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Bogo
01-27-2018, 01:55 PM
Hey guys. I wanted to introduce myself as a new pace member. I love harness racing and have been playing for about 6 months. I prefer the longer stretch and I am currently playing Meadowlands, Woodbine, and Hawthorne. I am pretty conservative by nature and I usually play 3-4 races per card. I have not been getting killed but tend to lose a little over the course of a month. This forum has a lot of experienced handicappers and I wanted to compliment all of you on the solid picks that you post here. As much as I appreciate the picks I was hoping some people would go into more detail on how they arrived at the selection. If some feel uncomfortable or feel they are revealing an edge, I understand. For others, maybe an explanation of a best bet or some other pick that you won. It can be a race that was in the past or one coming up. It seems some guys are using some type of computer calculations and others some spots or angles. Since I asked this I will post a brief outline of what I am currently using to help me handicap. Feel free to make suggestions on my process.

First I look at a horse's last two starts within 21 days. If the second race falls outside 21 days I just use the last start. I take the TM speed rating and make the following adjustments. Add 1 for every park out. 2 if three wide and 2 if the horse had the lead at one of the calls. I subtract 3 for a horse moving into a negative post. This post varies from track to track. I add or subtract for driver changes. This process is a little more detailed and I can explain further if someone asks. After all the ratings are done I look for a horse that has the highest rating and is a price or if I am playing under 5/1 I prefer a horse whose rating is best by at least 3 points. If a horse is the program and board favorite I pass the race.

I mostly play win but am trying to learn the best way to put together tickets for exactas. At this point trifectas and supers are just too much. Thanks for reading and hopefully some members will respond to this.

Ray2000
01-27-2018, 02:44 PM
Welcome Bogo

You're on the right track (pun intended) with the speed calcs.

TM ratimg alrady has ITV and DTV and includes starting post adjustment.

Here's their description . . .

https://www.trackmaster.com/articles/har/ratings

I prefer using the horses actual final time as the base for adjustments to create a speed rating.

I use these ITV's (all relative to 120 seconds)
Track Trailer Spd adj
ACES 10 5.7
BR 9 2.8
BTVA 9 3.7
CALX 10 5.0
DD 9 6.1
DTN 10 6.1
FHLD 9 2.6
FLMD 9 2.9
GEOD 10 4.8
GRVR 9 3.1
HAR 9 4.2
HAW 10 5.6
HOP 10 6.4
LEX 11 6.4
LON 8 1.5
M 11 6.4
MEA 10 5.1
MOH 11 6.5
MR 9 1.9
MVR 10 5.5
NFLD 9 4.6
NP 9 4.7
PCD 10 6.2
PHL 9 5.8
PPK 10 5.5
PRC 10 5.3
RCR 9 5.0
RIDC 9 4.1
SCD 10 6.2
STGA 9 3.9
TGDN 10 5.7
VD 10 5.9
WDB 11 5.9
YR 9 4.8


Good Luck with Harness races!

Bogo
01-27-2018, 03:07 PM
Thank you for the information. I did know TM adjusts for post but when I did my numbers it felt like they compensated for a poor post but that a horse with say #2 post going to the extreme outside had an unattainable rating so I subtracted three and it seems more accurate. Maybe the answer is using the actual final time as you do.

I'm not sure I quite understand your chart. Is this an adjustment for trailers only?
Also, if you were to use the program times how much of an adjustment would you make for a horse at the Meadowlands from an inside post to post 9 or 10? I guess this is where I am not sure what an accurate adjustment would be. Thanks

Ray2000
01-27-2018, 03:24 PM
Thank you for the information. I did know TM adjusts for post but when I did my numbers it felt like they compensated for a poor post but that a horse with say #2 post going to the extreme outside had an unattainable rating so I subtracted three and it seems more accurate. Maybe the answer is using the actual final time as you do.

I'm not sure I quite understand your chart. Is this an adjustment for trailers only?
Also, if you were to use the program times how much of an adjustment would you make for a horse at the Meadowlands from an inside post to post 9 or 10? I guess this is where I am not sure what an accurate adjustment would be. Thanks

No, That column is just which post is the 1st trailer at each track.
When I copied/paste it came along with the speed ratings.

Ray2000
01-28-2018, 02:27 PM
This forum used to have good discussions on handicapping but has lately turned into a selections bulletin board.
You may want to search the Forum for posts by
LottaKash
markgoldie
pandy (bob often includes references to his DRF articles)
for good info.

here's an example

http://www.paceadvantage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=71489

Also, the game has evolved to early speed in almost all races. Position at the half pole is paramount to today's handicapping.

