Cheap horses are the mainstay of every race track in the world. Everyone likes to watch the talented runners in the Kentucky Derby and Breeders’ Cup, but cheap claimers are what fill the majority of races on any given day. Before you bet on cheap horses at your favorite online racebook, you should beware a certain type of runner. Cheap horses that run behind stay behind. Early speed can be much more important when it comes to low level claimers.
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What is a Cheap Horse?
A cheap horse can be defined as any animal that runs in the lower level claiming ranks. By lower level we mean for $15,000 or less. A claiming race is one in which every horse in the race is for sale at the claiming price. There are many times when trainers will look to get rid of a horse that is lame or untalented. They run them in a cheap claiming race and hope that someone will purchase the horse.
The road to the claiming level is different for all horses. Some of them are legitimately less talented than other horses and never race in any other type of event. Some are horses that formerly did very well. Now they have gotten older or are perhaps suffering from nagging injuries. It doesn’t really matter how they got there. What matters is that the horse is now valued way below what it once was for a reason.
This is not to say that you cannot make money from EZ Horse Betting in this way. Unless you want to only wager at an online racebook a few times each year when the big events happen, you must learn how to bet claimers. The problem with handicapping claiming races is that the form of the horses in a race can vary wildly. A horse that has been running dead last might up and win a claiming race with no indications that it will do so.
Even though these are hard races to handicap, there are some things you can do to improve your chances at winning. One of them is to recognize cheap horses that you should stay away from at all costs. The cheap horse that runs behind is one of these.
Cheap Horse Running Styles
If you are a regular reader of EZ Horse Betting then you are familiar with three basic running styles:
- The front-runner
- The stalker
- The deep closer
Each horse has its own preferred style of running. The front-runner likes to take the lead and try to hold it. The stalker likes to sit right behind the leaders. The deep closer likes to retreat to the rear of the pack and make a dramatic finish. You will see all three styles in cheap horse races.
Stalkers and deep closers in claiming events are not near as worthy or merit as these same horse types in stakes races. Why? Because the talented horse in a stakes race event is using its running style with intent. It has a strategy, aided by its jockey, that will give it the best opportunity to win a race. A cheap horse has no such strategy. They are most often running behind because they couldn’t get the lead even if they tried. There is no intent behind the running style.
When a cheap horse breaks from the starting gate the horse will run to its potential. If it has the ability to remain in contention it will, for a very simple reason. The jockey is not going to ask a cheap horse to do more than it is capable of doing. There may have been a time when this horse was able to stalk the pace and unleash a late run. That day is past. It now needs to be very close at all stages of the race in order to be competitive.
Cheap Horses Don’t Close – Speed Horses Get Tired
Some will be saying that this mentality defies racing logic. The handicapper can see that some cheap horses are indeed trying to make a late run, and some of them are successful. Not every cheap race is won by a horse that led the field from wire to wire.
This is true, but it is subjective. In a race of talented horses the animals at the rear of the pack are often speeding up as they make a late run. In a cheap race, every animal is slowing down. It’s an optical illusion. It appears that the horses in the back of the pack are getting closer. What is actually happening is that the horses in front are coming back.
Some horse has to win the race. In cheap races this is usually the horse that is most fit. It is the horse that runs out of gas last. Pay attention to fitness in your handicapping of cheap horse races. You want to look for horses that have a tendency to finish well, work out often, and are reliable in their performance.
Watching cheap horses run and making bets on them is seductive. Many handicappers will often try to convince themselves that they have identified a winner no matter what that means. They will rationalize why the horse went to the back of the pack and stayed there. Do not do this! It will only cost you money when you make your online racebook bets.
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