Horse Racing Handicapping Using Workout Times and Patterns By The Trainer

One handicapping angle that many handicappers forget when they’re trying to pick winners is the athlete angle. In other words, you must remember that horses are athletes and that the trainer’s job is to condition that athlete just like a coach helps his human athletes reach their physical peak. Think about human athletes and how they are each unique. While they may all do wind sprints on a football team, the effect may be different for each one.

Also, while some may sprint 100 meters in 11 seconds others may be slower, but still in top physical condition. The point is that each athlete, whether human or horse, is unique. The best horse trainers understand that and will use different workout patterns and techniques for each one. They may work one horse in company with others while they may keep another horse far away from others when it works.

Your job as a handicapper is to understand training techniques and then to see what is going on with a horse from that understanding. When one trainer sees another working a horse slowly he or she knows what the trainer is trying to achieve. While it is true that each trainer has a set of tricks or moves that he uses and finds success with it is also true that he may use one for one horse and another for another horse. In other words, one size does not fit all when it comes to conditioning horses.

Part of the problem that handicappers have when they are trying to understand a pattern of workouts is that they often forget that the conditioner also has to keep a horse mentally and emotionally healthy. A workout is a time that the horse gets out of the barn and can release some pent-up energy or relieve stress. Yes, race horses do experience stress. If you understand the trainer it will help you to understand the workouts and to know when a horse is ready to win.

That brings us to the key to workout patterns and times. Understand the trainer. That means you won’t be able to understand everything that is going on in a lot of races because there are too many trainers for a handicapper to learn all the different personalities and moves, but if you just study the top ten trainers at your favorite race track you will have knowledge of the men and women who win most of the races. Then you can apply that knowledge every time you handicap a race and want to understand where a horse is in terms of its physical conditioning. Trainers usually don’t go for the win with a runner until they think it is ready.

Posted in Gym

Michael Ortiz

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