Handicapping Basics

A simple way to determine if a horse likes an off track, is to check his Wet record on my tip sheet or look at the horse's individual past performances on a wet track. The horse looked significantly better in his last outing compared to the horse's typical form. Simply, you can compare the records between the previous and current trainers. Once you can project or figure that certain horses will be near the pace, certain horses will be mid pack in the race, and certain horses will be far back, then you are well on your way to visualizing how the race will be run and who may come out on top when the smoke clears. SO FAR THIS YEAR...

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Only the fast track race must be of interest to a horse racing handicapper. If a performance of the horse was not consistent, that horse is a bad candidate. If a horse competes in the class where it has not been successful it does not deserve your bet. If a form of the horse shows a decline the odds are against it. The following are the good rules for eliminating questionable horses.

Consistency and current form of the horse. All the information regarding consistency and current form of the horse as well as other data related to horses and races can be found in Daily Racing Form, which is a must to have source for any horse racing handicapper. Daily Racing Form also will tell you about current form.

Daily Racing Form contains enough information for that purpose. If a horse competes in the claiming races then the size of a claiming price is a good indicator. It is more difficult to find out the class of the horse running in the allowance races where horses can not be claimed. Many horse racing handicappers use a simple formula to figure out an allowance level of the horse. They divide the amount of money won by the number of places taken by the horse. If another horse won 15, and took the same number of places, the class will be 15, A horse with a higher class, obviously, is a favorite against a horse from a lower class.

If a horse is entered into a race that has a lower class, the horse has a good chance to be in the money and deserves a bet in that particular horse race. The quality, ability and experience of the horse trainer are a crucial factor to consider in your handicapping thought process.

Not all horse trainers have been created equal. A horse trainer knows his horse like nobody else. He knows what the horse needs to be best prepared for a particular race.

A horse racing handicapper should try to gather as much information as possible about the trainer of the horse he is betting on. A good horse trainer like a good horse is supposed to have consistent record of good results. The value of the jockey. However, the good riders can squeeze the maximum performance out of the horse.

The same horse runs better under one jockey than under the other. The difference between jockeys is confirmed by statistics. Obviously, there are good consistently winning riders and there are less capable ones.

As soon as they start getting good results, the riders start to attract the attention of the horse trainers and owners. In result, they get opportunities to ride best horses. Once you can project or figure that certain horses will be near the pace, certain horses will be mid pack in the race, and certain horses will be far back, then you are well on your way to visualizing how the race will be run and who may come out on top when the smoke clears.

Again theoretically if there is only one horse in the race that has superior early speed, his chances of going wire to wire is strengthened. If there are a number of horses that possess similar early speed, this could set up the winning move for a runner that can come from mid pack or from far back. Other important things to consider are the jockey, trainer, when the horse raced last and who has that horse been facing.

Players must know the top riders and trainers on their circuit and then go a step further by investigating where those human players excel. Some riders fit certain horses with certain styles. And some trainers excel in particular categories like first-time starters, turf runners, runners first time after being claimed or runners that are coming back from an extended vacation.

When it comes time to stepping up to the plate and making the wager, be well versed about what you want to bet and how much you expect to make from that bet. There are a plethora of options. There is straight win, place and show wagering. Daily doubles are the winners of 2 designated races. Trifectas and superfectas are extended exactas to the third and fourth finishers respectively. Pick 3s to Pick 6s are the wagers that must pick the winners of consecutive races and can be the payday that all are looking for.

Managing money is paramount to success at the track. Never bet over your head and never chase your cash. Rate your bets and determine how much a prime bet or a side bet will fit into your bankroll. The successful horseplayer must have control, must know when to hold them and when to fold them and at the same time not be too rigid.

Each race is different and players must adapt on the fly sometimes. Keep eyes and ears open and good luck to all. OddsShark provides live odds and sports betting lines with point spreads and totals.