Seven Breeders’ Cup Betting Tips

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 25, 2021 in Blogroll, Breeders Cup, General Discussion, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Seven Breeders’ Cup Betting Tips

Th sun is setting much earlier these days. Just a reminder of the end of summer and the impending arrival of winter. It was just a few weeks ago when the sun was high in the bluish sky until 9:00 or 9:30pm. But times change, literally. As we head into the four final days of the Keeneland meet, we begin the mad dash on handicapping the Breeders’ Cup next week. Here are a few ideas of what to look for and how to prepare.


1. – If you have TVG, be sure and catch the morning breakfast coverage, and morning works. Incredible coverage to get you watching the works, barn talk and interviews. Well worth the time.

2. – Keep up-to-speed on news about shippers, when they arrive and the work tab on each.

3. – Start focusing on the list of runners who are having any late problems, equipment changes, or unusual late fast works. These are toss out runners.

4. – Toss the synthetic runners, and horses who are making the turf to dirt switch. These changes are far too late in the game for last minute world shattering changes to compete at this level. If they win, it will be without my wager.

5. – Only play horses who comes from “key” races and have won or placed in a G1 or G2 in their final two preps. If it was a G3 or non-graded event, toss the horse, or use for third or fourth in your exotics. – Key races have been the ones who have held up over the years as prep events moving forward. Key races usually have the perfect time spacing and allow runners to get just enough rest to freshen up.

6. – For some reason, the Euros do incredible in the warm California heat on the turf. They leave a cool climate and one would think it may hinder their ability coming back to a warm climate. But, not the case. They are at their best, and I attribute this to the great preparation of the Euro trainers.

7. – Get familiar with the European preps that have propelled many winners on the grass in the states. There are a handful, and to get acquainted could be a major difference. They start pointing runners in the early spring and have just a few preps moving forward.

Best of luck, and we’ll be talking more in the days to come!


Free Keeneland Selections – Wednesday, 10/20/21

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 20, 2021 in Free Picks and Tips, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Free Keeneland Selections – Wednesday, 10/20/21

A perfect day on tap in Lexington, Kentucky! – A trip to Keeneland awaits with eight live races and three on the turf! – Buckle up, here come some free selections that will make your day a winner. Best of luck!




Race#1 – #7 – Forgot Password = 3rd time off the layoff and makes a huge drop down the class ladder. James Graham in the saddle for Stephen Lyster and the barn wins 50% dropping down two class levels.


Race#2 – #1 – Tiz Rye Time = First time gelding and comes off a 56 day break from Saratoga. The rail is winning at 56% and hot boot B.J. Hernandez in the irons.


Race #3 – #11 – Carnivore = Son of Runhappy dropping in from Maiden Sp Wt action and was claimed two races back. Makes the turf to dirt switch and trainer Jeff Hiles is having solid year winning 22%. Cuts back from a mile and should show good speed.


Race #4 – #7 – Cheeky Chaps = Ships in from Kentucky Downs against tougher and should attempt to turn the tables. The barn wins 25% with beaten favorites for the Steve Asmussen barn with his go-to-rider Ricardo Santana in the saddle.


Race#5 – #2 – Fan the Fire = Hails from the Mike Maker barn and goes route to a sprint (22% win rate) and goes turf to the dirt (17%). – Red-hot rider Tyler Gaffalione in the driver’s seat for Maker and going from a route to a sprint score 22%. Tyler G. is winning 29% for the short meet.


Race#6 – #1 – Daddy is a Legend = Hit the gate last out in the G1 First Lady and makes 2nd start off the layoff with a big drop down in class. Tyler Gaffalione in the irons and he is winning 18% with these turf closers. May be a free spot in multi-race wagers.


Race#7 – #2 – Movie Moxy = Hails from the George Weaver barn with Tyler G. in the saddle. She’s been off 56 days and is 3/3 ITM over the Keeneland strip. Tyler G. is red-hot winning 29%.


