Aqueduct Fall Meet Trainer Trends

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Noel Michaels

November 12th, 2019

Trends to assist your betting at Aqueduct in New York

Racing and wagering at the November portion of the Aqueduct meet is in full swing and one way for horseplayers to look for winners is to focus on the human trends taking shape – or likely to start taking shape – in the trainer standings. Bet the trainers who are most likely to be successful at the meet and you will give yourself the best chance to win.

The month of November is a very turf-centric season of competition at The Big A, and therefore you can expect the top turf stables to rise to the top of the trainer’s race.

Ever since the death of the old inner dirt track, weather permitting, the Aqueduct track configuration features two turf courses accommodating plenty of grass races, including turf sprints. It’s the last gasp blowout for turf racing in New York until late March or early April, so turf racing will take center stage and remain at the forefront at Aqueduct until early December.

Leading Trainers at Aqueduct

Through November 8, it is no surprise that the leading trainer at Aqueduct was Chad Brown with 6 wins (32%) and 14 in-the-money finishes (74% ITM) from his first 19 starters.

He is followed by Linda Rice with 4 wins from her first 18 starters (22%), who is also off to a good start at the meet and who often does well in New York during this time of the year. Rice finished fourth in the 2018 Aqueduct fall standings with 8 wins from 37 starters, so she’s right at where you would expect her win percentage to be at 22%.

Christophe Clement, who enjoyed a good Belmont fall meet, has remained hot with 3 wins from 14 starters (21%). He is tied with Rudy Rodriguez for third in the early standings. Rodriguez has 3 victories from his first 15 starters (20%), which is also right about where you would expect him to remain in terms of win percentage. Last year, Rudy was the co-leading trainer at this meet with 12 wins. His win percentage then was 18%.

RELATED: Trainer stats for the last 60 days

Surprise Slow to Rise

The surprise story amongst the leading group of trainers at the start of Aqueduct’s 2019 meet has been the slow start of perennial power Todd Pletcher, who was the top trainer at the 2018 Aqueduct fall meet. Pletcher is off to a 1-for-19 start for just 5%, and has burned a ton of money in the process for his supporters. Pletcher won last year’s Aqueduct fall meet with 12 wins and a big 27% win percentage.

There is two ways for bettors to look at Pletcher’s cold start at Aqueduct;

  • 1) Pletcher is ice cold and his horses should be bet against as low-odds underlays, or
  • 2) handicappers will get off the Pletcher bandwagon after the slow start, leaving his horses underbet for the latter part of the meet when the law of averages says his horses will begin to win and bring his win percentage back up where we would expect it to be before the end of the meet. 

Out of choices 1 & 2, the second one seems more likely. Pletcher is likely to end with a win percentage way higher than 5%, so the time to start betting his horses is right now. A similar case could be made for Jeremiah Englehart, who is also off to a slow start this season with just 1 win from his first 9 starters. He’ll probably heat-up soon, as well.

RELATED: New York speed by circuit report for Nov. 11

Past Aqueduct Trends

Based on last year’s (and prior year’s) statistics, trainers likely to go on and enjoy winning meets at Aqueduct this November include Jason Servis and Brad Cox and Raymond Handal. Jason Servis had a big 2018 Aqueduct fall season with 6 wins from 19 starters (32%), while Brad Cox won a similar 6-for-18 (33%). Raymond Handal, a much more low-profile trainer whose runners go off at good prices, went 4-for-13 for 31% in 2018, and that kind of meet has proven not to be an outlier since Handal has gone on to win plenty more races this year at both the spring and fall meets at Belmont.

Other Trainer Trends

Other trainer trends to consider early this season include a slow start for the Danny Gargan barn at Aqueduct, who is 0 for his first 9 starters with just 3-for-9 ITM. This is notable because Gargan has been on fire ever since Saratoga, and his barn may finally be ready to cool down and came back down to Earth after an extended hot period.

Trainer Jonathan Thomas, on the other hand, is hot right now. He’s won 2 of his first 3 races at Aqueduct. Trainer Robert Falcone is also doing well, with 2 wins and a place from his first 5 starters.

Finally, if you are searching for trainer trends from beyond just this year and last year at Aqueduct, Rudy Rodriguez and Linda Rice both won at 28% trainers at Aqueduct in 2017 through November and December, with Rudy going 27-for-97 and Rice going 26-for-95 that year. With three seasons of stats including 2017-2019, other trainers who should do well in terms of Aqueduct winners the rest of the year include Michelle Nevin, Bill Mott, James Bond, and Gary Gullo.

Aqueduct At a Glance for November 11

Find more At a Glance reports from brisnet here.

HOT TRAINERSStartsWinsPlaceShowAvg.Winning’18-‘ 19
Thomas Jonathan
COLD TRAINERSStartsWinsPlaceShowAvg.Beaten’18-‘ 19
Gargan Danny