's Ultimate Guide To Letting A Wagering Menu Work For You & a $200 Contest

An even money shot who you like but don't love can be a daunting part of any Pick 4 sequence. Winning 50% of the time means they lose 50% of the time, too. If you have two such horses in a sequence then it's as likely that they both lose than both win (25%, 3-to-1 either way).

So how do you make money in this scenario? By letting a track's wagering menu work for you.

For Past Performances of all races discussed in this post as well as full-card daily reports for Belmont Park and Keeneland visit the Blood Horse store.

Let's take the Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes on Saturday at Keeneland, which features champion Groupie Doll. If you think her Presque Isle Masters win represents a return to top form then she wins this easily. If you think her Masters performance is now her ceiling then either of the inside horses--Judy The Beauty, Purely Hot, and Gypsy Robin--are capable of running with her.

To me, it's an either or proposition. Either you think Groupie Doll is moving forward and she's a single or you don't and she's not. The great thing about a horizontal player at Keeneland is you can play it both ways even on a small budget by singling Groupie Doll in the $.50 Pick 5 (races 6-10) and $.50 Pick 4 (6-9) and going deeper in the rolling $.50 Pick 3s.

True, you give up the chance at a four or even five-figure payoff by beating an odds on horse in a Pick 4 or Pick 5, but you still give yourself and out with the cheaper Pick 3s and the chance to hit a couple of them since they roll.

Wise Dan as the heavy favorite in race 9 is a different animal. It's an important race as the final leg of the Groupie Doll Pick 4 and the penultimate leg of the Pick 5 and late Pick 4, and Wise Dan will probably be be heavier in the multis than even in the win pool.

I can understand why because the only horse I like to possibly beat him is Silver Max, and do I like him enough to double the cost of my tickets? Not really. Wise Dan is the fastest horse in the race, likes Keeneland, and has an outrageous PRIME POWER advantage.

We're somewhat wired to think that Pick 4s and Pick 5s should pay fantastic, but value is value, and it's a competitive enough sequence elsewhere that prudent decision making can lead to an OK score in either sequence even with Wise Dan winning.

For Past Performances of all races discussed in this post as well as full-card reports for Belmont, Keeneland, and Santa Anita, visit the Blood Horse store.


I hinted at a contest in the comments of last week's post, and I've decided to do a PRESS YOUR LUCK-style game. Here are the rules:

You can post one horse in each comment. If you are the first person to mention this horse and it wins you get three points. If you copy someone else's pick and it wins you get one point. If your pick loses you get no points. You can only pick one horse per comment and can not post another pick until someone else comments after you. You can have a maximum of four picks, so a perfect score is 12.

The winner gets $100 if you win with a score of 12 I'll double it. If multiple people score 12 then you split the $200.

Good luck!

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