Race#8 – #11 – Twin Cause = She tried her best at Kentucky Downs, and appeared not to take to the undulating oval. She drops in class for the Brendan Walsh barn and Ricardo Santana in the saddle. Look for improvement today over the lush Keeneland lawn.

Three Tips to Make Handicapping Profitable

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 12, 2021 in Blogroll, General Discussion, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Three Tips to Make Handicapping Profitable

Everyone has a solution or an idea. We all have at one point or another tried to find that “short cut” to success at the windows. But, after reflecting on the process for years. There is no short cut, only putting in the work will help your overall game.


  1. Start keeping notes. Just like in high school there was a rhyme and a reason for taking them down to examine later. – Take notes on how much you bet each race and how you did. How much did you start with as a bankroll?  Troubled trips with horses. Bad starts, trapped in along the rail, jockey didn’t get them out of the gate. Use these as a guide later to build a “horses to watch list” and you have made the first step in being accountable. The process has begun.

2. Limit the number of tracks you play. By keeping it between one and three. You will allow yourself to keep            control of your betting. – Now, once you have found your couple of tracks to play. Eliminate and highlight                the races you’ll want to bet. Don’t like maidens? Toss them out. Love turf races, highlight them to handicap.            We try and take on too much and it overwhelms us and causes our bankroll to be up $20 bucks and down            $40. – Take away the races that aren’t your cup of tea and focus on the races you have an opinion on. This will          allow you to plan ahead and focus your money.

3. Every race does not get the same amount wagered. You will have some races where you make a small bet            that fits your goal, and others where you go a little deeper and reach in the jeans and pull out the greens. – Every race is a potential to build a bankroll or it is time to make a move to make the day a winner.


So, what have we done? – You have started keeping records and building a list of troubled trips. This is a long standing tradition of every great horse player. Trip handicapping. – By limiting your number of tracks to follow you’re going to narrow your focus on how you’re going to spend your bankroll. Money management is key, and you need to be a good handicapper and an excellent money manager to win on the day. – By handling each wagering opportunity as a separate venture, you examine “Is it worth what you’re putting up for your return?” –  These are solid starting points and nobody is an expert at every type of race. By eliminating the number of races with a detailed plan and be aware of what you’re spending in regards to what you could win. You have taken the steps to making your game better. – Just be patient. It is a process and it takes time. In a short spell you’ll start seeing you won’t feel as tired at the end of the day by handicapping a ton of races and you’ll stick to your strong suit.


Best of luck, and let us know how you’re doing. Handicappers need to share what is working and keep your game evolving. See you in the winner’s circle!



Racing Wants You to Win

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 4, 2021 in Blogroll, General Discussion, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Racing Wants You to Win

It’s hard to believe that racing wants you to win every wager. But, that is the truth. Unlike many forms of gambling, gaming, or entertainment. They want you to win each and every time and come back the next day and do the same. I wonder if any other forms of betting feels the same?


Slots / VLT’s

Exciting to say the least, and can be played by a gambler who walks up and plunks down some money. This form of gambling is very attractive, and the jackpot excitement is worth the chase sometimes. New players have the same chance of winning as someone who plays daily. – The machines are taking in monies and payout random percentages. But, once your money is gone, the house has made the profit. They like for you to grind it out and play longer, but the goal is to take it down. The small payouts keep you going, but there is no way to estimate when the big payout will come. It is all set at random, and eventually gets your bankroll. They just give you rewards like tea pots, grill sets, and free tickets to the lounge. I’ll go to Dollar General and pick up some of these coveted items.


Bingo / Keno

Play a bunch of cards or numbers; complete random winning and you can bang away on the boxes of pull-tabs being sold in between games. Too random; like tossing spaghetti against the wall to see if it sticks. All monies are profit, and just subtract the payouts for the lucky few. Not for this gambler.


Horse Racing

Now, before you formulate a thought. Remember, this form of gambling allows you to “do your homework” or handicap the race. You decide who looks best and wager. – No random numbers, and the best horse wins the race.

