11/13/2008 2:26PM

Moccasin, questions, HandiGambling review


A couple years ago Tampa Bay Downs threw out several jockeys who were suspected of possibly fixing a race at , I believe, Great Lakes Downs. Great right? Not so fast my friend, As far as I know the case was never resolved (dan? bueler? anybody?).

Here's an article from August concerning one of the affected riders. 


To show how fragmented the industry has become, some tracks recognize these riders while others have banished them altogether.  It really is ridiculous that this "investigation" has dragged on so long without any answers.  Even though the "questionable" race that started this uproar occurred in Michigan (Great Lakes Downs), Terry Houghton was licensed to ride during the recently-concluded meet at Pinnacle Race Course, and he took home the jockey title there.


Dan, I'm sorry to go off-topic here, but I have a question about a particular race condition that I don't understand.  Can you (or anybody else) explain to me what the designation "Beaten Claiming" means?
I've never seen this out here in SoCal, so it must be something unique to east of the Mississippi.  I've asked a few folks out here, and nobody seems to know.

A beaten claimer is usually a claiming race with a variety of conditions.  Here's an example: 

"Claiming.  For three-year-olds or four-year-olds and upward that have never won three races."

This is a multi-tiered condition.  Any three-year-old can enter this race no matter how many races they've already won.  You could conceivably see a six- or seven-time winner in the field.  Older entrants must be eligible for a N3L condition (they have never won three races).  Some handicappers will give more weight to the younger horses in this race as they have more winning experience despite facing older and more seasoned foes.

Hope this helps.


I believe it was our esteemed leader who said he was "Leparouxed". Well I bet he would like to have been Leparouxed today...

Actually, I had the privilege of co-hosting the "Out of the Gate" program on the New York OTB channel on Tuesday, and was able to praise Leparoux thoroughly for his rides.  I must have used the words "textbook," "perfect," "crafty," and "brilliant" on about thirty occasions.  In a previous blog, when I was asked to defend the term "Leparouxed," I wrote

"Leparoux is obviously a top rider, but he sometimes can get a bit too "fine" with his mounts." 

Not exactly a public scourging, and I do believe that sometimes he is too patient.  On Tuesday, he was wonderful.  He went to the lead when it was warranted, and always seemed to be in a perfect spot off a speed duel.  He was on a headstrong runner in a turf race, and properly got the horse to relax by placing him in behind horses.  When it was time to push the button, he angled three wide midway on the turn to avoid the potential traffic jam inside, and rolled on by. 

As for being Leparouxed, I didn't match him, but five winners on top isn't too bad (hey, I never toot my horn around here).  I might have had more, but the collar that gives me electric shocks when I don't update the posts quickly enough malfunctioned, and I was almost comatose in the studio.  Thankfully for some, I was able to resist the urge to be hospitalized, canceled any dinner plans I may have had, and rushed to the nearest computer...


The definition of "Illmaned" of course is  having your secondary choices run 1-2-3 while your key selection runs poorly (and often last)...

And Dan, we all know you'll flip this around and win like 5 of these HG's in a row.
J. D

I think that's three weeks in a row I've "Illmaned" myself.  The top pick runs out, the second and third selections run 1-2 to the tune of a decent Exacta mutuel.  Maybe boxes aren't just for shoes after all?  I admit that I'm slow and/or stubborn to come around, but it's time for a change.  I can't treat three "B" horses like "A," B," and "C" plays.  I can't treat them like an "A" and two "B's."  If I have an "A," I should play him like an "A" (i.e. drop the hammer to Win or key heavy on top and only on top in exotics).  If I have several "B's," or "C's," maybe I should just box 'em, and hope for the best.  As for Sam P., I wrote

"I love him...

...well as much as a horseplayer can love a runner like Sam P."

That's like saying I love creamed spinach better than creamed corn.  I hate 'em both, but if I have to make a choice, then shiver me timbers, I'll eats me spinach.

That's why the HandiGambling exercises are so interesting.  They're making me rethink my strategy, and I'm willing to try something different next time.  Congrats to chicago gerry for his excellent selections.  He'll get to select next Wednesday's HandiGambling 110

J. D., I'd take a winning show bet right now.  The short-term goal is to beat Matt Carothers in the Hawthorne Survivor Contest that begins tomorrow.


Back later with some weekend stakes picks.