If you have been handicapping horse races and trying to win money then you probably know how difficult it can be. But did you ever consider the fact that all horse races are not created equally? There are horse races that are easier to handicap and also are very profitable.
Wise bettors keep track of their progress and wagers so they can tell what they are good at and where their strengths are so that they can focus their efforts and maximize their time to best advantage. Some people specialize in maidens while others prefer to handicap turf races.
The first thing I advise you to do is to keep records of what you wager on and how well you do. Keep notes and refer to them. Set aside a little time each week or month to go over your bets and see where your handicapping strengths are.
I have found that mid level claimers are the best races for me. I prefer the ones run on a dirt track or all weather track, too. The reasons I have found these races particularly profitable is that I can get good odds on horses that are improving and it is also easier to compare the horses.
Claiming races are WYSIWYG races, meaning, “what you see is what you get.” Very few good trainers put a horse that can compete in a $25,000 claiming race for a purse of $25,000 in a race for a lower purse. It just doesn’t make economic sense. They put their horse where it can be competitive and earn the most money. Training horses, after all, is a business and that makes good business sense.
So when I handicap a mid level claiming race and compare the horses it is relatively easy to see which horse is capable of competing at that level and which horses are moving up or dropping down in class.
Another benefit of handicapping those races is that I can see a good trainer claim a horse and follow the moves that he or she is making to improve the horse and win. Equipment changes help but there are other things they do, such as changes in diet and exercise that will improve a horse. Some trainers like to claim a horse and drop it in class if they are reasonably certain that their horse can win the race. The runner might be claimed from the race for a lower price than they paid for it, but the claiming check they receive, plus the purse money and any bets they win offset the loss in claiming price.
All of these moves and the horses ability are more transparent in claiming races. Most claimers have been running for a while and have shown what they can do, hence the term WYSIWYG. When I see a horse that has demonstrated the ability to win at the $10,000 level for a fair trainer that has been claimed and is now in the barn of a much better trainer, I know the horse will probably improve and win at a higher level. These bets often are not appreciated by the public and good odds can be found on them.
The reason I stick with mid level claimers is that experience has shown the runners in the cheaper races are just too inconsistent and sometimes have major problems. Once in a while they manage a god performance but their record is so spotty it is impossible to tell when that might be.
Try sticking to mid level claiming races for a few programs and see how you do. Use a reasonable system and have realistic expectations and you may be pleasantly surprised by your own performance as a handicapper.