Today’s Best Claimer Play

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March 15
Philadelphia – Race 7 – #5 Light Sentence – ML 8/1 – Win $10.40

March 15, 2010 • Posted in: Updates • No Comments

The Dominator

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If you’ve been reading my articles for any length of time, you know I enjoy reporting on research I’m involved in. I present them, usually with a 100+ race sample behind them, so that you can follow them if you please. The results of one hundred races is not anywhere near enough to get crazy about but it’s a good place to start if you’re interested. Many of them are variations of the things I’ve researched and now back with money every day.

I never bet a horse unless I recognize a profile I’ve researched and named. I give them names like the Clever Thief, the Bandit, the Embezzler, the Banker, the Pickpocket, the Carpetbagger, the Con Artist, the Slum Lord, the Grifter, the Ponzi. And I know the kind of race (stage) where each one excels – which I call Mush Races, Key Pace Races, etc. I pay absolutely no attention to trainers, jockeys, track biases and the rest – all the secondary information. The horses I play must be improving and have demonstrated the ability to record a par speed figure for today’s level and they must have the ability to handle a fast pace and they must fit today’s match-up. Just this morning I went through 7 – it takes about 3 ½ hours – tracks and didn’t find one play. I’m writing this instead of playing. As I’ve said before, if I can’t find “a demonstrable, recognizable advantage” (I don’t know who owns those words but they’re good) then I’d rather do something else or give the money Jerry’s kids.

So let’s name one and follow it. We’ll call this one the Dominator. Sounds powerful.

The Musts:
1. I require the Dominator to have 5 to 8 Quirin speed points
2. S/he must have an E or E/P running style
3. Today’s race must be the first or second start after a layoff of at least 30 days but no more than 60 days
4. Our Dominator must be in the money in one of its last two races
5. Must be “up close” at the pace call in its last race (less than 3 lengths for sprints and 5 lengths for routes)
6. Last race must have a Fast 1 pace of the race velocity rating (My software gives you that info or you can construct it for yourself. It’s an important step because we don’t want to support horses coming out of slow pace races)
7. One dimensional early pace horses (E) must be pure, which is to say they must be the only E runner in the race.
8. The horse must be in the competitive speed figure range (Has one of the top three speed figures in the field or has one of the top three speed figures in one of its last three races)
9. Must have posted today’s level par speed figure in one of its published races

Now for the Must Nots:
1. Did not win its last race
2. Did not win its previous race unless it was a Big Win (3 lengths or more. We’re looking for improving horses, not the peaked kind)
3. If the horse is coming off a first start after a layoff then the speed figure must not be a top (once again we’re looking for improving horses)
4. Cheaper tracks (Beulah is not a good idea at Churchill)
5. Last race claims. (My experience says it’s a bad idea)

Now for the research results.
Remember, this is only the beginning so don’t get too excited about it. Follow it, add to it. If you find that it helps balance the ledger then, and this is the most important part, believe in it.

I’ve been following the Dominator for a while. I started backing it with real money in January. Research is one thing but putting money on it is another thing. Here’s the $2 flat bet result. My real bet amounts shall remain a mystery.

January – (27.90% – $162.40 – 88% ROI)


So far the Dominator has delivered 27.90% winners and an 88% ROI. That’s just 43 plays, though. I’m always prepared for things to turn south. As you can see I had to withstand 13 loses in a row but I hung in there. Scotch helped. I let some winners go and a fair share of losers, too. But nonetheless this is where I stand today on a flat bet ledger, real time.

Now, here’s the entire story from October 20th until today. This result includes my actual plays.

155 races
48 winners
30.9% winners
Invested ($2 flat bet) – $310
Gross return – $440.30
Profit (+/-) – +$130.30
ROI (+/-) – +42%

I don’t consider any of this a “system”. It’s not really. It’s all about improving early pace horses that have the final time ability to win along with superior pace ability. It’s kind of like a fast and fit horse with a head start.

