Category Archives: Handicapping Blog

Sharp Angles – Del Mar Oaks

Sharp Angle - Saturday, August 18
Del Mar Oaks (G1)
9 furlongs on turf
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: 12 graded stakes for 3yos at 9 furlongs on turf at Del Mar
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Last E1 Pace
Factor Stats: 15 contenders, 5 winners (31%, $43.80 flat win bet profit, 236 ROI% and a $3.80 flat place profit)

Arrogate may be the headliner of Saturday's Pacific Classic Day at Del Mar, but the 14-horse Del Mar Oaks offers a superb betting opportunity. Analyzing the horse racing data in Betmix Angler for 3yo graded races on the Del Mar grass course shows that Last E1 Pace has been a lucrative approach. The five winners from 15 contenders include two Oaks heroines - Discreet Marq ($11.40) in 2013 and Personal Diary ($20.20) a year later.

How to apply this Angle? On the Free Race of the Day page use the Factor Statistics slider to see which horse ranks first in Last E1 Pace.

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Track of the Week – Arlington Park

It's hard to believe that it's been 35 years since John Henry nosed out The Bart in the inaugural Arlington Million at our Track of the Week, Arlington Park. While the suburban Chicago track faces more challenges today than it did three decades ago, Million Day remains a major event on the Chicago sports calendar. This week we'll parse some data and highlight some Angles to help formulate plays for the four Million weekend cards.

Sharp Angle - Saturday, August 12
Beverly D. Stakes (G1).
9.5 furlongs on turf
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: 14 Stakes at 9.5 furlongs on turf at Arlington
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Average Last 3 Late Pace 
Factor Stats: 15 contenders, 5 winners (33%, $26.60 flat win bet profit, 188 ROI%), 11 in the money (73%, $10.00 flat place bet profit & $10.10 flat show bet profit)

The Beverly D. Stakes has drawn a Breeders' Cup-worthy field this year and it's just as competitive at the windows. With a 73% in-the-money rate and two of the past three Beverly D. heroines represented (including $19.80 winner Watsdachances) this Sharp Angle is an ideal starting point in handicapping the race.

Results: 1st Dacita paying $15.80

Want to look for your own Angles?
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This week's other Angles:

Since Aug 1, 2016, for 1-Mile Turf Claiming races at Arlington Park:

Single Factor Angle: Horses 1st in Average Speed last 3 have won 19 of 49 races (38.7%)

Since June 1, for Turf Sprints at Arlington Park:

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Best Speed Last 3 have won 8 of 25 races (32%)
Multiple Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Best Speed Last 3 & Top 4 in Turf Pedigree Rating have won 8 of 20 races (40%)

Track of the Week – Mountaineer Park

They've been racing at Mountaineer Park, this week's Betmix Track of the Week, since 1951. On Saturday afternoon the track will host it's biggest day of the season with a seven stakes card highlighted by the $750,000 West Virginia Derby (G2). Leading up to Saturday there are a trio of weeknight cards. See below for tips and Angles that can be applied to the Free Race of the Day.

Sharp Angle - Saturday, August 5
West Virginia Derby (G1).
9F on dirt
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last four runnings of the West Virginia Derby
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle (multi-factor): Ranked Top 3 in Average E2 Pace & Top 3 in Average Last 3 Race Class
Factor Stats: 9 contenders, 4 winners (44%, $4.60 flat win bet profit, 125 ROI%)

The West Virginia Derby has been 'chalky' the past four years with an average win payout of just $5.65. But the multiple factor angle presented here has found all four recent winners and points to a 2017 contender who will pay considerably more.

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Other Angles four Mountaineer Park:

Since June 1, for non-Maiden Dirt Sprints at Mountaineer Park

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Avg. Best 2 of last 3 Speed have won 42 of 113 races (37%)
Multiple Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Avg. Best 2 of last 3 Speed & 1st Avg. Last 3 Race Classes are 19 for 36 (53%)

Click here to visit the BirdDog handicapping software Free Race of the Day page and use the Factor Statistics sliders to rank the factors shown above.

