There are two, and only two reasons to bet on horse racing.

The first is for entertainment.  No different than going to a ballgame or the theatre.

The second is to make money.

If you are a reckless gambler who likes the rush of risking huge amounts of money, go play slot machines.  Horse racing isn’t for you.   Although, we will gladly take your money.

While LoneSpeed can help make a day at the races more enjoyable, most of the information you will find here is designed to help people who want to bet on horse racing and win money.  And with that, we have created the LoneSpeed Horseplayer Rules to Live By.

Rule #1- Never, ever, make a bet unless you think you have an advantage over the other bettors 

Sure, sometimes it’s fun to go to the track with your buddies, drink a few beers, and try to cash a big ticket.  And there is nothing wrong with that.  Feel free to pick your horses based on the name or the colors of the jockey’s silks.  Have fun, but expect to lose over the long run.  If you are serious about winning money, you absolutely must learn to identify value, and only wager when you see that value.  You have to pick your spots, and you can’t bet every race.  Become comfortable with going an entire day without making a bet (unless you’re just having fun with your buddies, of course.) Demand value.  And don’t put your money on the line unless you are getting it.  Otherwise, you’re no different than a slot player.

Rule #2- Use all of the information available to you

Again, if you’re just having fun at the track, maybe all you have access to is the track program.  Or maybe you’re just betting off the tote board.  But if you are planing to make a wager because you think you have identified good value, do not allow your money to go through the windows unless you have used all of the tools at your disposal. Have you watched video replays of your horse’s last few races?  What about the other horses in that race?  Does the favorite’s last race, which looks bad on paper, really look that bad on video?  Did your horse really have an excuse last time when he finished 5th, or does a closer inspection of the replay indicate that maybe he just isn’t as good as you thought?  Is your big bet based on your analysis of speed figure patterns?   Have you checked to make sure other speed figures paint the same or similar picture?  Learn how to use the tools, and then use them before you bet.  Otherwise, you’re just pulling the lever of the slot machine.

Rule #3- Treat it like an investment

It’s ok to lose 80% of the bets you make, as long as you make money.  Most people simply don’t have the stomach to make a wager on an outcome that they think has an 80% chance of losing.  But if you have learned to spot value, you can absorb four straight losing bets if the fifth bet wins at odds of 5-1. That’s just simple math.  Get comfortable with the losses.  There will be many.  Just make sure you learn.

Rule #4- Trust your stuff

Listen to others.  Learn.  Absorb. But when the time comes, don’t let anyone talk you off your horse.  Unless the trainer stops you on the way to the window and says “I promise you my horse will not win today because I have instructed the jockey to prevent the horse from running fast”, you have to trust yourself.  There is no worse feeling than letting someone who you think knows more than you talk you off a 15-1 winner.  If you lose, at least it was YOUR loss.  Learn.  Study.  Prepare.

Rule #5- Accept blame

Maybe the jockey gave your horse a bad ride.  Maybe the track condition changed and compromised your horse’s chances.  Or maybe your horse just didn’t feel like running fast today. It happens.  But you made the bet.  So the responsibility begins and ends with you.  Try to learn something and move on.  Win the next bet.

Rule #6- You aren’t a genius, and this game will humble you

Today was a good day.  You won nearly every bet.  Dinner is on you tonight.  But just when you think you’ve got the game by the balls, the game reminds you that if you don’t respect your opponents (other bettors) they will take it all back and then some.  There is no time to up your game and refine your skills than right after a good day at the track.