PICKING WINNERS IN HORSE RACING – GUIDELINES
( The following guidelines are applicable when the horses are allowed to run on merit. By observation about 40% races are run on merit. There is need to study the psycology of racing. Even among the above said balance of 60% most of the horses are among the first four of the horses as per calculations under the guidelines. Guide lines are approximate and are supposed to be near accuracy and should not be taken for granted as accurate.)
While studying performance of any horse, select as many races of previous performances as possible at least upto previous one year. At times even the 5th or 6th places of the horse gives faster timings. So select a suitable race book that gives many performances. At a glance select one or two races wherein the timings seem to be fast, for the purpose of further calculation.
Most of the books give the placement timings. Take it as it is. If not given, calculate the place timings from the winner timings and the distance of the horse from the winner in lengths. One length is = 0.2 seconds. For example if the horse place is 3 lengths away from the winner add 3x0.2=0.6 seconds to the winners timings. If the winner timing is 1m 39.8 sec. for the race distance of 1600 metres, the placement timing of the horse under consideration is 1m 39.8 sec. + 0.6 sec. = 1m 40.4 seconds.
For this purpose, we must know how many kgs (excess or less) are needed to arrive at a difference of one length (excess or less) in a fixed distance. The following table gives as guideline for the same.
1000m 1100 1200 1400 1600 1800 2000 2200 2400 2600 2800 3000m
3.1kgs 2.8 2.6 2.2 2.0 1.7 1.6 1.4 1.3 1.2 1.1 1.0kg. Respectpvely
Suppose as per placement timings the horse timing is 1m 40.4 seconds when it carried a weight of 55 kgs., as in a selected previous race, and the horse is now carrying 60kgs as handicap weight, the following are the calculations. As per the above table one length accounts for 2 kgs of weight in a distance of 1600m. Now there is a difference of 5 kgs. Corresponding equivalent lengths = 5/2=2.5 lengths or 2.5x0.2 sec. =0.5 sec. (as 1 length= 0.2 sec.). So its timing with 60 kgs weight should be 1m 40.4 +0.5 secs. = 1m 40.9 seconds.
FALSE RAILS CORRCTION:
For the sake of uniformity and convenience, we have to convert this false rails effect into no false rails condition. For this purpose, the false rails on the curve portion is more effective. Every meter of false rails will increase the length by 3 m (more exactly by 3.14 m) or one length (0.2sec.). If there are 5m false rails in the curve the increase in time is 5x 0.2 (since one length = 0.2 sec.) =1 second. Usually the curve is between 1000m mark and 400m mark. As an example if in the previous race considered, the false rails in the curve are 5m, then the correction for no false rails condition is – 1.0 sec. Therefore including placement and weight correction , it becomes 1m 40.9-1.0 sec.= 1m 39.9 seconds for no false rails condition. For longer distances like 2800m and more there is need of correction for two curves, if there are false rails in the other curve also. Correction to false rails along the straight portion is not required if the false rails width is less than that in the curve. If the width of false rails along the straight portion is more than that of curve, correction is required for every 3m extra at the rate of one length or 0.2 seconds. However this can be neglected as it is small. In case the distances are measured along the false rails, there is no need for corrections due to false rails. This will be dealt separately later, as this needs another type of correction of opposite nature.
CORRECTION DUE TO PENETROMETER READING:
To arrive at this correction, one has to fix a suitable penetrometer reading for the race day and race station and convert the effect of other penetrometer readings of races considered for calculation to this fixed penetrometer reading. A fixed reading of 2.0 is preferable for races at Mumbai and Pune. A reading of 3.0, 3.5 may be preferred at Mysore. 3.0, 3.5, or 4.0 may be preferred at Bangalore and Hyderabad depending on the seasons. This reading may approximately represent the average penetrometer readings of the races under consideration for calculation, to reduce possible error if any. The following table may please be referred, for distance versus correction in time for every 0.1cm. difference in penetrometer reading.
Distance 1000m 1100 1200 1400 1600 1800 2000 2200 2400 2600 2800 3000m
Correction 0.10sec. 0.11 0.12 0.14 0.16 0.18 0.20 0.22 0.24 0.26 0.28 0.30 sec. respectively.
Suppose in the example race under consideration, (1600m), if the penetrometer reading is 3.0 cms., and its effect has to be transferred to any fixed penetrometer reading, say 3.5 cms.,, the actual value in seconds is to be added (as the ground becomes slow and time increases as the penetrometer reading increases) to 1m 39.9 secs., as already calculated. The correction is (3.5-3.0)x(1/0.1)x0.16 = 0.8sec. Hence the corrected timing after applying penetrometer reading correction is 1m 39.9 sec. + 0.8 sec = 1m 40.7 secs.
If a horse at Mumbai (say penetrometer reading at Mumbai as 2.0 cms.) runs at Bangalore, 3.5cms. being the fixed penetrometer reading under consideration, the distance being 1600m, the effect of change in time to be added only as correction to difference in penetrometer reading is (3.5-2.0)x(1/0.1)x0.16 = 2.40 seconds. Penetrometer reading may be considered reliable upto the reading of 5.5 cms. Beyond this, the ground is considerably soft, and the horses run with a slow pace at the initial stage, resulting in slow timings. In such cases, it is better to go far another race with penetrometer reading of less than 5.5 cms., for the purpose of calculation.
