The racing form and my professional handicapping analysis, how I did it!
The daily racing form was first published in Chicago on Nov. 17 1894, and since then itís been the top tool to handicap thoroughbreds. Yes 113 years old, the daily racing form has evolved to be a very exact record keeping resource.
Within its pages you can find hundreds of angles to play the ponies. The thing is to develop your own angles, once you get familiar with the form, it will become natural. Yes it captures so many variables that it makes its analysis a beautiful and extravagant challenge. When I first started to visit the race track I was in complete ignorance I just liked the thrill of the race and the uncertainty usually associated with luck.
In time I was introduced to the mystical Racing Form and the first variable that caught my eye was the speed index, I used to add it all together and that way I could compare the fastest horse in the field. It was fun for a wile but I did realize that it wasnít very accurate, then I started to base my assumptions on track conditions, this made my handicapping a bit more successful.
It also made it a lot more complex, in the beginning† I just used one factor to compare the horses, and now I was including in the mix muddy track, fast track, slow track, turf, and soon after I was also including trainers win percentage, jockey win percentage, age of the horses, equipment changes, workout patterns, layoff patterns, even the looks of the trainer, believe it or not I used to stay in the saddling paddock trying to figure out the confidence of the trainers and owners in their horses.
In other words I was just going no were. I started to fool myself.
Handicapping Thoroughbreds is a very complex task, you have to develop a method to follow religiously; and donít get carried away with all the information, the racing form provides. It is just so extensive that you need a formal strategy to follow and this is very difficult to handle. I am not saying that no body can, no, in fact I have seen professional annalists manage a whole race card in a couple of hours. But for regular people just like me the way to go is a system, if you canít get a good idea or a good pattern, copy a ready made system. But be careful it is amazing how far some guys can go for their horses.
Some systems are just incredible, and impossible to profit with, when looking for a system make sure you get a proven system, try to get the best one you can buy, remember you are going to be investing your hard work money with it. And remember to bring a ton of luck every time you go to the track, luck is a very strange lady and some times she just stays home. The thoroughbred tracks are the most mystical places; there you can contemplate the whole world.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Max Dí is a professional handicapper, and a dedicated thoroughbred owner/trainer, currently having adventures in Western Canada.††He also keeps two Thoroughbred Handicapping informational websites.† http://www.handicapping.ws/† http://www.newhandicappingsystems.com/