Friday, September 20, 2013


Inspired by NJHorseplayer's recent post, I thought I'd slap up a few words to update my legions of readers. (Though perhaps some have gone elsewhere to read handicapping-contest nonsense in the 100 days since I last blogged. I may not be able to make this a paid subscription site after all.)

My recent play in handicapping contests can be summed up in one word: blech.

 When last sighted in cyberspace (June 11 blog post), I was touting my prowess in online feeders -- specifically, my 3-for-17 record in $26 HorseTourneys contests that award $240 credit to the top 10%. 3/17 was pretty killer outperformance versus 1/10.

But since then is where the 'blech' comes in -- I guess I shouldn't have bragged because I've gone 0/11 since, watering down my outperformance to a marginal 3/28, just a smidge better than a 3/30 record that would randomly be expected. And I'm 0/3 in the $240 events.

In my defense, I do the dinky contests largely for fun and as a low-cost way to scratch the itch. I generally do little or no preparation, and I've even been known to nod off intra-contest, lying on the couch with iPad on chest. But still, I've been following this game for long enough that I should have some decent value-added insights even on the fly, so I can't really use a lack of preparation as an excuse.

I've also dabbled in a couple DerbyWars contests -- feeders to their own bigger $ events or NHC qualifiers. Had a close-but-no-cigar or two, but no luck.

Nothing to write home about with live stuff recently. I was in contention with some ammo late in the Monmouth July contest, but the shots I took (three ~$80 win bets, as I recall) missed the mark. I finished mid-packish at Belmont in June, and NJHorseplayer's $4 final bankroll last weekend beat me by $4.

So with the year about 3/4 done, I haven't come close to qualifying for the NHC, and I have 0 NHC Tour points. As Dean Wormer said to Mr. Blutarski, "0.0."

But, no worries. I've been around long enough to know that fortunes change quickly, and an ice-cold stretch can give way to a hot streak in the blink of an eye. I'm not saying that'll happen for me, but I'll take a few more swings the rest of the year (some online stuff and probably Aqueduct live in November) and let the chips fall where they may.