Horse Racing Forum - PaceAdvantage.Com - Horse Racing Message Board

Go Back   Horse Racing Forum - PaceAdvantage.Com - Horse Racing Message Board > Thoroughbred Horse Racing Discussion > General Handicapping Discussion


Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old 04-03-2006, 04:19 PM   #16
Observer
Support Res-Q Foundations
 
Observer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: New York
Posts: 1,488
Rep Power: 18 Observer will become famous soon enough
Quote:
Originally Posted by delayjf
While it can be difficult at times to watch a horse's motion and determine which is actually hitting the ground first.

It might help to watch a horses head. As he runs down the stetch, a horse on the right lead will appear to be looking into the grandstand or will have his head cocked toward the grandstand
I agree with the first statement, but not the second. Yes, it can be difficult to watch a horse's motion and understand leads. However, it's not accurate to simply base it on which way a horse's head is turned.

The easiest way to learn leads, is like anything else .. work at it.

As the hooves strike the ground in a stride:

right lead: left hind, right hind, left front, right front.

left lead: right hind, left hind, right front, left front.

Use replays or video tape to go back and watch as horses come out of the far turn, that's the most logical spot where horses will be making their changes. Focus on one horse in the clear and only watch his legs .. watch for the change .. the more you train your eye to see it, the easier it becomes.

And yes, a horse can go around a left turn on the right lead (which would be "wrong"). However, this makes the horse unbalanced and less efficient.

In American racing, which turns left .. a horse will travel on his left lead around turns and on his right lead in the stretch .. unless through fatigue, greeness or some other reasons, like Funny Cide, who changes with complete randomness - and has done so his whole career.

I'm not likely to be as critical of horses that show a tendency to run on their wrong leads .. like people, horses can show a strength on one side over the other. So I'd rather see a horse with a wrong-lead tendency than a horse doing it for the first time today. I'd also rather see the wrong lead tendency in the stretch than on the turn.
__________________
"You don't throw a whole life away because it's banged up a little," (from Seabiscuit)
Observer is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-03-2006, 04:38 PM   #17
the_fat_man
Veteran
 
the_fat_man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,599
Rep Power: 0 the_fat_man is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by Observer
And yes, a horse can go around a left turn on the right lead (which would be "wrong"). However, this makes the horse unbalanced and less efficient.

I'm not likely to be as critical of horses that show a tendency to run on their wrong leads .. like people, horses can show a strength on one side over the other. So I'd rather see a horse with a wrong-lead tendency than a horse doing it for the first time today.
I'd also rather see the wrong lead tendency in the stretch than on the turn.
It's pretty easy, for me anyway, to see that a horse is on the wrong lead in the stretch run --the gait appears 'unnatural' or the horse seems to be climbing (in the worst case). Then again, I've watched alot of races.
Your suggestion to watch their feet entering the stretch is right on.


To this point I haven't payed attention to leads on the turn (or backside)
but I suppose that with a bit of practice it would be easy as well. Would be interesting to carefully watch the action of horses going around righty.

Would going around the turn on the wrong lead be 'harder' than running through the stretch without changing?

All other things being equal, probably.

I agree with Observer, who seems to be saying that leads need to be taken within the context of the horse (its history) and the particular race.

Last edited by the_fat_man; 04-03-2006 at 04:43 PM.
the_fat_man is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-03-2006, 08:23 PM   #18
delayjf
Registered User
 
delayjf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Norfolk VA
Posts: 5,368
Rep Power: 22 delayjf is on a distinguished road
Quote:
However, it's not accurate to simply base it on which way a horse's head is turned.
Your are right, I should have qualified my statement. When I see a horse who appears cocked toward the grand stand I then look closer as I strongly suspect that he's on the wrong lead. I don't know why, but some horses I can spot their lead easily and others I can't. I guess it depends on how long a day I've had.
delayjf is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 01:13 PM   #19
Observer
Support Res-Q Foundations
 
Observer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: New York
Posts: 1,488
Rep Power: 18 Observer will become famous soon enough
Horses strides vary greatly .. remember back to Skip Away .. who had one of the weirdest strides going .. that horse really picked up his knees .. would bring them all the way up to his chest as his stride was beginning to unfold. However, Unbridled's Song .. I used to refer to as "lazy legged" .. simply because it never seemed like he picked up his knees as all. These extreme cases, and everything in between is what can make it easier or harder in identifying lead changes .. along with those long days that wear a person down from being sharp!

