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Cigars, Beer & Poker Ground >> Horse Racing Thread


7/6/11 3:33 PM
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GrapplerHK
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Any fans out there???

Seems like horse racing fans are a dying breed out there, but I've loved it since going to the Meadowlands when I was in high school.

Monmouth is a great track at the Jersey shore.

And I think this may be the summer i make my 1st trip up to Saratoga!
7/6/11 4:50 PM
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GrapplerHK
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Yea man I do care about the horses too. I dont like to think about what happens to the unwanted ones, but I try to stay positive, believing that there are plenty of good people in racing who also care, and do what they can to help these horses.

I also like to think that race horses are treated very well, in general, the good health and happiness of a horse can only help a trainer/owner.

Sure theres some exceptions, and also the drugging/doping/race fixing dark side of the sport, that may go on at smaller/cheaper tracks that dont police as well as others.
7/7/11 11:28 PM
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kyle_7777
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I love horse racing...it's the thing i probably know the most about in my life which is sad. I have been going to the track weekly since i was 14, i am 26 currently. I bet on my local track every single race day but due to the pool sizes and betting opportunities i only play pick 3's and pick 4's.

I am starting to get into the handicapping tournaments but with a wife and kid i don't have a ton of free time. I've read several handicapping books lately and won three local handicapping tournaments. My goal is to make the DRF Handicapping Championship in two or three years when i have more time for the qualifying tournaments.
8/29/11 7:12 PM
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GrapplerHK
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lol I just won a free contest at the meadowlands.....they give you five races, you pick 1 horse in each race, a $6 imaginary across the board bet WPS (you dont actually bet anything) on your horse..... I won the contest, got $1000 betting voucher

I had a winner that paid $23 to win, and another that paid $12 to win
8/30/11 12:54 PM
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kyle_7777
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GrapplerHK - lol I just won a free contest at the meadowlands.....they give you five races, you pick 1 horse in each race, a $6 imaginary across the board bet WPS (you dont actually bet anything) on your horse..... I won the contest, got $1000 betting voucher

I had a winner that paid $23 to win, and another that paid $12 to win



That is a great free contest. You could take that cash and buy into the the National Harness Handicapping Championship next year at Meadowlands. Turn that $1000 into $25,000. The NHHC is on my bucket list of tournaments to play.

This year the thoroughbred meet at my local track has been great. This is only my third season playing thoroughbreds and I am making more money at the track then i am working full time. I am currently riding a streak of four consecutive Pick 4 cashes. Shattering my old personal best of one.

8/31/11 12:53 PM
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kyle_7777
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Excuse the FRAT. I enjoy talking about horse racing and have zero outlet to do so. None of my friends or family like horse racing.

I consider myself mainly a trip handicapper meaning the most important factor of my handicapping is how easy or hard of a race the horse has ran in it's last few. Basically i watch replays over and over and take notes which i refer to every race. If i have notes from a month ago and while looking over the races i am a little confused, i go back and watch the replay. There is nothing that will give you as much information as watching the horses run.

I personally consider trip handicapping the biggest edge currently because half the information i get from the replays and the notes i make cannot be found in a program running line. There are so many horse programs, figures(speed, pace) and general information that it's hard to find an edge. Add in the sizeable % the tracks take out of the pools and it makes it even harder to grind profits at the track.

You also have to be familiar with the basic handicapping principles - speed/form/class/pace. I consider the notes and replays i watch over and over my extra advantage.

