Category Archives: Handicapping Blog

Pedigree Handicapping – Derby & Oaks Sires

A total of 21 stallions have contenders in the 2020 Kentucky Oaks and Derby fields. While the September placement of these two Classics means we have a better idea of the actual distance aptitudes of this year's runners, adding some pedigree context should prove useful.

The Betmix Angler online handicapping database has a wealth of sire information. We queried Angler for Derby/Oaks sire progeny performance in all two-turn races (8.5 furlongs and longer since 2012) and the results are presented in the chart below, sorted by Win %.

From a small sample, Daredevil, sire of two Oaks players including close second choice Swiss Skydiver, leads the way in that category. The great veteran sire Uncle Mo, sire of an Oaks and Derby contender this year, checks in next with a two-turn win rate of nearly 19%.

Angler also revealed some interesting figures in terms of Win Return. The young sire Bayern is the sire of a pair of longshot Oaks entrants and his longshots appear right at home in two-turn races with a $110.60 Win Return. Paynter, sire of Derby longshot Winning Impression, is another with a three-figure Win Return.

Sharp Angles – Sword Dancer S.

Sword Dancer S. (G1)
12F on Turf (August 29)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 13 Saratoga Graded turf stakes at 12F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in In the Money %
Factor Stats: 14 contenders, 8 winners (57%, $32.10 Win Bet Return 214 ROI%), 10 place/show (71%, $6.60 Place Bet Return)

The penultimate Saturday of the 2020 Saratoga meeting is anchored by a pair of Grade 1 heats, including the Sword Dancer for turf marathoners.

We queried the Betmix online handicapping database for clues to decipher this competitive 8-horse affair and found that consistency is the key.

Contenders ranking first in In the Money % in the 12-furlong graded grass races at The Spa have found the winner's circle on 8 occasions, generating a sparkling $32.10 Win Return.

The 8 winners include 6 of the past 7 Sword Dancer conquerors, including 2017 champ Sadler's Joy ($16.00) and last year's hero Annals of Time ($7.10).

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the In the Money % slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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Sharp Angles – Fourstardave S.

Fourstardave S. (G1)
9F on Turf (August 22)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 10 Saratoga Graded turf stakes at 8F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Avg. Last 3 E1 Pace
Factor Stats: 10 contenders, 5 winners (50%, $29.00 Win Bet Return, 245 ROI%), 5 place/show (50%, .20 Place Bet Return)

The Fourstardave Stakes graduated to Grade 1 status four years ago and this year's exceptional field confirms its status as the premier summer middle distance turf race.

What's fun for horse racing racing fans can also be lucrative for horseplayers, especially with the Betmix Angler online handicapping database on your side.

Angler tells us that the Avg. Last 3 E1 Pace handicapping factor has pointed to 50% winners in the past 10 graded turf races going a mile at Saratoga. The sample includes 3 recent Fourstardave heroes - Wise Dan (in 2013/$2.80), Grand Arch (2015/$18.20) and Voodoo Song (2018/$15.40).

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the Avg. Last 3 E1 Pace slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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Sharp Angles – Alabama S.

Alabama S. (G1)
10F on Dirt (August 15)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 15 Saratoga Grade 1 dirt stakes at 10F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Last Late Pace
Factor Stats: 16 contenders, 5 winners (31%, $33.90 Win Bet Return, 205 ROI%), 8 place/show (50%, 720 Place Bet Return)

The 10-furlong Alabama Stakes is the only chance for top class sophomore fillies to show their talents at the classic 10-furlong distance. This year's race has drawn a strong favorite in multiple graded stakes winners Swiss Skydiver, a valiant 2nd last out against males in the Blue Grass Stakes.

But is she vulnerable? A scan of the Betmix Angle online handicapping database reveals that she might be.

Last Late Pace has pointed to 31% winners in the recent 10-furlong dirt Grade 1's at The Spa and it's one of her talented competitors that ranks first in this handicapping factor.

The overall Win Return for Last Late Pace is a healthy $33.90 and among the five winners are Alabama heroines Princess of Sylmar ($3.00) and last year's winner Dunbar Road ($5.50).

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the Last Late Pace slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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Sharp Angles – Yellow Ribbon S. and La Jolla S.

Yellow Ribbon S. (G2) & La Jolla S. (G3)
8.5F on Turf (August 9)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 20 Del Mar graded turf stakes at 8.5F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st in Average Last 3 Purse
Factor Stats: 20 contenders, 7 winners (35%, $67.60 Win Bet Return, 209 ROI%), 9 place/show (45%, 5.20 Place Bet Return)

A pair of 8.5F graded turf stakes face Del Mar handicappers this weekend - the Yellow Ribbon S. for older distaffers on Saturday and the La Jolla Stakes on the Sunday slate that puts eight sophomore turfers in the spotlight.

A scan of the Betmix Angler online handicapping database tells us that class has been an important handicapping approach in this racetype, specifically Average Last 3 Purse.

The contenders ranking first in this handicapping factor have captured 35% of the graded turf stakes going 8.5F 'where the turf meets the surf', generating a whopping $67.60 Win Return.

These winners include the past two Yellow Ribbon heroines in Beau Recall ($6.00) and Cambodia ($5.40) and two of the past seven La Jolla winners - River Boyne ($3.00) and Dice Flavor ($19.80).

