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Football-horse420
02-21-2016, 05:49 PM
Hey I first want to start off by saying this is a wonderful forum you people have been very helpful in answering questions.
I'm kinda of taking a brake from betting because I kinda have hit a wall, I need to regroup and focus. I'm trying to find a good book to read to help me better understand handicapping and betting. These are the books I'm looking into buying what one should I buy to read first

Money secrets at the track

Betting on horse racing for dummies

Handicapping 101: finding the right horses and making the right bets.

Any input on what book I should read first would be a big help...

thaskalos
02-21-2016, 05:53 PM
First, read Handicapping 101...but don't stop there. Read Andy Beyer's book The Winning Horseplayer next. You can buy a used hardcover copy at Amazon.com for only a couple of dollars plus shipping.

Lucky Dave
02-21-2016, 07:01 PM
Hi Foot,

I'm also a newbie on the board here. I saw your other post too. Your situation is not dissimilar to where I was about five years ago or so when I first started betting the ponies. You might want to re-look your analysis and also how you bet. I'll get to your book question, but here’s what I’ve done, with some success, in my six-year handicapping adventure: I decided to focus on one track, my “home” track. Everyone on the board might laugh, but I like Charles Town (CT), a small “bullring” oval in West Virginia. Love it in fact. It was within driving distance of my house, they ran all year, and they ran at night, when I could actually watch and bet the races. Focusing on this one track allowed me to get a feeling for the trainers, the kinds of horses the track favored (early speed vice closers), the distances of races usually run at the track, how the “class” structure was set up, and even get familiar with the regular horses themselves. I also learned who the top jockeys were and what it meant when they got a particular mount. I no longer live in that part of the country, but I still play that track all the time.

Here is my analytical process:

I use the “speed” figures to get a quick feel for the quality of the horses in the race. The figures help to whittle down and throw out horses that likely have no chance. Don’t take them as gospel – still look at every horse, but there are many (probably half) that can be tossed just by looking at the speed numbers and where the horses have historically finished vs. similar company.

I focus on trainers - they are important to results. There are reasons some of them win at a 25 percent clip. I take their stock seriously. Their horses often go off at short odds, but not always: on this past Saturday night I got almost 5-1 on a solid horse run by a 25 percent winning trainer in a field that only had (what I thought) were three realistic shots to win. Watch good trainers and their stock (and their odds) like a hawk.

I perk up when I see “class drops.” In the above Saturday night race, the same horse that won dropped two levels in class – from higher competition to a lower competitive level. Most of the ten-horse field was simply overmatched. Class can be hidden and overstated too: a horse running well in a $10K race restricted to state-breds may be inferior when when run in a $10K unrestricted race.

Some tracks get a lot of “shippers” from other tracks. Some of the other tracks are “classier,” meaning their horse stock is generally better, even if both run at nominally the same class level, i.e. Clm 10k NW2L. Observe and learn how shippers perform at your home track.

I like races where I have a lot of data, from the same track, to work with. Many horses at CT for example are year-round plodders that run really often against each other – the time series data is great and allows me to really compare apples to apples. (By contrast, I have a tough time with major G1 stakes races – they have horses shipping in from ten different tracks – for me, it is still tough to compare them and the competition they’ve been running against.)

I can’t handicap maiden races to save my soul. I don’t feel like I have enough data. I don’t like comparing horses based on workouts, or pedigree, or first-out trainer stats. So I pass on races that have lots of new runners.

I do pay attention to horse comportment, especially when at the track, but this is not a major factor in my handicapping. I have moved up horses in my picks through observations made in the paddock and post parade.

Regarding my betting: I bet one dollar three horse exacta boxes (total of $6.00), probably for about 60-70 percent of my bets. I’ve noticed that boxing bets drives some people on this board crazy, but for me they work: horses are fickle and have bad days. They get slow starts, bumped at the gate, trapped in traffic, and so on. If I can isolate the top three horses in a ten horse race, I feel like two of the three are likely to have a good run and come in 1 and 2. The extra horse is a hedge. Some folks say that extra horse is dead money, or that maybe “key” boxes are a better strategy. Sometimes yes. I’m flexible and try to find the right bet for the circumstances. But I can’t tell you the number of times when the horse I thought was the best in the race finished in third, or even out of the money. I like the hedge.

I watch the exacta odds as they change before the race. If I’m not going to at least double my money on most of the combinations of the three horses I’m going to bet, I probably will pass on the bet entirely. This is a subjective process.

I pass on a lot of races. This is hard. I like the action of betting. If I look at a race and can’t tell who the top three horses are, I definitely wait for the next race. Sometimes, I might see an interesting long shot angle and might make a $2.00 bet on that shot – sometimes to win, more often just to show, just because I like the action.

I also bet .10 supers and occasionally trifectas, depending upon whether I see value in doing that. But overall, I’m an exacta guy.

Find PPs that you like and stick with them. Consistency helps. I like the Bris PPs that I get for free with my TwinSpires account. They have nice pace figures and race class ratings that I find really valuable for comparing horses. Their power-ratings also have encouraged me to give a second look to some horses that I’ve discarded. When I travel and visit tracks and have to use DRF or Equibase PPs, I miss my Bris tools.

Don’t be biased by the opinions of others. I don’t look at who Bris or track analysts predict will win until after I’ve done my own handicapping and picked my own winners. I’ll compare my work against outside opinion, but it is rare that I change my picks.

The above has been a winning strategy for me. I’m up over the last six years of playing – on average I've probably played once per week, a little less frequently recently, because of work and family commitments.

Back to your main question. Of the books, I recommend “Betting Thoroughbreds for the 21st Century” by Steve Davidowitz. It is a good start.

Have fun. If it stops being fun, stop doing it, like you did. Make "paper" bets for a while. I’ve walked away from the game after dry spells where I couldn’t pick a winner many times. But I keep coming back because it is an awesome "thinking-man’s" game. Good luck.

whodoyoulike
02-21-2016, 07:32 PM
I would suggest you start with a book which will introduce you to various aspects of horse racing. If handicapping 101 is Free's book, I've heard it was a good primer but I've never read it. But, I have read Davidowitz's Betting Thoroughbreds (1995) years ago which was pretty good. It was sort of an update of things up to that time to know about handicapping / horse racing compared to the first book which I read by Ainslie (1968). Since then there has to be others with a good reputation for beginners and intermediate.

Money Secrets as I recall was more about being aware of betting value because sometimes even 3/5's can be a lock but, not with my money.

In another thread about a year ago, I suggested a book about Pace Handicapping but that may be a little too advanced as a beginning book. If he reads this, I hope it worked out for him (or them). But, hopefully you will eventually read a book about Pace and see the merits it offers. It really made a lot of sense to me regarding the relationship of Pace, Speed, Class and Form.

You actually have to sit up before you can get up. And, if someone wants to use that phrase in one of their pending books you can.

delayjf
02-22-2016, 05:17 PM
If I had to pick one book it would be the latest version of Davidowitz's Betting Thoroughbreds. He covers everything from speed and pace handicapping to bias and trainer handicapping in a very comprehensive manner.