The track for example takes 18% from wagers. That is 18 cents from each dollar. Half goes to the purses for the horsemen, and half to the track to keep the lights on, salaries, upkeep, etc. – Horse racing wants you to win everyday, all night long. They are happy for you, and will hold the door open the next day when you arrive. It’s not a gimmick for the big score. They take a small percentage to keep the game afloat and your favorite seats clean, and clerks happy to take your wager.

I can already feel the bitching from the video poker players arguing it’s a game of skill. – But, when you lose your bankroll, you can pick up your free hamburger on the way out the door. – Racing does not have the big profit percentage for the facility, but it does offer a unique form of wagering. The facility now is an entertainment destination offering many forms of unique gaming. – Racing can be lucrative if the purses are boosted a bit, and we take more time educating the public on how to handicap. Long ago they opened the doors and people just came in. Over the years, the competition has gotten tough and the sport of kings has fallen from its throne. But, if we invest a little time bringing out some new jackpot wagers and keep it fresh. It may appeal to the slot players to come over and try their hand and vice-versa.

I’ve been a long time gambler. I love racing and the action that makes it one of a kind. Just because I’m not a fan of the mindless machines doesn’t make them wrong or bad. They create an action atmosphere for all to enjoy. – Keep an open mind about all forms of gambling as they appeal to players. It creates a vibrant exciting atmosphere as they enter a building offering a little something for everyone. At the end of the day, we all get some entertainment of our choice and make plans for our next trip back. That’s the overall goal.




Free Selections – Belterra Park – October 6, 2021

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 4, 2021 in Blogroll, Free Picks and Tips, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Free Selections – Belterra Park – October 6, 2021

The final four days of the 2021 race meet are winding down. Man, where has the beautiful days of summer disappeared to? – Just seems like we just got started and 93 days later here we are. But, not to worry. We’ve been doing well with our selections and there is no better time than now to build our bankrolls for Keeneland, Belmont, and Santa Anita!

Three of the four days have rain and thunderstorms in the forecast for the Cincinnati area.


Belterra Park


Race #1

#1 – Paynted = Hails from the Steve Cannon barn and is seeking his 4th straight win. The rail post is winning at 22% and Perry Ouzts stays aboard. Look for a close-up stalking trip with Ouzts poised to pounce.


Race #2

#3 – Statesboro = Speedy gelding from the Nabu Morales barn shipping in from Cleveland. He is 4/4 ITM over the track and makes the drop down the class ladder. Morales is winning 26% on the year.


Race #3

#5 – Big On Big = Hails from the Doug Cowans barn (22%) and was a beaten chalk last time out. Switching to high % rider Luan Machado who has been 7/9 ITM the past week.



#3 – Tequila Flats = Closing son of Colonel John and been off for 55 days. Dropping down in class and moves from the turf to the dirt. Dropping down two class levels yields a 27% win clip for the barn. Albin Jimenez in the irons.


Race #5

#8 – Angle of Verdun = 2nd time off the claim for Larry Smith and drops down in class today. Look for a close-up stalk as Perry Ouzts reels in the leaders.


Race #6

#1 – Ancient Brown = This daughter of Big Brown is 4/4 ITM at Belterra and hails from the Norman Cash barn who is winning 44%. Cash wins 31% off a last race win and John McKee aboard is a very good thing as the rail is winning 20%.


Race #7

#8 – So Caught Up In You = Edwin Vizzcarrondo trainee who is winning 24% at the meet and has Nicky Figueroa in the irons. Going from a sprint to a route wins 32% for the barn.


Race #8

#2 – Aujara = Speedy filly from the Gorostieta barn who is winning 33% at the meet. Luis Batista has the call and she was a beaten chalk last out looking to graduate today.

Free Selections – Belterra Park – October 5, 2021

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 4, 2021 in Blogroll, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Free Selections – Belterra Park – October 5, 2021

The final four days of the 2021 race meet are winding down. Man, where has the beautiful days of summer disappeared to? – Just seems like we just got started and 93 days later here we are. But, not to worry. We’ve been doing well with our selections and there is no better time than now to build our bankrolls for Keeneland, Belmont, and Santa Anita!

