I had hoped to be able to run a full card today but time constraints won't allow.  Instead I am going to focus on three tracks, the first three or four races, in essence creating my own race card.

I am also going to forgo the multiple updates and going with a single update for each race at approx 5mtp.

What I'm looking for today are win wagers that will profit long term so qualifiers will need to pay in the 9-5 range or I won't be backing.

Finger Lakes race 1 - the 4 and 6 both Q, the six at 2-1 currently.

​Aqueduct race 1- the 3 and the 5 both Q, the five at 5-2 currently.

Q's won both races, however there were no wagers put through as all fell below the designated threshold.

At GPW there are two Q's in the first, the 4 and the 5, both over 2-1, but dutching them drops the odds too low.

FL R2- the 5 Q's and at 5-2 will be a play unless bet down.

​Aqu R2- there are three Q's- the 1,6,8 but the odds on the 6 destroy the dutch wager, however the exacta looks good, may take a chance.

The heavy favorite in FL R2 also Q'd which destroyed any dutch so everything was scrapped at 1mtp, although it did win...

Again the late money forces a Q to the top as the 7 not only Q's but wins.

The Q's are doing really well- 4/5 races, but the prices are lacking.

The 3rd at FL has a heavy fav that already Q'd so I'm going to pass, the same goes for the 2nd at GPW, the 4 is currently 2/5.

The 3rd at the Big A has the 6 horse at 2-1, will wait and see...

Short prices are the mantra today, last chance for something to happen is GPW R3, with two Q's, the 4 and 6, both currently at decent prices but only time will tell...

At 5-2 for each it makes for a lower payout than I'd like... Next time.
 

Well here I am on a rainy Thursday (where I live anyway), and looking at the card for the Big A, Aqueduct.
The first race has three scratches in a short field creating a situation where all remaining horses qualify.
going to follow to see if some value appears in the daily double, possibly a pick.
Decided to go with the 4/7 over the 3/6 in a DD, anyone's race.

The second race opens with a couple of horses flirting with a Q, but none as of yet.  Will update at 10mtp.
 
The only Q for the 2nd is the 4, which I didn't use in the DD.  Looking at the exacta with the 1 as a possibility. 
Ultimately went to the 1 and 6 with the 4, rooting for a 6/4 finish.

The 1 did Q after betting closed but it didn't matter as the 5, a bomb and TVG pick by Matt Coruthers, got there first.  

No early Q's in the third- be back in ten...

The 6 Q's in race 3, still looking... Just not feeling anything here, a race to watch.

The 4th race Q's are the 4 and the 7, looks good for some profit, and may go with an exacta 47/475, the trifecta may be in play as well.
​Big drop on the 3 at the 3mtp mark, should consider.

No early Q's in the 5th.  Another bomb drops in for the 4th, some really good prices.  Should no horses Q I am looking at possibly the 3rd betting choice.

No horses Q'd in the 5th and the 3rd choice ran 2nd to the fav.

In the 6th the Q's are the 1 and 2 from the start, I also like the 5 so may go with an exacta box with my wins on this one.

The 10 Q'd after close, doing me no good, and it ran a decent race coming in a fading second to the fav.

​No early Q's in the 7th.  Back at 10mtp. 

​Any Q's will probably come late in this one, I liked the 5 this morning, still do, may use in a box with the fav...

The 8 did Q after close, again no good for a wager, which is fine because he came in second.

Two more races to get in the black for the day, and both with decent size fields.

At 10mtp the 2 is flirting with qualifying, as is the 8, but so far no major plays have been made.  

Days like this see races with late Q's because the money is played so slowly and shared mutuals are put in after closing.  You can take a gamble and try to predict if the horse that's close is going to Q late by watching the trends.

The gamble would have paid off if you decided to follow the favorite who Q'd after close and went on to win.  I didn't go that route this time saving my pennies for the last.

The ending theme- no early Q's in the finale.

At 10mtp the 11 Q'd, we'll see if anyone joins him, I may join him with the 4/7 in an exacta, but a definite win wager forthcoming. 

All the money went to the 2 at the close pushing him across the wire and he wins in a two horse stretch run with the 7.