Tall One
02-22-2016, 08:22 PM
First, read Handicapping 101...but don't stop there. Read Andy Beyer's book The Winning Horseplayer next. You can buy a used hardcover copy at Amazon.com for only a couple of dollars plus shipping.



I wish I would've read TWH first instead of Picking Winners, but I went by the amount of PP's listed in each book as a decider(this was '88 or '89 and was first getting started). I have yet to read 101, but will read anything that will help me be a more efficient student of the game. As noted above, Steve Davidowitz's book cannot be ignored, and should also be purchased and it's relatively cheap on the Amazon.

Thoughts on Ainslie's The Compleat Horseplayer for our OP?

With regard to wagering styles or formats, 420, I'll recommend Exotic Wagering Formulas by Thomas Walters. Coil bound, easy to read book, with just some basic exacta and tri wagers that I found helpful. There are more advanced exotic wagers detailed, but it's a good starting point for exactas. $20 bucks on line.

As you get more into the pace aspect, Thaskalos once advised I purchase Pace Makes the Race by Tom Hambleton & Dick Schmidt. Common sense approach to an important piece of the puzzle, and I'm glad I listened to what the man said. :ThmbUp:

Poindexter
02-22-2016, 10:11 PM
Hey I first want to start off by saying this is a wonderful forum you people have been very helpful in answering questions.
I'm kinda of taking a brake from betting because I kinda have hit a wall, I need to regroup and focus. I'm trying to find a good book to read to help me better understand handicapping and betting. These are the books I'm looking into buying what one should I buy to read first

Money secrets at the track

Betting on horse racing for dummies

Handicapping 101: finding the right horses and making the right bets.

Any input on what book I should read first would be a big help...

Start off with Barry Meadows money secrets at the racetrack. Learn how to bet well first. Then once you have a grasp of that, learn how to handicap(read the good handicapping books). Once you figure out the handicapping, then re-read Barry's book. At that point practice making fair odds lines without betting. Make lines, and see what is happening. Who is winning horses you make 6-1 winning at 2-1 or horses you make 4-1 at 8-1. When there is a big difference between what you have made a horse and what the public has made a horse figure out why. Were you right or wrong and what did you miss? After you have lined about 100 races or so(which would likely be about 20 to 30 racing days), you should have a fairly good idea whether you are ready for action or not. When you are ready, dive in at a very comfortable bankroll, start with win betting only(or win/place betting-I prefer equal amounts win-place because it keeps the losing streaks down). Wait till you are fairly successful before branching into exotics(you have a lot more margin for error with win betting). I know the majority of posters here do not believe in making lines, but initially whether you choose to continue to do so or not, it is a very good way to measure your handicapping and see where you are. The key to winning is identifying value and the best way to identify value(IMO) is to be able to determine fair value on each runner (as close as you possibly can). Also if you have the time, once you feel you have handicapping down, make watching replays a priority. Both during your handicapping and in analyzing your performance. By the way, if you do not have a lot of spare time, I do not recommend trying to beat the races. It is a lot of fun, but a lot of work.

The bottom line is work hard at building a solid foundation and developing good habits. Track and measure your performance and start betting when you have convinced yourself that you are ready. That will give you the best chance of success IMO. Once you do start betting, especially when you start betting exotics, make sure you chart how much you bet on each kind of bet and how much you win or lose. You have to keep score and know where your leaks are(or at least where you need to improve).

By the way if lining 100 races without betting pains you(I get it), just bet on a small bankroll (an amount of money that you are willing to lose without causing yourself hardship) and expect to lose initially until you figure things out. If you start winning you can increase your bankroll with profits.

Charlie
02-23-2016, 09:30 AM
Calibration Handicapping is a darn good read.

whodoyoulike
02-23-2016, 11:47 PM
...
Thoughts on Ainslie's The Compleat Horseplayer for our OP? ...

Fortunately this was my first handicapping book. It was very well written for the time and as mentioned previously by me, it covered different aspects using the DRF. S. Davidowitz's book I felt was just an updated version. Remember though that Ainslie's book was written before replays and Trakus were readily available. He used 5 lengths per second which a lot of people still use although I think it's incorrect. In other words, I thought it was excellent as an intro for me at the time but now there are others available.

As I recall, he favored Class handicapping.

Greyfox
02-24-2016, 12:07 AM
Hi Foot,

I'm also a newbie on the board here. I saw your other post too. Your situation is not dissimilar to where I was about five years ago or so when I first started betting the ponies. You might want to re-look your analysis and also how you bet. I'll get to your book question, but here’s what I’ve done, with some success, in my six-year handicapping adventure: I decided to focus on one track, my “home” track. Everyone on the board might laugh, but I like Charles Town (CT), a small “bullring” oval in West Virginia. Love it in fact. It was within driving distance of my house, they ran all year, and they ran at night, when I could actually watch and bet the races. Focusing on this one track allowed me to get a feeling for the trainers, the kinds of horses the track favored (early speed vice closers), the distances of races usually run at the track, how the “class” structure was set up, and even get familiar with the regular horses themselves. I also learned who the top jockeys were and what it meant when they got a particular mount. I no longer live in that part of the country, but I still play that track all the time.

Here is my analytical process:

I use the “speed” figures to get a quick feel for the quality of the horses in the race. The figures help to whittle down and throw out horses that likely have no chance. Don’t take them as gospel – still look at every horse, but there are many (probably half) that can be tossed just by looking at the speed numbers and where the horses have historically finished vs. similar company.

I focus on trainers - they are important to results. There are reasons some of them win at a 25 percent clip. I take their stock seriously. Their horses often go off at short odds, but not always: on this past Saturday night I got almost 5-1 on a solid horse run by a 25 percent winning trainer in a field that only had (what I thought) were three realistic shots to win. Watch good trainers and their stock (and their odds) like a hawk.

I perk up when I see “class drops.” In the above Saturday night race, the same horse that won dropped two levels in class – from higher competition to a lower competitive level. Most of the ten-horse field was simply overmatched. Class can be hidden and overstated too: a horse running well in a $10K race restricted to state-breds may be inferior when when run in a $10K unrestricted race.

Some tracks get a lot of “shippers” from other tracks. Some of the other tracks are “classier,” meaning their horse stock is generally better, even if both run at nominally the same class level, i.e. Clm 10k NW2L. Observe and learn how shippers perform at your home track.

I like races where I have a lot of data, from the same track, to work with. Many horses at CT for example are year-round plodders that run really often against each other – the time series data is great and allows me to really compare apples to apples. (By contrast, I have a tough time with major G1 stakes races – they have horses shipping in from ten different tracks – for me, it is still tough to compare them and the competition they’ve been running against.)

I can’t handicap maiden races to save my soul. I don’t feel like I have enough data. I don’t like comparing horses based on workouts, or pedigree, or first-out trainer stats. So I pass on races that have lots of new runners.

I do pay attention to horse comportment, especially when at the track, but this is not a major factor in my handicapping. I have moved up horses in my picks through observations made in the paddock and post parade.

