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Bet Horse Racing - A Matter of Record

Posted by Brian Mulligan on 11/20/2012 5:18:35 PM

If keeping score was not important, sports for the most part would just be exercise and that’s way it is imperative for online sports betting players to grin and bear it and keep strict records so that weaknesses and strengths can be identified.

Take if from me as a public handicapper for years, adding up the losses is not much fun but it is necessary in order to be eventually have success.

Face it, there are just some tasks in life that are not the most fun to do. Nobody likes to look the taxman in the eye come April 15 and try to bluff him into submission.

Paying bills also comes to mind. Of course, it’s always nice to have the satisfaction of finishing off a nice stack of bills, writing the checks and making the run to the post office or hit a few keys and pay online but in the back of our minds we are usually thinking “ this could have been a nice down payment on that long overdue trip to Hawaii.”

A gambler, even a bettor of casual dimensions, should face up to the eye-opening task of keeping track of his or her wagering habits. As a public selector for decades, I keep accounts of my own personal spending habits at the track but someone else was usually in charge of recording my particular public success ratio on a daily basis. And personally, I generally was too busy to tend to yesterday’s news. Sure, I knew if I had 4 winners on top or 7 and I surely knew if I had a price far out of line on a morning line prediction. But I found the grind of counting up winners tedious, boring and too time consuming.

This was not always the case. About 30 years ago when I was a fledgling amateur horse betting handicapper who thought he was one of he best in the land, I would keep careful records. I even would keep my losing tickets. You can imagine the depression around holidays when I would scramble to buy presents for the loved ones, only to stumble across the losing ducats from the previous summer at Monmouth Park. If I had one tenth of what I pushed through the windows to give as gifts, the recipients would certainly enjoy a career like Yuletide celebration.

The records those many years ago did serve me well. I realized that I was not a maven with maiden races. That I seemed to handicap grass races much better, maybe because I could envision certain horses being in a projected spot during the race. I found out through the detailed paper work that I was much better handicapping sprint races than routes and did very well when the tracks became anything but fast.

So even way back then, I started to adjust. I concentrated on my strengths at that time. I tried to work on my weaknesses, too. I studied pedigrees in order to be better equipped to deal with maiden affairs. I tried to analyze the pace of route races more diligently and came up with a good overall handle on routes eventually.

And the bottom line became a bit more in focus.  I would study my losing bets, see what I had missed in a horse’s form that made me pass on an opportunity and I would watch the horse intently in his next couple of races.

When I moved West, with a nice bankroll and an all too visible chip on my shoulder, I proceeded to tackle Northern California racing. Still an amateur, and not yet a member of the racing press, I was dealt a harsh lesson at Golden Gate. My records were well kept but useless. I had to revamp a total eastern slant I had assumed of the game, and learn again from the bottom up. Speed was king out here, not class. Pace and position are mandatory to success. There were many long silent drives home down to Silicon Valley after exiting Golden Gate frustrated and diminished.

But all was not lost. I delved through my notes, caught a few weaknesses, and finally turned the meet around. That meeting taught me a lesson and that’s what I’m trying to convey.

No matter how bleak, how long the losing streak may stay intact, no matter how many long walks to the car occur with losing tickets bobbing in your brain, keep those records.

Account for the time you jumped on a maiden when the board told you to. Look back and analyze why you bet a horse coming off a year layoff even though he was catching one of the sharpest horses on the grounds. Stick with your betting sites records, they will eventually help lead you out of the abyss.

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