Playing the Odds – Gateway to the Game™

“What’s the best experience a newbie could have at the track?”

By Tom Amello offers this first installment of fan education and player development opportunities for Essential Core Players. Our long-term goal is to provide effective fan education and player development opportunities in a variety of formats. Today’s presentation targets new fans.

As the Thoroughbred racing industry fine tunes the concept of “Big Race-Day” events that entice new fans, racing venues, more than ever, face the challenge of helping these newbies gain a quick understanding of how to play the game.

Ask anyone in the industry this question: “What’s the best experience a newbie could have at the track?” The near-universal answer: “Win!” But, since the fact is that not everyone at the track can or will win, so what then? This question: “What’s the second best experience for newbies when they don’t win?” The near-universal answer: “Have fun, of course.” Which means exactly what, in terms of growing the fan base?

Woman and Man playing the horse racesI agree about having fun, and America’s Best Racing is doing a fine job of bringing the fun everyone experiences at the track to the crucial 18-35 demographic. But, if the answer to the first question is found in the context of wagering, then the answer to the second question must lie in that same context…making a wager. Newbies must be taught to wager in a way that empowers them, more often than not, to be on horses that will be in contention. Therefore, the second best experience for the “newbie” is cheering and rooting for horses in contention in the run to the wire because they are holding tickets on those horses. That’s the real excitement and fun to experience at the track…even when you don’t win.

Current on-track instructional programs, to the extent they exist, attempt to introduce newbies to handicapping, a difficult task made daunting by the limits of time. “Figurating”, the words of Colonel John R. Stingo in A.J. Lieblinngs’ The Honest Rainmaker, involves a process for working towards some form of opinion about race contestants and various outcome scenarios. The wagering that follows is the expression of those opinions. What, then, is a newbie, unskilled in past performances, and thus devoid of opinion, to do? How, in the absence of experience with past performances, can a newbie be expected to develop an opinion about a race?

For newbies, one immediate solution is Playing the Odds Board – Gateway to the Game™, and this is for several reasons. First, the Odds Board is the single constant at every racing venue. Second, the Odds Board represents the opinion of all bettors. Third, experienced horseplayers, players with informed opinions, makeup the bulk of the betting crowd. Fourth, the “informed” crowd’s opinions are represented on the Odds Board. Fifth, the Odds Board is a relatively “efficient market” in that, for all races, the crowd’s favorite (the horse at the lowest odds) wins more than the second favorite; the second choice wins more than the third choice; the third choice wins more than the fourth choice…and so on. The crowd’s long-term opinion is quite sound. Therefore, an understanding of the odds board is crucial for newbies. Experienced horseplayers have a context in which to evaluate the crowd’s opinion…the odds…and decide whether to play with or against the crowd. Newbies, without context or opinion, should, more often than not, play WITH the crowd.

Playing the Odds Board – Gateway to the Game™ , our betting guide for newbies, features a limited glossary of key terminology, four unique concepts for mastering the Odds Board, facts to support our concept, and specific examples for making wagers grounded in the Odds Board. Applying these concepts increases the probability that a newbie will wager on “live” horses, horses the informed crowd supports, and gain an appreciation for the game. The guide is the “Gateway to the Game”™.

To be clear, concepts about the power of the Odds Board are useful to all players. The guide is, however, intended as a road map into the game for the uninitiated and unfamiliar, not in any way a system that promises to change one’s life with a winning system of methodology.

Gateway to the Game by writer Tom AmelloDOWNLOAD THIS GUIDE & LEARN TO ENJOY HORSE RACING!
Get a printed version of the brochure at no extra cost

Purchase Playing the Odds Board – Gateway to the Game™ and receive a downloadable pdf file which you can view on any type of device. Additionally, for a limited-time you will receive a hard copy in the mail. Questions about the guide will be answered here on our website at  The two-for-one “Playing the Odds Board – Gateway to the Game™” is only $7.00.

This short guide is power packed and offers:

  • Four unique concepts for mastering the odds board
  • Facts to support our unique concept
  •  Specific examples for making wagers grounded in the Odds Board

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When you place your order for the instant download, please add a note with your mailing address so we can send you the printed brochure at no extra charge.

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