's Ultimate Guide To Betting Entries

I've lamented before about the horseplayer compulsion to pick THE winner, and nothing upsets that need more than coupled entries. The Ultimate Past Performances now available for Belmont Park this weekend include program numbers and morning line to help you navigate this situation.

When it comes to the pari-mutuel pool, though, you don't get extra credit for saying Real Solution will win the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic rather than "the Ramsey entry." The flipside benefit to that is even if you're wrong then you can still get paid of Big Blue Kitten or Joe's Blazing Aaron win.

The biggest reason touts don't like coupled entries is because they think it automatically hurts their value. Yes, if you like the less likely winner of a coupled entry, then you will undoubtedly get a lower price, but does that mean you're getting less value?

In the case of the Flower Bowl where I see Laughing as the most likely winner but Tannery as the best chance for an upset, the answer is NO. In the case of the Hirsch where I see Big Blue Kitten as a far more likely winner than either of his entrymates, the answer is YES.

Let's look at the Flower Bowl where the aforementioned Alan Goldberg-trained duo of Laughing and Tannery is 8-to-5 on the morning line. Those odds represent a 38.5% chance of either winning. If you see Laughing as a 5-to-2 choice (28.5%) then that leaves a 10% chance for Tannery, or fair odds of 9-to-1.

Both prices are overlays to me, as I see Laughing winning this race 33% of the time for fair odds of 2-to-1 and Tannery getting the job done 20% of the time for fair odds of 4-to-1. Even if the entry is 3-to-2 then Tannery would have to be 6-to-1 individually to offer better value (Bet 100 races, the entry wins 53 times and pays $5 for $265. Alone, Tannery wins 20 times and pays $14 for $280. If she's 5-to-1 then the return is only $240).

But I do most of my betting in the pick "N" pools, and in this case the Flower Bowl entry makes things easier on me because I like both horses and can now single. This is the opposite situation as the Hirsch where I think coupling the Ramsey horses lowers my expected value on them while increasing it dramatically on Slumber, who I like second off the year layoff.

Individually, I could make a case for either Big Blue Kitten or Real Solution at a certain price, but I think their coupling will make them a betting interest that people feel they "have to use" in the multis, and while either winning wouldn't shock me, I just don't think the value is there when I like a horse better, anyway.

The other race on the stakes portion of the Belmont card with coupled entries is the Kelso Handicap that includes the Lapenta-owned duo of Easter Gift and Jackson Bend. Neither would be favored individually, and getting "two for one" with these appeals to me since I don't fully trust Graydar off the bench giving weight. Souper Speedy will also be on my tickets.

There are no coupled entries in the Jockey Club Gold Cup, which is too bad from a wagering standpoint because I think coupling the Mott and Pletcher horses (Flat Out and Ron The Greek for the former and Cross Traffic, Palace Malice, and Vitoria Olimpica for the latter) would inflate the price on others, including my top pick Last Gunfighter.

Palace Malice has actually run faster than Cross Traffic has early on occasion (e.g. the 1 1/4-mile Kentucky Derby), but based on their last couple races I think it's fair to assume Cross Traffic will have the lead down the backstretch.

Palace Malice, Orb, and Flat Out will try to get to the leader before Last Gunfighter does, but at 10-to-1 I'm hoping a sort of "pressers duel" develops between those three and that they go too quickly on that expansive far turn. That leaves Ron The Greek and Last Gunfighter to close, and I'll take the latter, though for the Pick 4 I'll use Flat Out as an "A" as well.

That was a lot to go over, so let me make sure I'm clear about my picks (especially since they're not all listed above!): Royal Delta (Beldame), Souper Speedy (Kelso), Strapping Groom (Vosburgh), Santulli/Goldberg entry (Flower Bowl), Slumber (Hirsch), Last Gunfighter (JCGC), Mucho Macho Man (Awesome Again), Cleveland Indians (American League Wildcard contender).

Again, FINAL Ultimate Past Performances are now available for Belmont Park's Super Saturday program. FINAL means the file includes program numbers and morning lines are included, which is extremely helpful when dealing with coupled entries!


Leave a Comment:


At Belmont I like the following:

Race 3) #10 Storming Inti

Race 4) #12 Western Grit

Race 10) #3 Last Gunfighter Palace Malice Exacta

Race 11) #3 Rosalie's Pleasure

Building Pick 3s and 4s around those

27 Sep 2013 9:58 PM
Plod Boy Phil


FYI,  a few of the regulars have posted opinions on this week's TimeformUS Blog

27 Sep 2013 10:25 PM
Plod Boy Phil

JCGC: Ron the Greek gets my win bet

27 Sep 2013 10:27 PM
Mary Zinke

Okay, I put all of my contenders at the competitors' "We" blog, so here I'll post which ones I would like to win, as my personal favorite in each race.

