Subtleties in race grades can produce lucrative payoffs
You might assume that a Grade 1 race is better than a Grade 2, and a Grade 2 is better than a Grade 3. That’s a good rule of thumb, but it doesn’t always hold true.
The Science of Horse Racing: We're All Ears
Understanding the language of a horse’s ears as well as the impact of what they hear on their behavior can help us gain insight into our athletic partners on the track and off.
How Kentucky Derby Winners Have Fared in Preakness Stakes
The 13 Triple Crown winners captured both the Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness (G1) en route to the Belmont (G1), but that just scratches the surface of the impact of the Run for the Roses on the middle jewel.
Watch out when route runners are actually sprinters
It’s not uncommon to see young horses run well in their first route race, only to falter in subsequent two-turn events. A single victory running long isn’t always indicative of a true route racer in the making.
Tall Tales of the Track: Bourbon, Bets, and the Beatles
The combination of a well-timed swig of bourbon, a fortuitous wager, and a basement music club made history not just in horse racing, but also in rock and roll.
Betting Strategy: Free Roll for a Seat at the NHC
The second of five free online qualifiers for the NTRA National Horseplayers Championship (NHC) is set for this Sunday, May 14.
The Heart That Wears the Crown: War Admiral
Lofty expectations are laid upon the greats when they exit stage left to enter the next phase. When Man o’ War said goodbye to his life on the track, the focus then became on whether the 20th century’s greatest racehorse could produce another one like him. Whatever it was that made Big Red so dominant and so iconic had to be passed along to his progeny, but what would that look like?
When analyzing layoffs, sometimes basic handicapping trumps all
There are many ways handicappers can gauge whether a horse is ready to win off a long layoff. One of the simplest is, has the horse shown the ability to win a race like the one you’re handicapping?
Kentucky Derby 2023 Purse: How much prize money the winning jockey will earn
In addition to the worldwide attention and acclaim Sonny Leon received for his spectacular ride aboard Rich Strike, Leon—a first-time Derby participant in 2022—also collected a portion of the $3 million purse.
Top 10 fastest Kentucky Derby times in history
From a legendary Triple Crown winner to a high-priced yearling who stole the heart of a Japanese racing enthusiast, here are the 10 horses with the fastest winning times in Kentucky Derby history.
Top 10 Most Successful Trainers in Kentucky Derby History
Based on overall number of victories, as well as second- and third-place finishes, here are the 10 most successful trainers in Kentucky Derby history.
Catching My Eye: Brian Hernandez Jr. and Reylu Gutierrez at Keeneland
Two jockeys had big days at Keeneland on Saturday. Brian Hernandez Jr. won three races including piloting home 13-1 Aunt Becca, and Rey Gutierrez bagged two, most impressively aboard 12-1 Front Run the Fed.
When it comes to trainer stats, nuance matters
Trainer stats are among the most valuable tools horseplayers have at their disposal. But a trainer’s overall win percentage is only one part of the story.
When three-year-olds face older horses, the class level matters
Traditional handicapping guidance explains that three-year-old Thoroughbreds are rarely ready to challenge older horses before autumn. But the equation can change at lower class levels.
Betting Strategy: Chris Larmey, “Nobody wants to be a fish"
To succeed long term, a horseplayer needs to know how to bet in order to cash in. Chris Larmey has begun a new podcast “Bet With the Best” aimed at exactly that.
Top 10 Fastest Horse Breeds in the World
From the noble Arabian poised for battle to the esteemed equines who run in the Kentucky Derby, let's explore the 10 fastest horse breeds in the world.
Should you bet or dismiss a horse off a bad race?
It happens all the time. A horse enters a race off a poor performance in its previous start, leaving bettors to wonder—will the horse rebound, or run badly again?
The Heart that Wears the Crown: Omaha
When any Triple Crown winner goes to stud, the high expectations set by winning that coveted trophy come along, as fans eagerly anticipate the next generation. Can he copy himself and produce another just like him? Of the 13 to have worn the crown, only one has done what is nearly impossible, a feat unlikely to be duplicated anytime soon: siring another Triple Crown winner.
Pedigree lingo: Phrases to known in horse racing
Words like “sire,” “dam,” and “broodmare” don’t necessarily mean a lot to those unfamiliar with horses or horse racing. Fortunately, the lingo isn’t as complicated as it sounds.
Top 10 best racehorses of all time
Ranking the greatest racehorse of all time is an exercise fraught with challenges and subjectivity. But I'm going to give it a try.
How and when to bet a Power Box
Boxing bets. There have always been pros and cons to this catch-all strategy. If only there were a way to box bets in a more nuanced manner. Well guess what? That’s what a Power Box is for.
What is the Place Pick All, and how do you bet it?
Once in a while you’ll see a racetrack offer a less common type of wager. One example is the “Place Pick All”.