Regarding my betting: I bet one dollar three horse exacta boxes (total of $6.00), probably for about 60-70 percent of my bets. I’ve noticed that boxing bets drives some people on this board crazy, but for me they work: horses are fickle and have bad days. They get slow starts, bumped at the gate, trapped in traffic, and so on. If I can isolate the top three horses in a ten horse race, I feel like two of the three are likely to have a good run and come in 1 and 2. The extra horse is a hedge. Some folks say that extra horse is dead money, or that maybe “key” boxes are a better strategy. Sometimes yes. I’m flexible and try to find the right bet for the circumstances. But I can’t tell you the number of times when the horse I thought was the best in the race finished in third, or even out of the money. I like the hedge.

I watch the exacta odds as they change before the race. If I’m not going to at least double my money on most of the combinations of the three horses I’m going to bet, I probably will pass on the bet entirely. This is a subjective process.

I pass on a lot of races. This is hard. I like the action of betting. If I look at a race and can’t tell who the top three horses are, I definitely wait for the next race. Sometimes, I might see an interesting long shot angle and might make a $2.00 bet on that shot – sometimes to win, more often just to show, just because I like the action.

I also bet .10 supers and occasionally trifectas, depending upon whether I see value in doing that. But overall, I’m an exacta guy.

Find PPs that you like and stick with them. Consistency helps. I like the Bris PPs that I get for free with my TwinSpires account. They have nice pace figures and race class ratings that I find really valuable for comparing horses. Their power-ratings also have encouraged me to give a second look to some horses that I’ve discarded. When I travel and visit tracks and have to use DRF or Equibase PPs, I miss my Bris tools.

Don’t be biased by the opinions of others. I don’t look at who Bris or track analysts predict will win until after I’ve done my own handicapping and picked my own winners. I’ll compare my work against outside opinion, but it is rare that I change my picks.

The above has been a winning strategy for me. I’m up over the last six years of playing – on average I've probably played once per week, a little less frequently recently, because of work and family commitments.

Back to your main question. Of the books, I recommend “Betting Thoroughbreds for the 21st Century” by Steve Davidowitz. It is a good start.

Have fun. If it stops being fun, stop doing it, like you did. Make "paper" bets for a while. I’ve walked away from the game after dry spells where I couldn’t pick a winner many times. But I keep coming back because it is an awesome "thinking-man’s" game. Good luck.

That's pretty sound advice that you've put forward Lucky Dave. :ThmbUp:

Greyfox

Greybase
03-07-2016, 01:06 AM
I would suggest you start with a book which will introduce you to various aspects of horse racing. If handicapping 101 is Free's book, I've heard it was a good primer but I've never read it. But, I have read Davidowitz's Betting Thoroughbreds (1995) years ago ...
I've read all these and would definitely say Handicapping 101, by Brad Free, is your best bet for an Introduction to handicapping. Very well written, he's also been a regular for Daily Racing Form, and he does go into some depth on the important factors: Class, Form, Speed.

So that's my #1 because it's more recent but otherwise, Recreational Handicapping by James Quinn for years was probably the best "all around" Intro to the game, and Quinn is one of my favorite turf writers. R-C could be Out of print however (?) He does have a newer book called the Compete Handicapper which I've not read yet but pretty sure it's more advanced (and also more $.) but would be a good investment.

Beyer On Speed, by Andrew Beyer, is a pretty good commonly available book that a newbie could benefit from... Davidowitz' books are classics, sure but Steve gets into a bit more advanced stuff like Key Race theory, synthetic Dirt, exotic wagering etc. which are great topics but not exactly beginner material IMHO ;)

http://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzUwWDUwMw==/z/hSMAAOSwsB9V~yMz/$_35.JPG

ultracapper
03-08-2016, 01:45 AM
Hi Foot,

I'm also a newbie on the board here. I saw your other post too. Your situation is not dissimilar to where I was about five years ago or so when I first started betting the ponies. You might want to re-look your analysis and also how you bet. I'll get to your book question, but here’s what I’ve done, with some success, in my six-year handicapping adventure: I decided to focus on one track, my “home” track. Everyone on the board might laugh, but I like Charles Town (CT), a small “bullring” oval in West Virginia. Love it in fact. It was within driving distance of my house, they ran all year, and they ran at night, when I could actually watch and bet the races. Focusing on this one track allowed me to get a feeling for the trainers, the kinds of horses the track favored (early speed vice closers), the distances of races usually run at the track, how the “class” structure was set up, and even get familiar with the regular horses themselves. I also learned who the top jockeys were and what it meant when they got a particular mount. I no longer live in that part of the country, but I still play that track all the time.

Here is my analytical process:

I use the “speed” figures to get a quick feel for the quality of the horses in the race. The figures help to whittle down and throw out horses that likely have no chance. Don’t take them as gospel – still look at every horse, but there are many (probably half) that can be tossed just by looking at the speed numbers and where the horses have historically finished vs. similar company.

I focus on trainers - they are important to results. There are reasons some of them win at a 25 percent clip. I take their stock seriously. Their horses often go off at short odds, but not always: on this past Saturday night I got almost 5-1 on a solid horse run by a 25 percent winning trainer in a field that only had (what I thought) were three realistic shots to win. Watch good trainers and their stock (and their odds) like a hawk.

I perk up when I see “class drops.” In the above Saturday night race, the same horse that won dropped two levels in class – from higher competition to a lower competitive level. Most of the ten-horse field was simply overmatched. Class can be hidden and overstated too: a horse running well in a $10K race restricted to state-breds may be inferior when when run in a $10K unrestricted race.

Some tracks get a lot of “shippers” from other tracks. Some of the other tracks are “classier,” meaning their horse stock is generally better, even if both run at nominally the same class level, i.e. Clm 10k NW2L. Observe and learn how shippers perform at your home track.

I like races where I have a lot of data, from the same track, to work with. Many horses at CT for example are year-round plodders that run really often against each other – the time series data is great and allows me to really compare apples to apples. (By contrast, I have a tough time with major G1 stakes races – they have horses shipping in from ten different tracks – for me, it is still tough to compare them and the competition they’ve been running against.)

I can’t handicap maiden races to save my soul. I don’t feel like I have enough data. I don’t like comparing horses based on workouts, or pedigree, or first-out trainer stats. So I pass on races that have lots of new runners.

I do pay attention to horse comportment, especially when at the track, but this is not a major factor in my handicapping. I have moved up horses in my picks through observations made in the paddock and post parade.

Regarding my betting: I bet one dollar three horse exacta boxes (total of $6.00), probably for about 60-70 percent of my bets. I’ve noticed that boxing bets drives some people on this board crazy, but for me they work: horses are fickle and have bad days. They get slow starts, bumped at the gate, trapped in traffic, and so on. If I can isolate the top three horses in a ten horse race, I feel like two of the three are likely to have a good run and come in 1 and 2. The extra horse is a hedge. Some folks say that extra horse is dead money, or that maybe “key” boxes are a better strategy. Sometimes yes. I’m flexible and try to find the right bet for the circumstances. But I can’t tell you the number of times when the horse I thought was the best in the race finished in third, or even out of the money. I like the hedge.

I watch the exacta odds as they change before the race. If I’m not going to at least double my money on most of the combinations of the three horses I’m going to bet, I probably will pass on the bet entirely. This is a subjective process.

