Solving the Riddle of Handicapping Stakes Races Again…

Solving the Riddle of Handicapping Stakes Races Again…

In our most recent blog, Solving the Riddle of Handicapping Stakes Races” I proposed the following…

“In the most obvious and elemental way, we need to reduce the race to the logical contenders based on statistical probability in any given field and then wager on the horse or horses within those contenders that will provide the most value.  People are pretty good at recognizing that.  iHandicapRaces with PacePals is much, much better.

Here is the method… when evaluating the horses in any stakes race, dirt or turf, we need to look at the horse’s last race.  Who are the best off their last race?  We aren’t looking at workouts, or trainers and jockeys, track bias or anything else as a single separating factor.  We are honing in on their last race.  A stakes race is not like any average claiming or maiden event that we find occurring on a daily basis at tracks all over America.  So what better race to demonstrate how iHandicapRaces with PacePals solves the riddle than the Arlington Million.”

I would like to qualify that by saying now, as of this past Saturday’s premier stakes race, the historical Travers at Saratoga, “So what better race to demonstrate how iHandicapRaces with PacePals solves the riddle than the Travers Stakes at Saratoga.”  Because both stakes races are solid examples of how using iHandicapRaces with PacePals and looking at the last effort in a stakes race will lead you to those top 3 or 4 contenders that will produce the winner more often than not.  Then next, the obvious question, is there value in betting one or more of these contenders that iHandicapRaces with PacePals has led us to?  With Tapwrit as the morning-line favorite at 7/2, we have been given an early and probable answer to that.

If we start the process, as usually we should, we observe the speed graph at the default settings that iHandicapRaces with PacePals gives us as the first step.

We can easily see the contenders that the artificial intelligence of our pick engine has produced based on all of the handicapping angles that have been processed by the iHandicapRaces with PacePals’ algorithms differentiating each contender from one another  The advantage of this is that we are also seeing what horses are consistently fastest in terms of feet per second in their last three races regardless of surface, visually and quickly.  We don’t need to pore over speed figures and fractional times at various calls of these last three races for each and every horse in the field in the racing form.  It has been done for you.

Next, we want to look at our speed graph below and check the feet per second that each horse achieved in its LAST effort.  Again, notice how visually and quickly we can accomplish this using iHandicapRaces with PacePals.  Now we get a look at speed as seen not through an average, but recency.  In other words, FORM.

Next, we want to go through the same process for early pace to see what contenders might carry that speed to jump out to a lead.  The last three average on both surfaces, as it applies, remembering that pace is thought of as the overall speed in which a race was run, but also as a handicapper you must be acutely aware of recognizing those horses capable of sustained pace in the early stages of a race as well as how it relates to overall pace.  This normally would be labor intensive as well as incredibly time-consuming, creating many opportunities to make mistakes as all handicappers are prone to do.  But NOT with the visual clarity and conciseness of iHandicapRaces with PacePals.

And early pace below as seen in the horses’ last race on dirt, today’s surface.

And now the same recognition below as seen in overall pace for the last race on both surfaces in case we have a turf standout that might surprise on the dirt.

So we need to know not only how fast any contender runs, but how that horse runs fast.  The QUAD PLOT gives us that better, in a matchup of the horses running against each other today, than any handicapping tool that I know of. Take note of the four horses in the Quad Plot.  Because of this, we see in an instant what horses have the ability to get out away from the rest of the field regardless of their running style.  Even professional handicappers sometimes overlook the fact that running style is not always going to be a constant in and of itself.  But rather, and more importantly, is a result of the horses that create the matchup for any given race.  Stakes quality horses have the talent to usually adapt to what is required in a winning run style based on its opponents.  Can we see this any easier?

Our top choice, #3, West Coast, dominates in early pace versus this field with its last three races in the Quad Plot for early pace.  Look at the two Quad Plots below where we isolate West Coast and then compare to the others in the Quad Plot in their last three races for early pace.

We should take a brief look at the last 5 races for each horse in the Quad Plot to get a visual sense of any horses consistently dominating.  And then see how our contenders stack up in overall pace based on their last race.  Basically, this would be impossible with the racing form.  With iHandicapRaces with PacePals… you just need to look at the graphs.

Who are the best horses in this field in overall pace based on their last race?  Just look below…

Can you imagine if you asked a traditional handicapper to accomplish what we just did in a matter of a few minutes?

We have established quickly who has the best early speed and pace in its last five races, its last three, and its most recent race out of an entire field of some of the most talented horses the sport has to offer.  Our traditional handicapper would then have to try to determine the contenders who have the best overall pace and speed combined.  We just need to look…

Are you starting to feel confident about our top contender’s chances?  On top of that, look at the stats below we have available to us to further evaluate.  West Coast’s connections are awesome.  Remember, TAPWRIT is the early favorite, at 7/2.

We can see who those connections are by simply looking at the PacePals chart.  Bob Baffert and “Hall of Famer,” Mike Smith for the ride.  Easy enough to evaluate, wouldn’t you say?

West Coast had little trouble putting the field away, winning wire to wire, 3 1/4 lengths in front and paying $14.60.

So how to bet to win?  Good Samaritan, #5, became the post time favorite at just under 4/1, so real value in all the contenders.  If you were worried about the favorite, we need to use the HD Calculator to cover ourselves.  ALWAYS MINIMIZE OUR LOSSES.  We can bet the top 4 contenders, as you see below, and realize a minimum of 75% no matter which contender wins.  Or look further…

If we feel confident in our top three contenders, we can increase our ROI to a minimum of 125%.  Spectacular, isn’t it, to be able to modify your bet accurately and instantly without error and giving you the maximum return based on the odds.

And in the following examples, we can increase our return on the horse we feel the most confident in of the three by simply tapping the + button until you get what you want for all three.  Observe the following three examples below…

And if we are really only concerned about our top choice and the favorite, what iHandicapRaces with PacePals has given us with no handicapping, if that is how you would choose to go, Look how easy and more significantly CORRECT.  You are controlling the return on your investment.

And again, increase the amount bet of your base wager on the horse you feel strongest about without fear of losing to the favorite, and getting a great return had the favorite won.

Look at Good Samaritan’s Stats Box below and immediately you are acutely aware that the jockey and trainer connections are just not as strong as West Coast.  As it turns out, Good Samaritan finished a distant 9 lengths behind West Coast.

In stakes’ races, as I said in the previous blog, hone in on the last race to narrow down your contenders.  This is what separates the potential winner from the rest, but it doesn’t hurt to have Mike Smith and Bob Baffert helping.  AND NEEDLESS TO SAY…IT DOESN’T HURT TO HAVE iHandicapRaces with PacePals more than helping you make the correct decisions in both your handicapping and betting.