What is a key race, and how do you identify one?
Have you ever heard of a “key race?” A key race is a race from which a large number of participants return to win or run well the next time they compete.
When to bet (or not bet) the trifecta
The trifecta often seems like the perfect exotic wager. But some situations are more suitable for trifecta betting than others.
When you should (or shouldn't) bet a Pick 6
Effectively betting a Pick 6 can be difficult and expensive. These guidelines help you determine when you should (or shouldn’t) bet a Pick 6.
Why it pays to look beyond a horse's most recent race
Horses aren’t machines, and any number of events can trigger a poor performance. Knowing when to forgive a subpar result is often the key to cashing tickets.
G1-to-maiden class drop can be surprisingly lucrative
One of the most extreme examples of "dropping in class" occurs when a horse exits a Grade 1 race (the highest class there is) and enters a maiden race (restricted to horses who have never won a race).
When to bet to place (or not)
The place bet can be a tricky wager to properly play. Not because it’s complicated to understand, but because executing a sound strategy that capitalizes on your opinions is easier said than done.
Using Stable Alerts as a handicapping tool
If you’ve ever missed a bet because you weren’t aware your preferred horse was entered to race, we have good news. Stable Alerts from TwinSpires let you know when it’s time to bet.
The Science of Horse Racing: Foaling the Future
Let’s look at the process of foaling and how our favorite racehorses went from safe inside a broodmare’s womb to taking their first steps toward greatness.
The best way to decide and create a place bet
When carefully executed, the place bet can play a useful role in a bettor’s arsenal of handicapping strategies.
The best way to decide and create a show bet
As strange as it might sound, the horse racing wager that's easiest to hit is one of the trickiest to understand on a technical level.
The best way to decide and create a win bet
The win bet is the purest way to wager on a horse race. All you have to do is pick the winning horse. But deciding which horse to bet can quickly grow complicated.
How trainer and sire stats can combine for enticing payoffs
When betting maiden races filled with unraced horses, win percentage stats come in handy. They consistently steer bettors toward live contenders in races that might otherwise be inscrutable.
The Science of Racing: The Starting Gate
It is a sight as familiar to racegoers as the horses themselves: the starting gate. As the minutes to the next race tick by, a tractor pulls this mechanical wonder to the right spot on the racetrack, dirt or turf, and draws the eyes of everyone present.
How trainer stats can point toward future stakes winners
When a horse defies the stats and wins at first asking for a low-percentage debut trainer, you might be looking at a special horse. Maybe even a stakes winner.
What is a jockey weight allowance?
In the sport of horse racing, the amount of weight carried by each horse has long been varied to account for differences in age, gender, and ability. Or, in some cases, the experience of their jockey.
The Science of Horse Racing: Colic and Laminitis
Both colic and laminitis come up as health issues that affect horses both on the racetrack and off.
Oaklawn Park: How scrutinizing race conditions can be beneficial
The first thing bettors should generally do before handicapping a race is read and comprehend its conditions.
Why horses tackling multiple major changes can outrun their odds
Sometimes, a racehorse will tackle so many changes at once it’s impossible to project how they'll perform. But the “change everything” approach can occasionally reap big dividends.
Catching My Eye: Two Angles to find prices at Fair Grounds, Part One
Four weeks in at Fair Grounds, racing analyst Kevin Kilroy has found two handicapping angles that have been key for finding price horses.
True Crime in Horse Racing: Shergar, Stallion Lost
This month, we explore the ultimate cold case in horse racing, an international mystery that captivates to this day. Who kidnapped Shergar and why?
How sire stats and racing records can uncover winners
Sometimes, combining a little pedigree knowledge with the sire stats and performance data found in Brisnet Ultimate Past Performances is all you need to uncover a lucrative betting payday.
Off-the-turf races can present enticing betting opportunities
When races slated to take place on turf are instead transferred to dirt or synthetic, enticing betting opportunities can arise.
Fair Grounds meet horseplayer preview: Louisiana circuit insights
Here are some things to know about Fair Grounds and the Louisiana circuit to help sharpen your edge.
Brisnet Speed ratings can make small fields playable
The power of speed figures—and specifically the Brisnet Speed ratings published in Brisnet Ultimate Past Performances—came to the forefront in the 2022 Bob Hope (G3) at Del Mar.
The Science of Horse Racing: Why Do Jockeys Ride Like That?
The race rider’s stance has gone from straight in the saddle to a balanced squat over the withers, a change that started with one legendary jockey and was soon adopted worldwide. This month’s Science of Horse Racing examines both how this change came about and why this demanding position works for both horse and rider.
Pick 5 Play Fair Grounds: Saturday, Nov. 19
It’s important to have a strong opinion in one of the first two legs of this sequence at Fair Grounds.