The biggest things i watch for in the replays are kind of obvious(wide trips, traffic, awkward starts) but you would be suprised how inconsistently they are documented in the brief summary section of the running line. Wide trips are a huge part of my notes, if a horse from the outside(post 9 or 10) is 4 wide the whole race he effectively loses 4 lengths per turn in ground he has to cover. If he goes two turns and finishes in 5th 4 lengths behind, he possibly could have been an easy 4 length winner if he had got a "perfect trip". The line will read finished 5th and it may mention he was wide. If he is a closing 5th making up distance, it's a huge positive. He ran longer then every other horse and was still closing. If he is kind of a fading 5th it's not as good, but he has a built in excuse with the extra ground and the odds will make it worth it next time to watch that horse. An awkward break is another thing which is inconsistently noted. It make say "broke slow" or "squeezed at start" but some time they leave it out(especially when a horse gets squeezed). The first thing i do when i see a horse break bad is look at the odds. If the horse is 20-1...toss. No further information required, the horse broke slow because the horse is slow(probably covers 75% of horses that break slow). If a horse that is 3 or 4 - 1 breaks slow, i dig deeper. What type of horse is it. If it's a front runner or a stalker, i watch his trip. Alot of times these horses will close up a ton of ground, they start off 10-12 lengths behind and finished 4-6 lengths back. Then i look to see why the horse may have broke poorly, maybe he was loaded first and had a long wait, maybe inexperience, maybe he got spooked. A ton of excuses for one poor start. If a horse gets squeezed and that sends a stalking horse to the back, that horse is going to run poorly, finish bad and have elevated odds. Traffic is the same thing, it's a momentum killer. If a horse is making a good run and get's shut off from his path, his momentum is interrupted and he will finish up a lot worse then he was going to.

I also favor closers...i am lucky to play a track that doesn't have a huge speed bias and closers can close up well. My common sense view on closers is i'd rather have a horse who is running their best late, rather then at the beginning.

I play pick 3's and pick 4's so it's less about isolating winners and more about finding value and beating favorites. You can spread out and select many horses which helps. If favorites win, i lose. There is no value in multi race wagers playing favorites. I lose 90% of my bets, it's the other 10% that covers my losses and get's me my profits long term. My wife is not a gambler and hate's to see my spread sheet after a month of losses. Most people who play pick 4's have two disadvantages. 1. They don't bet enough to do deep and get maximum value and 2. They select too many favorites. With a 23.5% take out, there is almost no way to make healthy margins by including favorites. You have to beat favorites and beat them consistently.
9/2/11 1:34 AM
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GrapplerHK
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well. first off, there the 2, or 3 different kind of race horse

the trotter and pacers, which carry the "buggy" or cart behind them

then theres the thoroughbreds most people are familiar with

i won the contest picking the trotters/pacers at the meadowlands......yes Ive played 3 nhhc contests at the meadowlands, and finished in the top 10 in 2 of them....unfortunately havent qualified for the big contest

basically theres two things you look for in a race horse

thats 1. current form

and 2. class

current form is how a horse is currently running....and class is what kind of horse he's used to facing

so many factors come into play rating these factors, such as

*shippers- horses coming in from other tracks and how to rank them

*distance (thoroughbreds)- is your horse bred to sprint, or run routes (longer races) (trotters/pacers all generally run 1 mile races)

*surface (thouroughbreds)- is your horse bred to like dirt, grass, or synthetic

*class- is your horse used to facing tougher, or easier competition?

*trainer goal- is your horse looking to win this race, or use it as a warm up for races down the road?

*age- i generally dont like 3 yr old horses vs older horses.....and watch for rapid decline in form in horses age 7+......horses ages 4-6 are generally in their prim

*jockey/drivers- the factor that i look at least, as its the category most people OVERBET, the best jockey/driver always gets bet more

*trainers- look for trainers with a high win% and ROI (return on $2 investment) in the appropriate categories, some trainers excel with younger horses, some with claimers, some with turf horses, some with sprinters. etc , the daily racing form provides those statistics

* finally, stick to the top tracks with the highest purses, the best horses are easier to predict with stats.....and while some people love the cheap tracks and cheap races because the longshots will come in more....and while maybe thats true, chances are you wont hit those longshots by handicapping them
9/2/11 1:39 AM
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GrapplerHK
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Im with you Kyle!! I love the pick 3s and 4s......and I also favor closers, Id rather have the horse coming on strong than the one hanging on to win

monmouth racetrack thoroughbreds, with high quality racing has just a 15% takeout on their 2 daily pick 4s and 1 daily pick 5

California tracks also now offer a 15% takeout pick 5 starting 1st race every day
9/2/11 1:43 AM
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GrapplerHK
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damn kyle 4 straight pick 4 cashes thats SWEET!!!

