There are several ways to enhance your horse racing handicapping whether you are a novice or an old pro. One of the best and most overlooked ways of picking winners at the horse track is to handicap the jockeys. Handicapping the jockeys is really a lot like handicapping the horses.
Even if you don’t know which end of a horse kicks and which one bites, you can still improve your horse handicapping by evaluating the jockeys. It is done in two ways, just like horse evaluation.
First of all, you can get a lot of statistical information about jockeys. Many past performances and race track programs now show statistics for all kinds of races, surfaces, distances etc. for each jockey.
Knowing that the so-so jockey that is on a horse in a turf race is really an excellent turf rider can turn a fair bet into a good bet. Also, knowing that a jockey excels with maiden first time starters may make a first time starter who is getting some betting action a good bet. If you want to improve your handicapping, or if you really just don’t seem to be much of a horse handicapper, start reading the jockey stats.
Here is another good way to handicap the jockeys. Watch them. Are you a good judge of people? Are you a people watcher? Go to the saddling ring and watch the jockeys. See how they move. Is one jockey moving as if he is sore or not feeling well? Perhaps another seems quite confident and is smiling and already anticipating a win. The better you are at reading jockeys the better your chances of getting real inside information.
If, for instance, you know that a particular jockey worked the horse and is now riding it, look at his or her body language and expression. That jockey has recently worked the horse and has a real good idea of what the horse can do. In fact, short of the trainer, that jockey has more information about that horse than anyone else. Watching the jockey and how he or she handles the horse will give clues as to what he or she expects.
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