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Horse Racing - Make Money Toss Out False Favorites (Part 2)

Posted by Pete Mitchell on 4/26/2012 11:03:36 AM

Racebook betting

In Part 1 of this article, posted on this website on June 30th, we discussed false favorites and identified A. P. Arrow, favored at 1.25-1 in the Suburban Handicap, as such a horse. Now let’s discuss how to capitalize on this opinion.

Before looking at a few wagering strategies, I’ll take a moment to discuss the eventual winner, Frost Giant, who paid a generous $82.00 for a $2 win bet. Frost Giant was one of two horses in the race trained by Rick Dutrow (of Big Brown fame). The other was Rising Moon, sent off at a modest 4.10-1. Dutrow has been known to bet large sums on his horses, so anything he sends out merits extra scrutiny. Frost Giant had two dirt races on his resume, both of which were at a distance of 1 1/8 miles at Gulfstream Park earlier this year, and both resulted in a respectable Beyer Speed Figure of 97. He was favored in both races, winning a 2X Optional Claimer and finishing 4th in the Grade 3 Skip Away Handicap after an awkward start. Note that in ’06 he won a Group 3 event on grass in Ireland at the Suburban’s 1 ¼-mile distance. Many people dismissed this horse’s chances because he was being ridden by low-profile jockey Rudy Rodriguez. Well, it just so happens that Rudy has been working this horse in the A.M. and knows him like a book. He (and Dutrow) also knew that the horse was getting good at the right time. Finally, 40-1 was a far cry from Frost Giant’s morning-line odds of 12-1. In other words, here was a horse with some betting value.

Let’s say you decided to leave A. P. Arrow out of the exacta, and played a 7-horse exacta box. That would have cost you $84 for a $2 box (7 X 6 X $2). The exacta returned $265.50. How about if you liked Frost Giant, but weren’t crazy about the other two longshots, Naughty New Yorker and Hunting. A 5-horse exacta box would have cost $40 (5 X 4 X $2). How about if you really liked Frost Giant, and keyed him top and bottom in the exacta with all but A. P. Arrow, for an investment of $24 (1 X 6 X $2 + 6 X 1 X $2). As you pare down your options, you increase your ROI.

The same methodology in the trifecta would have generated a truly handsome return. A 7-horse trifecta box (leaving out A. P. Arrow) would have cost $420 (7 X 6 X 5 X $2). A 5-horse trifecta box would have cost $120. If you keyed Frost Giant first, second and third in the trifecta with all but A. P. Arrow, it would have cost $180 (1 X 6 X 5 X $2 + 6 X 1 X 5 X $2 + 6 X 5 X 1 X $2). The trifecta paid $2,620.00 for a $2 bet!

You could have cashed highly profitable exacta and trifecta tickets in the Suburban with no strong opinion, except that A. P. Arrow was an underlay.  Sometimes a “Bet Against” strategy is the only way to fly. We invite you to fly with when you have an opinion on the ponies!

Pete Mitchell has been handicapping horses since his teenage years. He has been a professional horse player for many years, and came to’s attention through multiple referrals from industry insiders/sportsbook owners. Pete is revered for his horse handicapping opinion and industry experts acknowledge his impressive career winning record. Thoughts or questions?



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