R5 Beldame: Royal Delta

r6 Kelso: Jackson Bend

r7 Vosburgh: Justin Phillip

r8 Flower Bowl: Somali Lemonade

r9 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic: Little Mike

r10 Jockey Club Gold Cup: Flat Out

About the coupled entries, what I don't like is getting ones or ones that I would never pick attached to the one I like and lowering the odds.

28 Sep 2013 1:08 AM
Mary Zinke

Bad editing, should have said getting one or ones that I would never pick, such as 2x.

28 Sep 2013 1:40 AM
Mary Zinke

GL with Ron The Greek, Phil.  He's got in in him, somewhere. I just have started to doubt him, but I'm thinking his odds may be mid-huge.  If I risked it, I'd go wps.

28 Sep 2013 11:13 AM
Plod Boy Phil

Thanks Mary - GL to you as well

28 Sep 2013 11:40 AM

horse#4 which is now horse #2, going thursday.....claiming one in cali.....cali.....cali......i'm claiming one in cali.....cali....cali...........this weekend........

28 Sep 2013 3:18 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Boom !

28 Sep 2013 6:00 PM
Mary Zinke

Phil, huge congrats, and since both you and Mr.Aloof liked Ron The Greek today, and I have liked him, and I am in mourning over the Beldame, I put $5 across on RTG after I didn't play the Vosburgh correctly.  It did take both of you guys to convince me to risk a little across on RTG, so thank you!  I was going ton eat forbidden Chocolate fudge cake, but now I have the will not to, and for any fb or google circle people, I will post the ticket photo, so as to not past-post.  I didn't watch the Beldame yet.  Three years of love, you know.

28 Sep 2013 6:07 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Mary -

Thanks.  I did very little betting today up until the JCGC.  Managed a decent WP bet and used the 6 and my old favorite the 7 in exactas...I am not a trifecta bettor, so I won't kick myself for not making that bet.

Never dreamed he'd destroy them,  but was confident he'd run his best race since January.

28 Sep 2013 6:28 PM
Mary Zinke

KY, GL with your horse. I won't be in cali, cali, cali until Halloween.  Might stop by the SA clubhouse that afternoon if we get there early enough.

28 Sep 2013 6:54 PM
Sam Santschi

Great work Phil.  After watching the beldame couple of times I could not believe the odds on RTG.  Didn't bet straight but nice exacta...been away from game for awhile.  Good way to start back up!  Arc next weekend luv betting that one, then BC.

28 Sep 2013 8:17 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Thanks Sam.

28 Sep 2013 8:31 PM
Pedigree Ann

What were the other riders doing, letting Beholder get away with a 23.73 quarter and a 47.36 half? Joyful Victory threw down a 46 2/5 half and kept going to win the Santa Margarita - why was Rosie rating her 3 lengths back? Very puzzling.

28 Sep 2013 9:19 PM

horse #2 race didnt go thurs at fair........

28 Sep 2013 10:57 PM

I've entered the last few players pools on Twinspires and not happy with how the "experts" set up their tickets.  

Today, they have $50K to try to get Arlington's Pick 9.

I put together the ticket below for $260.  Lets see who does better.

1)  1,2,6

2)  5,6,9

3)  6

4)  4

5)  2,5,6,7

6)  2,3,10

7)  2,3,10,11

8)  1,3,10

9)  5,9

29 Sep 2013 11:23 AM
Plod Boy Phil


In the 5th, 6 Brewmistress gets a bold upgrade (use 1 and 4).

In the 3rd, downgrade the 6 Silky Sami for doing little more than passing stopped horses in a Closer favoring scenario last time.

Then again, what do I know ?

Good luck.

29 Sep 2013 12:03 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Mary -

Have to ask,  who is Mr. Aloof ?

29 Sep 2013 12:07 PM
Mary Zinke

I don't know his real name, Phil.  Someone who comments at another website.

29 Sep 2013 1:54 PM
Mary Zinke

Oh, by aloof I meant someone who would chat for at least 3 hours at a time for let's say maybe 40 of 52 Saturdays per year for a year and a half to two years then say weird crap like we haven't broken the ice yet, whatever that means, since I have other ice breaking type persons in my life, so, so what, and disappears only to come back somewhere else to find sweet little Mary much changed, and for her sake for the better, amen.

