Oct 24, 2003
Double Action Angle
By: Ray Taulbot
This angle was originally devised for the purpose of getting a price on a fit, well-meant horse.
Its one weakness, however, is that horses frequently are dropped in class or claiming price
for reasons other than a trying effort next start. This being so, the handicapper is frequently hard
put to determine the true meaning of this move in any given instance. In short, some horses that
were dropped in class last start are well-meant today, while others are not.
This situation has made this angle most convenient for the horseman because of its uncertainty
of intent. This is especially true when the horse displayed an apparent lack of sharp condition in
its dropped-down race. Anyone who doubts that this device serves the horseman should study
their local result charts for a week, noting how many of the really high-priced winners are horses
that were moved down in class in their most recent race. Winners at prices from $30 up to as
high as $90 are frequently horses that were dropped in class last start.
The point of confusion is the entered price today. Some horses that moved down last start are
dropped again today; others are re-entered at the same price in the race following the initial drop.
With this in mind, the handicapper is at a loss to distinguish a well-meant horse of this type from
one that has been dropped for reasons other than preparing it for a trying effort today.
A great deal of research was required in order to discover a factor which separates the well-meant
horse from the horse that was dropped last start for no apparent reason.
The reader knows that a horse that was dropped in class and also showed a corresponding
drop in odds was probably sent out to win. If the horse lost last out, what are the trainer's
In researching this part of the angle, we have come upon a training tipoff which we believe reveals
the trainer"s intentions quite well. Not only do we consider it a positive factor for those horses
that tried and missed but also for horses that remained at their own claiming level in their last two
starts and which today may remain at that same level, move up in value or be dropped—it seems
to make little difference.
The trainer who tried and missed knows he did not send a razor-sharp horse to the races and
therefore takes a little time to fine-hone his charge for the next trip. The trainer who has been
racing his horse at the same claiming level knows he has a horse that is almost ready but he,
too, takes the same method of fine-tuning before he goes for the money.
The training tipoff you should look for consists of two parts, and both parts are equally
important. First, the horse must have been leading or running not more than one length off
the leader at the pre-stretch call of its last race. Second, the horse must show at least two workouts
since is most recent try. Here are the selection rules:
1. Horse must have been leading or running within one length of the leader at the pre-stretch
call of its last race.
2. It must have run recently, i.e. within 30 days.
3. The horse must show two or more workouts at any distance since its last race. Time of
the workouts is not important.
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