One of the best exercises to develop your handicap skills is with the self-driving rolling parlay. “What?” you ask. No, it is not a new IRA or 401k account applied to horse racing. It is a method of playing the races on a budget and at the same time testing your handicapping ability on a full or partial race card in many different conditions.
You may want to play your continuous parlay with your top picks on Pick Threes, Pick Fours, Pick Fives, Pick Sixes, and even Place Pick Nine’s. Several racetracks now offer Place Pick Nine’s for as little as a one dollar bet. If you are just learning, your budget is limited, and you want to enjoy the thrill of horse racing, this is a great way to play without sacrificing all of your bankroll.
Place Pick Nine or Place Pick All are now offered at various tracks, including Arlington Park, Hawthorne Race Course, and Hollywood Park. You will first put a handicap on all your races so that your place chooses nine bets, choosing a horse that you hope to finish first or second. Using the selections you made, you would place a Show bet on each horse before the start of each race. After each race, the winnings will be published on the exchange, then you will cash your ticket and bet a show on your selection in the next race. Based on your winnings, increase the amount of your next bet by one dollar.
For example, in Race # 1, your horse finishes second for $ 3.50 in show money. Then you would bet three dollars to show your selection for Race # 2. If your horse ends up out of the money, then you would reduce your bet on the show to two dollars. If your horse ends up in the money, you will revert to the three dollar show bet you made in Race # 3. Continue doing this throughout the race card. As the winnings pile up, go up to a four dollar show bet, maxing out at a five dollar show bet.
To get an idea of how it works, let’s examine a recent Place Pick foray made during the Arlington Park meeting in the summer of 2010. [SH = Show wager. (1st) = finish position of horse selected. Earn = for $2.00 wager. Ext. = Extrapolating the wager. Bal. = Running balance of funds].
Race 1 # 6 Lots of Jack. $ 2 SH (3rd) Earn $ 3.40. Ball. $ 3.40
Race 2 # 5 Terminal One. $ 3 SH (1st) Win $ 3.20. Ext $ 4.60. Bal. $ 5.00
Race 3 # 6 Lovely Daisy. $ 3 SH (1st) Earn $ 3.20. Ext $ 4.60. Ball. $ 6.60
Race 4 # 6 Atticus Christy. $ 3 SH (2nd) Earn $ 2.20. Ext $ 3.30. Ball. $ 6.90
Race 5 # 2 Cool C Note. $ 4 SH (2nd) Win $ 2.80. Ext $ 5.60. Ball. $ 8.50.
Race 6 # 6 Scarce. $ 4 SH (2nd) Win $ 3.60. ext. $ 7.20. Ball. $ 11.70.
Race 7 # 1 Loves to Fly $ 4 SH 7th Place Ext. $ 0.00. Ball. $ 7.70.
Race 8 # 10 Silent Candy $ 2 SH (3rd) Win $ 6.40. ext. $ 6.40. Ball. $ 12.10
Race 9 # 1 Battle Buster $ 3 SH (1st) Win $ 2.60. ext. $ 3.90. Ball. $ 13.00.
While we did not win the Place Pick Nine, we did have a net profit of $ 13.00 for the day while maintaining our original bankroll of $ 20.00. As you can see, continuous parlay can help you assess how your downside is going. Make adjustments on your next outing. It is clearly a fun way to play and teaches serious discipline.
As mentioned above, you may want to apply the self-driving rolling show parlay to Pick three, Pick four, Pick five, and Pick six to prepare for a handicap challenge. Other ways to apply this betting technique could go beyond playing a single track race card. Try multi-track betting on Saturday covering multiple races or even a multi-track with specific conditions, for example all seven furlongs races. The goal here is to improve your handicapping skills, have fun on a tight budget, and hopefully make a little coin.
With a rolling show bet, you can budget as low as two dollars for each race and one dollar for the Place Pick Nine bet. If a lot of your horses end up in the prize, you could go home with a few extra bucks. At the same time, you will have fun and improve your handicapping skills while playing the races.