Ending totals for w/p/s are- 17.40 / 13.40 / 10.50
Playing total is $22 leaving a (4.60) / (8.60) / (11.50)

There was never any value in the p / s wagers today with the smaller fields and late money. 

Tomorrow's another day, I hope to be live again next week, but one never knows.  Luck to all!



 
The tally for the first five races yesterday at Del Mar (qualifiers only):
9 total qualifiers
33% win, 67% place and show
40% win profit
30% place profit
3% show  profit
Three races had multiple qualifiers, basing the exotics on a $2 box wager:
Exacta-
33% for a 59% profit (1 out of 3 races boxed- 1 out of 10 wagers total)
Trifecta-
0% for a $12 loss. (1 race boxed- 6 wagers)
Total for a win, place, show and exotic monetarily:
All- $86- wagered, $99- returned for 15% profit
Win, place, exacta only-
$56 wagered, $80.40 returned for 44% profit.

I am currently working on an additional methodology that will work in conjunction with the Tote Method further narrowing some play.  I hope to be able to release it by Derby time 2018.

In the mean time be sure to check back for more live runs with the tote method.  I realize that they are sporadic and somewhat spontaneous, but then again, so is life.  Though there may be one this coming Thursday....


 
I have the opportunity to share results in real time for the first few races at Del Mar this afternoon.  If you would like to follow along simply refresh the page every so often.

My early selections for the first five races are (in order of race):
2,4/9,5/2,3/4,6,8/3,5.
The favored horse being listed first.
My advance wagers will include an across the board wager on the 7 in race 7 and the 4 in race 9.

Now, the early early qualifier ( Q from now on) for the first race is the 2, Good bye Greg.  

I am hoping to see Q's that go back up in price today, as payouts during the Breeder's Cup tend to be higher.

So with sixty minutes to post, the 2 is the sole Q thus far. 

With 30 tmp Mr. Hinx has also Q'd, so it is now the 2 and 6.  Because this is a short field of only six runners all of the horses would Q as overlays so the value may be in exotic multi race wagers such as the daily double.  Will have to see as post time draws nearer.

At 15mtp it is still the 2/6 as Q's.  I can get 3-1 on a daily double with the 9 in the second (2,6 / 5,9), while getting 3-2 on a dutch play.

5mtp, no changes, time to head to the window.

The one thing about value is that the horse needs to win.  Mr. Hinx caught 2nd and Good Bye Greg ran out, so on to race 2, where the early Q is the 11, Ritzy A.P.

​5mtp and no change in Q's, using some trending I went with the 6,9 over the 11 in a trifecta.

Ritzy A.P. got up for the win, and the trend didn't pan out for that run, but shows  most probable win for a favorite here, we'll see. 

The early Q's for the 3rd race are the 2,3 and 10.

At 5mtp, no changes, the exacta's with the 2 are money back wagers, lets see what happens.

The 10 on top gives you a nice little profit.  The early Q for race 4 is the 8, Spiced Perfection.

The 6 was a late Q, so it was the 6 and 8 at 3mtp.

The 8 caught second, the early Q for the 5th race is the  3.

It's time for me to roll out, but follow up on the 1 here as fourth wagering position is trending.  

I'll update with final tally either later tonight or tomorrow.

​Luck to all!
 

It's hard to believe that a year has come and gone.  But here we are.
Today's running of the Kentucky Derby offers quite a few opportunities for value.

There is no overly hyped favorite, and the weather has been poor.  Of course the weather may not be too much a factor by race time, with forty-five minutes to post of the first race at Churchill Downs, Twinspires has yet to list track conditions and scratches.

Early qualifiers of the first are Maximus Beauty and Wholehearted.

My early leanings for the Derby are three- Girvin, Gunnevera and McCraken.

On a side note- in the last at Gulfstream, Tom Liz looks solid and Annie's Big Boy looks as though he may upset.

Churchill conditions- turf good, dirt sloppy as of 9:54 est.

Notable scratch in the 7th at Churchill- the scratch of Miss Temple City opens the door for upset run by Prize Exhibit with Linda up close.

30 min. to post, no changes in qualifiers of the first.  
​(you will need to refresh to follow throughout the day)

Race 1 is being bet pretty even across, and with no changes in Q's at the 4 minute mark I will go with those two in the double with Underpressure.