Three of the four days have rain and thunderstorms in the forecast for the Cincinnati area.



Belterra Park


Race #1

#2 – Blanconia = Speedy gal who is 4/5 ITM over the course and has the services of Perry Ouzts in the irons. She was a beaten chalk last out and trainer Valerie Shanyfelt wins 26% of the time turning the tables looking for payback.


Race #2

#9 – Alice Jewell = David Rider trainee comes in 3rd off the layoff with Sonny Leon in the saddle. 3rd time off the layoff yields 30% win clip. Drops down in class today and the barn wins 17% with sprints.


Race #3

#4 – Super Steamy = Hails from the barn of Jesus Esquivel and was a beaten favorite last out. This daughter of Tiznow is 3/6 ITM at Belterra and wins 33% going from a sprint to a route. She’s a late runner and Isaias Ayala the bug rider has been doing well all summer.


Race #4

#2 – Kumandra = Speedy filly shipping in from Cleveland for Edwin Vizzcarrondo who is winning at 24% for the meet. Nicky Figueroa fresh in from from Puerto Rico in the saddle and drops down in class. 2nd time with the trainer yields a 27%.


Race #5

#2 – Etelka = Daughter of Bodemeister who is making the turf to dirt move for Richard Estvanko and Agustin Bracho. She drops in class and may improve going back to the dirt today.



#8 – Nice Kaz = Goes to post for trainer Haley Hester and moves up the ladder off a solid performance last out finishing 2nd. Sonny Leon in the saddle.



#6 – Abigail Lee = She is a late runner who is 7/8 ITM at Belterra. John McKee has the call and has been the bridesmaid her last two efforts. Today she looks to walk the aisle to the winner’s circle for Bruce Waltermire.



#7 – Trickazar = Late runner for Rey Hernandez who is winning 24% at the meet. 2nd time off the layoff shipping in from CD and is 6/7 ITM on the course.


Morning Lines Made Easier

by Ed Meyer

posted on September 27, 2021 in Blogroll, General Discussion, Handicapping, Help/Educational Articles, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Morning Lines Made Easier

In the early morning my head was rattling off numbers. Keeping count and arguing with myself while sleeping, but still looking to find the best representation. Funny, I used to hate math as a little kid, and many moons later my dad still speaks of a 4th grade math test that went wrong. But today I love the numbers as they reflect the opinion and  guesstimate how things will take shape.

Many folks I work with have asked me about how this process begins. – “It’s not about who you like, and it’s more than just picking out numbers at random.” – There is a short formula that has to be used. When doing a morning line for race tracks, there is a computer system that will only allow for a figure that takes in number of runners in the race and the cap for total points. You can override on occasion, but I wouldn’t recommend it all the time as it defeats the process. – Here is how it begins:

You take 100 and add in the win, place and show pool takeout. We’ll use 18% which equates to 18 points. – You now have 118 points.

Now, you add in one point for add in one horse in the race. – 10 horses equal 10 points. Entries still only receive one point. – Now, you have 128 points. This is your high point margin and cannot be exceeded. Give yourself 4 or 5 points under this number to create a balanced line and the extra points to subtract keep it manageable. 

Now comes the work, but if you look at it closely, not really that difficult.

If you want to use (2-1), add one number to the 2 points and come up with three points. – Take 100 and divide it by the 3 points and you come up with 33.333. Disregard the .333 and just use the 33. – You have 33 points toward your tally of the 128 point total. 

If you like (7-2), take half of 7-2 or ($9.00) which is (4.5) and divide it into 100 points. You will come out with 22 points to use. – Getting the idea? – One more. You like a big favorite and want to assign it odds of (4-5). Take half of what (4-5) would pay ($3.60 and use $1.80). Divide the $1.80 into 100 and you have 55 points to assign. 

