Handicapping the Election

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 20, 2016 in Blogroll, General Discussion, Handicapping, WinningPonies.com | No Comments >>

I’ve been following the debates as much of the nation, and yesterday I was contacted by a friend. – She works in the industry but isn’t much of a handicapper. – That’s just fine, and I’m always glad to help. But her questions were a little different than I expected. – ” Ed, can you use your handicapping skills to help me find who I should be backing in the election ?” – I have to admit it was a new kinda’ question, but after giving it some thought I found out my handicapping process may be applied to other aspects of life.

For all that it’s worth, and for the many who are undecided. I came up with a handicapping idea or plan to help keep the process manageable. – Keep these in mind and see if they help in any way:

1. – You must go back and watch the replays = In racing this would be the past races, but for her inquiry it would have been the past debates and town hall meetings. – See where they started and how they are progressing or stagnating. Just like in racing, going back and having a refresher is a good thing. We may see things a little different after time.

2. – Who fits your needs = If it’s a 20-1 shot you need in a contest, or the leader who will embody what you hold important. – Go with what fits your needs.

3. – Watch with an unbiased eye = Just like when we watch racing, we need to keep an open mind about what we’re really seeing and not what we want to see. – This may be the hardest part of handicapping, but in the end may be the most important.

4.- You are all alone when betting at the windows or pushing the button in the booth = No matter how many people try and sway you this is your time. – You make the call. I like the 10-1 shot and you think the chalk looks like a lock. – Either way make your decision on what you feel is your best move. – There is only room for one person at a time at the betting windows, and only one in the voting booth at a time.


Checking in with the British Bookmakers, I used Ladbrokes and Betfair:

Clinton is 2/11, and Trump is 4-1 for Ladbrokes –

Clinton is 2/11 and Trump is 5-1 for Betfair – 


Now, as a betting man I can see the swing in Secretary Clinton’s favor. Across the board the odds all read about the same. – I must admit, the Brits are locked on like a dog with a steak bone. But the wagering numbers don’t lie. – People wager on what they see the outcome, and in every movie that has had a financial motive they claim that “following the money” is the way. – But this handicapper sees a bigger payday if a wager was to be made later. To make $2 on every $11 wagered makes her the odds-on choice, but getting 4 or 5-1 is a much sweeter deal.

In the end she asked who I liked. – I told her the golden rule of handicapping is that all punters worth their salt always keep their feelings to themselves.  – The odds are reflective of the early money and every handicapper looks for that late shift to grab up the best odds. That’s where  I would be standing, waiting for the best price and watching for odds-fluctuations. – In her best Sherlock Holmes moment she said; “You must favor Mr. Trump.” – ” If the odds hang in that direction, you can bet dollars to donuts the late money will be on the bigger price.” Or, that’s what the odds-makers are hoping. Even at paying $2 for every $11, they stand to lose if there is a big plunge. – But don’t feel sorry for the Bookies, they’ll just drop the payoff for Clinton and make the Trump wager more attractive. -She was taken quite a bit that I used horse racing handicapping methods to deduce my election prediction. – Not much of a trick as racing has taught me to seek the better price. In the long run, you’ll be better served taking the better odds. Even if the event takes place once every four years. – Keep your eye on the ball whether your at the track or watching from the sidelines. – I’ll sure be glad when the election has concluded. I can’t wait to collect my (5-1) and be thankful for the square price.