Since June 1, for non-Maiden Dirt Routes at Mountaineer Park

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Last Race Class have won 21 of 54 races (34%)
Multiple Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Last Race Class & 1st in Trainer/Jock combo win % are 8 for 13 (61%)

Want to look for your own Angles?
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Track of the Week – Monmouth Park

It's Haskell weekend at Monmouth Park, our track of the week. See below for some Angles that can help you play the historic Jersey Shore track via the Free Race of the Day page.

Sharp Angle - Sunday, July 30
Haskell Invitational (G1).
9F on dirt
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: 11 stakes for three-year-olds at 8.32-9F on dirt
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Best Lifetime Speed
Factor Stats: 23 contenders, 11 winners (47%, $21.20 flat win bet profit, 146 ROI%), 60% 1st or 2nd ($6.80 flat place bet profit, 114 ROI%)

Top-figure horses are always dangerous but are often overbet. Betmix Angler data shows that Best Lifetime Speed has indeed been a predictably good predictor of success in the three-year-old dirt stakes at Monmouth Park. The data also shows these horses tend to pay reasonably well. In addition, the past three Haskell winners have all ranked first in Best Lifetime Speed, returning $7.20 (Exaggerator), $2.20 (American Pharoah) and $11.40 (Bayern).

Results: Girvin (1st at $9.20-1) & Timeline (5th at $1.90-1)

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Sharp Angle - Saturday, July 29
Lamplighter S.
8.5F on turf
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: 11 stakes for three-year-olds at 8/8.5F on turf
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Best Turf Pedigree Rating
Factor Stats: 17 contenders, 7 winners (41%, $77.60 flat win bet profit, 328 ROI%), 65% in-the-money ($7.00 flat show profit, 120 ROI%)

It makes sense that Turf Pedigree ranking would be a strong predictor in turf stakes. This is especially true for younger horses like the mid-year three-year-olds contesting the Lamplighter S. The massive $77 flat win bet profit certainly indicates this factor is one to be taken seriously.

Results: Mo Maverick (1st at $1.00-1) & Harlan Strong (3rd at $12.30-1)

Click here to visit the BirdDog handicapping software Free Race of the Day page and use the Factor Statistics sliders to rank the factor shown above.

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Friday, July 28 
7th Race at Monmouth Park
Allowance
8.32 furlongs on the dirt

Since June 1, for non Maiden Dirt Route Races at Monmouth

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Trainer Current Year have won 14 of 30 races (47%)
Multiple Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Trainer Current Year and ranked 1st or 2nd in Best Lifetime Speed are 12 for 20 (60%)

Single Factor results: Spring For More (1st at $3.20-1) & Twofour Six Oh One (3rd at $4.30-1)
Multiple Factor results: Spring For More (1st at $3.20-1)

Click here to visit the BirdDog handicapping software Free Race of the Day page and use the Factor Statistics sliders to rank the factors shown above.

Want to look for your own Angles?
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Best Factors for Saratoga

July 21 is opening day at Saratoga! Let's take a look at the best 2 factor combinations using data over the last 3 years.

In our previous post for Del Mar stats, we looked at the best single factor for each race. At Saratoga we are going to use a combination of 2 factors for each race type.

The more factors you use in an Angle, the more accurate it will be, but if you use too many you run the risk of creating an Angle that rarely returns a result.

Think about it this way.  In every non-maiden race there is going to be a horse that is ranked 1st in Speed Last Race.  There may also be ties, so you could have 2 or 3 horses with the same speed score in their last race.  If that was the only factor you were using in your Angle, then it would find at least one horse in every race.

If you add another factor you start reducing the results.  If your Angle says a horse must be ranked 1st in Speed Last Race & ranked in the top 4 for Trainer Current Year, then it is very possible that you wont find a match - the horse ranked 1st in Speed Last Race may be ranked 6th in Trainer Current Year.  The more conditions you add the fewer results you will get. You need to find that "sweet spot".  You certainly want to use more than one factor in your Angles, but if you use too many you may be creating a very accurate angle, but it will very rarely find a matching horse.

In this table below we have some good 2 factor combos to use for races at Saratoga.  There is also a short videoto show you how to create an Angle and demonstrate how the results get narrowed when you add more conditions to your angles.