Solving the Riddle of Handicapping Stakes Races

Solving the Riddle of Handicapping Stakes Races

The Arlington Million, the $1 million, Grade 1 Stakes race that took place this past Saturday at Arlington Park in Chicago is a “Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series” race that if won gets that horse into this November’s Breeders’ Cup Longines Turf event worth $4,000,000.  Beginning in 1981, historically, the Arlington Million has recorded victories by some of the top turf horses that horse racing has ever seen.

So to handicap this race seems pretty intimidating, doesn’t it?  Why, exactly, is that?  Perhaps because you have such talented competitive horses, some coming from Europe as the best foreign shippers turf horse racing has to offer, casual handicappers scratch their heads and try to find anything that they think will separate the contenders.  Not an easy task.  Or so you would think.

Professional and public handicappers generally felt that Saturday in this Arlington Million, the consensus boiled down to four horses.  Oscar Nominated, Mekhtaal, Deauville and Kasaqui were thought the best for a variety of very valid reasons.

What I am going to show you is how having iHandicapRaces with PacePals will, time and time again, through a consistent methodology using artificial intelligence will inevitably lead you to results that the most knowledgable experts in horse racing will sometimes miss.

Realistically, as we all know by now, a positive ROI does NOT depend, over time, on selecting a single winner.  Thoroughbred horses are athletes like athletes in any sport.  Things happen in a race that aren’t always expected.

So what are we to do?  In the most obvious and elemental way, we need to reduce the race to the logical contenders based on statistical probability in any given field and then wager on the horse or horses within those contenders that will provide the most value.  People are pretty good at recognizing that.  iHandicapRaces with PacePals is much, much better.

Here is the method… when evaluating the horses in any stakes race, dirt or turf, we need to look at the horse’s last race.  Who are the best off their last race?  We aren’t looking at workouts, or trainers and jockeys, track bias or anything else as a single separating factor.  We are honing in on their last race.  A stakes race is not like any average claiming or maiden event that we find occurring on a daily basis at tracks all over America.  So what better race to demonstrate how iHandicapRaces with PacePals solves the riddle than the Arlington Million.

Looking at our speed graph first to get a general idea about the fastest horses based initially on their last three races, we see #10, Beach Patrol, is consistently the fastest of our very competitive turf entries.  Look at the next graph to see what I mean about the last race as an indicator of potential success.

When we look at all the horses’ last three races separately in the “days since last race” graph, in isolating Beach Patrol, our top contender that iHandicapRaces with PacePals has given us, we were able to determine very easily that this horse had the fastest feet per second at 55.33 in its last race compared to the rest of the field.  This also showed us the improvement that Beach Patrol had made in its last three outings.  Look further at the next graph, the Quad Plot.

In the Quad Plot, based on the horses’ last race, we are able to see how Beach Patrol stacked up against the rest of these great horses.  Not only the fastest at 55.33 but carrying that speed with the best pace figure of 101.8.  Let’s just isolate Beach Patrol in the Quad Plot in the next graph to see how good that last race was.

Compared to all the other talented American and foreign turf horses, Beach Patrol is obviously the best for today’s matchup.

The important point to make here, as you can again easily see from the STATS box, is that Beach Patrol didn’t win that last race, as great as it was compared to all the other horses’ last race, but was a beaten favorite.  And as we know from our previous blogs, impact values tell us that beaten favorites not only win more than their fair share of races, they have a very POSITIVE Impact Value of 1.62.  This is a VERY FAVORABLE horse

We can also see from our PacePals chart below that Beach Patrol was rated as the best horse based on its last race as well.

So how do we bet this?  

Beach Patrol, #10, won driving down the stretch and paid $11.80.  

If our bankroll, betting comfort and safety tells us to use the HD Calculator, we made just under 200% ROI, betting iHandicapRaces with PacePals’ top three contenders and winning a minimum 180% ROI had Kasaqui, the third choice, from Argentina won.

As it turns out, the crowd read all the public handicappers and made Deauville, the Irish champion, the favorite at 9/5, who ran a very competitive effort and finished third behind Beach Patrol and the unbelievable long shot, Fanciful Angel, also from Ireland, who finished second at 73/1.

A $2 exacta, keying our top choice with the field, as you see below, with #9, Scottish, having scratched…because of the odds of our second place finisher, returned a whopping and very satisfying $995 for $22 bet.

So let’s review…

We base our handicapping analysis of a Stakes race on the contenders’ last race.  Our probable winner emerges from the speed and pace graphs and the Quad Plot indicators of that last race.  If the horse has great connections or is a beaten favorite, all the better.  But focus on the last race as only iHandicapRaces with PacePals makes interpreting so abundantly clear, wager for value, and a positive ROI will be the result.

When track conditions change, races are taken off the turf and tons of scratches take place, no worries…we have iHandicapRaces with PacePals

When track conditions change, races are taken off the turf and tons of scratches take place, no worries…we have iHandicapRaces with PacePals

Happy and enthusiastic handicappers get up in the morning, grab their racing form and set about to do their best to figure the races for the day.  Summer vacationers who have come to Saratoga to experience world class thoroughbred racing and see these magnificent animals up close look forward to a day of excitement, fun and the prospect of winning.

Then the weather changes with rain showers and it’s not a bad weather day, but a day in which many of the races to be run were scheduled for the inner turf course are, out of necessity for fear of horses getting hurt on wet, soft turf, changed to the dirt.  And because of this, scratches by trainers who know their horse is not ready to run on the dirt.  This happened Thursday at Saratoga but happens all the time at tracks all over America.

Now, what is the racing fan who spent hours preparing to annihilate the races going to do?  In most cases nothing but hope that their hunches pan out.  All of the work that they spent so much time on has gone by the board.  Not the case for the users of iHandicapRaces with PacePals.

All you have to do when there has been a change in track conditions forcing a number of scratches is tap the box for the new surface to get really accurate figures for every category you are interested in… best, worst, last, last three average, dirt, turf or both.  And of course, once you know the scratches, if there are any, you would simply tap on the horse’s PacePal figure and you will see a box that allows you to scratch that horse.

The power of  iHandicapRaces with PacePals is phenomenal in its simplicity of use and its accuracy in ranking contenders.  Imagine trying to do this on the fly with a racing form or track program.  Let’s look at how this transpired on Thursday at Saratoga.

In the first race, no change yet due to weather, though #11 was a scratch.  As you can see below, with no handicapping, our third choice #8, Swansea Mile, won this A.P. Smithwick Memorial Steeplechase Grade I Stakes Race and paid $59.  Not a bad way to start the day.

Depending on our temperament as a bettor, If we chose to use our HD Calculator, it looked like this below.  No matter which horse won of our top three contenders, we would have seen an ROI of over 300%.

All we had to do was put in the odds for our choices a couple of minutes before the race and the placing of our win bets.

Or we can take advantage of the longest odds of our contenders, in this case, our winner.  All we need to do is tap the value + box to increase our amount of money on #8 to give us the maximum return without changing our base bet.  All our choices change automatically with the increase on #8 and now we know the mathematically correct amount to bet on all three as can be seen below.