Good Luck

maybe we can get some others contributing posts to this thread.

Bogo
01-28-2018, 04:46 PM
That thread you linked was very interesting. You say position at the half is paramount. Should I just look at 2nd quarter position or look at position gained to the half? Only reason I mention it is because a horse on the lead at the half from the 10 hole would be more impressive than one who got the lead from an inside post. I have a hard time predicting leavers at a place like the Meadowlands so any thoughts would help. Thanks, Bogo

Ray2000
01-28-2018, 05:25 PM
Currently I'm using the average ground gained or lost from the horses' starting post to call at the half.
Typically 4 or 5 starts.
So a change from post 8 to 2nd would be +6, a change of post 3 to 8th at the 1/2 would be -5. Averages above 2.5 I call a Leaver, below -2.5 a Closer and in between a Stalker.

If an outside horse is the sole leaver in the race that's a plus. If there's 2 or 3 'Leavers' inside him he's almost a write-off.

I've thought about using a 'Half pole' Speed rating using leaders time, lengths back and adjustments for post start, ITV and DTV. In fact, my program does that but I've never got around to testing it.

You might check.
http://www.paceadvantage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=138917

Bogo
01-28-2018, 06:24 PM
Thank you for sharing that. Looks like a clever way to measure leavers. Is that early speed number something you incorporate into your overall figure for a horse or just a number you look at for throwing out outside horses in a race with too much speed inside?

Ray2000
01-28-2018, 07:28 PM
After rating the horses with the normal factors, speed, class, driver, trainer, 4thQ effort, and post bias . .
I then use the Leaver/Stalker/Closer classification to predict pace. (driver aggression enters in here also). A race with 1 or 2 leavers is considered slow and a bonus is applied to the best rated leaver. A race with 3 or more probable leavers gives the bonus to the highest rated inside closer. I've never tested using the 1/2 pole speed ratings to predict pace. Something on my To-Do list.

therover
01-29-2018, 10:46 PM
I am a newbie here as well. Glad to hear you just joined as well.

My question is, do you take into account the other half of the equation. Numerical ratings, speed ratings, etc. is one half. The other is how the race will/should set up and how was the horses trip last time out. Was it parked without cover...with cover. Blind switched at some point...driver change to better ?

I try to take those things into account. Watching the race replays has helped me a lot. It's so much easier than in the past with an online account.

I only bet Big M and sometimes Woodbine. I like Big M the best being from NJ. The long stretch is a plus too since a lot of horses are still in the mix coming home.

Bogo
01-29-2018, 11:50 PM
Well right now I'm trying to put most of it in a number. If a horse was parked to the lead that would be 3 points added to the TM number.

As far as driver changes I use the following formula. I take half of the drivers win% and add or subtract from the overall number.

Example 8% driver last time ( becomes 4) 18% driver today ( becomes 9). I would add 5 points to the horses number as long as I was using that race to rate the horse.

How the race is going to be run is hard for me. Ray's previous post had some good ideas on how to figure out leavers and assign or take away points. I am trying to incorporate that into my number.

You are correct that there can be so many things that you notice in a replay that are hard to put into a number. That being said, this method has put me on some live prices. It just took me a long time to figure out what price to accept and to stay away from low priced horses that appear to be so much the best on paper. Lost a lot of money doing that at the beginning.

Hopefully some other members can comment and give their thoughts.

Ray2000
01-30-2018, 05:11 AM
. . . . Averages above 2.5 I call a Leaver, below -2.5 a Closer and in between a Stalker.

. . .
http://www.paceadvantage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=138917

I went back and looked at my code and the cutoff numbers are 1 not 2.5 for average call gain/loss.

I was thinking of my TM class shift range.
I use 2.5 as the measure of field strength when deciding if today's race is a shift up or down compared to the horse's last start.



Senior Moments are getting too frequent...:)

Poindexter
01-30-2018, 05:43 AM
Hey guys. I wanted to introduce myself as a new pace member. I love harness racing and have been playing for about 6 months. I prefer the longer stretch and I am currently playing Meadowlands, Woodbine, and Hawthorne. I am pretty conservative by nature and I usually play 3-4 races per card. I have not been getting killed but tend to lose a little over the course of a month. This forum has a lot of experienced handicappers and I wanted to compliment all of you on the solid picks that you post here. As much as I appreciate the picks I was hoping some people would go into more detail on how they arrived at the selection. If some feel uncomfortable or feel they are revealing an edge, I understand. For others, maybe an explanation of a best bet or some other pick that you won. It can be a race that was in the past or one coming up. It seems some guys are using some type of computer calculations and others some spots or angles. Since I asked this I will post a brief outline of what I am currently using to help me handicap. Feel free to make suggestions on my process.

