TrackFacts – August, 08 2020

The above caricature of a race tracker has been a representation of my alter ego for many years. A former student drew it for me some twenty-five years or so ago. I love everything about the jacketed DRF-holding, sandwich-eating, computer-checking figure you might have encountered on any bench or picnic table at Saratoga Race Course. He is, of course, Howie Pixum…and everybody, even horses in the paddock, wants to know Howie Pixum. Enough has been said and written about this uniquely and historical race meeting I will not belabor the point. As we head into it, however, I remain convinced that analysis of a race, any race, must…
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TrackFacts – August, 01 2020

The above caricature of a race tracker has been a representation of my alter ego for many years. A former student drew it for me some twenty-five years or so ago. I love everything about the jacketed DRF-holding, sandwich-eating, computer-checking figure you might have encountered on any bench or picnic table at Saratoga Race Course. He is, of course, Howie Pixum…and everybody, even horses in the paddock, wants to know Howie Pixum. Enough has been said and written about this uniquely and historical race meeting I will not belabor the point. As we head into it, however, I remain convinced that analysis of a race, any race, must…
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TrackFacts – July, 23 2020

The above caricature of a race tracker has been a representation of my alter ego for many years. A former student drew it for me some twenty-five years or so ago. I love everything about the jacketed DRF-holding, sandwich-eating, computer-checking figure you might have encountered on any bench or picnic table at Saratoga Race Course. He is, of course, Howie Pixum…and everybody, even horses in the paddock, wants to know Howie Pixum. Enough has been said and written about this uniquely and historical race meeting I will not belabor the point. As we head into it, however, I remain convinced that analysis of a race, any race, must…
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Track Facts – July 17, 2020

The above caricature of a race tracker has been a representation of my alter ego for many years. A former student drew it for me some twenty-five years or so ago. I love everything about the jacketed DRF-holding, sandwich-eating, computer-checking figure you might have encountered on any bench or picnic table at Saratoga Race Course. He is, of course, Howie Pixum…and everybody, even horses in the paddock, wants to know Howie Pixum. Enough has been said and written about this uniquely and historical race meeting… I will not belabor the point. As we head into it, however, I remain convinced that analysis of a race, any race, must…
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Track Facts – August 30, 2019

[intense_lead]The caricature of a race tracker (Right Image) has been a representation of my alter ego for many years. A former student drew it for me some twenty-five years or so ago. I love everything about the jacketed DRF-holding, sandwich-eating, computer-checking figure you might have encountered on any bench or picnic table at Saratoga Race Course. He is, of course, Howie Pixum…and everybody, even the horses in the paddock, wants to know Howie Pixum.[/intense_lead] [intense_dropcap]I [/intense_dropcap]I has been another hectic but enjoyable year producing these blogs. I am convinced that analysis of a race, any race, must begin with the morning line favorite. Of course many handicappers start…
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TrackFacts – August 23, 2019

Trainer intent and the wrong horse: [intense_lead]I stood next to two punters poring over pps while trying to decipher a race and discussing a horse shipped into NY by a sharp trainer.[/intense_lead] [intense_blockquote border_color="#231273" author="Punter"] Da guy din’t spend da bucks ta ship for nuttin, da hoss has back numbahs, 15-1 on da line, dis smells like a putovah.[/intense_blockquote] This was a sharp trainer who regularly shipped up from Maryland. No “D.Wayne-off-the-plane” type outfit, this trainer owned a small 2-stall van and drove it himself. He knew, from years of driving between tracks, the value of a “balanced” van. He never vanned just one horse over a long…
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TrackFacts – August, 17 2019

[intense_lead]Two punters, Vinny and Carlos, were standing at the paddock eyeing the eight colts being saddled for the finale and conversing on the merits of each.[/intense_lead] While perusing the dope on the 6-horse, a sharp looking runner, alert, on his toes, somewhat dappled out, Vinny asked, “Whatta ya thinka the 6?” Carlos, quipped, “Da 6? Looks good, but dat trainer couldn’t win a fixed race!” Smart N Fancy - $100k August 17, 2019 5 (1-1) Morticia looms a legitimate short-odds favorite. Last out facing some of these rivals, she was hard held, steadied and bottled up in traffic. Frustrated, trainer Rusty Arnold reunites Morticia with winning jockey Jose…
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TrackFacts – August 9, 2019

[intense_lead]Among other wonderful essays he penned, Emerson wrote the following in “Self Reliance”: “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds…With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do.” Wow. Of course he was reflecting on serious aspects of life. But what is more serious than betting Thorughbreds?[/intense_lead] [intense_dropcap]L[/intense_dropcap]et me relate a story to bring his words to life. It happened to me, as I am sure it happens to all horse players. A friend comes up to you, non-winning ticket in hand, and claims aloud, “If I’da boxed it, I’da had it.” Seeking commiseration and sympathy where it is not to be found after 40-odd…
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TrackFacts – August 2, 2019

[intense_lead]Years ago on a fine Saratoga morning I was walking through the lot at Siro’s waiting for the beginning of the seminar then sponsored by DRF and hosted by the great Harvey Pack.[/intense_lead] [intense_dropcap]C[/intense_dropcap]omputer carry bag slung across my shoulder, my many colored pens for marking up past performances stood out in the pocket designed to keep them separate and easily reachable. Midway across the lot, the legendary handicapper known to his friends as “Stew Beef” stopped me. I knew who he was. I knew him to be a dirt sprint specialist. I knew him to be the principle poacher of the quinella pools because he felt the…
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TrackFacts – July 26, 2019

[intense_lead]So at 70+ years of age, Capital OTB invites me to participate in their 2019 Summer Series of Podcasts posted to the new CapitalOTB.com website. [/intense_lead] [intense_blockquote border_color="#231273" author="Tom Amello"]Podcast! What’s that? Oh, internet radio without radio. Whatta country, as Yakov Smirnoff would say. [/intense_blockquote] [intense_dropcap]T[/intense_dropcap]he first podcast included a discussion of applying the odds board to your handicapping, featuring statistics to support strategies. The next two have been conversations with professionals in Thoroughbred racing. Jim Mazur, of trainer statistic book fame, joined us to talk about the game in general and his statistical approach to pilfering the pari-mutuel pools. Our most recent edition featured my good friend…
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