11/23/2008 4:08PM

Bomby, Not Balmy


2:45 pm: Halfway home in the Sunday one-day carry at Aqueduct, but so's the rest of the world. After a bomby (and not at all balmy -- it's freezing here) weekend including a $143.50 winner in today's second, they've been running like trained piglets since the pick-6 began:

That 70-1 winner in race 2, Fourteen and Out, led to a $50k early pick-4 that would have paid on 3/4 with half the field in the the fifth race. Fourteen and Out was a turf-to-dirt, route-to-sprint turnback, who had the field's third-best fast-track fig if you were willing to go seven starts back and overlook his most recent six losses by a combined 80 lengths.

Sheik's Serenade wasn't favored in the 6th until the last two minutes when she was finally bet ahead of Treasure Trail, Zenyatta's 2-year-old half-sister, who was a plodding fourth in her debut and a plodding fifth today.

So I'm 6x1x5 or 3x3x2 the rest of the way, the single being Stormin Normandy in the featured $65k Itaka Stakes for statebreds going a mile. Stormin Normandy is at his best at six furlongs, but looks like the lone speed in a thin field and I'm hoping he and Prado will hypnotize the others early and just make it to the wire.

3:35 pm: The Shaughraun at $19.80 just made things a little more interesting, though this is the kind of winner whose value is hard to gauge: The Shaughraun was technically the 8th betting choice in a field of 10, but this was everybody's spread race, with 8 horses were between 7-2 and 8-1, the winner one of three 8-1 shots, and the 9th and 10th choices were both over 60-1.

3:55 pm: Never mind. Didn't expect any of today's racing at Aqueduct to remind me of Belmont Stakes day, but that's what the feature felt like around the far turn as Stormin Normandy, wearing the IEAH silks, pulled a Big Brown and was virtually eased as the field ran by him one by one. Big Truck wasn't much better fading badly after pressing him, and Icabad Crane got going way too late and could manage only second to the hard-to-like Love Abroad ($34.80).

Worse, a few people did like him: Everyone's covered in the finale, ranging from 5 winners at $35k with favored Hangingbyathread to one winner at $179k with the 3,4,5,8 and 10.

4:20 pm: A dead-heat in the finale between 6-1 Yield Bogey and 15-1 Blues Street. So instead of two winners at $89k with Yield Bogey or one at $179k with Blues Street, there were three winning tickets with either, worth $59k each.

This raises a longstanding theoretical point: Why aren't pick-4 and pick-6 pools split with two payoffs when there's a dead-heat the way that win pools, daily doubles and (usually) pick-3's are? That way, $79k would have been allocated to each horse, and there would have been two winners at $39k with Yield Bogey and one at $79k with Blues Street, reflecting the respective difficulty of coming up with each.

The argument for doing it that way is fairness and consistency; the argument against is that if there were two dead-heats in a pick-six sequence, there would be four pick-6 payoffs, with a possibility for further confusion if there were also gate scratches with transfers to a winning favorite. Still, it doesn't seem fair you would get the same pick-6 payoff with a 50-1 shot who dead-heated with a 1-5 shot. Whaddya think?

