Saturday, November 17, 2007

Why All the Maidens?

I haven't had time to update this site due to some issues with a computer repair person who will be named: Louis Sabo III of Mac to Mac Service). Essentially, I took my father's computer to this guy to have it upgraded and memory added. Sabo broke the computer (blank screen) and could not repair it, and wouldn't give it back without me signing a document which basically waived my right to sue for damages. My father and I had to buy a new computer and we will sue for our time and money spent.

Anyhow, that little adventure kept me away from my work and the betting parlor, so I haven't been doing much in the gambling regard. I did rush a couple of bets and probably shouldn't have, losing what I had made and then some, so I'm starting over with a $100 stake and some rules.

The first rule is that I am not going to bet any maiden races. These are races for horses which have never won and they can be a nightmare to handicap. For starters, there are usually a couple of horses which haven't even run in a race, so all you have to go on are workouts and pedigree, which often isn't very helpful. The other horses in the race usually have erratic racing patterns since they are 2 and 3-year-olds just learning how to run.

I would wager that the majority of my losses have been on maiden races, so they're going to be cut out of my betting regimen, but there are so many of them, it's really somewhat limiting, which, in the end, may be a good thing. I was looking over the entries at the Daily Racing Form and decided to count the number of maiden races in relation to the total number of races at the tracks I bet. Here's my list for today:
Aqueduct: 4 of 9
Calder: 5 of 12
Churchill: 3 of 10
Finger Lakes: 2 of 9
Laurel: 3 of 10.

That's a total of 17 maiden races out of 50. 34%!!

If that seems like a lot, it is. Most of those races are loaded, with 8 to 10 or more entries. There are a lot of horses out there who just aren't cutting it and will never win a race. I did notice that there are fewer at the minor Finger Lakes track than anywhere else, which probably indicates that there are more bad horses racing at the major circuits as owners seek bigger purses. That's too bad, because they're not going to win up there.

This brings up another interesting point. With so many maidens (as many as 200 per day at just those 5 tracks), how good are the horses emerging from these ranks. Probably not very. It's intriguing to note that there seems to be more starter allowance races for horse which have broken their maiden for less than XX dollars. Those are probably full of also-rans from the better allowance races.

Here's a god rule of thumb. If a horse has taken more than 3 tries to break its maiden, it's probably best to steer away from that pony until it gets more seasoning. A better rule of thumb: wager on allowance and stakes races only, where the best horses run.

See you at the finish line.

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