Or we could make a different type of bet and place our combinations for the PICK 3 that I will show you we chose from our contender list, not going more than 3 deep in consideration of our bankroll.

With no changes because it was scheduled for the dirt in Race 2 below… #1, Tarquinia, went wire to wire and won by 13 lengths paying $11.20.

iHandicapRaces with PacePals has obviously pointed out quite easily the dominant horse in this matchup.  We can single this for a $112 payout or with confidence and safety use the HD Calculator in the manner below our speed chart.

As you can see, by dutching the three contenders and hedging the favorite, it doesn’t get us our minimum 40% return if that is what you will accept as your minimum return.  Look at the next chart below.

If we eliminate from the bottom up in our contender order, we have a successful dutch no matter which horse won.  But we can do better.  Check the next chart.

By hedging the favorite because the payout would be so low, we have a solid 257% ROI on Tarquinia and no loss if the favorite somehow was able to win.  But 13 lengths is a rather dominant win.  Minimize your losses and increase your ROI.  Our PICK 3 bets are coming.

Race 3, the last leg of our first PICK 3, is off the turf with the rain and six scratches because of that.  How does the average recreational handicapper deal with those changes?  They don’t.  It simply is not a problem for us.  Make the scratches and see what iHandicapRaces with PacePals does for us.  The decision to take everything off the turf, except Race 1 because it was a hurdle race, was made before the first race of the day.  All the scratches were known in time for us to shape our PICK 3 bets.  Not so much for everyone else.  It would nearly be impossible to try to re-handicap the races using traditional methods.

Our top pick, #3, Jonquil won and paid $13.20.  Scratches made, surface changed.  Tap a box and it is done for you.  Get a clearer picture. Let’s  look at how our PICK 3 was constructed next.

Our Wager Calculator helps us see what our combinations would be and what it costs without error.  Many handicappers, professional and casual alike, believe it is a waste of money to box PICK 3 bets.  Because Races 2 and 3 had dominant horses, we could have keyed on them and our PICK 3 would have cost us $6.  If that is a handicapper’s BANKROLL and COMFORT zone, then that is how you SHOULD bet.  Never step outside bankroll or comfort.  You will start to make bad decisions if you do.  But without iHandicapRaces with PacePals would you have seen that race 2 and 3 had dominant horses?  And more importantly, would you have included a horse going off at odds of just under 29/1 in your first leg.  Let the artificial intelligence of iHandicapRaces with PacePals do all the heavy lifting for you without error.

Because of that first leg with a $59 horse winning (missed by the crowd but not iHandicapRaces with PacePals), coupled with a 9/2 winner and a 6/1 winner on top in the second and third legs, the first PICK 3 paid us $1967.  I know.  WOW…

In Race 4 below, no surface change needed and just one vet scratch.  #8, At Guard, our third pick won and paid $8.90.  In our rolling PICK 3, the fourth leg hit with #8 and paid $197.

Race 5 below is a NO BET with 10 first-time starters to begin with, so we knew we would have to stop our PICK 3 betting here for now.  Good for us because, after scratches, there were still 6 first-time starters in the race and #12, Sly Roxy, a first-time starter won as the favorite based on one factor…jockey and trainer connections.  Not enough for us.  Jockey and trainer impact values alone are negative.  They simply don’t win their fair share of races though the crowd bets them like crazy.

Race 6 below… after being taken off the turf and all the scratches, #11, Rprettyboyfloyd, our top pick, won and paid $10.60.   We win the first leg of our newly begun PICK 3.

Race 7 below… with no change and only one vet scratch again, our top pick, #2, Tom’s d’Etat, won as the less than even money favorite at 4/5 and paid $3.70.  Good… that this means we are still easily alive for the PICK 3, but probably not good that a low priced favorite won.

Race 8 below… our third pick #5, Ava’s Kitten won and paid $7.90 as the third betting favorite after just one scratch with the surface change (main track only).  Our new PICK 3 of races 6, 7, and 8 won for us with a lower, but respectable payout of $104.50.  The 4/5 favorite in the middle, coupled with the 3/1 third favorite in this last race hurt the potential of a larger payout, but we will take it.

Race 9 below… our third choice again, #12, Celtic Chaos won and paid $13.40 after three horses were scratched by their trainers because of a now muddy track.  We hit the PICK 3 again for $132.50.  Still being slightly affected by races 7 and 8 for our PICK 3 payout.

Race 10 below… sadly we lost the last leg of our PICK 3 because our bankroll kept us at three deep, but we can readily see who appears to be best on dirt and in form based on the last race after all the scratches with the race being taken off the turf, #12, Unbridledadventure, who paid $11.40.  Had we been playing this as a win bet, it became a NO BET situation on the HD Calculator because Unbridledadventure was the fourth betting favorite at 9/2 and we could not reach our 40% ROI even with hedging.  And we did not want to eliminate the best speed and pace horse on the dirt based on its last race.

What do we take away from Thursday at Saratoga… races taken off the turf due to weather or any other possible reason and a multitude of scratches, as a result, is no reason to not play those races.  While everyone else is confused, you have all the tools provided by iHandicapRaces with PacePals to adjust quickly and easily.  Do we really have to say anything more…

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed…Wait…What?

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed…Wait…What?

Isn’t that alluding to an old English tradition that has to do with marriage?

Yes, only in this instance, it is going to be the approach for you that will unlock the mystery of the exacta.  This has been provoking handicappers forever to wonder how anyone could seriously expect to consistently beat this infuriating betting proposition.  It is simply too much of a risk to expect to pick the horse that finishes first and the horse that finishes second in exact order.

Well, fortunately for us, that is not correct.  It can not only provide a positive ROI, but provides tremendous value for any horse player.  Exacta pools are almost always larger than any of the straight mutual pools.

We have referenced the prolific and ingenious Dick Mitchell in previous writings who was the author of the best-selling book Winning Thoroughbred Strategies as well as others that include Myths That Destroy a Horseplayer’s Bankroll, Commonsense Betting and Thoroughbred Handicapping as an Investment.  He revolutionized how to bet Thoroughbreds by putting into effect mathematical concepts in determining horse racing outcomes. This accurate mathematical approach finally solved the questions that had consistently plagued bettors about both handicapping and wagering.

His successful “Mitchell Matrix” for exacta betting was introduced back in the 80’s.  So we have our “something old.”

What is the “Mitchell Matrix” and how can it, when combined with iHandicapRaces with PacePals, our “something new” visual methodology of handicapping and betting tools, lead us to a positive and extremely profitable ROI?

First, we need to have an understanding of the certainty of the proven mathematical concepts that Dick Mitchell provided for any handicapper who is fortunate enough to have read his books.

For example, suppose we have four horses that we feel are contenders to win.  We believe, odds aside, from our handicapping, that each horse has a relatively equal chance of winning.  Each also, of course, has a relatively equal chance to finish second.  How does this affect our thinking for the exacta.  It ultimately means that we need to realize that all twelve possible combinations of the four horses also have an equal chance of winning the exacta proposition.