29 Sep 2013 1:58 PM
Mary Zinke

SAr8,John Henry Turf Championship: Giving Indy Point another chance since the Million was way weird for him: 4,13,2,8.

Remington r9, Oklahoma Derby: 4,7,6,1.   Maybe the speedy Broadway Empire can upset Departing.

29 Sep 2013 2:28 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Mary -

Nice pick in the Okie Derby.

Bridge jumper goes SPLAT.

29 Sep 2013 7:48 PM
Plod Boy Phil

and again with Indy Point...

29 Sep 2013 7:55 PM
Mary Zinke

:) Thanks, Phil.  Mucho happiness today, and yes, real money, plus small Remington r9 super, only doubled my money, and SA r8 exacta. I know hilarious huge show money on Broadway Empire. See? Indy Point is good. Million was freaktatious, a horror story.

29 Sep 2013 8:36 PM
Mary Zinke

Phil, I forgot to mention that my "discovery" of Broadway Empire was in the PPs of one of the Fairplex runners the other week. Added him to my virtual stable after that.

29 Sep 2013 8:48 PM
Pedigree Ann

I know this is redboarding, but I did have Indy Point in the Race of the Day contest. Winner of the second and third jewels of the Quadruple Crown in Argentina (the Jockey Club and the Derby), second in the other 2 jewels, including the Carlos Pellegrini against his elders, the most prestigious wfa on the continent. He missed the second half of his 3yo year because the change in hemispheres so he is still a young 4yo, more to come.

30 Sep 2013 12:20 PM

In order to encourage more conversation on the Brisnet portion of the Picking Winers blog, we will offer prizes for participants next week. Would you rather A) have a random drawing among those who leave a comment, or B) make it based on picking horses?

30 Sep 2013 4:58 PM
Mary Zinke

Ed, This is where Phil and I chat, but I'd like a prize for picking horses.  Do they have to win? ;)

30 Sep 2013 5:36 PM
Plod Boy Phil


re: Broadway Empire

I'm happy the FAIR exercise was productive. Winners beget winners (you had several WP horses in the contest), plus, looking at PPs is a good thing.

re: Prizes

It doesn't matter to me. Seems to me though, that if the drawing were limited to just those posting winners, you and I should have to post two to everyone else's one just to keep it FAIR.

01 Oct 2013 5:14 PM
Mary Zinke

Can Holy Lute win the Indiana Derby? I would be mucho happy if the answer is yes.

True, Phil, more people should go ahead and give their opinions. One only has to be very sure of them self, like you, or not afraid to be totally wrong, like me.

01 Oct 2013 8:59 PM
Pedigree Ann

Keeneland is starting in a couple days and I still can't get any practice handicapping done.

Now that the catalogues are on-line for Kee November, I have been looking for the replacement for my dear departed Emma (Our Majestic Cat). So many nice mares who have been bred to indifferent or even out-right bad sires - makes their produce records look bad. Like one who was bred to Eddington three years in a row - from 350 foals of racing age, he's had 5 SWs or 1.4%. Sure he's had other winners but he got decent mares and he drags them down. No wonder he's in California for $3500 now.

I don't know where the one and only foal I have bred has gone. We sold her last year as a weanling to a Japanese family so she may be in the Land of the Rising Sun. She was a nice Horselette, by Majestic Warrior, who looks better in a catalogue now than he did last November.

02 Oct 2013 11:24 AM
Mary Zinke

Pedigree Ann, Your search may need to be in Korea, not Japan.

03 Oct 2013 2:23 PM
Mary Zinke

Korean Racing Authority contact info:

03 Oct 2013 2:29 PM
Pedigree Ann

I'm not jumping to conclusions. Since the Toyota plant was built over in Georgetown, we have had a number of Japanese-speaking families here locally. They may be Toyota folks who are more comfortable speaking their own language among themselves. I had no direct contact.

04 Oct 2013 7:37 AM
Mary Zinke

The reason I suggested Korea is because Sekye Contruction Company is located in Changwon, Korea. I have the adress, if you think that could be the new owner.

04 Oct 2013 3:25 PM
Mary Zinke

The Japanese Studbook  Database Service responded that your filly was not imported into Japan.

07 Oct 2013 11:26 AM
Plod Boy Phil

Hi Mary

07 Oct 2013 6:12 PM
Mary Zinke

Hi Phil. Had to update my search, but no one's been "home".

07 Oct 2013 7:52 PM

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