It's the age old saying, is it better to be lucky or skilled? In my experience at the track, skill gets you break even and luck brings you an ROI with boasting about.
Welcome friends to The Turk and the Little Turk blog. We started 2020 with the intention of blogging every week and having a 52 Bets in 52 Weeks series of posts. We made it to the end of February before, in this order, my father in law died, the quarantine started and life came to halt, and my father died. When horse racing did return, and when I came out of the fog I was in personally, the world was seen differently by me.
The lack of fans at the track doesn't bother me, but the rhythm of the racing season is ajar. Coupled with a sense of my own mortality, I wasn't sure if this blog, started in a different time and different place, September 2008, was worth continuing.
The reality is that almost no one reads it anymore. My traffic was never great, and it's abysmal now. When people did read blogs, mine wasn't good enough, or my writing not crisp enough to garner regular readers. I soldiered on because I never started this blog for any reason other than to share my insights into the game of handicapping and betting with anyone interested. While the world is different, and my priorities for that matter also, I still like the challenge of betting the ponies and I continue to be good at it. I may not have much charisma as a turf writer, but I have always done a good job picking winners, be it superfectas in the old days, but over the last few years, the exacta near exclusively.
I handicapped the Fourstardave and was struck by how good the field was. For the first time in a very long time I almost didn't toss any runners, and only after some hand wringing did I toss the Show horse, Casa Creed, a Mott horse who at 4 YO I thought was too slow to be with this group. I didn't particularly love recent form, although training nicely at SAR, but last year over this course he put up a 1.33.72 in the Hall of Fame G2. This one was won in 1:33.32. I just thought there was too much in front of him, but I did notice he was 5th on the tote board, just a bit better than the returning last year winner, Got Stormy.
Anyways, in the blog post I was clear that I wasn't interested in betting short paying favorites and I said I'd be inclined to $2 Bet Halladay and Got Stormy OVER Raging Bull, Without Parole and Uni for $12.
My ultimate bet was Halladay/Got Stormy OVER Halladay, Got Stormy, Raging Bull, Without Parole and Uni, a $2 Bet for $16. You hope for the best, luck helps, and on this day that $16 became $125. You'll find the race chart from DRF here.
The lovely Dita (pictured above) honored me with a cigar for my effort.
The 52 in 52 is up to Race 6. I'm just going to keep this spreadsheet rolling forward until the sample size is over 100.