First I look at a horse's last two starts within 21 days. If the second race falls outside 21 days I just use the last start. I take the TM speed rating and make the following adjustments. Add 1 for every park out. 2 if three wide and 2 if the horse had the lead at one of the calls. I subtract 3 for a horse moving into a negative post. This post varies from track to track. I add or subtract for driver changes. This process is a little more detailed and I can explain further if someone asks. After all the ratings are done I look for a horse that has the highest rating and is a price or if I am playing under 5/1 I prefer a horse whose rating is best by at least 3 points. If a horse is the program and board favorite I pass the race.

I mostly play win but am trying to learn the best way to put together tickets for exactas. At this point trifectas and supers are just too much. Thanks for reading and hopefully some members will respond to this.

My advice, go through some old programs if you have some and take your finalized tm numbers and average them with the tm class rating. So if you have a horse with a 93 your speed rating but it was a 85 class rating, you will have a final number of 89. While a horse with a 93 your speed rating and a 93 class rating will be a 93. I think you will find the numbers to be a lot more accurate. After you have done so, let me know what you determine, I am curious myself about the conclusion you reach. If you don't have any old programs than obviously you will have to start fresh.

Stick with win betting. If you like, you can use exactas as a protection bet. Simply playing the top 3 favorites on top of your horse will give you the winning exacta about 70% of the time your horse runs 2nd with no handicapping whatsoever. If you want to play your horse on top of the same 3 for about half as much you could. So a play may look something like this. $30 to win #6, $6 exacta 1-2-7 over 6 $3 exacta 6 over 1-2-7. By playing the top 3 favorites you are usually catching the live horses that unfortunately will beat you way too often. Down the road when you feel that your are really good at the game, you can try other approaches. I realize you may not always know who the top 3 favorites will be.

You are wise to stay away from tris. High takeouts and of course you are forever being beat by inferior horses who get much better trips. Also whenever one or more of your horses breaks you are in deep ****. in the trifecta. If you want to use trifecta as a protection bet(with 20 cent minimus at some tracks it is not expensive. You can do something like this 1-2-7 with all with 6 and then 1-2-7/1-2-7 plus other horses that look strong to you /6. Once again should your horse come 3rd at least you will hit the tri about 70% of the time.

By the way not sure if you are there yet, but at some point you have to explore the 20 cent(low takeout) pick 5 at Woodbine/Mohawk. The value is so good so often and with a 20 cent denomination you can play for affordable amounts. If you aren't comfortable with that idea, ignore the suggestion. Much better you stay within your comfort zone.

therover
01-30-2018, 07:18 AM
Stick with win betting. If you like, you can use exactas as a protection bet.

Great advice in my opinion. That's how I roll.

Bogo
01-30-2018, 07:59 PM
I went back and looked at my code and the cutoff numbers are 1 not 2.5 for average call gain/loss.

I was thinking of my TM class shift range.
I use 2.5 as the measure of field strength when deciding if today's race is a shift up or down compared to the horse's last start.



Senior Moments are getting too frequent...:)

Okay. So that is an average,correct? If I look at 5 racing lines the horse should be at least cumulative +5 to qualify as a leaver?

Bogo
01-30-2018, 08:03 PM
My advice, go through some old programs if you have some and take your finalized tm numbers and average them with the tm class rating. So if you have a horse with a 93 your speed rating but it was a 85 class rating, you will have a final number of 89. While a horse with a 93 your speed rating and a 93 class rating will be a 93. I think you will find the numbers to be a lot more accurate. After you have done so, let me know what you determine, I am curious myself about the conclusion you reach. If you don't have any old programs than obviously you will have to start fresh.

Stick with win betting. If you like, you can use exactas as a protection bet. Simply playing the top 3 favorites on top of your horse will give you the winning exacta about 70% of the time your horse runs 2nd with no handicapping whatsoever. If you want to play your horse on top of the same 3 for about half as much you could. So a play may look something like this. $30 to win #6, $6 exacta 1-2-7 over 6 $3 exacta 6 over 1-2-7. By playing the top 3 favorites you are usually catching the live horses that unfortunately will beat you way too often. Down the road when you feel that your are really good at the game, you can try other approaches. I realize you may not always know who the top 3 favorites will be.

