is there a chance that these might be settled as winners as well?

  28. Rob

    Hi Tim,

    If settled as a dead-heat, it means you get paid out to only half your stake. On the BBC website today it states:

    ‘Kimberley Walsh and Denise Van Outen are joint runners-up of Strictly Come Dancing 2012’

    Who settled your Louis/Kimberley forecast, Tim, & was it settled in full? High st bookies seem to still be deciding how they are going to approach Top Female and straight forecast markets.

  29. Tim B

    Thanks Rob, I get it now. It was the lovely folks at Boylesports who settled my Louis/Kimberley win bet in full.

  30. Boki

    The funny thing is that I today realized WH settled my Louis/Denise forecast bet also in full.

  31. Guildo Horn Forever

    Well done to everyone who listened closely to Rob re the Louis straight forecast betting. I hope I have learnt the lesson.

    On another note, I notice the markets are up and running on the Melodifestivalen. Not an event I have bet on before.
    I dislike / don’t rate the others in the top four in the betting so is 9/2 a fair price for the multi-talented Ulrik to go two better than last year?
    Any pointers or guidance, Rob?

  32. Rob

    Thanks for the comments, Guildo. ESC 2013 will be the site’s main focus in 2013, as we head towards Malmo in May.

    Last year, after hearing a snippet of Loreen’s Euphoria for the 1st time pre-MF heat, got stuck in to the 5 & 6-1 being dangled by the high st bookies for her to win MF. Amazingly, the song was never a bigger price than this when full ESC 2012 Outright betting opened.

    Obviously risky to get too heavily involved before hearing any of this year’s MF songs, but looks like the bookies have it about right.

    Ulrik Munther, as you point out, 3rd last year, likely to be a strong contender. David Lungren, who finished 4th in last year’s final from the coffin slot of 1, & beat Munther in his heat, should have another good tune up his sleeve.

    For Army Of Lovers, gather this is their big comeback, & they could get nostalgia vote. You’d have to expect something decent from them to be willing to enter MF. They are drawn in same heat as Munther so will be interesting to see who wins there.

    Then there’s Amanda Fondell, who apparently won Swedish ‘Pop Idol’ in 2011… so presumably is well liked & she might have something decent to offer.

    For an early position, might be best to take best prices on these 4, scale your stakes for similar potential returns on each, & have them effectively competing for you vs the field.

    Hope you also managed to back ‘colour of Tess’s dress’ – as silver was landed.

  33. Rob

    That’s good to hear, Boki. Hopefully this will be same approach as other bookies.

    In answer to your earlier question, what next? Will try & give Dancing On Ice some coverage with a series preview. Then, ESC 2013 will become main focus as we have more national finals & the contenders start to emerge heading towards Malmo in May.

  34. Boki

    Looking forward to DOI coverage as well, don’t know anything about it to be honest (just like SCD before this season so lot to learn). In the meantime, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  35. Guildo Horn Forever

    Hi Rob,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the upcoming Melodifestavalen. I hadn’t realised David Lungren had competed from trap 1 in the running order, last year.

    May I talk a little about Dancing on Ice? as I have already had a bet on the outright.
    I snapped up the 3/1 for Beth Tweddle asap.

    About the only totally correct decision I made re Strictly betting was in backing Louis on the opening market shows at 6/1.
    I thought this was a spectacular price because:
    a) he was an young, male, medal-winning London Olympian
    b) he was a housewives favourite during the Games
    c) he was second best in the world at a discipline in artistic gymnastics
    d) he was an expert on the pommel horse (not the still rings, uneven bars, etc). Only an expert in the floor event would be better qualified to rapidly learn ballroom and Latin dancing.

    One look at the Dancing on Ice market and Beth Tweddle jumped out at me.
    She is not only a champ at the uneven bars but also the floor exercise. Also she has an all-round silver from ten years ago.
    Plus she is little, which is a positive for the male partner lifting her; although a negative would be that she may not look as elegant as a taller female skater (still, she’s only a few inches shorter than sex-on-skates, Katerina Witt).
    I once read an auto-biography of a female stunt woman, who remarked that her early training in gymnastics was a huge advantage in her future stunt career, as she was very comfortable with aerial work and had a keen kinaesthetic, body-in-flight awareness.

    Then there is the Liverpool connection for Beth. Although she was born in Cheshire, I think of her as a Scouser. She graduated from JMU and competes and trains for and out of Liverpool.
    I’m in mind here not only of the Marcus Collins regional vote, the Chris Maloney regional vote and the all-time (Justice Collective inspired) Liverpool voice, power and unity, but also that Ray Quinn is a previous winner of Dancing on Ice.

    The two potential problems I can think of for Beth are this: there transpires to be a better skater amongst her competitors (!) and the fact that she may come to be seen to have an unfair advantage.

    Louis Smith’s background advantage (and Kimberly’s, Dani’s and Lisa’s) was masked by the singling out of Denise Van Outen as the one who had the unfair advantage. (Though, personally, I think a lot of the unspoken heat towards DVO was to do with her snagging of Lee Mead (via Any Dream Will Do).)

    Beth may by perceived to have a (comparative) unfair advantage and may struggle to go ‘on a journey’.

    Certainly, I don’t foresee a Bronze medal winner for the balance beam having that much trouble learning to balance on ice skates! Or lack for courage to do so!

    I might do well to look at her rivals now!

  36. Rob

    Top post, Guildo, & outline of Beth’s many potential pros. As you say, maybe it’s only the perception of ‘unfair advantage’ & lack of a journey that could stop her.

    When the DOI field was officially announced, also backed Beth & got some 4-1. In the upcoming preview here will be focusing on some of her opponents as better value because Beth looks too short now at 5-2.

    & to Boki, Guildo & all our readers – have a great Christmas & here’s to another highly profitable tv betting season in 2013 🙂

  37. Guildo Horn Forever

    4/1?! Wow, you had your skates on!

    Have had a look over her rivals and I see one that stands out as a potential danger (and is probably over-priced); and notice another rival whose cramped price is unfathomable to me.

    Am looking forward to your preview.

    Happy Christmas.

  38. Rob

    Today’s Star reveals Denise came 2nd, Kimberley 3rd – appears at the very end of this story. Tom Savage also Tweeted this news last night:

    http://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/view/290341/Strictly-Come-Dancing-s-Louis-Smith-is-so-kissed-off/

    So those who were only paid out dead-heat on Denise for Top Female can feel aggrieved & possible grounds to request a full pay out.

    Ditto those who only got dead-heat return on the 1st Louis 2nd Denise straight forecast.

  39. Guildo Horn Forever

    It seems you were spot on, yet again Rob, with your concern that the choreography to Kimberley’s ‘Crazy in Love’ might not play well to the voting demographic.
    Conversely, Louis’s state of undress, stripped to the waist in his showdance, probably proved a huge turn-on to the same voting demographic (plus it was played for grace rather than heat.)

    Now I have never felt so relieved at a dead-heat 1/2 winner!
    Am stunned Denise finished second.

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