When to Play Dogs That Run Outside and Wide

One of my favorite dogs was Josie Lane. She used to break out of the box, even an inside box, and veer sharply over to the extreme outside of the track where she’d very often be when she came in first several lengths ahead of the other dogs.

Some people used to say that she ran so wide, only the fence kept her out of the parking lot. She didn’t though. She ran outside. There’s a difference, although it might sound technical. Dogs like Josie Lane are outside runners. They prefer to run along the outside of the track.

Now, this might seem to give them a disadvantage, because they run farther than the dogs that run along the inside of the track. However, if you think about it, the outside runners who run in the money are very strong dogs. Not only do they run farther, but they run faster than the other dogs.

Outside dogs aren’t as prevalent as inside and mid track dogs, and the farther up the grade ladder you go, the fewer there are. Even rarer at any grade are dogs that run wide and manage to win, place or show. Wide runners, unlike outside runners, run along on the inside or the middle of the track, but go wide at times.

Most of the time, it’s on corners, possibly because they’ve had problems with being knocked down by other dogs in the past on corners. More rarely, it’s on the straightaways that they move over to the very outside of the track.

This running pattern isn’t one that gives them an advantage, especially if they start out in an inside or mid track box. Outside runners, on the other hand, sometimes do very well from an inside or mid track post position, if they break well and get to the part of the track that they prefer.

Sometimes, chart writers will indicate that a dog runs wide, when it really runs outside or vice versa. Sometimes, the comment says that it runs “wide and outside” which really confuses the issue. It’s up to the greyhound handicapper to take note of as many dogs as possible so that they’ll know what their running style is.

If you see a dog in the higher grades, and its comments say that it runs outside or wide, take careful note of how the other dogs run and also how that dog has done from the post position it’s in for this particular race. That’s the key to figuring out whether post position will help or hurt it in its present race.

(This is an excerpt from Book 5 of Greyhound Handicapping Books 1-6 available in paperback, Kindle and Kindle Unlimited on Amazon)

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Are Tips Just for Losers?

At the dog track, everyone has an opinion and they give it loud and long. There’s no way you can escape getting other peoples’ opinion. Whether it’s which dog to bet on or which sandwich to avoid at the snack bar, you’ll get tips all day and night.

So, do you, like most people, ignore them? Or, do you, like some people, believe everything you hear and bet on every tip you’re given? Well, neither of those approaches is the one I recommend, but I DO think that tips can actually be worthwhile sometimes.

I never just blindly bet on a tip, but I do pay attention to them, all the while considering the source. Because I go to the track often, I know the good tipsters from the touts. When someone I’ve gotten good tips from in the past gives me a tip, I write it down on the program page that it applies to.

If I have the money and the inclination, I bet based on the tip, but never too much. Then, and this is what most people don’t do, I write down whether the tip was legit. That’s right. Right on the program page, I write down the tip, who gave it to me and whether the dog came in.

This way, when I’m going over my program at home, I use my notes to keep track of who’s worth listening to and who’s just blowing smoke. I’m no spring chicken and I don’t remember things as well as I used to. This system helps me remember who I should listen to and who I should just smile at and walk away from.

Tips can be a big help, but only if you know that they come from winners. They can help you win more and lose less. But the most important tip anyone can give you is to learn basic handicapping skills, rather than just depending on other people’s tips.

(This is an excerpt from Book 4 of Greyhound Handicapping Books 1-6 available in paperback, Kindle and Kindle Unlimited on Amazon)

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