Quote:
Would going around the turn on the wrong lead be 'harder' than running through the stretch without changing?
In my opinion .. YES! The only reason the "right" lead is correct on the straights here in American racing is because the turns are left, requiring a left lead for optimum balace and efficiency.

When a horse is moving solely on a straight path .. there is technically no correct or wrong lead.

The right lead for the straight runs is meant to off-set the fatigue which would result from the horse moving strictly on his left lead the entire trip.

The most common comparison .. would be a person carrying luggage. Imagine carrying a heavy bag in your left hand and you have a mile to walk to get to your gate at the airport. Most likely, you are not going to keep the heavy bag in your left hand the entire way. You'll switch to ease fatigue. For the horses, their changes are more defined .. for balance and efficiency.

Now .. take the comparison one step farther .. suppose you're really late for your flight .. you've gotta run hard to the gate .. and still might not make it .. that bag is going wherever makes it easier for you to get to your "finish line." That's how I consider horses who have the tendency to switch off to the "wrong" lead in the heat of battle.

What's even more wild .. is when you see a battle to the wire .. where one horse swaps leads .. then within 2 strides or less .. the competitor swaps out too.

Also .. horses on the wrong stretch lead will sometimes change back to the correct lead after crossing the wire when the pressure is eased.

And the reason they are referred to as leads .. is because of the leg that reaches out the farthest .. the lead leg is the leg that is "in front" .. to put it in racing terminology.
__________________
"You don't throw a whole life away because it's banged up a little," (from Seabiscuit)

Last edited by Observer; 04-04-2006 at 01:19 PM.
Observer is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 01:58 PM   #20
JPinMaryland
Registered User
 
JPinMaryland's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 2,636
Rep Power: 18 JPinMaryland is on a distinguished road
Nice thread. I'd have to say from what I've seen, it would be harder to go through the turn on the wrong lead then the stretch. Though technically it's not "wrong" in the stretch. The reason is based on observation, I've seen very few horses on the wrong lead in the turn, and quite a few in the stretch. I would think that means something since I am only looking at stakes races and good horses, have to assume they've been trained to do it this wa.
JPinMaryland is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 03:57 PM   #21
delayjf
Registered User
 
delayjf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Norfolk VA
Posts: 5,368
Rep Power: 22 delayjf is on a distinguished road
If anybody wants to see and excellent slow motion example of a lead change, check out the movie Seabiscuit. At the end of the movie as Seabiscuit is coming down the stretch about to win the SA Handicap, they show a slow motion shot of the horse and you can clearly see him change leads.

I remember trying to explain to my wife what a lead change is, so when I saw it on the movie, I excitedly called my wife into the room to replay the video and show her the "lead change", she just looked at me and laughed, as if to say "you called me in here for that??" You had to be there.
delayjf is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 06:24 PM   #22
Joe L.
AM Golf... PM Track
 
Joe L.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Philly Park N.E. Turf Club
Posts: 59
Rep Power: 16 Joe L. is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by delayjf
If anybody wants to see and excellent slow motion example of a lead change, check out the movie Seabiscuit. At the end of the movie as Seabiscuit is coming down the stretch about to win the SA Handicap, they show a slow motion shot of the horse and you can clearly see him change leads.