Best factors for Saratoga last 3 years
Dirt Sprint (Less than 8F)
Race Class Best Factor Combinations Races Win Win% Profit
Mdn Clm
Ranked 1st Speed Last Race & Top 4 in Avg Lifetime Earnings
56 18 32.10 $8.50
Mdn Sp Wt Ranked 1st Last Purse & Top 2 in Speed Last Race 123 30 24.30 $8.50
Claiming Ranked 1st Speed Last Race & Last Race finish position 1-4 113 34 30.00 $39.20
Allowance Won Last Race & Top 2 in Trainer Current Year 83 14 16.80 $44.30
Stake 1st or 2nd in Last Race & Top 4 in Avg Speed Last 3 18 14 77.00 $19.40
Graded Stake Won Last Race & Top 6 in Speed Last Race 43 39 90.70 $87.80
Dirt Route (8F and greater)
Race Class Best Factor Races Win Win% Profit
Mdn Clm Ranked 1st Trainer Current Meet & Top 4 in Lifetime Earnings 6 4 66.60 $34.40
Mdn Sp Wt Ranked 1st Last Late Pace and Top 4 Trainer Current Meet 13 5 38.50 $39.60
Claiming Ranked 1st Jockey current Year & Top 4 Avg Lifetime Earnings 34 13 38.20 $37.40
Allowance Ranked 1st Last Purse & Top 5 in Dirt Pedigree Rating 44 18 40.10 $56.50
Stake Ranked 1st in Last Purse & Top 5 in Avg E2 Pace 24 10 41.70 $21.40
Graded Stake Won last race & Ranked Top 4 in Win % 24 13 54.20 $24.50
Turf Sprint (Less than 8F)
Race Class Best Factor Races Win Win% Profit
Mdn Clm Top 3 in Jockey Current Year & Top 7 in Turf Earnings 19 14 52.6 $44.40
Mdn Sp Wt Ranked 1st in Turf Earnings & Top 2 In The Money % 56 13 23.20 $14.90
Claiming Ranked 1st in Trainer Current Year & Top 6 Jockey Current Year 32 9 28.10 $24.90
Allowance Won last race & Ranked Top 6 in Win % 59 24 40.70 $43.80
Stake Ranked 1st in Avg Late Pace & Top 4 in Avg Best 2 of 3 Speed 22 10 45.40 $37.00
Turf Route (8F and greater)
Race Class Best Factor Races Win Win% Profit
Mdn Clm Ranked 1st Speed Last Race & Top 2 in Avg Turf Earnings 57 13 22.80 $16.80
Mdn Sp Wt Ranked 1st in Last Purse & Top 4 in Best Lifetime Speed 89 28 31.00 $32.60
Claiming Ranked 1st Avg Last 3 Race Classes & Ranked 1st Speed Last Race 74 8 12.00 $6.40
Allowance Ranked 1st Trainer Current Year & Days since last race < 90 165 39 23.60 $115.00
Stake Ranked 1st in Last Purse & Top 7 in Avg Turf Earnings 40 17 42.50 $24.60
Graded Stake Ranked 1st in Last Purse & Top 5 in Best Speed Turf 42 18 42.80 $52.70

What does this data mean?
Take a look at the table above and find the section for Turf Route Races. Then, look for Allowance races. We can see that there were 165 allowance races run on the turf at a mile or over, and the best factor combination was being ranked 1st in Trainer Current Year and having run within the last 90 days.  If you bet $2 to win on every horse at Saratoga that met those conditions over the last 3 years you would have made a profit of $115.

Using this information in BetMix
There are several ways to use this in BetMix. You could create a mix for each race type that used the best factor for each race, you could simply look at the factor stats in BirdDog to identify the top ranked horse for each factor, or you could create Angles that identify the horses for you. This quick video below will show you how to create an Angle using multiple factors.  Its easy to do, and when you run your angles for the day you will always know where the best betting opportunities are.

Get started with your own angles today at Betmix.

Best Factors For Del Mar

July 19 is opening day at Del Mar, and to kick it off we are going to look at the best factors for different race types at the track.

This data is based on the last 2 years of racing at Del Mar and is broken down by Dirt/Turf, Sprint/Route and Race Class.When looking at this table keep in mind that some race types are pretty uncommon at Del Mar (only 5 Mdn Sp Wt Turf Sprints) so the best factor information for those types of races will be less reliable than common race types like Claiming Dirt Sprints (138 races).

