Archive for February, 2010

The ABC of Horse Racing 1948 Style

In 1948 a little Bantam paperback book called The ABC of Horse Racing by Dan Parker, a columnist for the New York Daily Mirror, hit the stands. The first page displayed a reprint of The Morning Telegraph, presumably the devil’s code. Flip to the next page and you’re awash in sour graphs: “Having studied simple [...]

February 17, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

A Simple Pace Shape

Formula: pv + wsf(pc) Pace velocity (pace of the race) + winner’s speed figure compared to par for class equals a simple pace shape that includes the pace of the race (not a particular horse) and the way the “winner” finished against the pace of the race represented by the “winner’s” speed figure relative to [...]

February 16, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

The Speed Spot System

In the Dec. 1948 issue of American Turf Monthly Ray Taulbot unveiled his Speed Spot System. It’s the granddaddy of pace handicapping. He focused on what happened early – at the pre-stretch call or pace call as we know it now – in the race instead of late. He had been writing about pace for [...]

February 15, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

1932 Kentucky Derby

The May 1932 issue of Horse and Jockey magazine did a nice spread on the Kentucky Derby for that year. Brother Joe, a handsome dark brown colt owned by Kentucky colonel E. R. Bradley, had future book odds of 300/1 but by May they dropped to 30/1 for fifth choice. Top Flight, the filly, [...]

February 12, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

Slow Pace & You’ll Be Sorry

If you’ve been reading this blog for long you know there’s a lot of talk about fast pace races, key pace races, etc. But it’s just as important to know if the pace was unusually slow. In his book Figure Handicapping, James Quinn wrote, “Thus, whenever the pace of the race has been unusually fast [...]

February 11, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

Zen and the Art of Past Performances

Is your head swirling with too much information? Trainer stats, bias ratings, trip notes, jockey/trainer combos, class appraisal, form appraisal, etc., and please give me an Excedrin. Signal-to-noise ratio is in full bloom? Well, I recently read Malcolm Gladwell’s New York Times bestseller Blink  in which Gladwell does a entertaining job of describing the human [...]

February 10, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

The Bias

and the flyboy lunaticWell, the last newsletter created a bit of a controversy. Some folks simply thought I was a fly-boy lunatic for questioning ratings such as an obvious phenomenon called a track/dirt bias. And then there were some “way to go” folks out there, too. I hit the nail squarely on the head, they [...]

February 9, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments