Sunday, April 8, 2012

Go to Great Lengths to Win at the Dog Track

Win With Eb....
Greyhound handicapping is an art, not a science. No matter how much math you apply to greyhounds, they have minds of their own and sometimes defy the odds - literally. Sure, it's possible to narrow down the contenders in a race with a point system, but it still takes some handicapping and good judgment to make money at the dog track.
That said, one of the factors that handicappers often overlook is the importance of lengths in handicapping. For instance, do you look at the position of a greyhound at the 1/8th, Stretch and Finish call? If so, that's good.
But do you also look at the lengths for those calls? That's the small number to the upper right of the position at each call. Most tracks include it, although maybe not for every call.

This tells you how many lengths behind the leader the greyhound was at each call. If the dog wins, the finish call shows how many lengths it won by. These little numbers can give you a lot of information. Since most bettors ignore them, the bettors who pay attention to them have a big advantage.
A dog that makes up lengths from one call to the next is a dog that has some reserve energy between those calls. Closers often make up both length and position, while breakers often lose both length and position when they tire at the end of a race.
How can you use these numbers? Well, I like to see whether a greyhound managed to close the gap between calls by at least two lengths. This tells me that the dog is in form and likely to be a contender in this race. Also, I like to see a dog within 3 lengths of the leader at the end of its previous race.
Like most of greyhound handicapping factors, lengths alone won't win a race for you. But if you add them to your handicapping toolbox, you might find that they give you that little extra edge that you need to pick more winners.
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