With all of the witchcraft that goes into making a morning line, it gives you an idea about creating a fair and balanced line to guesstimate how the odds will go off at post time. This is a fair way to estimate how the public will wager by handicapping the race and assigning a numerical value. – I like to give myself 4-5 points lower that the total to use as a buffer not to drive odds too low or keep them too high.

A longtime friend who used to create the morning line said I’d enjoy it as much as handicapping the race minus making wagers. He was right. I pay close attention as I’m going about my routine. – I have used the concepts of the California line makers, New York, and the long time great handicapper of decades of Kentucky Derbies, Mike Battaglia. With all of these similar systems, it all works out about the same. – A few times Mike has asked me to pinch hit and make the M/L as he had to go out of town. – It was like Lou Gehrig asking if you would like to go to bat for him.

Take a look and start trying your hand at creating your own morning line to see if you are getting fair value for your wager. – The handicapping part is the only difference as I use three types of information that many won’t be able to use without purchasing.

I enjoy creating the line and take pride. Many think it is just guessing and assigning numbers, but nothing could be farther from the truth. I would like for the public to glance at the M/L and have a good idea of how the race could take shape as they are going to post. Giving the handicapper a gauge to find the best value for their betting dollar. That is my goal to allow them more time to handicap versus guessing what the odds possibly could be.

Best of luck, and try your hand at creating a morning line. – You can find the list of numerical points online and use the above system for getting started. Guarantee, it will be enjoyable when you glance at the program and can add in your head if the line is fair and balanced. Even better as the horses go to post and your line is square on for the top three runners. To have the entire field exactly on the number is like trying to push an elephant through a keyhole. – Stick to the top two or three runners as a good gauge for how you are doing.

Enjoy, and best of luck!


Free Selections – Belterra Park – Wednesday, 9/29/2021

by Ed Meyer

posted on September 27, 2021 in Blogroll, Free Picks and Tips, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Free Selections – Belterra Park – Wednesday, 9/29/2021

Perfect fall weather in the forecast for the Northern Kentucky / Southern Ohio area. – As we enter the final two weeks of live racing action it looks like Mother Nature is smiling kindly for players to enjoy live racing action !


Belterra Park


Race #1

#1 – Wacker’s Girl = She’s a late runner coming off a win, and the rail spot is winning 20%. Bug rider Ayala in the saddle and should be the major danger in here.


Race #2

#7 – Cardinal Bird = Son of Birdstone who sports early speed ships in from Mountaineer and was a beaten chalk last out. The barn comes back to score 33% on this move and he drops in class.



#2 – Gray Nay = Albin Jimenez named to ride and takes a big drop down the class ladder. – She is 3/6 ITM over the course.


Race #4

#4 – Myositis Mystique = She is 8/8 ITM at Belterra Park and the barn wins 33% with a repeat runner in the claiming ranks right back to the winner’s circle.



#3 – King’s Highway = This son of Super Saver is 4/5 ITM at Belterra and just missed last out. Rider change back to McKee is a plus in here.



#5 – Oak Room = Mountaineer shipper who has the services of Albin Jimenez. – Makes the turf to dirt switch and drops down in class today.


Race #7

#8 – Elle’sbigseacret = Speedy runner making a rider change to Luan Machado who is winning 26% at the meet. – 5/7 ITM at Belterra and hails from the Jamie Grubbs barn winning 36%.


Race #8

#7 – Hipster = Shipping in from Cleveland for Doug Cowans winning 23% and Machado scoring at 26%. – Rider switch from the last race and he is 3/4 ITM at Belterra.



Free Selections – Belterra Park – Tuesday 9/28/21

by Ed Meyer

posted on September 27, 2021 in Blogroll, Free Picks and Tips, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Free Selections – Belterra Park – Tuesday 9/28/21

The weather is supposed to be perfect all this week, and the players can enjoy a wonderful week to watch and wager on the ponies with the sun shining bright!


