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Old 09-18-2017, 01:07 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by Nitro View Post
Yes Woody, as usual you offered a very nice write up. The majority of players may regard it as “refreshing” because that’s what they’ve been indoctrinated into believing. However its unfortunately only a portion of what this game is ALL about: And that’s Money.
But not to worry, after a delightful and very rewarding Sunday morning I doubt I’ll have the time or inclination to post my future selections for HK. I doubt they were of much interest to the so-called handicappers anyway.
Best of luck Woody!

BTW, I posted this on another thread related to HK racing. However, it actually has also has significance here as related to the value of handicapping and statistical analysis.
It is “wonderful” when you can often glean an inside track of potential contenders in a race!
For those like me, who acknowledge the significance of money flow as a “Given”, we really could care less about where it’s coming from. What’s more important is it’s flow: When and Where its going in to the various betting pools. Insinuating “Conspiracy theories” is a feeble explanation for underestimating the objectives and intent of those on the inside: The connections. Who BTW don’t often publicly reveal their intentions, but would rather “Let their money do their talking" as objective evidence of their confidence.

Yet, you have to enjoy comments like these (At least I do); because it clearly demonstrates (once again) a complete lack of appreciation of the realities of the horse racing game from the perspective of the typical handicapper. I’m not going to pursue this very deeply, because it’s getting old.
However, I would enjoy reading a valid argument (from any credible source) as to how typical handicapping methodology in general (Computerized or otherwise) can rationalize 2 very basic but critical aspects of the game from an Outsider’s perspective:
1) Can it predict whether or not each and every entry in a race is actually going to make an attempt to Win it?
2) How all of the past performance data or statistical analysis can determine the current physical and mental well-being of each horse entered in a race?

Although I won’t take this any further, you might want to consider what Bill Benter has personally stated. If you don’t recognize the name here’s a link:
If you don’t respect his credibility, I would assume that you’re beyond his accomplishments and capabilities. So don't bother trying to comprehend the significance of his comments (below):

Excerpts from:
Computer Based Horse Race Handicapping and Wagering Systems:”
A Report by William Benter

The question of whether a fully mechanical system can ever "beat the races" has been widely discussed in both the academic and popular literature. Certain authors have convincingly demonstrated that profitable wagering systems do exist for the races. The most well documented of these have generally been of the technical variety, that is, they are concerned mainly with the public odds, and do not attempt to predict horse performance from fundamental factors. Technical systems for place and show betting, (Ziemba and Hausch, 1987) and exotic pool betting, (Ziemba and Hausch,1986) as well as the 'odds movement' system developed by Asch and Quandt (1986), fall into this category. A benefit of these systems is that they require relatively little preparatory effort, and can be effectively employed by the occasional race goer.

The complexity of predicting horse performance makes the specification of an elegant handicapping model quite difficult. Ideally, each independent variable would capture a unique aspect of the influences effecting horse performance. In the author's experience, the trial and error method of adding independent variables to increase the model's goodness-of-fit, results in the model tending to become a hodgepodge of highly correlated variables whose individual significance's are difficult to determine and often counter-intuitive.

Additionally, there will always be a significant amount of 'inside information' in horse racing that cannot be readily included in a statistical model. Trainer's and jockey's intentions, secret workouts, whether the horse ate its breakfast, and the like, will be available to certain parties who will no doubt take advantage of it. Their betting will be reflected in the odds. This presents an obstacle to the model developer with access to published information only. For a statistical model to compete in this environment, it must make full use of the advantages of computer modeling, namely, the ability to make complex calculations on large data sets.

The odds set by the public betting yield a sophisticated estimate of the horses' win probabilities.

It can be presumed that valid fundamental information exists which can not be systematically or practically incorporated into a statistical model. Therefore, any statistical model, however well developed, will always be incomplete. An extremely important step in model development, and one that the author believes has been generally overlooked in the literature, is the estimation of the relation of the model's probability estimates to the public's estimates, and the adjustment of the model's estimates to incorporate whatever information can be gleaned from the public's estimates. The public's implied probability estimates generally correspond well with the actual frequencies of winning.

BTW the last 2 sentences express exactly how Mr. Benter was able to achieve his success.
Since it sounds as though you're using a tote-watching system, I don't understand why you're citing Benter's method as proof that yours works. This isn't what he was doing at all. You make it sound as though he wasn't using a 'fundamental model', as he describes it (or, making your own line, as the average handicapper would describe it) because it would be too difficult. In fact, this is exactly what he did. And his 'fundamental model' was more powerful than the 'public model' -- it made a small profit. But it became much more powerful after he combined it with the 'public model' -- aka 'the odds' -- in the areas where the 'public model' was stronger. This is what you summarize in the last two sentences of your post. But, he wasn't doing this on a race-by-race basis, as you imply -- this model-combination was the result of an analysis of thousands of races. So, as with anyone who makes a line, he knew the odds he (or really his runners) was looking for before the race -- he wasn't watching tote movement.

Also, re tote action itself -- I've never seen a serious study that didn't describe pre-race price movement as random. And in this age of improved computer power, it certainly is one of the easiest things to track.


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