Dick Mitchell would point out to us that since the risk is the same on all of the combinations, it simply makes Return On Investment and mathematical sense to bet only those combinations that are going to end up giving us the most profit.

The sad reality of how casual horseplayers approach the exacta wager is that, instead of handicapping the contenders, because that becomes too difficult, relying on the top two, three, or four betting choices on the tote board and boxing them.  This is a losing proposition in the long run because the payouts that occur when you win are too low to offset the ones that you lose.  Realistically, a positive ROI will simply not happen.

Without going into the complexities of assigning your own odds to your contenders, no matter how many real contenders you have determined, or the actual chart Dick Mitchell created, let’s see how we can adapt the concept of the matrix with the superior artificial intelligence of iHandicapRaces with PacePals to choose your contenders.

If you have the discipline to bet only your contenders that have odds of 9/2 or higher in combination and refuse to fall into the thinking of the crowd in boxing the first four or five favorites in a race to hit the exacta, you are now starting to employ the mathematical reality of making money with the exacta.

So we are going to “borrow” from “something old” and mix it with “something new”.  Let’s see how it works…

We can examine what led us to believe iHandicapRaces with PacePals was correct in contender selection again. As you will see, far better than the public’s final assessment.

This past weekend at Belmont in Race 1 on Sunday, our first four contenders were given to us by the incredible algorithms and artificial intelligence of iHandicapRaces with PacePals.

The top four contenders are closely matched as we can see below in our speed and pace charts.

The odds on #5, Euro Verde, our first choice were 9/2.

The odds on #1, Final Flurry, our second choice and the crowd favorite, were less than even money at not quite 4/5.

The odds on #4, Mugu, our third choice were 3/1.

The odds on #7, Paluxy Princess, our fourth choice were 35/1.

Dick Mitchell would say look at the closeness of the contenders…are we going to blindly box them all or take advantage of the disparity in odds?

The Quad Plot for Paluxy Princess shows us a route horse who has the speed and pace to be in the mix with sprinters.

What is obvious to users of iHandicapRaces with PacePals is that Paluxy Princess, based on her last race, is the second best horse in the field and is being allowed to go off at ridiculous odds compared to the other contenders.

Then when we look at races run in the last 90 days, especially with young horses in a maiden race, Paluxy Princess and Final Flurry have shown tremendous improvement and as our days since last race chart so visually and clearly depicts, as route horses are faster than the sprinters in the field.

And as we look at the PacePals chart, the top contender is our winner, Paluxy Princess, who started at 12/1 on the morning line and ballooned up to 35/1 by race time.  Final Flurry is second, but went from 8/5 to 3/5, an untenable win bet as an undeserved underlay considering the closeness of our contenders.  There is no value in betting Final Flurry as a win bet or as an exacta bet if she had won.

Paluxy Princess would be a  great win bet with Final Flurry using our HD Calculator or Paluxy Princess alone as the huge overlay since she won and paid $72.50.

But as exacta players, we are not going to blindly bet the top four horses on the tote board in combination, because we would lose.  And with a favorite going off at 3/5, even if we won, we would lose.

By using the Mitchell Matrix and following our adapted rules in combination with the incredible ability of iHandicapRaces with PacePals to choose contenders, even without handicapping, we have the following bets for the exacta.

We box #5, Ouro Verde, the iHandicapRaces with PacePals’ top choice with #7, Paluxy Princess, our fourth choice, because #1 and #4 simply don’t qualify on our odds limitation.  This exacta won easily with #7, Paluxy Princess and #5, Ouro Verde finishing a combined 4 and 3/4 lengths ahead of the favorite and paid a remarkable $378.

I would recommend reading Dick Mitchell’s works for any horse racing enthusiast, but if you can only find the time to read one book, Common Sense Betting would be the best to lead you to the correct guidelines to follow when it comes to placing your bet.  When you combine that knowledge with the incredible and accurate innovation of using artificial intelligence presented in the visual methodology of iHandicapRaces with PacePals, not only will you become a better handicapper but a winning one as well.

Pick 3 feast at Parx

Pick 3 feast at Parx

Yesterday at Parx, with no handicapping, going 2 deep, iHandicapRaces with PacePals hit 8 out of 9 races. When going 4 deep, it hit every race. Only on race 8 would you have had to go 4 deep, but obviously the best horse as seen using iHRwPP visual handicapping. In the 7th race iHRwPP second choice was a $61 winner.

Breakdown for pick 3’s…

Total bet for the day…$56           winning $1,322.30 going 2 deep $8 per race betting $1 pick 3’s

Total bet for the day…$112         winning $2,644.60 going 2 deep $16 per race betting $2 pick 3’s

Total bet for the day…$448         winning $3,539.10 going 4 deep $64 per race betting $1 pick 3’s

Top choice #5 won paid $5.40

Top choice #8 won paid $16.40

Second choice #5 won paid $23.20

Top choice #2 won paid $3.60

Top choice #7 won paid $5.60

Second choice #9 won paid $12.00

Second choice #7 won paid $61.00

4th choice #3 won paid $8.40.  However, obviously visually best contender in top 4.

Second choice #10 won paid $7.80

Let iHandicapRaces with PacePals show you how and when to bet a horse coming off a layoff

Let iHandicapRaces with PacePals show you how and when to bet a horse coming off a layoff

Virtually all thoroughbred handicappers, professional and casual alike are plagued by this reoccurring question…

“How do I evaluate a horse that has been laid off?”

Traditionally, there has never been a definitive answer to that question, though handicappers have always looked for the signs that most believe indicate whether the horse is ready to run today.  What are those indicators? Most angles that are used for betting layoff horses are very well known. Generally, a handicapper is looking at the layoff horse’s workouts, the success of the trainer in the past with horses coming off a layoff as well as the horse’s own record of coming off a layoff.  The general prevailing thought is that a horse is not ready for its first race back, and it usually takes a second and possibly a third effort before it should be looked at as a serious contender.

Regarding workouts, however, we should know that workout information is very frequently misleading information. Was the horse working in the company of other horses, how much weight was the horse carrying in the workout as well as an entire group of other considerations?  All of this can lead to what amounts to downright unreliable information.  Most handicappers avoid betting this type of horse for all of these reasons and more.  Similar to a first-time starter…we don’t have a lot of information in many cases.

The truth is that until iHandicapRaces with PacePals came along, there really were no series of indicators that could put any handicapper in a position to realize a positive Return On Investment over time.

Okay, so why is that?  Let’s explore Impact Values for a moment. The concept of Impact Values was created by Fred Davis in 1974, and written about in detail in his book, Thoroughbred Racing: Percentages and Probabilities.  In modern thoroughbred racing, Impact Values are having more of an effect than speed figures are in determining value in betting. Dr. William L. Quirin, a Ph.D. in Mathematics, who had written several classic books on computer analysis in thoroughbred racing took Impact Values a giant step further.  His works are pretty old now, but statistically considered truisms in the world of handicapping more than ever before.