A dutch on those two as well will yield a decent return if one hits the front at the wire too.

Realized return on the dutch wager is 2-1 as Maximus Beauty hits the wire first.

Early Q's in the second race are Donwell and Awesome Saturday.  There are some viable overlays in the race as well.  Will wait and see how the wagering plays out.

No change thus far in Q's.  Getting about 5-1 on the exacta of Q's over my selection Underpressure so I will go that route being that the odds don't warrant a dutch.  I will also run a double with Flashy Jewel in the third.

Nice price on No Mo Dough as he knocks my exotic off the board.

​The early Q in the third is my selection of Flashy Jewel.  Again there are viable overlays, maybe I won't shy away from them this time...

Interesting that the over/under prices in the exacta with Flashy Jewel are within $3 for most horses save the two long shots.  

I will go with a win on Flashy Jewel and an exacta key box with Carve and Donegal Moon, and a double with Encrypt.

That's how it goes sometimes- last flash and Rocket Time Q's, without any real trend in the wagering it was hard to predict the late action.  Anyway he put away the rest to win.

Two early Q's in the fourth, Caviar Czar and Perfect Partner.   Odds too low to consider dutch at this time.  Will wait to see if the exotics with my selection, Encrypt, offer some value.

Last flash before closing in the fourth gave Souper Fly Over a Q.

My early selection ran third as two of the three Q's went first and second...

I went chalky in the fifth and sixth with Forge and Carina Mia.

The early Q's in the 5th are Forge and Cherry Wine.  At this point I will run them in the multi-race wagers with my early selections, and work on narrowing my derby key horse...

Nothing left for Forge when he got the opening.  No early Q's in the 6th.  Is there where everything starts to shift?  We'll see...

No Q's with 4 min to post so going to pass on this one and see what my long shot looks like in the 7th.

Roca Rojo is a heavy bet favorite and Q in the early wagering of the 7th.  My selection Prize Exhibit is 16-1 and Linda is, as I type now a Q as well.  If things stay as they are I will probably key my pick over and under with the Q's.

That's why they're long shots.... No early Q's in the 8th, but no surprise as there is 45 minutes to post.. 

What is going to happen now that the track is drying out? We'll see..

No Dozing Q's at 35 minutes to post.  

At the halfway mark Q's have paid on win 4/13, place 6/13 and show 7/13.
Per $2 wager that equates to $33 win 27.40 place and 21.80 show-  
profit on win wagers $7, on place 1.40 and a loss on show of (4.20).

Good Samaritan is the early Q in the 9th.  Oscar Performance Q'd late in the wagering.

No Q's yet in the 10th-

Beach Patrol is the early Q in the 11th.  

At this point I have decided that McCraken will be my key, but have to back up with Practical Joke who shows consistency that few in the race have had.  Unfortunately he drew the 19 post, a big minus.

The early Q in the Derby is Irish War Cry.  However there is still over an hour to go to post... Stay tuned...

Wind up with three Q's in the 13th- the entry, 2 and 5- using shorthand here.

​Going to sit the last two out, but will track progress none the less...

So to wrap it all up- the last two races had a total of 5 Q's and the final results are as follows:

23 Qualifiers  6 wins 10 places 11 shows

A $2 wager across the board on every qualifier would yield $150.80 on wagers totaling $138 for 9% profit.

Breaking that down further- wagering on individual places:

Win $50.80 / $46  10% profit

Place $54.60 / $46 19% profit

show $45.40 / $46  (1%) loss

Wagering win / place yields a 15% profit

A good day all around, despite the weather.





 
Todays running of the Florida Derby brings two undefeated contenders together- Nyquist (6/6) and Mohaymen (5/5).

Both are early favorites for the Kentucky Derby but only one, barring some weird photo finish, will trot away as the only undefeated horse left after this race..... Or will it?

Is there a horse that may upset the apple cart?  Could one of the others entered in todays Derby steal the cookie from Nyquist's or Mohaymen's cookie-jar?