You are wise to stay away from tris. High takeouts and of course you are forever being beat by inferior horses who get much better trips. Also whenever one or more of your horses breaks you are in deep ****. in the trifecta. If you want to use trifecta as a protection bet(with 20 cent minimus at some tracks it is not expensive. You can do something like this 1-2-7 with all with 6 and then 1-2-7/1-2-7 plus other horses that look strong to you /6. Once again should your horse come 3rd at least you will hit the tri about 70% of the time.

By the way not sure if you are there yet, but at some point you have to explore the 20 cent(low takeout) pick 5 at Woodbine/Mohawk. The value is so good so often and with a 20 cent denomination you can play for affordable amounts. If you aren't comfortable with that idea, ignore the suggestion. Much better you stay within your comfort zone.

I keep all my programs so I have plenty to look over. I will put in the class and see if that improves the number. Thank you for that suggestion and that exacta strategy looks very interesting. I will test that out for sure.

Ray2000
01-31-2018, 04:56 AM
Okay. So that is an average,correct? If I look at 5 racing lines the horse should be at least cumulative +5 to qualify as a leaver?


Roughly speaking yes, but it's best if you setup your own limits on how many and which lines to use. My approach has the computer first marking each ppline as "Goodline" "Breakline", "Too old", "Qual" ...etc.
so the average ground gain/loss is taken for "Goodlines" only.

Here's a test which may make me look foolish but let's see if Tetrick gets #6 Rosy Outlook to the half in a slow pace. If so the rail horse with the best TM speed and class numbers might not be able to catch him.:)
Dover Race #2 . tonight Jan 31

#1 -2.18 Closer

#2 -2.38 Closer

#3 -2.00 Closer

#4 -1.49 Closer

#5 -1.60 Closer

#6 +1.20 Leaver

#7 -2.60 Closer

#8 +1.00 Stalker

pandy
01-31-2018, 10:56 AM
Roughly speaking yes, but it's best if you setup your own limits on how many and which lines to use. My approach has the computer first marking each ppline as "Goodline" "Breakline", "Too old", "Qual" ...etc.
so the average ground gain/loss is taken for "Goodlines" only.

Here's a test which may make me look foolish but let's see if Tetrick gets #6 Rosy Outlook to the half in a slow pace. If so the rail horse with the best TM speed and class numbers might not be able to catch him.:)
Dover Race #2 . tonight Jan 31

#1 -2.18 Closer

#2 -2.38 Closer

#3 -2.00 Closer

#4 -1.49 Closer

#5 -1.60 Closer

#6 +1.20 Leaver

#7 -2.60 Closer

#8 +1.00 Stalker



In this scenario, not only does the six have no other potential leaver inside of him but the other horse with early zip, the 8, draws a tough post. Of course, the problem with these mathematical projections, the drivers often have their own ideas. Race shapes are difficult to figure.

If you are trying to figure out who's leaving, at some tracks, certain drivers almost always leave. At Northfield, for instance, Aaron Merriman is highly likely to be on or near the lead in almost every race.

Ray2000
01-31-2018, 11:44 AM
Very true, driver aggression has to be considered.

Especially if the driver's name is Yannick :)

Also, drivers read programs. If they see no obvious leavers then they all shoot out of there.

Ray2000
01-31-2018, 05:03 PM
True prediction...Rosy Outlook wire to wire . 27-1 . 28-3 . 28-3 . 29-

But the crowd saw what the computer saw and sent him off at 3/5 . unbelievable slam in the tote odds.

Bogo
01-31-2018, 06:05 PM
Great example there. I can see how that would really become an important factor. When the computer marks the lines for you what amount of time is considered too old?

Ray2000
01-31-2018, 06:26 PM
I have it set for 35 days or 4 pplines for pacers, 6 pplines for trotters.

Bogo
02-10-2018, 12:20 AM
As far as using final times instead of the TM ratings do you adjust with some daily variant first or just use fast track times as they are before adjusting for other things?

Ray2000
02-10-2018, 05:07 AM
I take the listed Final time in seconds and adjust by
subtract 0.6 for each wide mark "" in the line
subtract DTV/10
subtract Starting Post/5 (1st trailer is post 1.5, 2nd trailer 2.5)
add 5xDriver UDR*
add the Track Speed Rating.

I use this adjusted final time
added to an adjusted 4thQ time
to calculate a final speed rating for each ppline.


*adding seconds for Driver ability is arguable.
I use it as a normalizing method, meaning the horses' time wouldn't have been so fast with a poorer driver.