Belterra Park


Race #1

#5 – Zip It Scotty = Ships in from Kentucky Downs and makes the turf to dirt switch. Two races  back he finished a game 2nd place effort at Belterra and cuts back in distance. The barn wins 17% with maiden claimers and has the services of John McKee.

Race #2
#3 – Prince Jersey Town = Speedy son of Jersey Town for Ron Kahles and Eddie Dominguez in the saddle. He is 6/8 ITM at Belterra and drops down in class today. The trainer wins 50% with first time claimers.
Race #3
#1a – Over It = 3rd off the layoff for trainer Tim Hamm and ships in from Presque Isle off the synthetic surface. 3rd off the layoff the barn wins 25% and adds first time Lasix. This son of Carpe Diem should show some early foot and be near or on the lead.
Race #4
#4 – King Bing Hawk = A deep closer who comes off a tardy effort but still managed to finish a closing 3rd place effort. – Look for a cleaner trip and a big run from the 1/4 pole to the wire.
Race #5
#1 – Passion’s Image = Hails from the James Watkins barn and ships in from Fanduel (Fairmount Park). The deep course runners have always done well when coming to Belterra as they are “legged up” and relish the oval. The rail post is winning 21% and drops in class today.
#7 – Smartie Artie = Deep closer making 2nd start off a brief layoff and drops down in class today. Makes the turf to dirt switch and comes off an eventful journey leaving the gate tardy. A clean trip has her right in the mix.
Race #7
#8 – Minniemorepromises = She’s a closer dropping down the class ladder and shipping in from Churchill. High percentage rider John McKee in the irons and she is 3/4 ITM at Belterra.
Race #8
#8 – Out of the Mist = Daughter of Tidal Volume dropping in class from the Maiden Special Weight ranks. The trainer wins 21% moving to Maiden Claiming.

Changing of the Seasons

by Ed Meyer

posted on September 27, 2021 in Blogroll, General Discussion, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Changing of the Seasons

The smell of a late season grill, football in full swing and chimneys being swept in preparation of a warm hearth fire as the seasons change. I love this time of year, and more importantly the beginning of fall racing.

Living in Kentucky is special this time of year. Add in the fact I’m 80 miles away from the front gate of Keeneland, and a horse player couldn’t ask for anything more. – As a younger man I would skip out on a late afternoon class and make the drive. The foliage in full gear and the drive down seemed to take five minutes. – I was staring out the window as the sunshine was blazing through. – The professor was not feeling well and dismissed the class early. I was going to go home and work on a paper when an hour later I was in the paddock under the historic sycamore tree in Lexington. Yeah, there’s something about the magic of fall.

If you’ve never been, go ahead and add it to your list of tracks to visit. You can’t call it a bucket list, as once you go you’ll be back for many years. – I had the opportunity to work at Keeneland. Not many have the chance, and I was sure it was a mistake being a part of the team. – When I was hired, my new boss asked me what I was feeling being a part of the historic track. ” I know what it felt like being called up to be a New York Yankee when the dynasty was unstoppable.” Some of my best time spent in racing.

As Belterra Park is wrapping up the final eight days of live racing action I’m going to treat it as a fine cigar. I’ll savor every moment until I make my final walk from the crow’s nest. I have a habit of looking back at the finish line as the fall sunset disappears over the rolling hills of Kentucky  thinking of the action packed summer. I take a picture of the finish line and post it on social media for all to enjoy. Always brings a sad smile to my face…

But, onward to fall. Keeneland, Belmont and Santa Anita will excite our inner-horseplayer and bring us the beauty and pageantry that only horse racing can provide. – Before you know it, Breeders’ Cup will be here, and shortly after the action moves to our favorite winter racing venues. – A longtime horseplayer once told me bettors measure life in twenty minute increments (minutes between post times), and we know what time of year it is by which track is open. No truer words were ever spoken.

I’m ready. If everything works out and Mother Nature behaves, I’ll make at least two trips to Lexington. There is nothing like the sights and smells of being up close to the racing. If you don’t believe me, I’ll buy the first beer and Rueben sandwich. – See you at the races…