I pass on a lot of races. This is hard. I like the action of betting. If I look at a race and can’t tell who the top three horses are, I definitely wait for the next race. Sometimes, I might see an interesting long shot angle and might make a $2.00 bet on that shot – sometimes to win, more often just to show, just because I like the action.

I also bet .10 supers and occasionally trifectas, depending upon whether I see value in doing that. But overall, I’m an exacta guy.

Find PPs that you like and stick with them. Consistency helps. I like the Bris PPs that I get for free with my TwinSpires account. They have nice pace figures and race class ratings that I find really valuable for comparing horses. Their power-ratings also have encouraged me to give a second look to some horses that I’ve discarded. When I travel and visit tracks and have to use DRF or Equibase PPs, I miss my Bris tools.

Don’t be biased by the opinions of others. I don’t look at who Bris or track analysts predict will win until after I’ve done my own handicapping and picked my own winners. I’ll compare my work against outside opinion, but it is rare that I change my picks.

The above has been a winning strategy for me. I’m up over the last six years of playing – on average I've probably played once per week, a little less frequently recently, because of work and family commitments.

Back to your main question. Of the books, I recommend “Betting Thoroughbreds for the 21st Century” by Steve Davidowitz. It is a good start.

Have fun. If it stops being fun, stop doing it, like you did. Make "paper" bets for a while. I’ve walked away from the game after dry spells where I couldn’t pick a winner many times. But I keep coming back because it is an awesome "thinking-man’s" game. Good luck.

That's a damn good post for a guy that doesn't have some of the scars others have. You've handled your introduction period into horse race playing very well, it appears.

DeltaLover
03-08-2016, 08:09 AM
Besides getting introduced to the very basics of the game, do not expect too much more from the existing horse betting literature.

If you are serious about the game, go ahead and start building a charts database, watch a ton of replays, educated yourself about statistics and be ready for a long learning curve that will cost a ton of losing bets..

Tall One
03-08-2016, 09:18 AM
I've read all these and would definitely say Handicapping 101, by Brad Free, is your best bet for an Introduction to handicapping. Very well written, he's also been a regular for Daily Racing Form, and he does go into some depth on the important factors: Class, Form, Speed.

So that's my #1 because it's more recent but otherwise, Recreational Handicapping by James Quinn for years was probably the best "all around" Intro to the game, and Quinn is one of my favorite turf writers. R-C could be Out of print however (?) He does have a newer book called the Compete Handicapper which I've not read yet but pretty sure it's more advanced (and also more $.) but would be a good investment.

Beyer On Speed, by Andrew Beyer, is a pretty good commonly available book that a newbie could benefit from... Davidowitz' books are classics, sure but Steve gets into a bit more advanced stuff like Key Race theory, synthetic Dirt, exotic wagering etc. which are great topics but not exactly beginner material IMHO ;)

http://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzUwWDUwMw==/z/hSMAAOSwsB9V~yMz/$_35.JPG


I second this, Grey. Never leaves my bedside table. Very nice approach and intro to pace inside.

Capper Al
03-08-2016, 11:41 AM
Hey I first want to start off by saying this is a wonderful forum you people have been very helpful in answering questions.
I'm kinda of taking a brake from betting because I kinda have hit a wall, I need to regroup and focus. I'm trying to find a good book to read to help me better understand handicapping and betting. These are the books I'm looking into buying what one should I buy to read first

Money secrets at the track

Betting on horse racing for dummies

Handicapping 101: finding the right horses and making the right bets.

Any input on what book I should read first would be a big help...

Handicapping 101 is the best one on your list. Money Secrets just says guess your horse's chances and bet on him if you get a 50% bump on the tote-board. Not bad advice, but that's the whole book in a nutshell.

If you can find the late Danny Holmes 'Ten Steps to Winning', I would suggest that one.

downtown23
05-22-2016, 03:20 AM
Just starting out also. Thanks everyone for sharing so much information.

woodbinepmi
05-22-2016, 03:29 AM
Read everything you can get your hands on, some of it will be good and some of it will be bad, but read everything.

My advice is: find one circuit and learn everything you can about that circuit and only play those tracks. Don't spread yourself too thin by playing too many tracks.

Waquoit
05-25-2016, 07:53 PM
Betting Thoroughbreds for the 21st Century by Steve Davidowitz is my pick. It covers pretty much everything, makes it a good first step.

acorn54
05-26-2016, 07:45 PM
i second delta's advice. books are really out of date in this high tech fast changing world of horse racing. years ago men like h.allen jerkens and woody stephens and many other horse gentlemen were looked at in awe because they won with 20% of the horses they started. today the likes of broberg and ness get 40%?
also seems most trainers only do it part time.
fields are alot smaller and oftentimes uncompetitive. its harder to find a good betting 12 horse field than a hen's tooth these days. well time for me to go back to enjoying my stamp collection.
good luck

traynor
06-05-2016, 07:44 PM
http://www.amazon.com/Predictive-Analytics-Dummies-Business-Personal/dp/1119267005/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

whodoyoulike
06-05-2016, 09:01 PM
http://www.amazon.com/Predictive-Analytics-Dummies-Business-Personal/dp/1119267005/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

Is this a fair response?

You've been around the horse racing block for quite some time. The OP is asking about a recommendation for a horse handicapping book. Unless you can provide additional info on why you've found it applicable to horse racing, why bring it up? I haven't read or even heard of this book but it appears applicable and written to address other subject areas which are not horse racing related.

Nitro
06-07-2016, 01:32 AM
The first and still Best book I ever read about the horse racing game was:
Racing Maxims and Methods of George E. Smith “Pittsburg Phil” -- by Edward Cole (1908)

This was recommended to me by one of my Dad’s best friends. At the time (back in the mid-70’s), he mentioned that if you’re seriously interested in this game take my word for it and read these “Maxims” from beginning to end. Than read them again! I remember asking why he felt so adamant about this when there were so many other more current publications available. He simply said that if I wanted to gain thorough foundation to understanding what’s involved, then why not read about it from someone who first of all has nothing to gain financially. But even more important, it’s because those so-called “Maxims” are actually based on his life as a truly successful player. How successful? Well there are certainly varying opinions on how much 1.7 million dollars from 1906 would be worth today!

Some might suggest that reading a book over 100 year’s old is out of touch with the realities of today’s game. I totally disagree! I’ve read quite a few other horse racing books since then (by authors with various and even questionable backgrounds), and it seemed pretty obvious that every one of them in one way or another took some of Pittsburg Phil’s thoughts and ideas, massaged them and incorporated them into their own versions of what horse racing is all about. So why would more current authors do that if they didn’t believe in the original content? BTW, I also discovered that some (and I won’t mention any names) relied more on the revenue from their books then they ever did on actually playing the game!
I personally feel that the only thing that’s changed from yesteryear is the perception of the game from the outsiders looking in.
So here’s the opening excerpt from the beginning:
CHAPTER 1 -- What One Must Know to Play the Races
Playing the races appears to be the one business in which men believe they can succeed without special study, special talent, or special exertion. For that reason the bookmakers ride around in automobiles and eat at Delmonico's, while the majority of the regular race-goers jokingly congratulate themselves lucky if they have the price of a meal and carfare.

