3 Handicapping Factors to Look at When a New Race Meet Opens

WIN WIN WIN SETS TRACK MARK IN PASCO; 2 OTHER STAKES RECORDS FALLby Glen S.

A new racing meet starting up adds an extra dimension to handicapping these races.  Do some research, be prepared and you will be ahead of the curve. Here are a few things to look for in the first week of racing at a new meet:

Let’s begin with the trainers:
-Understand the difference between the local trainers and the trainers that ship from track to track
-Sometimes the local horses are returning off longer layoffs and may need a start or two
-The trainers that move from track to track usually have a plan and that is “win early”
-Find those hot trainers quickly because after a week or so, everyone else jumps on board

Preview of Ohio racing’s Belterra Park meet in April.

Here is where you take advantage of the public that doesn’t follow or do the research early. After about a month the trainer stats will have the shipped in trainers with a great record and the locals not so good. But remember, the win early trainers had that as their goal, whereas the locals are in for the long haul.  In other words, be patient.  The local trainers will win their fair share of races.

Understanding where the horses are coming from
-It takes a bit of experience but ask around or even reply to this blog and I will help you out. What I mean by this, the level of
competition varies greatly from the A, B and C tracks in North America. Get to know them.  What tracks produce winners at this meet, and which ones don’t?
-For example a horse coming from Santa Anita and now racing at Fonner park, will not look good on form. But what to
look for is, did the horse show speed. The speed horses from top track are far better bets than the plodders that just
ran at the back. Big difference from a horse showing lots of early speed and finishing last than a local plodder that passes one or
two late.

Get detailed meet statistics on any track with Equibase

Last tip, know the horse
-Is the horse ready to run today, e.g. many works coming in?
-Is the horse at the right distance or does this look like a prep for a later race?
-Is this the right surface for the horse in question?

After you have done your above research and made your notes, you still need to look at the race shape to see how the race sets up.  This requires a little more work, but it certainly can pay off in the end.

Good racing

Handicapping Tip of the Day #16 – Favorites to Play Against

4 Times to Play Against the Favorite

by Glen S.

Handicapping tips from agameofskill.com

Everyone loves to pick a longshot or tout a big price, but when is the time to actually bet on the longshot? I would base a longshot on the price of the horse that it will pay when he wins. A longshot is not a horse with a morning line of 10-1 that goes off at 2-1. Clearly the line maker made an error and I wouldn’t consider that a longshot.

Finding a longshot can start with the expected favorite in the race. We know the favorites win around 35% of the time and sometimes you look at the favorite and need to realize there is very little chance he gets beat.

Here are a few times to try and beat the public choice

  • The horse is trying something different, such as stretching out in distance, moving to the turf, trying an off track, etc.
    The runner is coming off a month or longer with no activity, e.g. workout.
    The favorite is dropping in class off a good effort, for example, a second place finish in a higher class maiden race.
    The race shape is against him, for example, a-need-the-lead horse with lots of other speed in the race.