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

Today’s Condition Book A List Entries*

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March 14
Gulfstream – Race 5 – Alw48Kn1x – #5 Touching Beauty ML 5/1 – Win $5.40
Fair Grounds – Race 6 – MSW 39K – #7 In Jack’s Memory ML 3/1 – Win $4.00
Turfway Park – Race 9 – MSW 21K – #8 Sacred Forest ML 4/1 – Win $8.60
*A-List entries are horses that fit the eligibility condition book’s best profile. In other words, the race was written for this type of horse. These horses must also have a PaceAppraiser Form Factor Rating of 3 or better.

March 14, 2010 • Posted in: Updates • No Comments

Game On – Maidens Sitting on Ready

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March 12
Tampa Bay – Race 4 – Md 8K – #11 Cosmosandreams – Finished out of the money
Fair Grounds – Race 10 – Md 10K – #1 Political Rock – Win $3.20

March 11, 2010 • Posted in: Updates • No Comments

Class + Pace = $$$

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Put this information in a 2D Early Pace Box and watch the magic. You can read about that important pace box here. I posted this article a few weeks ago but the pace box addition needed to be emphasized.

This year has been a good one. Here’s how. It’s called the CPL/CP/FFR 3+/CSFR/PCZ 5.0 Limit. I’ll explain in a minute. First, let’s just say I’m a profile fanatic. You could call the profiles equations, too. When they appear and the price is right I’m a happy person. I know over time I’m in the money, the black. This one that I’m about to tell you about has been in my profile book for 20 years. It’s still a nice return on investment producer. Now for the explanation one part at a time.

CPL – I call this one the class profile on the lead. Actually, the horse doesn’t have to be on the lead at the pace call but it’s usually leading at the wire. It’s on the lead where it counts. This horse must have a 2 dimensional early pace running style with 5 or more speed points; no more than 7 points. So it looks like this: E/P 5-7. I don’t use 8 speed points because too many times these types need to lead at the pace call. That’s a little risky for our purposes. Now this E/P 5-7 needs to be dropping in today’s race to its lowest claiming price out of the last three races. That’s easy enough. At the end of I’ll give you the twelve reasons that will eliminate this one from further consideration. This one must qualify on CSFR and PCZ limit 5.0…I’ll explain those in a minute.

CP – Any horse that is dropping to its lowest claiming price out of its last three races gets this designation. Just like above but aren’t E/P 5-7 types. No one dimensional early pace horses (E) or closers (C) are considered.

The Form Factor Rating – The Form Factor Rating is made up of 8 factors, which includes improving form patterns, jockey/trainer combo stats, single jockey stats and single trainer stats. The higher the number the better. The highest rating is 8; you won’t see many of these but you will see 5s and 6s, which should grab your attention when numbers are no higher than 3. In competitive races, those races with more than 3 CSFR qualifiers, you’ll find this rating a helpful tool with odds assessment. For example, in a recent race the favorite had a FFR of 3 and was 6/5 one minute to post; another contender with a FFR of 5 won the race and paid $11.20. You’ll find situations like this one often, which should answer any questions about anecdotal outcomes. You’ll also see a lot of races with clustered ratings in the 2 and 3 neighborhood, no real advantage. I look for horses with pace advantages, which includes extreme pace and pace box advantages, that have the best or one of the best FFRs in the race. Please remember that the lower the odds the more risk management we need; the Form Factor Rating will be a useful tool in that area. For example, I will wager on a pace advantaged horse with a relatively low FFR if the odds are excellent – not with mush races and low odds, however. The general rule is this: the lower the odds the higher the FFR should be; the higher the odds then relatively low FFRs are acceptable. As with every handicapping tool, they are the most useful when building contender lists and assessing odds. Well, that’s the definition of the Form Factor Rating in general play. For our purposes here we just need to remember the we need a FFR of 3 or more. Simple.

CSFR – Competitive Speed Figure Range qualifier. In the PaceAppraiser PPs these horses have speed figures in bold type. It simply means that these bold type horses have shown the ability to be competitive in today’s race final time wise. They’re fast enough to compete with today’s field.

PCZ Limit 5.0 – Pace Comfort Zone Limited to 5 lengths. For an explanation of this one see the post below in this blog. We want horses that can stay in touch with the pace setters. That’s why we have the 5.0 PCZ limit.