What is an Impact Value and how can it help us create value in our betting?  Basically, Dr. Quirin determined whether a factor or angle is positive or negative in one of his studies, Winning at the Races: Computer Discoveries in Thoroughbred Handicapping, as well as his other works.  The mathematical concept of an Impact Value is a ratio that fundamentally shows us how often the horse wins compared to how often it should win.  In other words, if an Impact Value is 1.00 for an angle, then that angle is winning its fair share of races.  For example, if it is 1.5, then it is winning more than its fair share and if the angle is resulting in an IV of .85, it is not.

So what does this have to do with iHandicapRaces with PacePals?  Well, simply put, layoff horses have an impact value that does not vary much.  It is consistent, for horses away 60+ days, a not so encouraging .85 Impact Value.  The Impact Value demonstrates that all layoff horses are statistically unfavorable.

BUT here is the key…win percentage has nothing to do with profit!  You should never look at the Impact Value figure in isolation. You should examine both the Impact Value and the ROI%.

So we have now examined the impact value of layoff horses…we know it is disadvantaged as a win percentage.

Here is the good news, iHandicapRaces withPacePals has changed how we should look at layoff horses of 60+ days.  And this is the approach…

At Belmont Park on June 16th in Race 8, a 1 1/4 mile route for fillies and mares on the turf, the top four horses provided by our pick engine have a layoff horse in the mix and ranked second in #3, Feeling Bossy, as seen below in our speed graph and further in our stats box.

We see she has been away for more than 60 days and this is her first race back.

It is readily apparent in our visual approach to handicapping that when we look at the Quad Plot below for Feeling Bossy, we see that her last three races are all in the Quad Plot. There are two keys to look for… one is, ARE ALL OF THE HORSE’S LAST THREE RACES IN THE QUAD PLOT and the second is, ARE THE ODDS ON THE SELECTION AT LEAST 7/1?  We need these two factors to be present to make the bet.  An obvious overlay and value in the bet will make up for the disadvantaged Impact Value for this type of layoff horse, when confirmed by our pick engine placing our contender in the top four and having its last three races in the Quad Plot.

Look at her last race below to evaluate versus the field today.  Trainer intentions should not be guessed at.  Was she just in need of a rest?  Instead of guessing why she was laid off, let’s just look at the facts before us.

Our PacePals chart gives us even more confirmation.  An interesting note to observe here is that #1, Queen Blossom, is the only horse ranked ahead of Feeling Bossy, but is ranked last in our iHandicapRaces evaluation.  Why is that significant?  Because if you look below our PacePals chart you will see from our stats box that she is a layoff horse of 60+ days as well.

So why look at this?   She is the only other layoff horse in the field.

Her last three races are in the Quad Plot also.  This is very important because the winner, #3, Feeling Bossy, paid $18 to win and even though she wasn’t in the top four for a win bet, Queen Blossom went off at odds of almost 6/1.  She did not meet the requirements to win if you set your overlay minimum at 7/1 but by including her in an exacta, since she finished second, you would have seen a payout of $135 for $2.No where else would you be able to see and evaluate correctly that now is the time to bet a layoff horse except when relying on iHandicapRaces with PacePals.

Let’s look at another example below that proves our method again at Belmont on a different day, different distance, and different surface.  #2, Basic Hero, is not only a layoff horse of 60+ days, but also a class drop.  That is important because Basic Hero won this race at odds of 4/5.  The betting public saw the class drop, and in our PacePals chart below that, the horse with the best trainer and jockey connections in the field along with being the morning-line favorite at 9/5.

On our Speed Graph, in the top four…

Last three races in the Quad Plot…

Second in Pace…

And obviously the best speed lifetime in the field of maidens…

But what is lacking is the necessary odds line to be the layoff horse we want to bet.  Yes, this time, it won. But enough to offset what we know from our Impact Value studies thanks to Dr. Quirin?  We want to put cold, hard information that is statistically correct to use so that at the end of the day we are the handicappers that can say, “Because of iHandicapRaces with PacePals, I know when and how to bet layoff horses that give me a positive ROI, and I’ll take that whenever I am at the races, won’t you?

The Quad Plot and What it can tell us to be a Successful Handicapper

The Quad Plot and What it can tell us to be a Successful Handicapper

We have written many times in the past about the importance of understanding the Quad Plot and how to use it to our advantage to be successful at the track.  With that said, one of the most difficult questions to answer for any handicapper is how to determine if a sprinter can successfully stretch out in a route.  With iHandicapRaces with PacePals, we have a tool available to us in the Quad Plot that allows this question to be answered unequivocally.

No better example for us to use for the purpose of demonstration took place in the 7th race at Parx Racing yesterday in Philadelphia.  This was an allowance route race for PA-bred 4 year olds and up who have never won two PA-restricted races.

The first thing we notice right away in our speed bar graph is that we have a horse who has exhibited outstanding speed in its last 3 races, a full foot/second faster than the pick engine’s first choice as a logical contender.

When we check our last race in the speed bar graph, we see right away that we have not only the fastest horse of the field based on its last three races, but a horse who was the fastest of the field in its most recent effort by an incredibly large margin.

The next step for us is to check the pace bar graph below.  In its last three races, #4, Kendricks has a definite pace advantage as well as speed.  Let’s look at its last and most recent race next.

We can easily see below that Kendricks has an even more impressive pace advantage in its last race.

Dick Mitchell, the well-known mathematician and author of many handicapping books dealing with a mathematically precise approach to betting, in Common Sense Betting wrote of a strategy for successful horse race wagering that is based on choosing good horses, making intelligent bets, and keeping accurate records.  In this now famous and well-respected treatise, he referred to this type of horse as a “double advantage” horse.  Possessing a substantial advantage in both speed and pace, we have come to call this a “dominant horse” in today’s racing.

Dick Mitchell used to have to go through a labor-intensive and time-consuming effort to be able to determine these numbers supporting speed and pace by completing a rigorous examination and calculating of the Daily Racing Form past performances.

We, however, have the huge advantage of having this done accurately for us by iHandicapRaces with PacePals.  We only have to visually check our graphs.

Alright…is this the end of our handicapping process?  I hope by now, you would see this is not enough.  How were those speed and pace numbers achieved?  Were they in the type of race, a route race, that Kendricks is running in today?  The answer is no, as we will see only because we have access to that most important information in the Quad Plot.

I’m sure Dick Mitchell would have loved to have the Quad Plot available to him when he was writing his now-classic handicapping books.  One of the most difficult questions in handicapping to answer…can a horse running in sprints stretch out from those to win in a route?  Horses switch back and forth from sprints to routes all the time for a variety of reasons…conditioning, as in endurance and speed development, as well as simply trying to determine a horse’s best avenue to achieving consistent success.

Look below to see Kendricks’ last five races.  Four are sprints, but we see immediately that he has run an outstanding route race also at a pace and speed that rivals his field-leading efforts compared to the other horses in this match-up yesterday.


Even though his last three races have been sprints, the Quad Plot reveals his consistency in performance.  Look further…

Even though his last effort was a sprint, it is the fastest of any horse in the field, as revealed by a glance at the Quad Plot isolating Kendricks’ last race.

What is also beneficial in our evaluation utilizing the Quad Plot is the addition of the PacePals chart below confirming further that this is also the highest rated horse based on his last race revealing current form.

The betting public missed it all and focused on the morning-line favorite who became a very poor bet as a huge underlay at 1/2.  Kendricks, as a substantial overlay at odds of just under 6/1 won and paid $13.60.

Our $20 win bet returns an impressive $136 and a boxed $2 exacta for $4 of the favorite and our selection paid an equally impressive $34.40.

Dick Mitchell would have been able to put away his calculator, Racing Form, and copious records to determine the winning wager in just a couple of minutes if he had the incredible advantages of the Quad Plot and visual handicapping using iHandicapRaces with PacePals.

And let’s quickly look at an additional example from Parx yesterday that perfectly demonstrates to us the power, ease and simplicity of using iHandicapRaces with PacePals, and the accurate results of the artificial intelligence of the pick engine combined with the Quad Plot, as seen in the 9th race, a claiming route of 1 mile for four year olds and up which have not won two races since November 30.

Again the first step…observe the pick engine’s contender selection.  Then see if there is enough in speed and pace to separate the contenders.  What I like about this race is that the best horses as determined by the pick engine are also the best in terms of speed and pace.

Look at how easily we see the obvious separation #5 and #7 from the rest of the field based on the last three race average in the speed bar graph.  Remember, we are looking at the pick engine’s artificial intelligence selection of contenders based on algorithms that interpret solid angles that 95% of all handicappers don’t assess as well.

So we are not just speed and pace handicappers.  Those two factors by themselves are not enough all the time to signal who will be the most competitive today.  We need to make our contender selection first, and then if possible, separate by speed and pace when it can overcome or be part of class consideration, the influence of jockey and trainer connections, track biases, race shapes, meaning how the race will be run, etc. as well as many other important handicapping considerations.  iHandicapRaces with PacePals does that all for us.  We just need to see the visual and graphic interpretation of all that information.

Most handicappers simply can’t do it consistently.  They rely only on speed and forget about class or discount the importance of connections, or whether a horse really is exhibiting the necessary form to win as well as so many other important factors that lead to winning.

The same powerful separation is seen in the pace bar graph.  #5, Atascarderan and #7, Yougotthatgoinforu are visually the best.  Now let’s use our Quad Plot tool to verify in our analysis if these two are the real deal.

Look below at Atascarderan and observe that he has all three of his most recent races in the Quad Plot and became the favorite at just slightly over 2/1.

#7, Yougotthatgoinforu, also has all three of his most recent races in the Quad Plot, both a combination of routes and sprints for each.  The Quad Plot has confirmed the pick engine’s selections as the two best contenders when combined with their speed and pace numbers.

Yougotthatgoinforu won easily by 5 1/4 lengths over the favorite at almost 8/1, paying $17.40 and returning $174 for our $20 bet.  Again, the exacta paid off by boxing our second choice, the obvious overlay, with the favorite.  Our $4 bet returned a fantastic $74.80.

Two separate races, of differing classes, at Parx yesterday affirming the incredible VISUAL power of iHandicapRaces with PacePals.  


The 143rd Kentucky Derby Analysis that no Public Handicapper could Match

The 143rd Kentucky Derby Analysis that no Public Handicapper could Match

With the Preakness Stakes looming before us this coming Saturday, the shortest leg of the the Triple Crown Races, and handicappers everywhere trying to figure out the best avenue to success in the second race of the Triple Crown, we need to take a look back at one of the most phenomenally lucrative handicapping weekends of racing if you are an iHandicapRaces with PacePals user and believer.

It started on Friday with iHandicapRaces with PacePals having the winner of the Kentucky Oaks, the female version of the Kentucky Derby, #13, Abel Tasman, in the top three of our contender list, given to us through the computer generated pick engine, without handicapping, winning by 1 and 1/4 lengths out of a field of 14 horses paying a remarkable $22.40.

With that success in mind, there is no better example of how to use iHandicapRaces with PacePals than the most recent running of the 143rd Kentucky Derby.

This particular Kentucky Derby is one of the most instructive examples of a race that we could use in understanding more completely the functions and advantage of the best and most exhaustive handicapping analysis and accompanying betting tools available in contemporary horse racing today with iHandicapRaces with PacePals. 

First, let’s look at the most fundamental and basic step of how to use iHandicapRaces with PacePals and it’s handicapping analysis.  The order of the horses from first to last in any given field are the strongest contenders in the race based on the most relevant handicapping angles and past performance statistics that have been massaged by the incredibly predictive algorithms of the iHandicapRaces with PacePals’ pick engine.

The very famous and prolific author of many important handicapping books, James Quinn, wrote Recreational Handicapping: A Comprehensive Introduction to the Art and Science of Thoroughbred Handicapping.  This classic work covers the major factors for determining a race winner and he believed that you needed, as a handicapper, to be able to construct a list of the horse selections in any given race in which you were typically looking at those horses that projected as the most probable choices to be the potential winner.  Once you have established your list of contenders, then and only then would you try to separate those contenders based on speed and pace as it applied to historical and current form.

So let’s be clear… this is the most difficult task in handicapping, establishing which horses have the most probable and realistic chance to win.  How do you do that?  Recreational handicappers rely on other people to give them those selections through a myriad of public handicappers available in various racing publications.  Certainly not the best way to invest your money when you start to see the differing selections and ultimately confusing opinions that these handicappers have.  To be successful as a handicapper and better in horse racing, you need to be consistent in your approach race after race.

The best way is to rely on the consistent computer analysis of iHandicapRaces with PacePals in establishing those horses with the most probable chance to succeed today.  I have stated many times, and it always bears repeating, that computers with accurate information will always out think humans in coming up with the correct solution to a problem.  And what is important to remember here is that in horse racing, you are playing against other people and if you are better than they are in achieving that solution to the puzzle of a race…you will, after a series of events (races), have a positive return on investment.

Many new users of iHandicapRaces with PacePals think that this order of horses is the final ranking process that we should be betting in that race. While the horses based on those handicapping angles and past performance statistics, and how they are evaluated through the complicated algorithms of the pick engine, are solid selections, that should not be the end of the handicapping process.

There is no “black box,” as any computer oriented handicapper knows, that is successful in providing a positive ROI in the long run.  What iHandicapRaces with PacePals provides is a solid order of contenders that are most likely to win any given race.

