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Submitted by Hank Goldberg on Wednesday, January 8, 2020 at 4:01 PM

If you are reading this then you know all about my exploits as a renowned Handicapper, Bettor and Winner of numerous Horse racing Challenges, of my visibility as an expert analyst on ESPN, ABC and other major Networks that cover the Triple Crowns, Breeders’ Cup and other major races.

Right now, as winter racing takes place in locations as varied as cold weather Aqueduct and PARX, warm weather Gulfstream, Tampa Bay, Fair Grounds and Santa Anita and intermediate locales such as Laurel and Turfway Park I am finding the Right Spots to take advantage.


As we all worked around the holidays, as you might expect, I remained Red Hot. I released 55 races the last 10 days and produced 26 Winners, 17 Exactas and 10 Trifectas. But this is what I expect as I continue to do the necessary work for both myself and my clients…who bet these horse with expectations of solid returns

Today I want you to look past that and see me as just like you…a handicapper and bettor looking to find the Right Horse for the Right Reason and at the Right Price.

With the abundance of Thoroughbred racing outlets, from wagering platforms such as TVG, analysis paradigm and algorithm data bases such as Race Lens and editorial content libraries such as Blood Horse and HorseRacingNation, one can be forgiven if in the logical “search” for the “right information,” a player becomes so inundated with information that they are left without an ability to pinpoint those few opportunities that are actually the right ones for winning.

I say that because I grew up in an era when handicapping meant, among other things, calculating how a race would be run based on the past performances of the horses in question. There was no click of a button which told me what percentages the trainer had with turf or dirt, distance or route, cut back from route to sprint or extension from sprint to route, moves from dirt to turf and vise-versa, plus all the other data that fits.


I bring all that up because, as I mentioned above, I fully believe that too often, all this information does two things, loads one up with too much contrasting information and just as negatively these percentages send the public to these high percentage horse which in turn deflates the prices.

Let me give you one example and then I’ll move on to what I want you to take away from this message. Suppose a horse is running for a trainer that has a 27% win percentage with sprinters, is at 25% with the jockey riding the horse and is also at 23% with horse going route to sprint. By those numbers the horse has a 1-in-4 chance of winning the race. What if he does win the race and the numbers are so dominant that the horse pays $5.60 as the public favorite? Shouldn’t 1-in-4 return at least $8.00 just to break even?


Of course I am connected to the best information there is. After all, people in the game, from owners to trainers to jockey agents and high rollers want to know what I think, and I trade information with them. But that is just the starting point because when it comes to making the important decisions I trust my “reading the race” experience above all else.

Let me give you two recent examples of horses that were overlooked by the public but were right there to find in the Past Performance Charts.

This is how I saw Race 7 at PARX on Tuesday, January 7
has every possibility of getting the solid trips he got vs similar class level and distance rivals that he did at PARX three and two races back on November 18 and December 3rd.
*In his last (December 16 versus 4 other runners who return here) he was caught wide from the outside from the start, remained there and never factored.
*In that last race Star Sign was sent off at 15.4-1 while Bumperdoo was 8-1 at Post Time. Today, Star Sign is part of a 5-2 favored ML entry while Bumperdoo is pegged on the ML at 8-1. I’m beginning with some value.
*Today Bumperdoo moves in a bit from the outside 8 of 8 to post 6.
*Four rivals to his outside, including Star Sign, part of possibly favored entry, a rival who beat him in his troubled trip in last and he beat three back, have some pace and could clear enough for him to tuck in ahead of some of deeper closers to his inside.
*If jockey Gonzalez can get that projected trip he might be able to use the good late kick Bumperdoo showed in the November 18 and December 3rd races.

RESULT: Bumperdoo ran almost exactly as was projected. He rated early, got to the inside down the backstretch as two of the outside horses and a rail sprinter cut out a contested pace. On the turn Gonzalez angled out and closed throughout the stretch to pull away to a 3 length win and return $21.20

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Let’s take a look at another recent winner.

This is how I saw Race 1 at SANTA ANITA on Sunday, January 5
In this one mile MSW Turf race LINCOLN CITY, a colt by The Factor is making his first try beyond 5 ½ furlongs.
*I’d watched him run in his last 3 races and the colt travelled like a middle distance horse.
*His breeding suggests as much and what I liked about his stride was that he ran at the same pace in furlong five as he did in furlong one in each of those three races and was never buried.
*This is all important to me because not a single one of his 7 rivals, six of whom had one or more distance tries on their maiden resume has ever shown speed in the early going.
*The only other sprinter stretching out, Cape Point, is on the outside and Lincoln City had out-sped him in their last.
*I am convinced that if Lincoln City, who is 8-1 on the morning line, can outbreak the field he has the running style to keep the lead throughout.
*Trainer Eric Kruljak even made the decision to switch from a jock who had ridden him four times to no avail and has gone to a lesser known but hungry jock who just might go all out from the start.

RESULT: Lincoln City indeed went right to the front and wired the field, just as I sensed he would, having watched his running style and measuring it against that of his opponents. And the win was made even that much sweeter when the public completely ignored the possibility and let him go off at 15.8-1 for a $33.60 Score.

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