Why a man, sensible in other things, holds this idea I have never been able to satisfy myself. He knows, and will acknowledge, that such methods would mean failure to him as a merchant, or as a broker, or as a business man in any other walk of life, but he never seems to apply that knowledge to racing. It must be that the quick "action" hypnotizes him, or the excitement dazzles him, or that he thinks himself too lucky to lose---I never could tell exactly which.

There are many men playing the races, nowadays, and the majority of them are losing. Some are winning, however, and while they are few, they are the characters that we must analyze and whose methods we must study if we would succeed as they do……..CHAPTER 2 -- One Day's Work at the Track
CHAPTER 3 -- The Reason for Speculation
CHAPTER 4 – Handicapping
CHAPTER 5 -- Handicapping by Time
CHAPTER 6 -- Class and Weight
CHAPTER 7 -- Treatment of Horses
Etc., etc., etc.

AndyC
06-07-2016, 01:26 PM
Is this a fair response?

You've been around the horse racing block for quite some time. The OP is asking about a recommendation for a horse handicapping book. Unless you can provide additional info on why you've found it applicable to horse racing, why bring it up? I haven't read or even heard of this book but it appears applicable and written to address other subject areas which are not horse racing related.

A very fair response. Probably the best advice for anybody considering betting on horses. With a good foundation in predictive analytics the handicapping part becomes more focused. The secrets to handicapping success won't be found in any "how to" books. Read them for entertainment and not as a roadmap to success.

Nitro
06-07-2016, 02:10 PM
The secrets to handicapping success won't be found in any "how to" books. Read them for entertainment and not as a roadmap to success. There might be some truth to this comment about many of the horse racing publications, but certainly not when it comes to the advice provided in Pittsburg Phil’s Maxims.

For those who can’t find a copy of the book, you can get access to each chapter on the following link: (The subsequent comments are interesting too)

http://colinsghost.org/2010/05/racing-maxims-and-methods-of-pittsburg-phil-1908.html
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green80
06-07-2016, 04:30 PM
The first and still Best book I ever read about the horse racing game was:
Racing Maxims and Methods of George E. Smith “Pittsburg Phil” -- by Edward Cole (1908)

This was recommended to me by one of my Dad’s best friends. At the time (back in the mid-70’s), he mentioned that if you’re seriously interested in this game take my word for it and read these “Maxims” from beginning to end. Than read them again! I remember asking why he felt so adamant about this when there were so many other more current publications available. He simply said that if I wanted to gain thorough foundation to understanding what’s involved, then why not read about it from someone who first of all has nothing to gain financially. But even more important, it’s because those so-called “Maxims” are actually based on his life as a truly successful player. How successful? Well there are certainly varying opinions on how much 1.7 million dollars from 1906 would be worth today!

Some might suggest that reading a book over 100 year’s old is out of touch with the realities of today’s game. I totally disagree! I’ve read quite a few other horse racing books since then (by authors with various and even questionable backgrounds), and it seemed pretty obvious that every one of them in one way or another took some of Pittsburg Phil’s thoughts and ideas, massaged them and incorporated them into their own versions of what horse racing is all about. So why would more current authors do that if they didn’t believe in the original content? BTW, I also discovered that some (and I won’t mention any names) relied more on the revenue from their books then they ever did on actually playing the game!
I personally feel that the only thing that’s changed from yesteryear is the perception of the game from the outsiders looking in.
So here’s the opening excerpt from the beginning:
CHAPTER 2 -- One Day's Work at the Track
CHAPTER 3 -- The Reason for Speculation
CHAPTER 4 – Handicapping
CHAPTER 5 -- Handicapping by Time
CHAPTER 6 -- Class and Weight
CHAPTER 7 -- Treatment of Horses
Etc., etc., etc.

I fully concur with nitro's post. Pittsburg Phil had to be one of the best. 99% of what he wrote over 100 years ago still holds true today.

traynor
06-09-2016, 12:25 PM
http://www.amazon.com/Predictive-Analytics-Dummies-Business-Personal/dp/1119267005/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

Repeat. Anyone becoming involved with gambling and wagering in 2016 needs--first and foremost--a sufficient understanding of basic research methods and processes to make astute critical decisions in regard to the validity and applicability of the mountain of words, ideas, and "advice" they will encounter in reading pop writing on the topics. Or, using more colloquial terminology, it helps to recognize drivel when he or she sees it before immersing herself or himself in it.

In particular, one needs to understand that the ideas, methods, and concepts expressed by most writers are based on (relatively) superficial studies of highly restricted numbers of events. Including those considered The Great Ones from Olden Times. They are NOT Great Truths that apply to every race, at every track, every day.

Reading that stuff as a way to pass time, or for recreation, or for lack of anything better to do is fine. Reading it to learn how to analyze races and wager more expertly is a quick way to join the flock of 98% losers who stumbled down that same sorry path before you.

Tom
06-09-2016, 01:07 PM
Being a newbie assumes the reader has very limited knowledge of the game.
Without this, how can he possibly know what to even look for using all this new research stuff? How would he know what data to even look for to use for his research?

traynor
06-09-2016, 02:39 PM
Being a newbie assumes the reader has very limited knowledge of the game.
Without this, how can he possibly know what to even look for using all this new research stuff? How would he know what data to even look for to use for his research?

The basic principles of data analysis and data mining apply to all data, not just horse race data. An example would be realizing that Quirin's approach in his original book (based on 7000 or so races) might not be as general as most believe it to be. Or that the workouts found in the old Ray Taulbot articles in ATM may not represent techniques that can be applied to other clumps of races. Same goes for almost every system and method out there--the conclusions reached (and strategies recommended) are derived from clumps of data that may be wildly skewed in one direction or another, selected because they "prove" the theories expressed.

The existence of outliers (another example) is rarely, if ever, mentioned in connection with horse data. Simplistic understanding of how easy it is to rinse a clump of numbers through a standard deviation function and automatically ignore/discard/don't even look at values that are more than two standard deviations from the centerpoint is useful.

Regarding outliers, consider how deceptive the output of most apps can be, when the ROI is a dirty value extracted from a clump of data. One mutuel in a generally even set of results can make the "pattern discovered" seem way more than it is.

A basic sense of what values actually represent is useful. I assume that most on this forum look at the old Ray Taulbot or PRN "studies" and automatically look for the boxcar mutuel in the clump of races "studied" and ignore the strategy presented as representing little more than backfitting.

It seems (to me at least) easier to learn the perils of backfitting in an objective sense, rather than specific caveats about each and every clump of horse race data. Distinctions between (and the use of) test sets and training sets in data analysis should become second nature.

AndyC
06-09-2016, 02:48 PM
Being a newbie assumes the reader has very limited knowledge of the game.
Without this, how can he possibly know what to even look for using all this new research stuff? How would he know what data to even look for to use for his research?

Most bettors have read numerous books and still don't know what to look for nor how to evaluate what they are looking at. If the newbie has a modicum of intelligence they will figure out what to look for and hopefully without the bias or taint of some "expert handicapper".

