Week of May 24, 2010
By Dana Byerly, Hello Race Fans Co-founder
Summer is almost here. Belmont’s spring/summer meet has started, Hollywood Park, Arlington Park and Calder are already in full effect and Monmouth Park kicked off its “Elite Summer Meet” this weekend. There’s no better time to go to the track than summer and we’ll have a few items to help get you in the mood for summer racing.
Summertime is turf racing time and we’ll have a post about turf angles to help you “get your footing” (sorry, couldn’t resist!). We’ll also have a post about factoring the post parade and warm-up when you’re evaluating the race. This week’s feature image is from the 2007 Garden City Stakes at Belmont, the race that taught me the importance of watching the parade and warm-up. The eventual winner, Alexander Tango, is on the far left just behind the other horses.
We received a question this week so I’ll take the opportunity to answer it here. Reader Jim writes:
With prohibitive favorites, when is it advisable to try and beat’em or just accept that they will win and structure something underneath. Any thoughts?
Ask ten different handicappers and you’ll get ten different answers. The rule of thumb I would offer is “if you think you can beat them, try”. I should note that I’m not risk averse!
There have certainly been times when I’ve played a prohibitive favorite on top and, in fact, there was a race this weekend where I wish I would have done just that as my choice, at 50-1, got up for second. The exacta paid $145 with a 7/5 shot on top! There are many ways you could play this situation and the odds of the other horses you like should be the guide on how you could potentially structure your tickets. But, this is a great question, and we’ll put it on our editorial to do list!
In the meantime, does anyone have any insight to offer?