This information should be used as a starting point for your handicapping and give you a good head start on creating some profitable angles at Del Mar.

Best factors for Del Mar last 2 years
Dirt Sprint (Less than 8F)
Race Class Best Factor Races Win Win% Profit/Loss
Mdn Clm Best Speed Last 3 145 45 31.00 $20.00
Mdn Sp Wt Avg Late Pace 102 24 23.30 $2.20
Claiming Avg Best 2 of 3 Speed 138 51 33.80 $90.60
Allowance Won Last Race 62 23 37.00 $163.00
Stake In the Money % 23 14 60.80 $12.40
Graded Stake Best Speed Last 3 16 8 50.00 $8.20
Dirt Route (8F and greater)
Race Class Best Factor Races Win Win% Profit/Loss
Mdn Clm Lifetime Earnings 31 10 32.20 $23.40
Mdn Sp Wt Jockey Current Year 16 6 37.50 $8.20
Claiming Speed Last Race 67 24 35.80 $30.40
Allowance Best Speed Last 3 40 19 47.50 $33.60
Stake Trainer Current Year 7 4 57.10 $72.40
Graded Stake Avg Last 3 Purse 13 7 53.80 $11.20
Turf Sprint (Less than 8F)
Race Class Best Factor Races Win Win% Profit/Loss
Mdn Clm N/A
Mdn Sp Wt Distance Worked 5 3 60.00 $97.40
Claiming Distance Worked 10 4 40.00 $20.00
Allowance Speed Last Race 49 17 34.60 $63.60
Stake TurF Earnings 4 2 50.00 $16.40
Graded Stake N/A
Turf Route (8F and greater)
Race Class Best Factor Races Win Win% Profit/Loss
Mdn Clm AVG Speed Last 3 10 3 30.00 $25.20
Mdn Sp Wt AVG Best 2 of 3 Speed 70 22 31.40 $35.00
Claiming Avg Earnings Track 50 15 30.00 $56.20
Allowance Avg Laste Pace 105 23 21.90 $69.20
Stake Won Last Race 22 9 40.90 $23.20
Graded Stake Last Race Class 33 15 45.40 $39.60


What does this data mean?
Take a look at the table above and find the section for Turf Route Races. Then, look for Graded Stakes. We can see that there were 33 Graded turf route races over the last 2 years, and the best factor was Last Race Class. Horses ranked 1st in Last Race Class won 15 of the 33 races and if you would have bet $2 to win on every horse ranked 1st in Last Race Class you would have made a profit of $39.60. Keep in mind that there could be ties in factors, so there may be 2 horses ranked 1st in Last Race Class in a given race so you would have to bet them both.

Using this information in BetMix
There are several ways to use this in BetMix. You could create a mix for each race type that used the best factor for each race, you could simply look at the factor stats in BirdDog to identify the top ranked horse for each factor, or you could create Angles that identify the horses for you. This quick video below will show you how to create an Angle for a factor.  Its easy to do and when you run your angles for the day you will always know where the best betting opportunities are.

We will send out similar information for Saratoga later this week.  Get started with your own angles today at Betmix.

Track of the Week – Finger Lakes

Next up in our Track of the Week series is Finger Lakes Racing & Gaming, located in Canandaigua, New York. The track hosts it's biggest day of the year on Saturday, July 22 when the New York Derby and New York Oaks are on the card. We'll be highlighting some Angles that have been working well over the past month or so. These angles can be tried in that day's Free Race of the Day.

Saturday, July 22
New York Oaks & New York Derby
8.5F on dirt
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: 8 stakes for three-year-olds at 8.5F on dirt
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Last Late Pace
Factor Stats: 9 contenders, 5 winners (55%, $3.30 flat win bet profit, 118 ROI%), 89% in-the-money ($9.20 flat show profit, 151 ROI%)

We get a little more specific for the Saturday co-features at Finger Lakes by looking at data for just three-year-old stakes at 8.5 furlongs. It's a much smaller sample but the results have been compelling with nearly 90% of the qualifiers hitting the board.