Nitro
06-09-2016, 03:19 PM
Repeat. Anyone becoming involved with gambling and wagering in 2016 needs--first and foremost--a sufficient understanding of basic research methods and processes to make astute critical decisions in regard to the validity and applicability of the mountain of words, ideas, and "advice" they will encounter in reading pop writing on the topics. Or, using more colloquial terminology, it helps to recognize drivel when he or she sees it before immersing herself or himself in it.

In particular, one needs to understand that the ideas, methods, and concepts expressed by most writers are based on (relatively) superficial studies of highly restricted numbers of events. Including those considered The Great Ones from Olden Times. They are NOT Great Truths that apply to every race, at every track, every day.

Reading that stuff as a way to pass time, or for recreation, or for lack of anything better to do is fine. Reading it to learn how to analyze races and wager more expertly is a quick way to join the flock of 98% losers who stumbled down that same sorry path before you.I think that lumping what was written about Pittsburg Phil’s Maxims into what you term “superficial studies of highly restricted numbers of events” is evidence that you’ve apparently either glazed over or perhaps never even bothered to read the realities of the horse racing game from the perspective of an extremely proficient player and horseman.

Any “Newbie” that wants a better understanding of the big picture of what’s been going on in horse racing for decades and seeks some clarity about horse flesh itself can’t go wrong by taking the time to read those Maxims. There ARE more Great (practical) truths presented in them (both subtlety and directly) than you’ll find in any of the publications portraying the typical theoretical and rigid mathematical approaches. The sooner that any one new to horse racing can come to the realization that it’s all about the interaction of living and breathing animals and their human connections, the better off they’ll be as players. As far as I’m concerned this is just a game with many idiosyncrasies and it’s not something that can be resolved with an exact science like Math.
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lamboguy
06-09-2016, 03:35 PM
everyone writes a book on how to win at horse race betting. i have been working on one for the past 2 years on how to lose at it. so far i have written about 300 pages and am nowhere near finished.

Nitro
06-09-2016, 04:18 PM
everyone writes a book on how to win at horse race betting. i have been working on one for the past 2 years on how to lose at it. so far i have written about 300 pages and am nowhere near finished.
Hey Lamboguy, when you’re finished writing it I’m afraid you’ll have to start another thread with the title:

”Best Books for the Downtrodden Life-long Horse Player”.

But 300 pages!? Wow! I guess there are more ways of losing then I thought. :eek:
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traynor
06-09-2016, 07:01 PM
I think that lumping what was written about Pittsburg Phil’s Maxims into what you term “superficial studies of highly restricted numbers of events” is evidence that you’ve apparently either glazed over or perhaps never even bothered to read the realities of the horse racing game from the perspective of an extremely proficient player and horseman.

Any “Newbie” that wants a better understanding of the big picture of what’s been going on in horse racing for decades and seeks some clarity about horse flesh itself can’t go wrong by taking the time to read those Maxims. There ARE more Great (practical) truths presented in them (both subtlety and directly) than you’ll find in any of the publications portraying the typical theoretical and rigid mathematical approaches. The sooner that any one new to horse racing can come to the realization that it’s all about the interaction of living and breathing animals and their human connections, the better off they’ll be as players. As far as I’m concerned this is just a game with many idiosyncrasies and it’s not something that can be resolved with an exact science like Math.
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You miss the point completely. What I suggested is that a prospective bettor should learn to differentiate between good stuff (of value) and mindless dreck (worthless) that someone wrote mainly because they had a typewriter or computer, hoped to turn a profit from writing (because they were unable to do so by wagering), and writing enabled them to bypass the stage of others telling them to shut up and sit down.

Critical thinking is a trait that few bettors do well. Developing critical thinking is not an easy task, and one most fear. Sort of like discovering there is no Santa Claus, tooth fairy, or free lunch.

However, developing critical thinking traits has a seriously useful fringe benefit--it enables one to recognize value when they see it, rather than lumping everything together, stirring it a bit, and hoping for the best. It also enables one to recognize the worthless when they see it.

I think a bettor (or prospective bettor) is WAY ahead learning to make those distinctions for himself or herself, rather than accepting the opinions (seriously tweaked, in general, by self-serving perceptual biases, cognitive dissonance avoidance, or the hope of profit in one manner or another) of others.

traynor
06-09-2016, 07:46 PM
Another great book for prospective (and well-seasoned but less-than-profitable) bettors (that I have suggested numerous times before on this forum):
https://www.amazon.com/Decision-Traps-Barriers-Decision-Making-Overcome/dp/0671726099/189-4742916-7880257?ie=UTF8&*Version*=1&*entries*=0

If one googles decision traps a bit, there is a LOT of good, concise material dedicated to enabling one to make better decisions. Which is, BTW, at the heart of successful wagering. The trick is to make better decisions than the other bettors. All the rest of it falls naturally into step with that ability.

Nitro
06-10-2016, 11:50 AM
You miss the point completely. What I suggested is that a prospective bettor should learn to differentiate between good stuff (of value) and mindless dreck (worthless) that someone wrote mainly because they had a typewriter or computer, hoped to turn a profit from writing (because they were unable to do so by wagering), and writing enabled them to bypass the stage of others telling them to shut up and sit down.

Critical thinking is a trait that few bettors do well. Developing critical thinking is not an easy task, and one most fear. Sort of like discovering there is no Santa Claus, tooth fairy, or free lunch.

However, developing critical thinking traits has a seriously useful fringe benefit--it enables one to recognize value when they see it, rather than lumping everything together, stirring it a bit, and hoping for the best. It also enables one to recognize the worthless when they see it.

I think a bettor (or prospective bettor) is WAY ahead learning to make those distinctions for himself or herself, rather than accepting the opinions (seriously tweaked, in general, by self-serving perceptual biases, cognitive dissonance avoidance, or the hope of profit in one manner or another) of others.So please enlighten us as to how a “Newbie” is supposed to “differentiate between good stuff (of value) and mindless dreck (worthless) that someone wrote” when in fact they have no point of reference or any previous experience with horse racing in general?

I didn’t miss the point at all. Please re-read the title of this thread! We’re trying to help a “Newbie” by suggesting material to read that will help them establish a foundation to better understand the game. I doubt very highly that anyone new to the game is concerned with “Critical thinking”, particularly when they don’t have any point of reference to begin with.

AndyC
06-10-2016, 01:39 PM
So please enlighten us as to how a “Newbie” is supposed to “differentiate between good stuff (of value) and mindless dreck (worthless) that someone wrote” when in fact they have no point of reference or any previous experience with horse racing in general?

I didn’t miss the point at all. Please re-read the title of this thread! We’re trying to help a “Newbie” by suggesting material to read that will help them establish a foundation to better understand the game. I doubt very highly that anyone new to the game is concerned with “Critical thinking”, particularly when they don’t have any point of reference to begin with.

"I'm kinda of taking a brake from betting because I kinda have hit a wall, I need to regroup and focus. I'm trying to find a good book to read to help me better understand handicapping and betting."

The OPs point of reference is that he is playing and not succeeding. You are correct that anyone new to the game is unlikely to be concerned with "Critical Thinking". The point is, they should be!