Here are the deal breakers:
1. No maiden or stakes races
2. No horses with 2 layoff lines in their last three races. You’ll see the lines in the PaceAppraiser PPs.
3. No long layoffs of three months or more unless the odds are above 5/1.
4. No drops below a claimed tag in last three races.
5. No unsupported turf speed figures. If the last three races were turf races then we need a dirt speed figure in bold type (CSFR).
6. No economically unsound class drops. For example, a horse drops from 25K to 5K. Beware of damaged goods!
7. No confirmed losers. 1 for 28, 2 for 36, etc. Who needs it?
8. No repeat drops in class without improvement. Drop, drop, drop…will today’s drop help? Probably not.
9. No cheaper tracks than host track.
10. No distance problems. Presser/closers stretching out, etc.
11. No races shorter than 5 furlongs or longer than 1 1/16.
12. No winners in last three races. Why drop?

I’m a simulcast player. I look all over the country for these types. It’s a terrific spot play. Since I don’t have time to do full dress handicapping at every track every day (who does), this is a great way to be involved at those other tracks without all the work. Here’s some good news. As you click through the races in your PaceAppraiser PPs, you can place your mouse pointer over each bold type horse in the pace picture and you’ll get the Form Factor Rating and the PCZ rating. If you find a potential qualifier, drop down and check it for class and the elimination rules. Don’t forget to click the Header option in the Java menu so that the header and the pace picture stay in view as you scroll down to check your potential play. It’s fast and simple.

March 8, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

Beat the Maidens

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I’m interested in an automatic bet. A friend sent me an article on the topic and so I’m thinking about it again. Depending on the player or misanthropist you talk to a research sample size must be anywhere from a couple hundred to a million zillion before the results can be trusted. Even at the million zillion level don’t get too carried away, they say, you’ll only be disappoint. I fall somewhere in the middle. I’ve done enough research to know that an apparent good thing can turn south very quickly even if a sample size goes just the other side of twenty. On the other hand, I’ve carried out research samples into the hundreds and then took that data and added it to my handicapping toolkit. The competitive speed figure range is one example of research in the hundreds that has held up well into the thousands, and few more thousand to boot. The IVs are solid still. I use the results of that early research with confidence today. But I want to know if there is something about a racehorse’s ability that is based on the fundamentals so strongly, so solidly that sample size talk is replaced with fundamental ability type discussions. I think there is.

So now we’re back to the questions I’ve been pondering about maidens. Here they are: Can we agree that maidens have not won a single race (no insult intended)? Can we agree that a horse that ran in the money is in decent form? Can we agree that recent form should be part of our decision making process? Can we agree that a horse that has one of the top three speed figures is one of the top three fastest horses in the race based on their last outing? Can we agree that a last race speed figure should be part of our decision making process? Can we agree that a fast pace race is superior to a slow pace race when the winning horses post the same speed figure (E, E/P & P only) as in Fast 5/100 and Slow 5/100? Can we agree that these questions are fundamentally solid? If you answered yes to each of these questions then I have good news for you, and you won’t have to worry about sample size.

Let’s give it a formula: Maiden Race + Key Pace + $ + 3/S = A maiden race with a horse out of a Fast 5+ pace race and finished in the money and has one of the top three speed figures in the field. That’s a horse with a lot going for it. Here are the results of run I did lately.

1. 2 (9.20 to place)
2. 5.40
3. 3.00
4. 4th
5. Out of the money
6. 2 (2.90 to place)
7. Out of the money
8. 13.80
9. 9.00
10. 8.40
11. 5.00
12. 3.40
13. 2 (7.00 to place)
14. 9.40
15. Out of the money

As you can see, we have a couple of odds on winners and two second place finishers that paid a very nice price. I added those because you might be a win and place bettor. I’ll let you do the ROI math.

That’s it. I’ve played these basic factors for years and with success. Maybe you believe a million zillion sample size is appropriate, though. That’s fine. Follow it and see what you find. As for me, I’m playing maidens today.

March 6, 2010 • Posted in: Articles • No Comments

Horses to Watch for March 5

List of 26 horses to watch for today from AQU, BEU, DED, FG, GG, GP, HAW, HOU, LRL, OP, PEN, SA, TAM, and TP. Download PDF. (Right click save as or click file to open in browser)

March 5, 2010 • Posted in: Updates • No Comments