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Wednesday, July 19 & Thursday July 20
7th Race at Finger Lakes & 8th Race
Allowances
6 furlongs on Dirt & 5 furlongs on dirt

Since June 1, for non-maiden Dirt Sprint Races at Finger Lakes:

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Best Speed Last 3 speed have won 53 of 153 races (34.6%)

7/19 Race of the Day results: Perfect Disco won paying $4.00; co-qualifier Steve's Image finished 7th
7/20 Race of the Day results: Lady's First finished 3rd

Tuesday, July 18
7th Race at Finger Lakes
Allowance
8.5 furlongs on Dirt

Since June 1, for non-maiden Dirt Route Races at Finger Lakes:

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Best Speed Last 3 speed have won 34 of 73 races (43%)

Race of the Day results: Four Directions won paying $4.80

Track of the Week – Delaware Park

We continue our Track of the Week series at Delaware Park, home of Saturday's historic Delaware Handicap (G1). We'll be highlighting some Angles that have been working well over the past month or so. These angles can be tried in that day's Free Race of the Day.

Wednesday, July 12
8th Race at Delaware Park
Allowance/Optional Claiming
6-furlongs on Dirt

Since June 1, for non-maiden Dirt Sprints at Delaware Park.

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Trainer Current Meet have won 16 of 59 races (27%)
Multiple Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Trainer Current Meet and Top 4 in Avg Earnings Today’s Track are 16 for 43 (37.2%)

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Monday, July 10
8th Race at Delaware Park
Starter Allowance
8.32-furlongs on Dirt

Since June 1, for non-maiden Dirt Route races at Delaware Park:

Single Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Avg. Best 2 of Last 3 Speed have won 16 of 36 races (44%)
Multiple Factor Angle: Horses ranked 1st in Avg. Best 2 of Last 3 Speed AND Top 4 in Dirt Pedigree are 16 for 32 (50%)

 

Sharp Angles – Queen’s Plate

Queen’s Plate
10F on Tapeta at Woodbine (July 2)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: 12 stakes at 10 furlongs on all weather
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Avg. of Last 3 E1 Pace
Factor Stats: 15 contenders, 4 winners (27%, $41.30 flat win bet profit, 237 ROI%), 67% in-the-money ($2.00 flat show profit, 106 ROI%)

Canada’s Derby Day is Sunday, July 2 when the Queen’s Plate is run for 158th time. The perception in ten furlong Classics like this is that off-the-pace & stamina types fare best. This is especially true in contests over all-weather surfaces, which often play like turf races. However, a Betmix Angler analysis of 10-furlong stakes over the Woodbine main course shows that early speed is the place to start when handicapping these race types.

Ten of the last 15 contenders (67%) who ranked first in Average of Last 3 E1 Pace have hit the board 10-furlong stakes over Woodbine’s Polytrack/Tapeta surfaces. Four of them have found the winner’s circle, including Midnight Aria, the $35.20 hero of the 2013 Queen’s Plate.

How to apply this Sharp Angle:
Under Factor Ranking in the Betmix Birddog handicapping software, use the Avg. of Last 3 E1 Pace slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

Last Sharp Angles result - Courtly Manner 7th at $9.30-1 in Bold Ruckus S.

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Sharp Angles – Bold Ruckus S.

Bold Ruckus S.
6F on the turf at Woodbine (June 25)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: 17 stakes at 6 furlongs on turf
Date Range: January 1, 2013 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Avg. of Last 3 Late Pace
Factor Stats: 18 contenders, 5 winners (28%, $21.60 flat win bet profit, 159 ROI%), 56% in-the-money ($6.60 flat show profit, 118 ROI%)

Woodbine quietly cards some of the more competitive stakes races in North America each weekend and Sunday’s 11-horse Bold Ruckus Stakes is a good example. Betmix Angler found a solid sample of 17 6-furlong turf stakes at the Toronto area track and the data shows that over one quarter of these contests are won by the horse with the best Average Late Pace in their last three races.

This angle is also trending in the right direction. Two of the 2016 Woodbine 6-furlong turf stakes produced double-digit winners using this approach, including last year’s Bold Ruckus hero Songs and Laughter ($11.40).

How to apply this Sharp Angle:

Under Factor Ranking in the Betmix Birddog handicapping software, use the Avg. of Last 3 Late Pace slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

Last Sharp Angles result - Clara’s Gone West 7th at $2.30-1 in Niagara S.

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