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Tips to Handicapping Horse Races

Listed below, you’ll find some Horse racing tips and betting angles that can make the difference between winning and losing when betting on horse racing.

Tip #1 – Betting Angle: Lone Speed

Front runners win more than their share of races at good odds, especially if they can get a clear lead early in the race and make their rivals play catch up. When you look at the running lines in the racing program, try to find a horse that has an abundance of 1s and 2s in its running lines. If you can find only one horse in the race with this type of running lines, there is a good chance that horse will be the lone speed.

Tip #2 – Angle: First and Second Time Lasix

There is no question that many horses improve when given the legal medication Lasix for the first time. But horses also improve when getting Lasix for the second time – and at better odds. Bettors who believe only in the first-time Lasix angle often disregard horses that show improvement on first-time Lasix without winning. This results in better odds for those who are playing the lucrative second-time Lasix angle.

Tip #3 – Angle: Layoff Specialists

Horses that show the ability to win off a layoff of four weeks or more will often continue to win off the shelf throughout their careers – especially when teamed with a trainer who has won with the horse off a layoff in the past.

Tip #4 – Angle: Big Win

If a horse has come from just off the pace in their most recent race and then drawn away through the stretch to win by more than four lengths, they will often perform well in their next start, even when moving up in class at good odds.

Tip #5 – Angle: Change in Running Style

When a horse who always runs from well back in the pack, as indicated by their running lines, suddenly flashes speed in a race, it can signal that the horse is ready to wake up and run a big race in one of their next few starts. Similarly, when a horse that always goes to the lead suddenly shows the ability to come from well off the pace – they too can be ready to wake up at a price.

Tip #6 – Angle: The Heart Factor

Always read the comment lines at the end of the running lines looking for comments that indicate a horse gave their best. Comments that include words such as “good try”, “gamely”,”game try”, “good effort” or “gave best” indicate that the horses is a courageous sort – and these types win more than their share of races. Horses with numerous comments like the above in the irracing lines are among the best bets in racing.

Tip #7 – Angle: Trouble

The comment lines at the end of the running lines may also include trouble-related words such as “checked”, “steadied”, “lacked room” and “stumbled start”. These words indicate that the horse may have been prevented from winning due to some kind of bad luck or lack of running room. These horses should always be given a second look in their next three starts.

Tip #8 – Angle: Rider Switches

When a leading percentage trainer replaces a lower percentage jockey with a leading jockey, they are usually indicating that they are trying everything they can to win. Top riders often have their choice of the best horses and top trainers often have their choice of top riders. This makes for a powerful combination. Many trainers tend to win more often with certain jockeys – and those jockeys may not necessarily be among the leaders. Watch for hot jockey-trainer patterns.

Tip #9 – Angle: First Time Blinkers On or Off

When a horse gets the shades on for the first time they can improve dramatically – particularly if they are two or 3-year-olds who are still learning the horseracing game. Blinkers can shield a horse from distractions and help them perform to the best of their ability. Blinkers off for the first time can help a nervous horse relax enough to give a top effort. Blinkers on or off can also stimulate a mental boost to a horse that has been showing little interest leading to a better effort.

Tip #10 – Angle: Route Horses in Sprints off a Layoff

This angle produces some big long shots and is great to use in the spring when everyone seems to be betting speed. It is easier to get a natural distance horse fit to run a sprint of six furlongs than it is to get a sprinter ready to go the same distance. If you spot a horse who often runs a route of ground, making their first start off the layoff in a sprint, always give them a second look – especially when in the hands of a top trainer.


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