Bet Like You Mean It – Keeneland

by Ed Meyer

posted on October 4, 2023 in Blogroll, Breeders Cup, Free Picks and Tips, General Discussion, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Bet Like You Mean It – Keeneland

As our bankroll starts dwindling or maybe it’s the flip side and you’re on fire. Now is the time to bet like a pro. – We all feel like we have a handle on our betting style and plan. But if this was true, wouldn’t you have quit your day job by now? – Don’t tell your boss “Where to go” and keep your meeting agenda intact. Betting like a pro is an ideal of who we want to be and not necessarily a character we have of someone doing this.

Betting like a pro is a plan. We want every wager to mean something and not just drop a few bucks to pass the time. No need for the cheap cigar and mobster-sounding voice. It is keeping your wagers in line. Hopefully right back in line to the cashier’s window.


  1. Don’t use over 5% of your bankroll on your first bet. Even if you are betting the minimum, that is the plan.
  2. You choose the five tracks you like running that day and trim it back to three. From there, two tracks get your main focus and the 3rd gets a spot play of the day. – Of the two main tracks you use the top three races you like on the card only and that spot play at your third track. – Not enough action? – Trust me you have eight to nine races of which you’ll bet the minimum on seven, and crank up your best bets to 10%. – If you’re winning, you can unleash the hounds if you like, but be sure to make your bankroll back to even where you started the day.
  3. Keep notes. Watch the races like a “scouting mission” and you’re looking for the best runners to wager on next out. – Trip handicapping is as old as time and the best cappers employ this daily.
  4. Do not force yourself to have action. – If you don’t bet Finger Lakes and it’s a Monday afternoon, let it slide. – You haven’t been watching them, and you dove in the deep end. Take at least two days off a week when you are not watching races and not charting the races. It will keep you fresh.
  5. At boutique meets like Keeneland. Stay away from the $150k maiden events. I know, no fun, huh? – This is about winning and the fun is at the end of the day when you have more in your pocket. – Use the big allowance races and turf races only. Trainers target and ship into Keeneland for the money and prestige of growing their barn with more winners. – Use the top four riders from last year and the top four trainers to start handicapping. There is a reason they are back and it’s not the burgoo.
  6. Keep an eye on the weather and know how the track plays from watching race replays from the day prior and even last year. Compare. – Keep an eye on the new rider who is setting the nation on fire. If they ship to try their hand at Keeneland, this has been a plan in the works with their agent for quite some time. – The big outfits didn’t come for the weather, and if a big name from another circuit targets a race. They have a reason and have some expenses shipping in from another track.
  7. Watch the cheap races. Not to play back as it is only a 15-day meet. You’ll see them drop down in class elsewhere and strike paying nicely down the road. – As far as runbacks during the same 15-day meet. Trainers have been targeting and they will take some time off after the short meeting.


Keep your head and don’t bet over it. – It can be enticing, and this week you should be betting the first weekend in Keeneland, New York, and California. Breeders’ Cup has plenty of opportunities that first weekend at Keeneland and spot-play stakes races at the other two. This Friday and Saturday offer up a great opportunity to see some making their last start before the Breeders’ Cup. Some will even draw into the starting gate with a “win and you’re in” stake.

Don’t forget to enjoy the races. After all, that’s how you started years ago. Make a plan and stick to it. Take notes and spend as much time selecting how much you’ll wager as who you’ll wager on. They seem two sides of a different coin, but they are the same in importance. – You’re already in the right place with Winning Ponies. They are tried and true and easy to use for long-time cappers and those making their first trip. Color-coded tier levels make it easy to understand and it will help guide you along to eliminating runners who don’t belong. Go ahead. Give it a try and let me know how your day goes. I’ll bet dollars to donuts we’ll be in the cashier’s line together. – Best of luck from your friends at Winning Ponies!