Years ago, every race track had touts who tried to get people to bet on certain dogs, so that they could clean up on other dogs that they had inside info on. There are still people who tout dogs these days, but usually it’s just because they really think the dog “can’t lose.”
Now there’s a phrase that should make you run the other way. Whenever someone tells you that a dog is a “sure thing” or that they “can’t lose” keep your wallet in your pocket and your money in your wallet. There’s no such thing as a contender who can’t lose.
True, there are some picks that are almost certain to win, providing they don’t trip over their own feet or miss a turn because the sun is in their eyes or something similar. Anyone who’s good at handicapping can find at least a couple of these kinds of dogs on any program.
But even seasoned handicappers know that betting on even a champion dog running in the top grade at the track is still taking a chance. That’s why they call it gambling. There’s never a guarantee that a dog will come in, no matter what anyone tells you including the trainer or the dog, itself.
There are 7 other dogs in that race who have their own ideas about who’s going to win the race. Any of them could suddenly find some speed it didn’t have before and blitz across the finish line ahead of the sure thing. This happens all the time which is why there’s so much groaning after every race.
No matter how many times it happens, the part of the crowd that bet on the “sure thing” just can’t believe that it didn’t come in. They yowl. They swear. They rip their tickets up and throw their programs on the floor. “How could it NOT come in?” they ask their friends.
But how much do you want to bet that they’ll be betting on another “sure thing” next time someone touts one? If you’re smart, you’ll use good handicapping to pick dogs that are very likely to run in the money, instead of going for the latest “can’t lose” dog that someone has “inside information” on. The only dog that can’t lose is the one that just crossed the finish line. And no one knows for sure which dog that is until it happens.