Whats your local track? mines Meadowlands and Monmouth

Im currently running ice cold with bad luck....hit 4 out of 5 in the pick 5........

Also a real killer, after handicapping yesterdays pick 5 the entire prior day.....I wrote down my bets......and then I changed them at the lest minute.

needless to say, my original bet that i wrote down came in a pick 5 winner for over $2000......the bet i put in obviously LOST
9/2/11 1:48 AM
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GrapplerHK
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monmouth's having a special hand crafted beer and BBQ special event this weekend, I should be there!!!

Damn I need to get to Saratoga soon!!!
9/2/11 11:37 AM
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kyle_7777
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Edited: 09/02/11 11:45 AM
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<blockquote>GrapplerHK - damn kyle 4 straight pick 4 cashes thats SWEET!!! <br /><br />Whats your local track? mines Meadowlands and Monmouth<br /><br />Im currently running ice cold with bad luck....hit 4 out of 5 in the pick 5........<br /><br />Also a real killer, after handicapping yesterdays pick 5 the entire prior day.....I wrote down my bets......and then I changed them at the lest minute.<br /><br />needless to say, my original bet that i wrote down came in a pick 5 winner for over $2000......the bet i put in obviously LOST</blockquote><br /><br />My local track is Northlands Park in Edmonton, Alberta Canada. They have thoroughbreds in the Spring/Summer and Pacers in the winter. About 100 race days in total. I don't live in Edmonton currently but it's where i grew up at the track and i can follow them online through HPI(I think that is the Canada equivalent to TVG). It is lower level racing but the one nice thing is we don't have a bunch of shippers from other tracks clogging up the lower level conditions...mainly we get the same horses running in close conditions, so the consistency makes it okay for handicapping.<br /><br />Our pools are very small compared to Monmouth and Meadowlands. Our thoroughbred Pick 4 pool is guaranteed nightly at $10,000 and the bigger pick 3 pools are $2000-$2500 only. Our big race every year is the Canadian Derby and they tried a $75,000 guaranteed pick 4. $47,000 got bet and the track was on the hook for $28,000. I'm guessing it's the last one we will see. I was out after race 1 but it paid $19,000 for $1(huge for our track). Eventually i would like to make a jump to a bigger track to play with bigger pools andthe potential of bigger paydays. Right now winning $ is the most important thing with a kid/wife/mortgage. If i didn't have those responsibilities i would have given professional gambling a try with horses. I am still hoping to quit my job and give it a try when the finances are a little more stable.<br /><br />You just have to get it through your head your changes were justified and the right move. The exact same thing happened to me on Wednesday to break my streak. I picked out a pick 4 Tuesday night before bed and threw the program in with my work stuff. At work i had some free time so i was looking at the pick 4 and deleted a longshot to add the favorite. I NEVER add favorites, the whole strategy of my pick 4 is to beat them in at least 3 races. This favorite had beaten the horse i deleted by 8.5 lengths two weeks back so i decided that i didn't want to be out after race 1 and added in the favorite. The beaten horse won as the longest shot on the board (small field 13-1) and the rest of my horses came in incluing a 21-1 horse. The pick 4 paid out to 1 winner for $8,000. Missed out on $4,000 because i was bored at work. Never bringing horse stuff to work again. I've been having great luck with the pick 4's and have been lucky enough to win a couple of pick 4 pools by myself but that would have capped off the best week of horse racing of my life. I'm trying to justify it as being the right move, but all i see is an expensive mistake.<br /><br />
9/2/11 11:41 AM
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kyle_7777
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*age- i generally dont like 3 yr old horses vs older horses.....and watch for rapid decline in form in horses age 7+......horses ages 4-6 are generally in their prim

*jockey/drivers- the factor that i look at least, as its the category most people OVERBET, the best jockey/driver always gets bet more

*trainers- look for trainers with a high win% and ROI (return on $2 investment) in the appropriate categories, some trainers excel with younger horses, some with claimers, some with turf horses, some with sprinters. etc , the daily racing form provides those statistics



