Everybody likes winning money, especially if the way in which they do so is expedient and requires little to no effort.

That is why gambling is so alluring.

Many people outside of the racing world view betting on horse races as a “get rich quick” scheme. They see success at the betting window as something akin to a lazy person’s way out, almost as a way to financially cheat your way through life. In short, they view bettors as people who speedily gain a fortune with luck and little to no effort.

While these people are correct in that the financial return can be very quick (most Thoroughbred races are run in less than a minute and a half), if they think that there is no work involved in achieving handicapping success, they are very wrong indeed.

You can check everything related to KD handicapping here: https://www.twinspires.com/kentuckyderby/handicapping

While luck will always intervene in one way or another, predicting horse racing outcomes and striking the most lucrative bets is a skill that can be grown and developed over time. Here are some tips and tricks to help beginning bettors turn a profit.

Make Exotic Wagers

When most people think of betting horses at the racetrack, they think of simple win bets: they pick a horse, place a bet, and only cash a ticket if their single chosen horse is deemed the winner.

While there is nothing wrong with a straightforward bet on a horse to win, there are other types of bets that can increase both your likelihood of winning and your potential payout.

First of all, there are “place” and “show” bets. These are bets that can be paid out if your horse finishes in the top two or top three, respectively. If you bet on a horse to place or show and they win, you typically make a little bit less money than you would with a win bet, but your chances of making any return on your risk are much higher.

Exotic wagers are bets that either involve more than one horse in a race or more than one race on a card. They are somewhat more complex than the aforementioned types of bets, but they offer a lot more profit.

The “Pick” bets are fairly easy to understand. These types of bets require a person to choose the winner of three to seven (usually consecutive) races on a card.

For example, if you were betting on the Breeders’ Cup races, you might have liked Malathaat in the Distaff, Rebel’s Romance in the Turf, and Flightline in the Classic. A two-dollar win bet on each of those horses would have returned a total of $24.56, whereas betting all of them in a single fifty-cent Pick 3 would have netted you $52.39.

There are also exactas, trifectas, and superfectas. These bets involve the punter choosing the top two, three, or four finishers in a single race.

Let’s look back at the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Nearly everyone liked Flightline to win, but figuring out who was going to finish directly behind him was a matter of much debate. If you had bet an exacta that had Flightline winning and Olympiad finishing second, a single dollar would have returned $17.87. If you had gone a step forward and chosen Taiba to finish third, you would have parlayed fifty cents into $41.63. Those skilled enough to predict Rich Strike finishing fourth would have spent ten cents and walked away with $69.16.

Use A Betting Calculator

If you are confident in the horses you have selected, but not necessarily in the order they will finish in, you may want to “box” your bet. This would mean that as long as the horses you picked were the first two, three, or four across the line, the order in that they themselves finished would not matter. However, increasing the winning scenarios of these types of bets does increase the cost of the bet itself. Therefore, in order to keep your spending under control, you may wish to use a betting calculator. These are formulas or apps that can not only help you keep track of how costly your bet is but also help you determine potential payouts.

Use Past Performances

Of course, now that you know what kind of bets are available and how to place them, you still have to gather your information and figure out which horse your money will ride on.

Thankfully, there are many publications out there that can provide you with a lot of relevant information about the horses in a particular race. This information is typically referred to as Past Performances or PPs. Racegoers can find PPs in online databases such as brisnet.com or in hard copies of racing programs or the Daily Racing Form.

For many who are unfamiliar with racing parlance, these PPs can be a bit daunting at first, as much of the information is encoded in industry-specific abbreviations and acronyms. However, looking closely at the PPs can provide you with an in-depth look at a racehorse’s background and career.

You will find the horse’s basic information at the top: name, color, age, and sex. There is also information on the horse’s human connections: breeder, owner, and trainer. You will then see the lifetime race record, followed by a breakdown by year and also how much money the horse has earned.

However, the most valuable information is below that: a list of the horse’s career races and how well the horse performed in them. You will be able to see which tracks the horse has started at and under which weather conditions. You will be able to see which jockeys have coached the best performances out of them. You will be able to determine the horse’s running style- whether they like to stay in the lead throughout or come from behind at the end of the race.

With this information in hand, you will be well-equipped to make your first wagers and grow your betting skills.

Author: Lindsay Griffin