AndyC
06-10-2016, 01:45 PM
There might be some truth to this comment about many of the horse racing publications, but certainly not when it comes to the advice provided in Pittsburg Phil’s Maxims.

For those who can’t find a copy of the book, you can get access to each chapter on the following link: (The subsequent comments are interesting too)

http://colinsghost.org/2010/05/racing-maxims-and-methods-of-pittsburg-phil-1908.html
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What specific advice or maxims did you find to be invaluable for your success betting horses?

Nitro
06-10-2016, 05:38 PM
"I'm kinda of taking a brake from betting because I kinda have hit a wall, I need to regroup and focus. I'm trying to find a good book to read to help me better understand handicapping and betting."

The OPs point of reference is that he is playing and not succeeding. You are correct that anyone new to the game is unlikely to be concerned with "Critical Thinking". The point is, they should be!Anyone who’s concerned about profiting from this game should consider “Critical Thinking” at some point. But you might want explain how that’s possible from a “Newbies” perspective. How are they supposed make informed decisions when they have no clue what’s involved in either the selection or betting processes?

What specific advice or maxims did you find to be invaluable for your success betting horses?As an overall practical reference and guide, I found Pittsburg Phil’s Maxims to provide a very telling description of the successful interaction of an astute player’s mentality in relation to the many things to consider in terms of their priority when getting involved in this game. Although there were no tote boards to speak of at the time, there are specific references to the bookmaker’s odds and seeking value. I say this only because the betting pools and their analysis are my primary source of information.

I also believe that the Maxim’s emphasis on a horse’s “physicality” can’t be ignored as a very important aspect in the selection process. As an example:
Racing Maxims and Methods of Pittsburg Phil -- by Edward Cole (1908)
In this frame of mind I go to the track. Once I enter the gate it is all business with me, and my program of one day does not change. I get the names of the jockeys and the positions of the horses at the post, if it is a race in which I believe there is a fair speculative opportunity. I know, of course, the kind of day it is, and the condition of the track. I next go up into the grand stand and watch the horses warming up. This is of the utmost importance, for although my mind may be centered on two, or possibly three horses, at the same time it is important that I watch the others for fear there may be an unexpected display of form in any of them. If I do not see any of the horses, I had in mind, warm up, I immediately go to the paddock, after having my agent bring me the betting quotations. Arriving there I devote my time and attention entirely to the contenders, as I have picked them, and to nothing else.

It is impossible to overestimate the value of this ability to tell the condition of a thoroughbred. It is the twin sister of handicapping and more important. In that respect the ordinary "form" handicapper is, so to say, handicapped. What may appear to be right on paper, very, very often is wrong in the paddock. This ability to tell whether a horse is at its best before a race is acquired only after years of the closest kind of study. The merest tyro can tell in a race whether a horse is doing its best, but when it comes to getting a knowledge of what he can be expected to do before a race from a blanketed animal walking about the paddock or standing in his stall, special knowledge is necessary. It is not a talent. A man is not born with it: he must acquire it by hard work and close observation. He must be able to decide whether a horse is in good condition or not, whether he appears to feel like running a race or otherwise.

traynor
06-10-2016, 05:42 PM
So please enlighten us as to how a “Newbie” is supposed to “differentiate between good stuff (of value) and mindless dreck (worthless) that someone wrote” when in fact they have no point of reference or any previous experience with horse racing in general?

I didn’t miss the point at all. Please re-read the title of this thread! We’re trying to help a “Newbie” by suggesting material to read that will help them establish a foundation to better understand the game. I doubt very highly that anyone new to the game is concerned with “Critical thinking”, particularly when they don’t have any point of reference to begin with.

You did indeed miss the point completely. The "problem" for a newbie is not "learning what others (mostly hardcore losers) think about horse races" as it is learning the basics of critical analysis. Rather than uncritically accepting the (mostly) useless prattle of those who are unable to do what they presume to "advise" others how to do, a prospective bettor would be better off using reality as a reference point. An understanding of basic research methods will assist that goal.

Expecting the writing of losers to make someone better able to win is unrealistic. Expecting that a prospective bettor (who is NOT in denial after extensive experience losing and believes himself or herself "in it for the sport") would be motivated by losing to continue participation is even more unrealistic.

If that concept seems arcane, I suggest you do a bit of research on Festinger and cognitive dissonance. The degree to which people trick themselves is more useful for a prospective bettor to understand than what happened in a small clump of races way back when.

traynor
06-10-2016, 05:56 PM
I also believe that the Maxim’s emphasis on a horse’s “physicality” can’t be ignored as a very important aspect in the selection process. As an example:

I agree. Completely. As I have mentioned several times, I have two fundamentally different types of wagering strategies. One is high volume, numerous wagers on most days, based exclusively (or almost exclusively) on computer models. The other (that involves all of what I consider my "serious" wagers) is ONLY made at the track, and is based on (my own) trip notes, and (my own) inspection handicapping.

I would not consider making a serious wager on any horse unless I could get close enough to that horse for long enough before making the wager for me to make (my own) critical assessment of its current form.

Nitro
06-10-2016, 06:18 PM
You did indeed miss the point completely. The "problem" for a newbie is not "learning what others (mostly hardcore losers) think about horse races" as it is learning the basics of critical analysis. Rather than uncritically accepting the (mostly) useless prattle of those who are unable to do what they presume to "advise" others how to do, a prospective bettor would be better off using reality as a reference point. An understanding of basic research methods will assist that goal.

Expecting the writing of losers to make someone better able to win is unrealistic. Expecting that a prospective bettor (who is NOT in denial after extensive experience losing and believes himself or herself "in it for the sport") would be motivated by losing to continue participation is even more unrealistic.

If that concept seems arcane, I suggest you do a bit of research on Festinger and cognitive dissonance. The degree to which people trick themselves is more useful for a prospective bettor to understand than what happened in a small clump of races way back when.So in other words you would consider Pittsburg Phil a “loser”?

Listen friend I completely understand where you’re coming from, but please try to get it out of your mind that the Maxims put forth by PP are anything even remotely related to the characterizations you’ve made about authors who may be hardcore losers.

However, on the other side of the coin there’s and old but precious horse racing adage to also consider. It originated by those who can generally offer GREAT advice, but fail miserably by not acting on it properly themselves (perhaps a losing author). It goes something like this:
“Do what I say. Don’t do what I do!”
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AndyC
06-10-2016, 06:27 PM
......However, on the other side of the coin there’s and old but precious horse racing adage to also consider. It originated by those who can generally offer GREAT advice, but fail miserably by not acting on it properly themselves (perhaps a losing author). It goes something like this:
“Do what I say. Don’t do what I do!”....

How does one know when they are being offered great advice?

barn32
06-10-2016, 09:08 PM
So in other words you would consider Pittsburg Phil a “loser”?

Listen friend I completely understand where you’re coming from, but please try to get it out of your mind that the Maxims put forth by PP are anything even remotely related to the characterizations you’ve made about authors who may be hardcore losers.

