One of the biggest problems most people face when trying to pick winners and make money betting on horse races, is how to figure out which horse is best and which ones will make you a profit. That is no easy task because there are so many variables to make sense of and compare. A system is just what the name implies, a method for arranging the data so that you can wrap your brain around it and make sense of it.

There are lots of horse racing systems and a few of them are even good. There is nothing wrong with shopping around and finding a good and perhaps easy horse racing system. But there is another alternative and it may not be as hard as you think, I’m talking about creating your own horse racing system.

All you really need to decide which horse is a good bet in a race is a good way of comparing each horse to the others and then knowing how much better or worse each horse is compared to the rest. While words like, better, worse, best, help, there is no way to turn that into a number that helps with the dollars and cents of odds and payoffs.

So the place to start in developing your own easy handicapping horse playing system is to figure out what factors you want to compare. Let’s start with speed and look at an example of how you can take speed, the trainer’s winning percentage, and the jockey’s winning percentage and turn them into one manageable number.

Let’s say you add, “Speedy,” the horse’s last three speed figures, such as, 78-80-75 and come up with a total of 233. Next you round that number off, up or down to the nearest ten. So 233 becomes 230. You then turn it into a smaller more manageable number by adding a decimal point, 23.0 and finally just make it 23. So Speedy has earned a 23 for his speed figure.

Next, let’s look at Speedy’s trainer. The trainer’s winning percentage is very important. Perhaps, Speedy’s trainer wins 33% of his races and earns a 33. Finally, let’s look at the jockey. She wins 18% of the races she rides in and therefore earns an 18. Now let’s add those numbers together and see what Speedy’s final score is, 23 + 33 + 18 = 74.

If you do that for every horse in the race that Speedy is in it might look something like this,

1. Speedy =  74

2. Happy = 60

3. Grumpy = 62

4. Blinky = 58

As you can see, Speedy is head and shoulders above the other horses, if these three factors are all we use. You could, of course, add more factors for things that you think are important, such as class, recency, etc. The point is that when you are done you will have a number and comparing all the numbers will give you an idea of each runner’s chances.

From this example I would expect Speedy to go off at a very low price, say, 4-5. Let’s say, however, that you think Speedy is vulnerable and not worth that 4-5 price. If you are shopping for value, the next obvious choice would be Grumpy. He is just 2 points better than Happy, not a great spread, but if his odds aren’t much lower than Happy’s he might be a good bet, especially if he is paying a lot more than Speedy. On the other hand, if Happy is going off at much longer odds than Grumpy, then he might be a better value.

The point is that you can make your own system, understand it well, test it on paper, and see how it performs. Then you can tweak it any way you need to make it work for you. When testing it, write down the odds that each horse goes to post at and also what the horse’s score was. Make your adjustments, perhaps giving more weight to one factor than another.

To make your adjustments, let’s say that you think speed is more important than the jockey’s win average. You might want to multiply the speed rating by 1.2 so that it has more weight or reduce the jockey’s average by multiplying by .9 or .8. Just take it slow and use your best judgment and above all else, enjoy your days at the races.

The most consistent horse racing systems have to have the basics and a handicapper must understand the basics. I have been around horse racing for 50 years including as an owner. Without the basics the rest is not going to do any good. If you want to learn how a horse owner and insider handicaps just go to http://williewins.homestead.com/truecb.html and get the truth.

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