This is an article from the Greyhound Handicapping Series Books 1-6 available in paperback or on Kindle.
Are you like most people who go to the dog track? Do you win a little only to lose it back so that you feel like you’re just winning and losing the same money over and over? It’s happened to all of us at one time or another. Sometimes, to break this cycle, you have to do something really radical. If you’re ready to shake up your handicapping, maybe you’d like to try this approach that I use when I get stale or hit a losing streak.
The first thing I do is look back over my records to make sure that I haven’t missed anything. Am I winning on Win bets and losing on exotics, for instance? If that’s the case, then the first thing I do is switch to ONLY making the bets that I have a positive ROI on. If it’s not true – if I’m winning money, only to lose it on all my bets, then I change my routine completely.
Instead of going over my program and handicapping every race, I download several track programs from www.trackinfo.com and only handicap one grade. For me, Maiden races seem to be the easiest to handicap, so that’s what I play at each track. Of course, I don’t just blindly play every maiden race on every program. I handicap them all and then play the ones where I feel there’s a good dog to play. (For you, route races in the top grade might be better to handicap. Just choose whatever you feel that you can handicap best.)
I play a dog to win, or two dogs to win if the odds are right and I feel like each one has a good shot at winning. For maiden races, I look at speed, the kennel’s record with puppies and, probably most importantly, post position. Older dogs can often overcome poor post position, but with younger dogs, post position can often be the biggest influence on performance. I like to play dogs that break in the 8 box, or dogs that get out early and run the inside in the 1 box.
One way to pick a grade or type of race to play is to look back at how you’ve done in each grade or distance. If you find that you have a positive rate of return in dashes, the 301 yard races, why not just play dashes for a while? If you do better playing quinielas in Grade C, play them for a while and drop the other grades. If you hit the daily double often enough to make a profit on it, just play that, but play it at more than one track.
Focusing on only one grade and/or distance can sharpen your handicapping skills. There’s something about just concentrating on one thing at a time that helps you see things that you miss when you’re trying to handicap several different grades of races at different distances. After you’ve done this for a few performances, you can go back to your usual method of handicapping, but with a fresh outlook and – we hope – with better success at holding onto the money you win.