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the Average Last 3 Purse slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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Sharp Angles – Monmouth Oaks

Monmouth Oaks (G3)
8.5F on Dirt (July 30)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 28 Monmouth Park graded dirt stakes at 8.5F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st Horses Beaten %
Factor Stats: 29 contenders, 12 winners (41%, $11.10 Win Bet Return, 119 ROI%), 19 place/show (65%, 8.10 Place Bet Return)

The Monmouth Oaks has drawn a very competitive field of 9 fillies set for a Saturday battle on the Jersey shore.

Using the powerful Betmix Angler online handicapping database, we uncovered a positive handicapping factor for the 8.5 furlong graded dirt races at Monmouth.

Angler tells us that Horses Beaten % has yielded 41% winners and 65% in-the-money finishes over the past 8 years. Among the winners that have contributed to the positive Win and Place Returns for this factor is last year's Monmouth Oaks heroine Horologist ($12.80)

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the Horse Beaten % slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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Sharp Angles – Marine Stakes & Selene Stakes

Marine S. (G3) and Selene S. (G3)
8.5F on All Weather (July 25)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 58 Woodbine graded all-weather stakes at 8.5F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st Jockey Current Year
Factor Stats: 62 contenders, 19 winners (30%, $23.60 Win Bet Return, 119 ROI%), 43 place/show (69%, $15.40 Place Bet Return)

The first two 2020 route stakes for the Ontario sophomore set highlight the July 25 card at Woodbine - the Marine Stakes (Race 3) and the Selene Stakes for fillies (Race 8). Both carry Grade 3 status and both feature candidates for the Canadian classics.

We turned to the Betmix online handicapping database to look for positive handicapping factors in the 8.5F main track graded heats at the Toronto track. We found that Jockey Current Year has been profitable.

30% of the contenders carrying the year's winningest jockey have had their pictures taken, while generating double digit Win and Place Returns. In addition, nearly 70% of the contenders have factored in the triactor.

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the Jockey Current Year slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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Pedigree Handicapping – 2020 Saratoga 2YO Sires

In a world that changes by the minute, handicappers can take solace in Saratoga returning for another historic season and ushering in another several weeks of exciting and important juvenile racing.

Trainers & pedigree - particularly sires - are the two most important factors in handicapping these races and Betmix has a wealth of data on both.

For this post we queried the Betmix Angler database for sire performance in all 2-year-old races at Saratoga since 2012. The chart below contains figures for over 50 of the most relevant stallions, including five based in the Empire State and whose runners will have to be considered in the many heats restricted to New York-breds.

For this year's survey we also included the top five from last year's impressive first crop sire class.

Triple Crown hero American Pharoah is one of those sires and his stallion career is beginning to look very much like his racing career. His early performers at Saratoga have certainly rewarded gamblers with a 26% win percentage and $35.20 Win Return.

Among the veteran stallions, Speightstown continues to shine with his Spa juveniles - 20% winners, 44% in the money and a sparkling $43.30 Win Return.

The chart below contains the full results of the Betmix Angler Saratoga juvenile sire query (sorted by Win Return):

Sharp Angles – Blue Grass S.

Blue Grass S. (G2)
9F on Dirt (July 11)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 29 Keeneland graded dirt stakes at 9F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st Average Last 3 E1 Pace
Factor Stats: 30 contenders, 8 winners (26%, $63.00 Win Bet Return, 205 ROI%), 20 place/show (66%, 26.80 Place Bet Return and $21.80 Show Bet Return)

Better late than never. Keeneland has returned and we'll have a Blue Grass Stakes this crazy year after all.

This 2020 edition of this historic race had drawn an especially fascinating field with including the Kenny McPeek-trained filly Swiss Skydiver.

We queried the Betmix Angler online handicapping database for some help and found that Average Last 3 E1 Pace has yielded a very nice profit in the 9-furlong graded dirt stakes at Keeneland.

This factor has also pointed to one of the longer shot to have won the Blue Grass, 2017 hero Irap, who rewarded is backers with a $64.60 win mutuel.

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the Average Last 3 E1 Pace slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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Sharp Angles – Suburban S.

Suburban S. (G2)
10F on Dirt (July 4)
Horse Racing Data Analyzed: Last 13 Belmont Park graded dirt stakes at 10F
Date Range: January 1, 2012 - Present
Sharp Angle: Ranked 1st In the Money %
Factor Stats: 14 contenders, 6 winners (42%, $48.70 Win Bet Return, 273 ROI%), 8 place/show (57%, 15.10 Place Bet Return and $4.20 Show Bet Return)

The 2020 Suburban S. has drawn a competitive field of 8 older male distance runners seeking to put their name along side the likes of Nashua, Bold Ruler, Kelso, Buckpasser, Forego, Easy Goer, Mineshaft and Invasor.

The Betmix Angler online handicapping database shows us that there have been only 13 10-furlong graded stakes on the Belmont Park main track since 2012. Angler also tells us that In the Money % has been a predictive handicapping factor in these races.

Over 40% of the contenders ranking first in this factor have had their pictures taken, including the past to Suburban champions Preservationist ($9.90) and Diversify ($14).

Find this race in Betmix Birddog and use the In the Money % slider to see which horse ranks first in this factor. That’s the Sharp Angles play.

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