01/10/2011 9:33PM

Five Ways to End the Day at Gulfstream


The expanded multirace betting menu at Gulfstream Park this winter, including a newfangled 10-cent pick-6 and the addition of a 50-cent pick-5, lets you hook up the last 6, 5, 4, 3 or 2 races of the day.

Here's how popular each option was during the first week of the meeting, which opened last Wednesday:



The pick-4 remains the most popular of the late pick-x bets but the interesting figures to note are what happened last Thursday, the only day so far when there was a carryover in the new pick-5: A carryover of just $35,203 drove $123,889 in new handle, compared to non-carryover pick-5 pools of $55k and $73k on the preceding and following weekdays. That was also the only day that the late pick-4, which handled $98k, was not $115k or higher. Clearly, even a modest carryover moved players from the $1 pick-4 to the 50-cent pick-5 that day. It's an added race but the lower base bet keeps a player's cost the same if he goes two deep in the additional leg.

The new dime pick-6 averaged just $15k a day opening week, but it grew each day and could take off this coming week if it continues to carry. This wager is a completely different animal from the other pick-x bets and from the conventional pick-6 because the front end of the pool and the carryover are paid out only if there is a lone winner. If two or more people go 6-for-6, they share the consolation pool and it carries again.

This raises a number of fascinating strategic issues I have yet to resolve in my own mind; your thoughts are most welcome.

A conventional big-carryover approach of merely trying to "survive" a six-race sequence, singling heavy favorites and trying to get one or two interesting prices in along the way, being happy to be one of 20 or 50 winners, makes no sense: if successful, you'd be one of 20 or 50 people getting a small conso (sharing just 60 percent of that day's net pool, with none of the carryover paid out.) You're not going to get one of those $5k or $10k payouts that can happen when nothing longer than a 5-1 shot wins during the sequence.

Also, it seems that the worst thing you could ever do is to have it more than once or play it for more than a dime a combo. If the point is to be the sole winner, having it twice would appear to disqualify you from the jackpot.

Of course the dime minimum allows you to use a lot more horses than you normally would. A three-a-race caveman ticket that would cost you $1,536 in a $2 pick-six now costs just $72.90 for a dime.

It's way too early to assess the value offered in the bets so far, but here are the payouts so far at the meet in the pick-5 and pick-6. Remember that the pick-6 conso payouts below are based on a 10-cent bet and the pick-5 payouts are based on a 50-cent bet:


About to return to some horseplay(ing) after a holiday break, I'll be following the Gulfstream pick-5 and pick-6 this week and contemplating when to dive in. My initial thought is that any carryover in the pick-5 is worth a look, and maybe that pick-6 carryover will hit $100k by the time I get down there for a quick visit next Sunday the day before the Eclipse Awards. Whereas I might have bought 250 to 500 combos on a conventional $100k carryover, at a dime a pop I could buy 5,000 to 10,000 combos for the same $500 to $1,000.

Carm More than 1 year ago
This bet begs for playing odds not horses. For a mere $72, you pick three horses in each race that will pay at least $15 to win or more. That will be the only way you might be the sole winner of the big pool. Quite a possible scenario early in the meet with horses coming in from all over, to have those prices in the last six races of the day.
Eam More than 1 year ago
I wonder if the take out per c.o, day is based on new monies in or the total of the c.o. when pool is closed. Are these pool totals greater than prior years? If so, then it will probably be here for awhile. I can see alot of new players jumping in but on average I think your odds per day woukd be 1 in 300,000 plus your .10 multiples. Good luck to all the players [Takeout happens only once, the first time money is bet. The carryover is not taxed again. -SC]
brainhurts More than 1 year ago
At what point do the computer wizzards start hitting the ALL (the unsold combos) button the nanosecond before the pools close?
Brian Skirka More than 1 year ago
The rules for the Rainbow-6 are available on www.gulfstreampark.com. If anyone has any questions about the rules of the wager, please email me at brian.skirka@gulfstreampark.com and I'll try my best to explain it. At Gulfstream, we have a way to distinguish between one person having multiple winnng tickets due to scratches therefore letting them take down the entire pool.
Stefan More than 1 year ago
Steve, I have a request/suggestion for upgrading the new web site. I use the alerts feature to follow carryovers. I recently tried to add alerts for the Gulfstream $0.50 Pick Five and the Southern California pentafecta (Super High Five) carrovers and noticed that there's no way to select those bets specifically. I hope that adding them wouldn't a difficult fix.
AndyScoggin More than 1 year ago
You have heard me speak to the merits of the MTH reduced takeout pick 5. GP offers a 4/5 conso payout, whereas MTH does not. I wish MTH did, I can't tell you how many times in had 4/5. Good for GP for trying new things.
Ryan More than 1 year ago
Steve (and Tim Ritvo for that matter), any investigation into today's 1st at GP? Winner was 6-1 at the 1/2 mile pole...then flashed down to 6-5 at top of stretch and won going away. At a major race meeting...that takes a LOT of cash to drop a horse from 6-1 to 6-5 in one flash.
Reason More than 1 year ago
In reference to the dime pick-6. Just mark your calendar for closing day. It figures to be a giant pool AND a bet that is affordable to whales and pigeons alike. The huge flaw in that bet is that once it gets rolling/attractive, the attraction to bigger players becomes its undoing. In this case, the bigger players aren't the problem, the bet itself IS the problem. At Beulah last time around (with minimum bet size 2 1/2 times that of Gulfstream) it was just silly to even play the thing on the way toward closing day, because everyone and his mother was doing so, nearly assuring that no plausible combination was covered less than twice. Just write it off until closing day, as was the conventional wisdom from the start.
Glen Rosenberg More than 1 year ago
It is a good play at the end of the meet when there is a sizable carryover and a mandatory payout. That happened at Beulah and the payoff was teriffic.
EJXD2 More than 1 year ago
What's interesting to me about these handle figures are the combos represented. On Sunday, the pick six handle represented ~240k+ tickets played while the pick five represented ~219k tickets played. The game theory aspect of the pick six only paying the jackpot out to one winner is interesting as well since the more money in the pool the harder it is to be the only winner, but the more people who give up on the pool because they think they can't hit the jackpot, the easier it is to be the only winner.