Displaying items by tag: Breeders Cup Handicapping - AmWager

Wednesday, 31 October 2018 17:56

Late BC Bullet Points

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October 31, 2018

Late BC Bullet Points

By: Jonathan Stettin


By now most of us have at the least finished our preliminary work for the Breeders’ Cup. We know the post positions, fields, probable weather and the wagering menu. Before finalizing decisions, I am going to keep some bullet points in the forefront of my mind.

Here we go:

The draw is important in some races. Pay attention to it and who it has helped and who it has hindered.

Consider rider tendencies when you project how you think the pace will play out. Pace often makes the race. Some riders are more aggressive than others. Anticipating what they are likely to do can be an edge.

You have waited a year to get to this dance and you’re in it. Nothing in the rear view matters this weekend. Go in strong and with conviction on your opinions. #NoFear

The board is less important this weekend than on any given Wednesday at your local track. Everyone is here to win. Nobody is giving anyone room, a break, or giving a horse a race.

Go after your best opinions regardless of price. This weekend you will see horses of high quality going off at high odds. Take advantage of that when you like one. It is not every day you have 25-1 shots you feel have as good a chance as a 2-1 shot. It only takes one of those to make it count.

Do what you are good at and most confident in. If you like multi race wagers stick to that. If you like exactas and triples stick there. If you are a win bettor than bet win. This is not the weekend to change up.

Pick your spots and invest more in those wagers. There are a ton of wagers and if you chase them all equally you are not maximizing your best opinions. You have to do that. Maximize your return when you are right and you have a better chance of being right when your opinion is strong.

Don’t be afraid to change an opinion based on how the track or course may be playing or on who is hot and who is not. The game is both streaky and trendy. Sharp players adjust and never lock and load until they are approaching the gate. I adjusted and caught Caledonia Road last year on a closers track. Pay attention all day, both days.

If you score early stick to the plan. This is a marathon and not a sprint.

If something looks to good to be true believe it anyway just for this weekend. That’s what dreams and scores are made of.

Don’t bet against yourself. Go after who you believe in. You can’t cover every horse in every race. If you liked that horse so much you would have used it.

All the statistics thrown around mean absolutely nothing in any given race. Don’t be afraid of stats.

What happened last year or in other year’s runnings will not affect any outcomes this year. Act accordingly.

Trainers who are suspected of pushing the envelope and taking an edge or even unfair advantage likely can’t push that envelope this weekend. Use that to your advantage but don’t think it means they can’t win.

Don’t get consumed by looking for value. Go after who you like and if you are right value has a way of working out. There is No value in a losing bet regardless of the odds. None.

If you have a bad beat or break early act as if it didn’t happen. Champions do not deviate.

Most important of all, be right. Remember, even if you follow all 16 of the prior bullet points, you are going to have to be right. Do your homework. Come prepared and don’t bring a knife to a gunfight. No matter how you get there, or any way you slice it, you’re going to have to be right.

Thanks for reading and enjoy the Breeders’ Cup. It really looks like a most competitive year. Some great racing looks to be a sure bet.

All the best to all the horses and connections and players. Any questions feel free to reach out and ask. I’m always happy to talk horses and share experience.

#BetBig #SwingHard #MakeItCount #P6K

Published in Jon Stettin's Blog
Wednesday, 24 April 2019 12:56

Seal the Deal

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October 25, 2018

Seal the Deal

By: Jonathan Stettin


The Breeders’ Cup is a little over a week away. The pre-entry past performances are out. The early weather forecast is in. It is almost time to seal the deal.

The Breeders’ Cup is a major wagering event for many of us and there is a good reason for that. There will be a lot of opportunities and a full wagering menu to make the most of them. While final handicapping comes after the draw, I have begun to strategize my attack and will share some early thoughts.

Most serious players keep track of where they stand annually. I have for many years. While most years I am usually in a good spot by now and comfortably in the black, this year that is not the case. It has been a rough year on the racetrack for me, but that won’t change anything in my approach. I will kick the door open on Friday, as opposed to limping in. When you can’t even remember how many six figure days you’ve had in your career, you learn to do that. I’ll be aggressive and confidant. What’s happened this year prior to now doesn’t matter come Breeders’ Cup. No looking in the rear-view mirror.

There is going to be some rain leading into the event. The Churchill Downs main track handles water as good as any I have ever seen. The turf is likely to, at best, have some give in it and that is very important. I think a common mistake many handicappers make, is not looking at the type of course grass horses prefer. While they do it on the main track with sloppy and muddy track horses, they seem to categorize turf horses without that preference for good, soft, or yielding turf. There will be some potential edges in looking at horses who prefer and move up with give in the ground.

I am looking at multi race wagers as in pick 4’s, 5’s, and of course the Pick 6. My major play of the two days will most likely come in one of these sequences. I will also attack one, or maybe two, individual races where I feel the strongest about the outcome.

For multi race wager players, Enable is going to be a key, whether you like her or want to beat her. You are going to have to be right if you single her, or try and beat her, to maximize the pick 4,5, and 6 ending with the Classic. Obviously, if you beat her you are looking at a better payoff, but I am not opposed to singling a winner and going after the bet multiple times. I don’t know which way I will lean there, but it is going to be a key decision in those late sequences. Choose wisely.

I will definitely look for a multi race sequence where I like a single who is a price and not “everybody’s single.” That’s one of my favorite positions and scenarios. Wide open races often value. I like them in the sequences I play.

We are hearing a lot of talk about European horses dominating. Logical for sure, being we don’t have the greatest grass contingent this year, and the conditions seemingly favor them. I agree in theory and may wind up playing that way, but I won’t know that until I finalize the work. I don’t like forming my opinion until I know the exact conditions, riders, and posts.

The two-year-old races on Friday offer a lot of opportunity for an edge. If you are the type of player and handicapper who can anticipate horses moving up and recognize trainer patterns, then you will get your chances Friday.

Historically the Breeders’ Cup has taught us price doesn’t matter. You can bet a 25-1 with as much conviction as a 2-5. Take advantage of that. There is no better two days in racing to do so. No fear. None.

The bulk of my play will go into the bets I discussed above. I will play the rest of both cards, but on a significantly lesser scale. Money management is always key, but crucial over two days where you want to jump in almost everywhere. Patience and discipline.

If you are playing from behind, as I am this year, it is a good chance to erase the deficit and get into the win column. If you are already there, that’s even better, as now you get a chance to pull away. Scared money has a hard time winning, so I suggest and plan to do as I usually do. Play to make it count. It only takes one. You just have to be right.

Published in Jon Stettin's Blog