Sunday, October 18, 2009

Post Race Analysis for Race Day October 17, 2009: The Nearctic Grade II at Woodbine

Woodbine was the scene of some fantastic racing yesterday. I was most interested as a handicapper in the six furlong Nearctic Grade II on the turf. With a big field and no 10 cent supers, I built what I thought was a pretty good handicap to go Trifecta and Exacta hunting, and even though I came up short, by handicap was fairly effective anyway. Patience and Consistency will always lead you back to the window a happy person over time.

Race 8 WO: The Neartic Grade II; 6 Furlongs on Turf for 3 YOs and Up.

The color coding explains my thought process: My base handicap is in blue, my possibles (be it part wheels or partial box candidates) are in yellow, and my tosses are in red. After I complete a handicap I always ask myself, why I am betting this race? I'm the sort of horseplayer that doesn't bet every race on the card and I'm definitely not the kind of horse player who needs "action plays". I handicap to win and I've learned the best way to pursue a positive ROI is to not bet races I don't feel good about the handicap on.

OK, what the heck does that mean? I'm a Past Performance handicapper. I like and feel comfortable handicapping off of Daily Race Form Deluxe PP's. While I watch trips, I can't say I'm comfortable enough watching trips to learn anything except to identify bad trips for future use. I guess I'm saying if a horse shows a great turn of foot or struggles with a lead change, its lost on me, all I see is good and bad trips, gutty efforts and timid ones. Feeling good about a handicap means I have plenty of races and workouts and trainer and jock stats to sort the wheat from the chaff. Whatever method you employ, be consistent.

By my rules I should have walked away on this race, but it is a judgement call and after handicapping I felt I had enough of a handle to take a good swing at it. It is horse racing after all, not a mathematical formula or a crossword puzzle.

As the color on my chart shows, flip Bogue Chitto and Chamberlain Bridge and I'm writing about a very successful handicap. The Turk hung his handicap on Chamberlain Bridge being able to go 1/2 furlong further then he has in the past and doing it aplomb. It didn't happen.

The Turk Clan did cash a $4 winner on Field Commission, a Woodbine runner who isn't intimidated by shippers. The $26.40 on the win bet which was a defensive bet that worked covered the $20 total that was bet on several straight trifectas and exactas.

It's getting very cold in Western New York and the ice was think on my windshield this morning. I'm starting to day dream more and more about the Baldwin Ave. exit that leads towards Santa Anita. The Breeder's Cup is coming, now less then three weeks away. While it would have been great to see Sea the Stars and Rachael Alexandra, at this point I'll be happy if our American runners acquit themselves well. For analysis and commentary of each of the Breeder's Cup divisional races, read the work of Thoroughbred Bloggers Alliance bloggers at the NTRA website as well as the excellent Breeders' Cup 360 website which is chock full of all kinds of good stuff.

Have Fun, Turk Out!

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