I remember trying to explain to my wife what a lead change is, so when I saw it on the movie, I excitedly called my wife into the room to replay the video and show her the "lead change", she just looked at me and laughed, as if to say "you called me in here for that??" You had to be there.
My wife ALWAYS looks at me and laughs WHENEVER I talk to her about handicapping.... except when I stuff a few C-notes in her handbag...then at least she acts interested.
Joe L. is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 08:42 PM   #23
Observer
Support Res-Q Foundations
 
Observer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: New York
Posts: 1,488
Rep Power: 18 Observer will become famous soon enough
Quote:
Originally Posted by JPinMaryland
...I am only looking at stakes races and good horses, have to assume they've been trained to do it this wa.
Changing leads is natural to a horse .. you'll see them doing this while running out in paddocks .. however horses are trained to understand the proper application of their leads, as well as the rider commands that signal when the change is requested.
__________________
"You don't throw a whole life away because it's banged up a little," (from Seabiscuit)
Observer is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 08:57 PM   #24
JPinMaryland
Registered User
 
JPinMaryland's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 2,636
Rep Power: 18 JPinMaryland is on a distinguished road
so what is the usual signal for that? He just taps them on the neck of something?
JPinMaryland is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 10:45 PM   #25
Indulto
Veteran
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 5,138
Rep Power: 0 Indulto is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally posted by delayjf:

I remember trying to explain to my wife what a lead change is, so when I saw it on the movie, I excitedly called my wife into the room to replay the video and show her the "lead change", she just looked at me and laughed, as if to say "you called me in here for that??" You had to be there.


Quote:
Originally posted by Joe L.:

My wife ALWAYS looks at me and laughs WHENEVER I talk to her about handicapping.... except when I stuff a few C-notes in her handbag...then at least she acts interested.
With my wife it was, ďDonít bother me with lead changes. All I ever hear from you is jockey changes and odds changes. How about some midnight diaper changes?Ē

I canít understand it. She was so interested before we were married.
Indulto is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 11:23 PM   #26
PaceAdvantage
PA Steward
 
PaceAdvantage's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: New York
Posts: 51,374
Rep Power: 73 PaceAdvantage is a glorious beacon of lightPaceAdvantage is a glorious beacon of lightPaceAdvantage is a glorious beacon of lightPaceAdvantage is a glorious beacon of lightPaceAdvantage is a glorious beacon of lightPaceAdvantage is a glorious beacon of light
Let's get back on topic and leave the spouses out of it....thanks!
PaceAdvantage is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Old 04-04-2006, 11:48 PM   #27
Observer
Support Res-Q Foundations
 
Observer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: New York
Posts: 1,488
Rep Power: 18 Observer will become famous soon enough
Quote:
Originally Posted by JPinMaryland
so what is the usual signal for that? He just taps them on the neck of something?
Changes should be automatic. Well-schooled horses with the right mind will just automatically make their changes. Other horses need very suble signals, a slight shift in the rider's weight might be all that's needed .. or a push with a heel. Progressing along to the less subtle .. a rider will squeeze or pull a rein (either left or right) to displace the horse a bit to get him to switch .. still more aggressive would be going to the whip.

In races, I find in certain cases it's more disruptive to fight a horse into a lead change instead of just letting him continue on. Getting a horse to learn anything should never be a fight, but rather a clear set of right and wrong .. and during a race, if it's taking more energy to get a change, than I feel the engery is mis-directed.
__________________
"You don't throw a whole life away because it's banged up a little," (from Seabiscuit)
Observer is offline   Reply With Quote Reply
Reply

Tags
changing leads




Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

» Advertisement
» Current Polls
Is adding 30 to 60 feet to the run up for the Pegasus a good idea?
Yes, good idea - 41.18%
7 Votes
No, bad idea - 58.82%
10 Votes
Total Votes: 17
Non-members may not vote on this poll.
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:15 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 1999 - 2017 -- PaceAdvantage.Com -- All Rights Reserved -- Best Viewed in a modern browser @ 1280x720 Resolution Or Higher
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program
designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.