WEAK RACE/STRONG RACE

A strategy for smart thoroughbred handicapping by evaluating the WHOLE race …

  • Race strength measures the likelihood of a longshot win. An average race will score 100. Races in the 80s and 90s favor chalky winners. Races above 110 favor longshots. Significant late scratches will make the races weaker.
  • Basically, players will go broke very quickly betting long shots in races weaker than 100. The stronger the race, the more likely the favorite will fail.

CANTERBURY PARK, MAY 25, 2021

RACE 1: Strength 98

# 7 H’rayforcaberneigh 8/5 Much the best. Despite the corny name. Ya can’t blame the horse for that.  Looks like we’re getting 2/1. No, it’s CBY, home of dropping odds.


RACE 2: Strength 81

OFF THE TURF CHANGES EVERYTHING…

#4 Ice Pop 6/5 Has at least a 40% chance. Don’t believe the #6 deserves the chalky price.

RACE 3: Strength 85

With all the scratches and the move off the turf, the whole card is getting chalkier.

#2 Company Store 8/5. Faces weakest challengers. Tonight’s best bet. Might wire ‘em, or might weaken in the stretch. Almost always hits the board.

RACE 4: Strength 98

# 8 Little No Way 2/1. Look past the last two flops, which were on nasty wet surfaces. This old gelding has won or just missed at Delmar and Santa Anita. Right now is 5/1 on the board.

The crowd, and Brisnet, prefer the #5 and #6. Of the two, #5 Yo Y Me seems best, and is very quick outta the gate. Still, 8/5 seems skinny he’s not clearly the best horse.

10% takeout $1 Pick-6 starts here. Ticket with (chances of winning the leg in parentheses.)

RACE FOUR: 8-5 (55%)

RACE FIVE: 2-5 (65%)

RACE SIX: 2-6-9 (55%)

RACE SEVEN: 4-9 (58%)

RACE EIGHT: 7-12 (49%)

RACE NINE: 4-6-8 (68%)

$144 (4% chance)

RACE 5: Strength 94

OFF THE TURF… Move to the dirt track changes the whole deal. Top pick #8 Turn the Switch, 2/1 seems exactly right.

#5 Funandfunny has a good chance too, and is 7/1 but has plenty of competition. For instance, #2 Stone Secret, a good bet at 7/2 or better.

#1 Zorich is the Brisnet and crown pick. 6/5 seems ridiculous. By speed figure he’s the third-fastest horse. He has no class edge. His lifetime record is 1-for-25, with 8 places. The crowd seems to be betting the switch to super-trainer Diodoro. We think this horse is more like 7/1.

10% takeout 50-cent Pick-5 starts here. Ticket with (chances of winning the leg in parentheses.)

RACE FIVE: 2,5 (65%)

RACE SIX: 2-6-9 (55%)

RACE SEVEN: 4-9 (58%)

RACE EIGHT: 7-12 (49%)

RACE NINE: 4-6-8 (68%)

$36 ticket. (4% chance) 

RACE 6: Strength 116

Longshot race. Tonight’s toughest race. Whoever’s the favorite, he’s very likely to lose. Winner at 7/1 or better would be no surprise. Look for a price of 7/1 or so on: 2-6-9-8-10-

This is not the kind of race where you’d take a short price. #4 Sky Jumper is a no thanks at 3/1. Same for the second choice, #3 Wild Behavior at 7/2.

Brisnet ranks #9 Ship it Red as their #2 horse, and the morning line is 4/1. We think he’s 9/1. The crowd says 9/1. Somebody’s wrong somewhere.

We’re down on the #2 at 9/1.

RACE 7: Strength 85

OFF THE TURF. Longshot race on turf, but now has chalky prospects. #4 Shinny looks like a 7/5 shot and will probably run like one. Next best is #9 My Boy Lollipop, but I would insist on at least 4/1.

The crowd set #3 I’m an Eight as a 9/1 shot. Our guess is 40/1. So we’ll see. If he really is 40/1, he’ll have no part in the race. Otherwise, the field seems to be priced right.

RACE 8: Strength 88

#7 Greater Cairo 2/1. Morning line is 5/2, no way that will hold. Brisnet rating implies overwhelming favorite, and the crowd usually bets these down to infinity. Would love to get 2/1, but 8/5 or worse is likely.

OMG, Greater Cairo opened at 1/5.

2nd best horse: #12.Jimmy’s Marco, is 24/1 on the board, but 5/1 in our hearts. Brisnet also lists him as second choice, the morning line is 8/1. Brisnet’s ranking implies about a 12/1 shot. So yeah, he’s an overlay, but what can you do with him?

How about the late double: 7-12 with 4-6-8 for a $6 tix?

Jimmy’s down to 9/1 now as the crowd comes to their sense. Cairo flips back to 4/5.

RACE 9: Strength 89

Started as a longshot race, but scratched down to a Chalker.

#4, Two the Punch, won’t have it easy. But he IS the best closer and 7/5 looks fair. 
Crowd loves Mac/Canchari, so expect #6, Discreet Tiger, to dominate the tote. But maybe not the race.
Look for a price of 5/1 or better: 6-8. But long shots don’t typically win races like this.

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