However, as we will see in the analysis of this past and most recent Kentucky Derby, iHandicapRaces with PacePals, after establishing the contender list in an order of probability, then gives us the incredibly accurate tools to separate the contenders from pretenders.

So let’s begin…

Here is the list of contenders based on their probability to be in the mix after the computer analysis of iHandicapRaces with PacePals.  As we know, these 20 young horses are being asked to run a distance they have never run before in conditions that most had not experienced before and are less than ideal, a wet fast track and a huge number of competitors in the field.

The first is the Speed Graph below based on the last three average races run on both turf and dirt.  Remember, this order of contenders is determined through a stringent, consistent, objective analysis.  This is not a public handicapper’s opinion that may be based on something like #18 having the best time of the field on an off track.  Would we place that horse, Gormley, ridden by Victor Espinoza as the most probable winner because of that one fact?  Many public handicappers touted that choice.

Secondly, let’s look at the next Speed Graph below based on the contenders’ last and most recent race to see if it reflects positive current form.  What stands out to you?  #5, Always Dreaming, the winner of this Kentucky Derby, whose final odds were just under 5/1 as the favorite, is the fastest horse in the field of contenders.  Also, let’s be reminded that these horses are the best as the current crop of three-year-olds having tremendous ability and running for the chance to win just over 1.6 million dollars for first.

Always Dreaming is also easily the best in Pace in this group of horses as we can see below in our Quad Plot.

To be even more definitive in our look, let’s isolate Always Dreaming’s last race in the Quad Plot.  #5 is as far as you can get in the upper reaches of the Quad Plot, demonstrating in speed and pace, that it is the dominant horse in this field.  And thus the reason it was the favorite at post time.  At just under 5/1 some handicappers might think Always Dreaming is a luke-warm favorite.  The reality is, of course, it’s the Kentucky Derby with 20 horses starting out of the gate.

The incredible accuracy is in iHandicapRaces with PacePals’ ability to sort out the contenders in a field of 20 and then give us the tools to separate them further in speed and pace.  All done for us by the sorting abilities of the deadly accurate algorithms of our consistently objective iHandicapRaces with PacePals.

And we should all recognize that speed and pace are separating factors but not the primary reason that horses always win or are competitive in races.  If we are speed and pace handicappers only, without first determining a horse’s ability to contend based on connections, class drops and rises, how a horse did in its last outing, whether it was a beaten favorite, coming off a layoff, as well as how has it performed in the past on this surface, distance, or track?  Does it have the running style to win or contend against this group of horses?

It isn’t that the horse can just run fast.  How does it run fast and how will that play out against other horses whose differing running styles will affect its speed.  These are the questions and more that a handicapper needs to answer just to achieve a probable scenario of the most likely horses that should be competitive.  Most people give up and resort to the “experts.”  But, again, it is this fundamental ability to put together a list of contenders in relative order first that iHandicapRaces with PacePals excels and outperforms the “experts.”

As we all know by now, Always Dreaming won convincingly by 2 3/4 lengths and paid $11.40.  It was a contender ranked in the first half of a large field who was the dominant horse in speed and pace.  We saw that easily.  But what about the rest?  Would any expert be able to have the other four finishers in the race behind Always Dreaming sorted out as contenders on angles and statistics be in the top six choices out of twenty at the prices we saw?

Finishing second, #1, Looking at Lee…     33/1.

Finishing third, #11, Battle of Midway…  40/1

Finishing fourth, #14, Classic Empire…     6.80/1

Finishing fifth, #19, Practical Joke…          27.80/1

So many ways to bet this with iHandicapRaces with PacePals Wager Calculator and HD Calculator.

The win…                             our first choice #5…                                                                    $11.40

The exacta…                        #5 and our 4th contender, #1…                                                $336.20

The Trifecta…                       #5, #1, and our 3rd contender, #11…                                  $16,594.40

The Superfecta…                 #5, #1, #11,and #14 our 1st contender…                             $75,974.50

and finally,

The Super High Five #5, #1, #11, #14, and #19 our 6th contender…                             $493,348.70

With #5, Always Dreaming, our key horse, this is how the wager calculator showed us how to win $16,594.40 in the trifecta below.

And how a boxed bet of our top six contenders below with our key horse for a base bet of $1.00, gave us $493,348.70.  Yup…I know!

The best and most accurate all inclusive handicapping software anywhere.  The proof is in the results…handicapping and betting perhaps the most difficult race in America.

iHandicapRaces with PacePals gave us the plan and then we executed it.

iHandicapRaces with PacePals gave us the plan and then we executed it.

Who wins in horse racing?  And even more importantly, when talking about winning, we mean making a profit.

As a handicapper, if you can simply determine the vulnerable favorite and eliminate him, profit is yours.  Just like in the stock market, where this is also the case when you can eliminate any stock that too many investors have funneled their money (bet) into, and invest in the undervalued stock, your choice of that stock will ultimately give you the best chance at a positive return.  It should also make sense that if there are overbet horses, it should be no surprise that there must be underbet horses. If you can evaluate a horse’s chances in a race, and only bet on the “overlay,” you are now going to be a winner in horse racing.  And again, by winner, I mean profitable. You can limit your bets and vary them based on what is a calculated advantage.

Well, how do we become so skilled that we can do that?  By using iHandicapRaces with PacePals.  You will not need skill.  IHandicapRaces with PacePals does that for you.  You just need to be able to recognize when there is an advantage.  iHandicapRaces with PacePals makes that easy.

Let’s deal with an important truism here.  The people that don’t win at the races, unfortunately, fall into that category because they don’t have a plan.  And if some do have a plan, it requires discipline to execute it.  Every handicapper has abandoned their plan at one time or another for various reasons.  Probably the most common reason is falling behind in their betting and increasing the bet to get back to even or when winning, increasing their bet way too much, because they think that they are on a “hot“ streak.

If we use iHandicapRaces with PacePals and don’t abandon what it tells us to do, those negatives to winning won’t happen.  We now have a tool that magically gives us discipline…

On Thursday at Gulfstream Park, we see why this is true and how we get rewarded for our “plan” (iHandicapRaces with PacePals).  Race 8 was a short sprint on the turf with a large field.  For most handicappers, this is at best, confusing.

Look at our first two examples of the speed graph.  There were three scratches to start.  Our first two contenders, Daddy’s Heiress and Southern Sassy, were scratched because they were also-eligibles.  Ballado Ballet was scratched because she was only going to run if the race was on the main track.

So what’s our plan?  With those three scratches, it becomes obvious that our top two contenders are #2, Elloree Gal, and #7, Dixie Grits.  The crowd favorite became #9, Check Out Gilda.  We have our vulnerable favorite.  No guessing, no intuition, but instead a steady and factual representation of probability.  Let’s move on to the Quad Plot in example 3 to evaluate pace along with speed.

Our top contender has its last three races, all sprints, in the Quad Plot.

