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RELY MORE ON HANDICAPPING THEN TIPS

Rely More On Handicapping Then So-Called Tips
by Greg Melikov

Unless I get the message straight from the horse's mouth or another part of the anatomy aggressive, controllable behavior, shiny coat or a fluid transition from a walking gait to a gallop in the post parade I rely on handicapping.

However, I'm not opposed to following sensible advice on making those selections such as:

Avoid first-time starters on the rail, especially in sprints, because speed horses breaking outside of them often prove intimidating.

Bullet workouts are good indicators that a horse is ready to roll, but pay more attention to fast workouts within a week of the next race.

Watch for a thoroughbred entered in a sprint after racing first or second near the far turn in a route before weakening.

Pacesetters with veteran jockeys and the inside post have the edge on off-tracks and finish in the money about 25 percent of the time.

Post positions mean more when a horse shows a preference for winning from the inside or outside.

Look for thoroughbreds who exhibit improvement by the decreasing number of beaten lengths and increasing speed figures.

Weight comes into play in routes a five-pound advantage is worth about a length.

Horses encountering traffic problems in large fields should be tabbed when part of a small field.

Consider betting on a horse with spotty performances and high odds when a top jockey climbs aboard.

Money management is the primary key to winning. So when you?re hot, increase your bets. And when you're not, decrease your wagers. That's because some
streaks last for days.

One way to ensure a losing streak is to bet on short-priced favorites that strategy will lead you to the poor house. Obviously, you can't win every race,
so you must be selective.

I knew a turf writing handicapper who refused to bet on favorites that dropped below 5-2. Others I know don?t wager on horses below 2-1.

As far as I?m concerned, that doesn't include exotic bets. It's all right to include such favorites in exactas, trifectas and Pick 3s, 4s, 5s, 6s, etc. But
I also always include a long shot unless the favorite appears truly unbeatable.

I?ve learned from several handicappers that you must be willing to adjust at any time. You must apply what factors are important for a particular race.

Discount so-called inside information. Bet your own horses. Once in a while you might get a tip that has some validity, but by the time it reaches you, it
has passed through many hands and undoubtedly will be over bet.

So the next time you get a tip, check out the horse and see if the thoroughbred passes your handicapping test. And let your wagering conscience be your
guide.


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