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All The Right Moves

Posted by on 2/18/2015 6:46:55 PM

In the movie All The Right Moves a high school football player, Tom Cruise, makes all the wrong moves eventually getting kicked off the team but when the money was on the line and with his college career looming, the player came up with a turnover that won the game.

It reminds of the ups and downs of playing the horses and trying to make the right moves knowing that there will be mistakes. The key to most endeavors, including handicapping and betting, is limiting the mistakes and making most of the good opportunities.

When betting, players need to stay away from the kind of bets that everybody has latched onto.

One of the worst kinds of these wagers is if a mediocre inconsistent wins a race in his last outing and while doing so, puts up a “number” good enough to win a Breeder’s Cup race!

The why of the huge number could come about for any number of reasons to include catching the golden path on a severely biased surface, suddenly finding himself the lone speed in a field of plodders on a speed favoring course, getting a dream trip behind 2 or more dueling frontrunners, or just catching a bad group and a few horses that put in sub-par performances.

The key in this case is to discover why the runner jumped up and ran big.

If you can see the why of the suddenly superb performance, the horse is even easier to toss out.

If the bizarre number this runner just put up last out was somehow legitimate, he’s going to be grossly over bet at the windows and the value will go right out the window.

If things just unfolded perfectly for this horse, the chances of getting it all his own way in back-to-back races is minute at best.

Most likely he won’t be the lone speed next out, or he’ll fail to get that same perfect trip, or he won’t again catch the golden path.

The claiming game makes horseracing go round. There are some guys like New York-based David Jacobson who is great with claiming while other trainers don’t have the same eye for a good purchase.

Think logically when looking at claimers. If an owner claims a horse, would he logically put him in for a cheaper price the first time he runs for the new owner?

Not unless there is a fire sale.

I hate horses dropping first out off a claim. They just don’t make sense and a red flag is immediately raised.

Giving a claiming trainer the benefit of the doubt that he knew exactly what he was claiming, dropping first out off the claim most often signals only one thing---something could be seriously wrong.

Something very negative may have occurred from the time the claiming trainer haltered the horse until today when you see him dropped in claiming price from the price recently paid.

He could have grabbed a quarter, injured an ankle or knee, acquired a new extension problem, began hitting himself or got sick and lost noticeable weight and color.

Think of it this way. Would you go out and spend $50,000 for a car that you really wanted and then turn around 2 weeks later assuming that there was nothing wrong with the automobile and offer it for sale at $40,000?

Not unless you were brain dead!

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