Look Out For Number One

As a horseplayer you have to look out for number 1. That’s you. Believe me nobody else is going to do it.

Amidst all the reform we hear about today, granted all of it needed and long overdue, you don’t hear much about helping the bettor. The bettor true to past performances will be the first to get put on the back burner or worse swept under the rug.

Beating this game as a horseplayer has always been hard. It is harder today than ever before. All the reform in the world won’t save the sport if nothing is done to help the current bettors, and attract some new ones.

How does a bettor look out for number 1? There are several ways we can do this.

Be selective and pick your spots. Remember you are not obligated to bet every day, every race at every track. Bet the races you feel strong about, in the larger fields, with the lower takeout. If you apply this to your handicapped routine in the long run it can do nothing but help.

Do your homework and be prepared. It is better to study one track thoroughly than to study a few tracks hap hazard or rushed. Not everyone will be doing that so you will have a leg up on all those players.

Unless you are part of a syndicate or betting big money rebates are minimal. They won’t carry you like they do the teams and syndicates. Find a platform like AmWager’s that is user friendly, makes things easy for you, and has tools like some of theirs that help you identify values

There are a lot of experts out there. Most self proclaimed, and most full of you know what. Be careful who you listen to. There are alot more bad opinions out there than good ones. The best opinion is yours. No matter what you hear, or anybody says there is only one benchmark by which all players in this game are measured. Do you beat the game or not? That’s it. Everything else means nothing.

Use good products. Quality past performances are a must. So are real speed figures not raw ones. I use Formulator and Thorograph and also make my own figures, 10- Figs which I post on Tracking Trips which is my trip note service.

You have to look out for you and give yourself every edge and shot you can. With all the safety reform being discussed you can bank on no take out reductions. No free quality data. No substantial rebates for the everyday player. Nothing to level the playing field so that old fashioned handicapping and money management give you a fair shot. Today you have to factor drugs, cheating, and even stewards. It all points to picking your spots.

California has now changed the rules regarding the riding crop. Now again safety should always come first. I advocate for that daily. That said this is a gaming sport we are expected to put or invest money into. Anybody ask you about any changes to the whip rules, or how it can affect a wager or race from a bettors perspectives? Me either.

I guess the new rules will affect anyone who chooses to continue to play California races both ways at times. There will be times your horse needed some urging they did not get. And there will be times another horse doesn’t beat you for that same reason. Maybe it will even out, maybe not. I don’t want to chance it on the day I am alive to a big score. That’s just me.

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Jon Stettin

Since childhood, Jon has always had a deep love and respect for the Sport of Kings. His years of experience have earned him a well respected spot in the industry as a handicapper. He now is a frequent contributor to AmWager as well as writing for his own site.

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