I have to admit that I am partial to Mohaymen, mostly due to the 'been there done that' reasoning.  Nyquist might have the class edge, but that may not be enough to make up for the added half furlong in this race, though having never run the distance it's hard to know for sure.  I would be more optimistic if Nyquist had drawn away in either of his winning routes, as he had in his sprint races.  That being said I have to give the edge to Mohaymen.

That being said, there are a couple of interesting possibilities for an upset.

Fellowship has never raced the distance either and has come in third to Mohaymen in his last two races.  The improving colt is 25% at Gulfstream Park and put in a nice work on 3/19.  

Chovanes is coming of his maiden victory in a $50,000 maiden claimer.
Yes, it was off a drop in class.  Yes, he did shorten from 1 1/8 miles to 1 mile.
And yes, he did show a 150% improvement.  He may bounce off the effort, but he has had two really good works since- one on 3/19 and one on 3/27- both at GPW.  (formerly Calder).

Still iffy? Then look at his trainer, J. Navarro, who is 30% at the meet.  The jockey J. Zayas's first time on Chovanes was for the win and who, when coupled with Navarro, hit for 24% for this meet and 33% year to date.  Hard not to include.  For me, anyway.

Then there's Takeittotheedge.  This will be his second time out after a driving win in a $50,000 maiden special weight at 7 furlongs at Gulfstream.  He has had steady works since of four and five furlongs.  

The stretch out is an unknown as well as adapting to the class level but the combination of Gaffalione and Romans is intriguing.  

Gaffalione was aboard for Takeittotheedge's debut win and the jockey's association with trainer Dale Romans has produced 13% wins thus far.  Not great at first glance, but looking at the positive ROI puts a positive spin on this colts chances.

What it comes down to?  I will be looking to key Mohaymen in different exotics with Nyquist, Fellowship, Chovanes and Takeittotheedge.  But I will be using the latter on top in some of them.

A debate can be had for just about any horse in any race at any track.  This race is no different, and that is what makes this game so great, and at times, so frustrating.

Great days to all!
 
What a great way to start the new season of racing off!  Anyone who watched the Dubai World Cup on Saturday saw why California Chrome earned horse of the year honors in '14.

Staying three wide for most of the race, and even four and five wide at points, California Chrome surged to the front top of the stretch and lugged in to capture top prize.  He left 110% on the track in a gutsy championship performance.  Congratulations to everyone involved!

Now our sights turn to the Triple Crown tip off only weeks away.

After winning the Louisiana Derby Gun Runner is the current points leader.  There is a lot of talent and a handful of preps remaining.  It will be interesting to see who makes the cut and what the field looks like.

​At any rate, it looks like it is going to be a great year for racing!

 
So, with all of the info just slamming into the handicapping world like a tidal wave I decided to back Firing Line.  He is my early pick, but one that will be incorporated in anything I decide to do wager wise.
It looks like this year will be a great one for great payouts.  Good luck to all!
I will update tomorrow as the race gets closer.  BTW my plays thus far for preplays are:
Oaks/ Wood/Derby P3- 5,6,13/5,6,8,10/8,10,18
Oaks/ Derby Dbl- 5,6,13/ 8,10,18

 
For me this is the most exciting time of year in horse racing- The Triple Crown Races- kicked off by the Kentucky Derby!
There are other great racing events, but I am decidedly partial to these.
As we get closer I will post my thoughts on the race for those who choose to take the time to read them, probably on the 1st.


For now- here is another spot play to consider:
Males only- Optional Claimers- look for those with a morning line less than 6-1 who are in the money at both track and distance and who had a stakes race run in one of their last three outings.


It is common to have multiple qualifiers, especially in the higher pursed races.
one way to separate is to look at the finish of the stakes race and using the horse that did best, or look to the last race and use the the horse that finished strongly.


Sometimes when there are many qualifiers it sets the race up for an outsider, a long shot, so be vigilant for the opportunity to strike a good one.


Best of luck!
 
Wow, February is a short month!  Missed it completely, so here are two spots to make up for it-
In claimers for males only look for those with a morning line of less than 6-1 and a win or place at that track and distance entered.  NO TIES.
In claimers for females only look for a bullet work since the last race and that the last race should have a finish of 1st thru 4th or less than 5 lengths, with a win at the track and distance entered.
Good luck and have fun!