5 Steps to Breeders’ Cup Success

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Derek Simon

October 24th, 2014

As many of my regular readers know, I love systems and angles. Simple systems and angles, complex systems and angles, goofy systems and angles — I love ‘em all.

My passion for a purely numbers-based approach to the Sport of Kings began in 1984, with a column penned — probably literally (there weren’t many personal computers back then, kids) —by Ed Fountaine.

Fountaine was a turf writer for the New York Post and, every year (or so it seemed), he published a system for selecting the Kentucky Derby winner in American Turf Monthly, a magazine devoted to convincing horseplayers like me that handicapping can be distilled down to a few simple rules and an insufficient workout of past results.

Well, in 1984, Fountaine’s system worked and I cashed nicely on Swale, a son of Triple Crown champion Seattle Slew, who gave Laffit Pincay, Jr. his only Derby win (that’s just an aside — jockeys were not considered in Fountaine’s system).

Anyway, this encouraged me to try my own hand at crafting a Derby miracle system and, in 2010, I came up with Simon’s Historical Investment Technique for the Kentucky Derby. Unfortunately, after making me look like a genius and tabbing Super Saver that first year, the method has lived down to its acronym ever since — as exemplified by this year’s steaming selection, Candy Boy.

Still, I refuse to be discouraged. And it is with great pride that I present Simon’s Historical Investment Technique for the Breeders’ Cup.

In five easy steps, I will turn you from a whiner into a winner — or vice-versa.

+1 point to any entrant that was not favored in its last race.
+1 point if the horse in question has a Pace Profile Report* median speed figure of 100 or greater.
+1 point if the race being studied has a Win Factor Report* race rating of 50 percent or higher.
+1 point to any horse possessing a last-race Pace Profile Report* form rating of 25 percent or better.
+1 point to any horse whose most recent 3- to 5-furlong workout (after his/her last race) took place over today’s racetrack and was considered “good.”

Good Workout Times

3 furlongs: Under 35 2/5 seconds.
4 furlongs: Under 47 1/5 seconds.
5 furlongs: Under 59 seconds.

* Win Factor Reports and Pace Profile Reports for the Breeders’ Cup races can be found at or 2-3 days prior to the big event.

Since 1997, horses with the following point totals performed thusly:

At least 3 points
Races (qualifiers): 124 (715)

Races Won: 72
Rate: 58.1%
Total Return: $1,831.90
ROI: +28.10%

At least 4 points
Races (qualifiers): 50 (86)

Races Won: 13
Rate: 26.0%
Total Return: $465.60
ROI: +170.70%

At least 5 points
Races (qualifiers): 2 (2)

Races Won: 1
Rate: 50.0%
Total Return: $6.00
ROI: +50.00%

So, when the Breeders’ Cup races come around (they’re less than a week away now), don’t just talk Simon’s Historical Investment Technique — eat it, live it, breath it.

You might just coming out smelling like a rise… or, well, not.