mark c More than 1 year ago
Does anyone making comments about POKER have any clue??? "poker has no takeout" HUH? it's called the "rake" and it is indeed a takeout. Poker isn't parimutuel? HUH? Indeed it is.
Wayne80 More than 1 year ago
It is absurd that they do not use proportional payouts. Imagine instead a non-carryover day with chalky results until the finale. The favorite is probably paying $300 with many live tickets, and you hit the all button which includes the lone tickets on a bomb taking the entire pool, say $35,000. They dead heat, you get two winning tickets for $400. I would be burning down the house. Needs to be changed, now.
C More than 1 year ago
Diceman, Actually, poker IS parimutuel and has no takeout. I also disagree about the pick 6-- and so does the evidence. Turfway Park has had a $1 P6 for years. Have you ever heard anyone raving about it? It takes in between $1000 and $3000 a night. They are not alone. Other tracks have it too and, I believe, Monmouth and Delaware have both experimented with reduced-cost variants of the P5 and P6. Lower the cost of the P6 and kiss carryovers goodbye-- and most of the big P6 players only play the large carryover pools, so say goodbye to their money too.
ElAngelo More than 1 year ago
Maybe the oddity really is that the Pick Three isn't divided evenly. Bruce's comment is true, that the consos are paid evenly, so really, the only oddball from a multi-race wager (doubles aren't really in this category, they're more similar to exactas) is the Pick Three.
Mike More than 1 year ago
It seems logical that there should be separate payoffs.Even given the unlikely/infrequent dead heat/late scratch scenario, it's hardly fair for someone to pick a bomb, dead heat say a 1-2 shot in the last leg, and only get paid the same money. It is most unfortunate for those who love and gamble racing regularly that the people who run racing(management and politicians)have little common sense on such matters, all too often. Given your platform Steve, I am surprised that you do not call such matters to the attention of the powers that be, more often. Mike
Brian McLean More than 1 year ago
While the long shot Pick Six players know they’re getting screwed. My dead heat scenario this weekend is a bit more gray…. I had an exacta box with Demarcation [33-1] and Karelian [5-1] and a win ticket on Demarcation in the River City Handicap. [Caveat: I’m an eternal pessimist ]. While watching the race and replays I thought that Demarcation was bringing his head back, while Karelian seemed to lunge at just the right time. I thought I had no chance at an 8-5 finish. So I was rooting for a DH. Others around were saying were saying that I was crazy, that even with the lower odd on top I’d get a better payoff than with a DH. Well I got a total of [73.6+110.6+30.4] 214.60 for 4 dollar investment. Is there any way to find out?
Diceman More than 1 year ago
Hi Steve, The recent barrage of negative comments by Horseplayers is disturbing. Most comments center around the inabilty to consistently handicappe races on sythentic surfaces. All serious handicappers, who love this sport, must face reality and adjust to our new and wonderful betting opportunities. If you abandon horse betting, you do have several decent alternatives including Casinos, Poker and Sports. None are bad games but they all lack the one indispensable feature that clearly gives the Serious Handicapper and Bettor the advantage: Pari-Mutual Wagering. In short, pari-mutual wagering gives us the opportunity to demonstrate superior skills and knowledge on each bet made compared to other bettors. I truly enjoy this remarable form of action when I know I have the betting edge! Allow me to share some handicapping and betting tips with my disgruntled friends. To win consistently, you must establish certain handicapping and betting strategies and avoid any sharp deviations. I follow these standards each and every day I break open the DRF fold: - Never play a sloppy track. Muddy, slow and good tracks and grass races are always playable and formful. - Play only $10,000 claiming races and above and Allowance, Stakes and Graded races. Stay away from bottom level claiming races. - Never play Maiden races. - Bet State Breds very selectively against open company horses and only when they have a superior class and performance record. When handicapping a race, consider the following DRF factors in the Horses last 4 races and assign a numerical point system to each factor reading from Left to Right in the PP's: - Horses Class - Byers Figures - 3 Running Positions - Closing Ability - Betting Odds - Race Par Figures - Trouble Line Comments As noted above, while I do look at the Horses last 4 races, I only assign a point number to factors in the horses 3 best races. Admittedly, it's impossibel to describe my math based handicapping method in the blog. It's simply too complex. However, I will be happy to answer speciic questions from blogger friends when requested and permitted. My wagering is focused on the following types of bets: - Doubles - Exactas and Trifectas - Pick 3's and 4's - 10 cent Supers - my favorite wager! Great value with limited investment. Try it - it's Fun and Rewarding! Finally, never, never play a pick 6 until the tracks lower the minimum bet to $1.00 or 50 cents. If they got smart and lowered the minimum bet, I predict the Pick 6 betting volume would double in less than one year! I hope the above information gives hope and some wisdom to all my Friends and Bloggers! The Diceman
Larry Thiel More than 1 year ago
Seeing as I'm never, ever going to win one of these things....with the 1-5 shot, or the 50-1 shot...I have no side.
Dave More than 1 year ago
I guess I'm in the minority, but I don't think the pools should be split. The pick-6 is not the same kind of parimutuel wager as WPS. If you pick 6 winners, you win a share of the pool, pure and simple. The folks that picked the long shot don't deserve any more. The Pick-6 is not a wager against the odds. It's just about picking the winners.
notwhathappened More than 1 year ago
To George315.... Love Abroad was on the golden rail during the running of the Empire Classic and was certainly never close to five wide.