This is all great advice.
9/4/11 11:25 PM
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GrapplerHK
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just went to Monmouth Park, great day, they had a special BBQ contest and micro brew beer sampling. Was a glorious day, cashed on Jackson Bend at 3:1 in the feature at Saratoga as well as a few others
9/22/11 2:14 PM
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CHof
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I love spending a day at the track. I don't really know what I'm doing, I always bet the trifecta box because that's what somebody told me to do, and I usually come away a winner. This thread was full of great information, thanks guys!
9/28/11 10:50 AM
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kyle_7777
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Last weekend i won my fourth handicapping tournament at my local track. I bring my dad(who knows nothing about horses, and just goes to drink) for extra entries and his entry actually won and mine finished 3rd. I was expecting to do well, i have been killing it at the track this summer. I've been lucky enough to win 4 out of 20 tournaments and could have easily won three more. I don't think anyone else has won two. After my last three years I'm seriously thinking about quitting my job and trying to give full time horse playing a run. I think it's a realistic goal by 30. I'd rather spend 60 hours a week on horses then in a hot office all year.
10/6/11 6:26 PM
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GrapplerHK
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good luck kyle, im with you bro it beats working!!!

Ive had a couple of heartbreaks lately since I last checked in

I also entered my local tournament, $100 entry $100 bankroll, win pl or sh bets only, $10 min per bet, 10 races minimum, no max, 3 tracks only monmout belmont parx

....top 2 players get free trip to las vegas for national tournament finals in february, top 10 out of 106 entries get paid at least $375

Theres a lot of strategy involved, Ive had experience in these tournaments before so I know more than most of the people there....anyway, I start out the day nailing my first three races, 20 wp on all of them, one was 2:1, then 9:2, then 5:1..........of course now Im wishing i went straight up win bets, and even increased my bets after hitting winners........but anyway Im now up $380 and in 1st place after 3 races

I slow it down as a lot of big chalk races coming up.......after betting my minimum of 10 races im up $320....with about 10 races to go....

then boom 2 longshots come in which 2 people have to jump ahead of me by around $100 and $200 each.....

coming down the stretch......I gota decide whether to play it safe, stop betting, and get my $700 or so for third place,......but of course I want the top 2 finish and trip to vegas!!!!

I end up dropping $100 on a 6:5 shot, then another $100 on jackson bend to beat uncle mo (yea brilliant!!)....and not only do I not get the trip to vegas, Im out of the top 10 and out the money altogether!!!!

10/6/11 6:32 PM
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GrapplerHK
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heres another one.......I start off the pick 4 at belmont with a 26:1 winner, nailed it, always great to start a pick 4 with a 26:1 shot........the next race also nailed the winner, which paid a nice $9 to win.........now im SIX deep in the 3rd leg......and 2 deep in the final leg.......

of course I miss the 3rd leg where im 6 deep, half the dam field covered!!!...... dam johnny velazquez goes wire to wire in a field loaded with speed, on a horse that was speed/fade every previous race in the very same class

my 2 picks run 1-2 in the last leg, which ends up paying a whopping $22,000 !!!!!!!! And I was sooooooo close!!!!!!

10/12/11 2:08 PM
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kyle_7777
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Those stories are both terrible. Just keep going. That shit does work itself out. Last summer i am pretty sure i ended up in the negative(never kept track)because of one DQ and another bad decision. Was photo'd out of a couple other pick 4's. Just nothing went my way. This meet i got those photo's and i got some good racing luck and had the best year ever. Thoroughbreds for us officially ended Monday. 3 days of nothing and Standardbreds come back Friday until Christmas. It's my favorite type of racing but from a betting persepective the pools are only aboud 40% of what our thoroughbred pools are. I put in the same amoun tof work and i bet the same amount on the win 4's so it cuts into profits.