However, on the other side of the coin there’s and old but precious horse racing adage to also consider. It originated by those who can generally offer GREAT advice, but fail miserably by not acting on it properly themselves (perhaps a losing author). It goes something like this:
“Do what I say. Don’t do what I do!”
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.Don't debate with trolls.

traynor
06-10-2016, 09:33 PM
So in other words you would consider Pittsburg Phil a “loser”?

Listen friend I completely understand where you’re coming from, but please try to get it out of your mind that the Maxims put forth by PP are anything even remotely related to the characterizations you’ve made about authors who may be hardcore losers.

However, on the other side of the coin there’s and old but precious horse racing adage to also consider. It originated by those who can generally offer GREAT advice, but fail miserably by not acting on it properly themselves (perhaps a losing author). It goes something like this:
“Do what I say. Don’t do what I do!”
.
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In what way did I specifically single out PP and declare him a loser? Suggesting that people people think critically about what they see, hear, or read is good. Uncritical acceptance of unproven premises--just because someone somewhere wrote it--is NOT good.

AndyC
06-10-2016, 09:37 PM
Don't debate with trolls.

Troll = Someone who has a different opinion?

Thanks for jumping into what was civil discussion to offer your sage advice.

traynor
06-10-2016, 09:51 PM
Good newbie book:

https://www.amazon.com/High-Tech-Handicapping-Information-Age/dp/0688053882/184-4992297-9948145?ie=UTF8&*Version*=1&*entries*=0

Nitro
06-11-2016, 12:48 AM
In what way did I specifically single out PP and declare him a loser? Suggesting that people people think critically about what they see, hear, or read is good. Uncritical acceptance of unproven premises--just because someone somewhere wrote it--is NOT good.Look I’m not sure what your game is or what’s motivating your double-talk, but I am sure anyone reading the posts I’ve made on this thread can see that they refer exclusively in one way or another to what I believe to be an excellent single source of reading material for the “Newbie” (or other wise) . I also believe that it’s pretty clear that you’ve attempted to downplay the content of the Maxims and the accomplishments its author.
By the way, contrary to your supposition of criticism as being a "Good" thing, completely disregards the principle that skeptical views of Factual information is actually pretty foolish.

............................So you want specifics?
Repeat. Anyone becoming involved with gambling and wagering in 2016 needs--first and foremost--a sufficient understanding of basic research methods and processes to make astute critical decisions in regard to the validity and applicability of the mountain of words, ideas, and "advice" they will encounter in reading pop writing on the topics. Or, using more colloquial terminology, it helps to recognize drivel when he or she sees it before immersing herself or himself in it.

In particular, one needs to understand that the ideas, methods, and concepts expressed by most writers are based on (relatively) superficial studies of highly restricted numbers of events. Including those considered The Great Ones from Olden Times. They are NOT Great Truths that apply to every race, at every track, every day.

Reading that stuff as a way to pass time, or for recreation, or for lack of anything better to do is fine. Reading it to learn how to analyze races and wager more expertly is a quick way to join the flock of 98% losers who stumbled down that same sorry path before you. You can’t tell me that these paragraphs above weren’t an attempt depreciate the value of the Maxims by degrading its author, Pittsburg Phil. Unfortunately, even though there was never the opportunity to meet the man, from what I’ve read he’s got a hell of a lot more credibility as player and horseman then many an author since, no matter what the scripted platform might have been. The fact that his endeavors led him to making a fortune in this game only further augments the integrity of his Maxims: A Path that many a player since could only dream about!
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Nitro
06-11-2016, 01:22 AM
Originally Posted by Nitro
......However, on the other side of the coin there’s and old but precious horse racing adage to also consider. It originated by those who can generally offer GREAT advice, but fail miserably by not acting on it properly themselves (perhaps a losing author). It goes something like this:
“Do what I say. Don’t do what I do!”....How does one know when they are being offered great advice?Well there are basically only 2 ways of knowing:
A Posteriori: Through the experience of an empirical evaluation of observed results from the advice being offered.

A Priori: Through faith that one places in the advice being offered without any prior experience or observed validity.

traynor
06-11-2016, 03:10 AM
Look I’m not sure what your game is or what’s motivating your double-talk, but I am sure anyone reading the posts I’ve made on this thread can see that they refer exclusively in one way or another to what I believe to be an excellent single source of reading material for the “Newbie” (or other wise) . I also believe that it’s pretty clear that you’ve attempted to downplay the content of the Maxims and the accomplishments its author.
By the way, contrary to your supposition of criticism as being a "Good" thing, completely disregards the principle that skeptical views of Factual information is actually pretty foolish.

............................So you want specifics?
You can’t tell me that these paragraphs above weren’t an attempt depreciate the value of the Maxims by degrading its author, Pittsburg Phil. Unfortunately, even though there was never the opportunity to meet the man, from what I’ve read he’s got a hell of a lot more credibility as player and horseman then many an author since, no matter what the scripted platform might have been. The fact that his endeavors led him to making a fortune in this game only further augments the integrity of his Maxims: A Path that many a player since could only dream about!
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I won't even bother to try. You see what you want to see, in the way you want to see it. A pity.

headhawg
06-11-2016, 10:51 AM
And this "debate" has helped the OP how? This kind of s**t still amazes me although I don't know why it should anymore. The so-called "help" that some posters give is really just an extension of their narcissism or the "my way is the only way" mentality. Here's a thought -- make a suggestion, give reasons why it might be a good read, and move on. Let the OP decide if the suggestion has value.

AndyC
06-11-2016, 11:35 AM
Well there are basically only 2 ways of knowing:
A Posteriori: Through the experience of an empirical evaluation of observed results from the advice being offered.

A Priori: Through faith that one places in the advice being offered without any prior experience or observed validity.


Wouldn't "Critical Thinking" be imperative for A Posteriori?

AndyC
06-11-2016, 11:56 AM
Look I’m not sure what your game is or what’s motivating your double-talk, but I am sure anyone reading the posts I’ve made on this thread can see that they refer exclusively in one way or another to what I believe to be an excellent single source of reading material for the “Newbie” (or other wise) . I also believe that it’s pretty clear that you’ve attempted to downplay the content of the Maxims and the accomplishments its author.
By the way, contrary to your supposition of criticism as being a "Good" thing, completely disregards the principle that skeptical views of Factual information is actually pretty foolish.

............................So you want specifics?
You can’t tell me that these paragraphs above weren’t an attempt depreciate the value of the Maxims by degrading its author, Pittsburg Phil. Unfortunately, even though there was never the opportunity to meet the man, from what I’ve read he’s got a hell of a lot more credibility as player and horseman then many an author since, no matter what the scripted platform might have been. The fact that his endeavors led him to making a fortune in this game only further augments the integrity of his Maxims: A Path that many a player since could only dream about!
.
.

I don't see an attempt to diminish or degrade Pittsburgh Phil. Who can argue with the following? Phil often said the reason most bettors lose is their unwillingness to put in the time. He once observed, “Playing the races appears to be the one business in which men believe they can succeed without special study, special talent, or special exertion.” (from http://www.drf.com/news/godfather-handicappers-pittsburg-phil-changed-game-forever)

To just read the maxims of PP doesn't make you a better player, you must be able to implement them. The ability to use "Critical Thinking" is best learned before trying to learn or perfect a skill and not after.