CORRECTION DUE TO MEASURING DISTANCES ALONG FALSE RAILS:
If the distances are measured along the false rails, there is no need of applying correction due to false rails. But some other opposite correction becomes necessary. Roadometer is used to measure the distances on cement roads and B.T. roads. It is not suitable for measuring the distances on the race track. It is highly objectionable. Roadometer can even measure along the small curves of undulations resulting from the impressions of the legs of the horses. As a result the measured distance will become less than the actual distance. If the measurement has to be done it should be with a measuring chain, but not with roadometer. The following table gives approximate reduction in the distance.
Distance 1000m 1100 1200 1400 1600 1800 2000 2200 2400 2600 2800 3000m
Reduction 10m 11 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30m respectively
In a distance of 1600m if measured along the false rails , a distance of 16 metres is reduced and the actual distance becomes 1584m, whereas under the condition of no false rails the distance remains 1600m., and if not measured the distance is more than 1600m. In the example considered, if the distance is measured along false rails, the timing has to be corrected to no false rails condition. The timing with placement correction + weight correction + penetrometer reading correction is 1m 39.8sec +0.6sec +0.5sec + 0.8sec = 1m 41.7sec. Correction due to measuring along false rails is 16m=5 lengths approximately ( 1 length is 3 metres roughly) = 5x0.2sec. = 1.0 sec. So the corrected timing is 1m 41.7sec. +1.0 sec. =1m 42.7 seconds. This is for one selected race. Like that one or two other close timing races may be selected for the previous runs of the same horse and the timing as explained may be worked out. The fastest (lowest) of all the timings may be selected to represent the stamina of the horse. Similar calculations are to be done for all the horses in a race for a fixed penetrometer reading. Out of all, the horse with the fastest timing is the likely winner, provided there is no mischief and the races are run on merit only.
PROPORTIONATE TIMINGS IN DIFFERENT DISTANCES:
(Applicable on plane and level race tracks only, not applicable on sloped race tracks. By observation it is applicable at Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad and not applicable at Kolkota, Ooty and Mysore)
Suppose a race on a day is for 1600m and a horse running in the race has not run previously in the distance 1600m, but it has run only 1400m. Now the worked out timing as per above said calculations for 1400m has to be converted to 1600m proportionately with some correction for additional stamina as the distance is increased by 200m.. If the worked out timing for 1400m is 1m 31.0sec. (91 secnds), the proportionate timing for 1600m is (91/1400)x1600 = 104 secs., or 1m 44.0 seconds. An additional timing of 0.5 seconds may be added as stamina correction. So the calculated time becomes 1m 44.0 secs., + 0.5sec. = 1m 44.5secs. If the 1400m timing is to be converted into 1200m timing, the timing becomes (91/1400)x1200=78 secs., or 1m 18 secs. As the distance is reduced the stamina correction of 0.5 sec. has to be deducted. So the calcuted time becomes 1m 18 secs. - 0.5 sec.= 1m 17.5 secs. This type of correction for stamina is applicable for 200m on either side only. Beyond this stamina corrections may not be proportionate. Pedegree of the horse should also be considered. On sloped race tracks timings of horses with the same distances are to be compared. Proportionate timings of distances are not applicable. Trial and error method by close observation may be useful.
1.) There is a difference of 5 lengths (1 second) in 1600 metres for a jockey with whip and without whip. 2.) There is a difference of 2.5 lengths (0.5 sec.) between a superior jockey and an inferior jockey both with whip. 3.) In a plate race, if there are 2 or 3 apprentice jockeys without whip, the horse with clear superior timings of these 3 jockeys should also be kept in jackpot races, along with one or two horses with superior timings. 4.) Psycology of trainers should also be studied. Some trainers won’t try to win, if the betting odds on the horse is very less. 5.) If a horse returns from a long rest , say 3 months or more, its timing is generally reduced by 1 second in a distance of 1600m. In the next one or two races it can regain its speed. 6.) The horses of 3,4,5 years of age have good stamina, and later their stamina gets diminished slowly. 7.) 3 year old horses are generally get improved with every race. For 3 year old horse with first run, internet odds at one hour before race may give some clue, besides track performance. 8.) Track timings should not be taken as authority. It only indicates that the horse is in good health and is in good form. Only the distance run timings should be taken as authority. 9.) Performance of the pedigree of horse is important, if the distance run of the horse is not readily available. In India horses with pedigree as Placerville (USA), Razeen(USA), Alnasr Alwasheek(GB), China Visit(USA) etc. are preferable for all distances, especially for long distances. Pedigree as Young Senor(USA) is prefferable for short distances. 10.) If at a same station there are races on two consecutive days with the same timings, and if the trainer and jockey of the winning horse on the first day are repeated on the second day at the same timings on two consecutive days, and if the horse is among the first four horses as per calculation on the second day, there is some astrological influence on the horse to win or take a place. If the name of the owner of the horse and part name of the horse also tallys the astrological influence is more. 11.) Penetrometer readings are not being given at Madras and Ooty races, width of false rails are not being given at Kolkota races. Hence the above calculations are not feasible fully at these stations. 12.) If the difference between the first two horses as per calculation is 5 lengths or more, the first horse is said to be a clear winner, if the horses run on merit. 13.) Horses with early draw numbers have advantage over others, if they have sufficient speed and takes lead and runs along rails, as the distance they they run is reduced by few lengths. over the others. 14.)Some horses wont be allowed to run at its merit in some seasons, though they come first in calculations. Such horses in the next season can win two or three races in a row. 15.) Race courses with firm grounds with penetrometer reading upto 2.5 give better results as per calculations. This applies to Mumbai, Pune, and Mysore. 16.) Regarding seasons, summer season gives better results followed by winter season. It is advisible to avoid rainy season. Greater caution is needed in rainy season. (ALSO REFER MY POST ON HORSE RACING AND ASTROLOGY - There is no need of knowledge in astrology).