You had to go for top 2. That Vegas tournament is life changing money and qualifying gives you a chance. Sometimes being on top in those tournaments is the worst, you spend the whole day sweating the longshots every single race. I've been there and it blows. Once i had the lead for 8 of 10 races in a $10,000 tournament where it was winner take all and finished 7th. In another $3000 for first place i had the lead until the last race and finished 5th. That one stung because it was an optional claiming/allowance race, my horse finished 3rd i think, then the next time out three weeks later that horse won a $150,000 stakes race. In two of the four tournaments i have won i hit a longshot early with 1 other person and got a sizeable lead that had to be maintained and was worried about longshots the rest of the day.

You will hit those big 4's...losing 6 deep is definitely more bad luck then bad handicapping. That kind of stuff happens to everyone.
11/16/11 7:24 PM
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GrapplerHK
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hit a 20:1 to start off the multi million dollar Breeders Cup pick 4, then hit the second leg, then got beat when a 25:1 shot won the 3rd leg, of course I had the 4th leg.

The good news was I forgot I had played a pick 3 starting the race before the pick 4, I had the winner, combined with the winners in the 1st two legs of the pick 4(the one at 20:1), I had $750 pick 3 for a $1 bet.....TAX TICKET, I didnt realize you could play $0.50 pick 3s at Churchill, it cost me taxes on that one!

I was all dejected to be KO'd from the huge pick 4, when I signed onto my account I had the $750 extra I forgot I had played. (good thing it was on my account and not a forgotten ticket)
11/16/11 9:38 PM
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kyle_7777
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GrapplerHK - hit a 20:1 to start off the multi million dollar Breeders Cup pick 4, then hit the second leg, then got beat when a 25:1 shot won the 3rd leg, of course I had the 4th leg.

The good news was I forgot I had played a pick 3 starting the race before the pick 4, I had the winner, combined with the winners in the 1st two legs of the pick 4(the one at 20:1), I had $750 pick 3 for a $1 bet.....TAX TICKET, I didnt realize you could play $0.50 pick 3s at Churchill, it cost me taxes on that one!

I was all dejected to be KO'd from the huge pick 4, when I signed onto my account I had the $750 extra I forgot I had played. (good thing it was on my account and not a forgotten ticket)


That 25-1 horse was from Woodbine...pretty much an auto toss, i never thought she had a chance at all. Not such a tough beat when a horse like that knocks you out. You could have went six deep and still left her off your ticket. Breeders cup was bad for me also except i didn't cash a single winner. The pick 3 is an okay consolation.

Local track is on a three week hiatus and horses are back Friday. Printed off a program tonight and just waiting for the kid to go to sleep so i can start handicapping. It's been a terrible run of late. October was my first losing month since March and November has started off poorly as well. Time to buckle down with the studying and get it back on track.

No taxes on gambling winnings here in Canada. Huge pro. Went to Vegas is September, lost for two straight days, hit a pick 4 at woodbine for $800(which wasn't anywhere close to what i was down), then watched them take another 30% of my winnings.I was just happy to cash a ticket though. The $240 seems like enough where i would love to have it, but it's not worth the hassle that is seemingly involved in getting the money back. While in Vegas I also listened to gambling advice for four hours from an older guy who i found out was legitimately homeless because he lost everything gambling.
11/16/11 9:40 PM
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kyle_7777
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What happens with the tax situation in your betting account? Taxes taken out immediately or just before you cash out?
11/19/11 7:36 PM
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GrapplerHK
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with my betting account, taxes arent taken out immediately, but they are reported to the IRS if u hit for anything over $600 on $2 bet, thats why you always play the minimum bet, as long as it pays under $600 then no taxes
11/28/11 7:31 PM
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GrapplerHK
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I went to Laurel Park, one of my favorite tracks to bet on, on my way to Florida!!!!
12/12/11 4:57 PM
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GrapplerHK
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on to Tampa Bay Downs......i love visiting tracks ive never been to before
12/14/11 11:31 AM
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kyle_7777
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A few of the local trainers from my home track winter at Tampa Bay Downs. I pay a little attention to that track and it seems to me like one of the better tracks i've seen in terms of long shot winners.

Good luck and let us know how it goes.

My terrible run has continued, i haven't hit a sizeable pick 3 or 4 since October.

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