Our second contender, Dixie Grits, two sprints in the Quad Plot and a route just outside.  We haven’t had any judgments on our part that would influence the actual performance of the last three races of these two horses.  But iHandicapRaces with PacePals has through mathematical certainty in its algorithms determined that these two are, based on their past performances, the best two chances we have to win.

In observing the last and most recent race for both horses, #2, Elloree Gal, ran a sprint on the dirt.

#7, Dixie Grits, ran a route on the turf.

Why do we even care about their last race?  Because the crowd has overlooked Dixie Grits because she is going off at odds of 26/1.  The favorite is vulnerable, according to iHandicapRaces with PacePals, because #9, Check Out Gilda, is ranked 5th after the scratches.  So why ranked 5th?  She has the best speed of the contenders in the race.  Look below…

Her last three races.

Her last and most recent race below…she has the best speed and pace.

If we look at the stats box of all three horses, we see Check Out Gilda is coming back within 14 days, finished 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in her last race, finished less than 5 lengths back and has a jockey change to a jockey with 20% or higher win rate.  So again, why ranked below our top 2 contenders?

By just looking at the stats box for both, we get an idea that might be part of the reason.  They are both class drops.  There is more to this than the normal handicapper can quantify, but iHandicapRaces with PacePals has done it for us.  Class in horse racing is almost an unexplainable phenomenon as a reason why horses dropping in class seem to outperform even faster horses who have not competed at that level.  Nonetheless, because of that handicapping fundamental,  which iHandicapRaces with PacePals has not overlooked in the evaluation of the probability of winning in this field, Check Out Gilda is vulnerable as the favorite.

Now let’s look at our betting as calculated by our Wager Calculators.  #2, Elloree Gal went out of the gate at just under 9/2 and #7, Dixie Grits just under 26/1.  If we use our HD Calculator, which we should for a win bet, we would want to always emphasize the longer odds horse of the two, because, in the long run, we will realize a much larger ROI.  Starting off at the default, we make over 300% on either horse.  But follow along with the series of adjustments by just hitting the + button to maximize our $20 base bet.  We will continue to click the + and see how it incrementally guides us to the proper amount to wager.

We get the maximum return on the larger overlay of the two best contenders with an equal dutch of the base bet.

#7 won wire to wire paying $53.40 followed by #2. If we are an exacta bettor, we used our wager calculator and saw that a $4 exacta box of our top two contenders and a $12 exacta box of those two and the favorite if we were really worried, returned $359.20.  With no handicapping or wagering skill, iHandicapRaces with PacePals gave us the expertise to not only come up with the two best choices but also gave us the correct betting scenario, whether we bet to win or in an exacta wager.

iHandicapRaces with PacePals gave us the plan and then we executed it.


How to Maximize your ROI with the HD Calculator

How to Maximize your ROI with the HD Calculator

Yesterday at Parx in the second race, a maiden claiming route for fillies three years old, we have a perfect example that demonstrates how to get the most out of your HD Calculator.

From a handicapping point of view, when trying to figure out if a horse is capable of stretching out from a sprint to a route for the first time, several of the most important factors to be considered are tactical speed, and what the pace scenario should be, and, of course, the all-important factor being the horse’s current condition.

If a horse is coming off a superior pace position in a sprint, and has a competitive pace number against today’s field, as seen in the Quad Plot, the horse will probably handle its first route assignment quite easily, frequently at very generous odds.

Looking at our contenders below in the Speed Graph, based on the last three race average, and remember in a maiden race, that may include horses who have not run three times yet, #7, Silver Winner stands out.

Silver Winner has run only once in a sprint.  How do we know this?  We simply look at the Quad Plot for the last three races for our competitors and readily see that Silver Winner has run just one time.  Look below to see how easy this is to recognize.

The Quad Plot reveals that every filly in this race has run three times, with the exception of Silver Winner and Revolving Storm, who both have run just once lifetime.  Revolving Storm had run a route on the dirt in its only outing and is just outside the Quad Plot.  Silver Winner, on the other hand, has run a sprint that shows us she has the speed to stretch out.  She definitely has the very generous odds we are looking for at just under 16/1.

Let’s look at the next visual example below isolating the field for their last race.  Postinos Champion and Keystone Jones also ran a sprint their last time out.

So now, how do we use the HD Calculator to maximize our potential profit?  Looking below, if we do nothing but put in the odds a couple of minutes before post…our top three contenders would look like this as our possible bets.

The heavy favorite, #4, Flosy’s Birthday is a vulnerable favorite as we can see in the Quad Plot.  So our final odds are not bad for our three choices.  And we definitely want to use the HD Calculator in this race due to the uncertainty of maidens, with our top choice stretching out for the first time after demonstrating excellent speed in her first outing.  Can we adjust the HD Calculator easily to place more of our money from our base bet on our top choice and still maintain a minimum of 40% for our other two most likely winners?  Look at the next example of the HD Calculator.

We don’t need to hedge any of our three bets because the odds are pretty good for all three as is.  But what if we just adjust #7, Silver Winner, incrementally up by using the + or – button in the value column until we get the most we can out of our biggest overlay without sacrificing the return on our other two.  By just hitting the + button on #7 one time, we already have more of a profit if she wins.  We will try again below this to see if we can safely win more.

By continuing to move the value up with the + button, when it hits 1.6, it jumps to 224%, and we are still well above 40% for our other bets.

Keep clicking and we move to 325% ROI at 2.1 in the value column.  We haven’t compromised our other two.  Keep going.  Maybe there is more.

At 2.8, we have correctly placed $6 on our top choice and still are looking good with our other two bets.  This is very easy to do, and you will never be wrong in the math of how much to bet…keep going.

By moving to 3.3, we have actually reduced the base bet from $21 to $19 and still have the same return on #7, but have increased the ROI by reducing the total bet.  Is there more?  This can be done in a few seconds by just continuing to hit the + button until we see we can go no further without hurting our return on our other two contenders.  So let’s keep going…

By increasing to 3.5, we have gone up to $119 potential return and our base bet is back to $20.  Keep going…this is getting really good.

4.4 has brought us to 548% ROI and $136.  Can more adjustment work?  Remember this is easy to do.  And you will always be correct.

Here is the last click on the + button.

Moving from 4.4 to 4.5 shows us we have finally reached our maximum because now we have dropped below our preferred lowest return of 40% on any of our betting choices.  So by proportioning our base bet like the HD Calculator example above, we are going to get the absolute highest return on our best bet of the three and still be profitable no matter which horse wins.  Maximize the profit while minimizing the losses, in the long run, translates into investing as opposed to gambling.

Practice with the HD Calculator and this process will become second nature.

Oh, and did I mention that #7, Silver Winner did win and paid $33.40 in stretching out to an incredibly impressive 9 1/2 length victory while the favorite #4, Flosy’s Birthday, finished a distant 4th at even money.  But we knew something like that would happen…didn’t we?