In a previous article, “Greyhound Handicapping: Winning on the Way Down“, I mentioned that dogs who are moving down in grade are 7 times more likely to come in than dogs moving up in grade. That’s why I look for dogs who are moving down, especially if they’ve moved down two grades i.e. double droppers.
But there are times when it makes sense to bet on a dog who is moving up in grade. Of course, the dog has to show something special for me to consider it a contender as I handicap the race. Some of those special little clues that a dog has a chance of running in the money at a higher grade than its been running in are hard to spot. But, if you do spot them, it’s a good idea to at least include the dog in quiniela boxes or even trifectas if you play them.
First of all, I don’t bet on dogs who are moving up if they’ve just won a race by less than 3 lengths. I figure if they just managed to win by a nose or one or two lengths, how are they going to beat the harder competition in this higher grade race? So, first of all, I look for a good solid win by 3 or more lengths. But that’s not enough to impress me to death.
The next thing I consider really important is the dog’s post position relative to both its favorite box, running style and its post position in its last race where it won handily. If the dog was in the 7 box and is now in the 1 box I have to ask myself if the dog benefits from the post position change or loses by it.
Does the dog like the inside boxes or would it rather be farther out or even on the outside? In other words, as I look at the race where it won from the 7 box, I ask myself if the dog won BECAUSE of the box it was in, or IN SPITE of the box it was in. If it’s a rail runner and has early speed, then the move to the inside box would be a big plus, as long as there isn’t an inside-running breaker next to it. If there is, they could get into trouble at the break, especially if the other dog is classier than the dog who’s moving up.
I might have to check farther back with Greyhound Track Data to get a good idea of its running style and preferred post position. Then, if I’m satisfied that the dog is in a box that it likes, where it can run where it wants to run without interference from the other dogs, and it won its last race by at least 3 lengths, I consider it a contender.
And, of course, if it doesn’t run in the money in this race and a couple other races, then it’s moving down in grade and it becomes one of the dogs that might be a good bet for winning on the way down. That’s the thing about dog races. Dogs are constantly moving up and down the grade ladder. The trick to making money at the dog track is to know when the dog is at a level where it can make the grade.