Ok, so one of the most frequent questions we get from people who are novices to the sport of horse racing, is: What is a daily racing form and how do I read it? It's a common question because if you aren't familiar with the Daily Racing Form it can be intimidating. There's lots of numbers and shorthand that you may not understand the significance of. The truth is, the Daily Racing Form is the Bible for horse players. No gambler worth his salt would ever place a bet on a horse without looking at the Daily Racing Form first. There is a reason it has been around for over 125 years and has zero competitors. It presents you with all the information you need about a race and the horses in it to be a successful horse player. Also, it just makes handicapping more fun, because you know why you like certain horses over other ones. So, today, Paul and I are going to try and break down a daily racing form so you can understand it and use it to your advantage at the track.
Also I want to give Stoolies a special discount off everything in the DRF Shop - Past Performances, Picks, Clocker Reports, anything and everything is available for 20% off with coupon code BARSTOOL20. Use code BARSTOOL20 and get the Daily Racing Form to get you all the information you need to be a winner.
Ok so first things first. The highlighted portion above shows you this is the seventh race at Gulfstream Park in sunny South Florida and it will be one mile in distance. Next is the type of race it is. This is an Optional Claiming race which means some of these horses are available to purchase at the racetrack for $16,000. The purse is a total of $29,000, and these horses have not won since at least December 23, 2019. These are just the qualifiers for the horses to enter the race and the stakes they are running for. Right below the highlighted information you see the anticipated post time and the type of wagering allowed on this race. Note this is the start of the Late Pick Four.
Now this is where we start to get to the real good stuff. Each of the entries above will be replicated for every horse entered in a given race. The highlighted portion above shows the information for the horse who drew the first post position "Yodel E. A. Who". It will list his morning line odds which can change with wagering through the lead up to the race. It will show his ownership information as well as his pedigree information. Some key info here is the jockey/trainer combo, in this case Edgard Zayas and Saffie Joseph. Further to the right you will see the horses career record. So, in this case Yodel has made fourteen lifetime starts, won five of them and finished second and third twice each. We can also see that he likes a track that is fast because four of his five wins came on fast surfaces. So if it's raining in Florida when he runs, maybe pass on him.
This part of the racing form entry shows the horses past performances. So Yodel's last race was December 7th, 2019 in the Sixth Race at Gulfstream Park. The track was fast and he wound up finishing eighth. The numbers we see along the way are the fractions in which the quarter mile, half mile, etc. were run leading to his eight place finish. We are also able to see that last time out he had a different jockey. He had Tyler Gaffalione. If we look down one more race we see he won that time out and had Edgard Zayas aboard, who is riding him today. So that may work in our favor if we like Yodel. On the extreme right of the entry is the clocker's entry. It is a little blurb about how he ran that race. This one says "awkward start, not pressed". So maybe Yodel broke out of the gate poorly and never recovered. We can use DRF.com to watch his previous race replays just by clicking his name or the race and see for ourselves.
Obviously previous races are important, but so are workouts. Workouts can help you get a feel for how a horse is doing leading up to each race. The Daily Racing Form, of course, gives you that information as well. We can see Yodel did four furlongs recently in about 51 seconds. If we compare that to previous works at similar distance, we see it is a little slower than usual. Maybe he's not feeling well or maybe he isn't training great right now. Either way, you're armed with that information.
The final thing to look at is the Closer Look. This is where you get some information that isn't necessarily quantifiable. For instance here with our friend Yodel, we see that the closer look tells us there is a lot of inside speed in this race so Yodel may be drawn into things sooner than he prefers. Also it again noted the success he previously had with rider Zayas last year. All important information to consider when making your wager. This information is only available in formulator PP’s so make sure to pay attention to what version you’re using. Hint: They’re all great.
At the end of the day the Daily Racing Form is the Bible for anyone visiting a race track. As my gift to you I want to give you a head start on your handicapping as we head to a huge race weekend. I want to give Stoolies a special discount off everything in the DRF Shop - Past Performances, Picks, Clocker Reports, anything and everything is available for 20% off with coupon code BARSTOOL20. Use code BARSTOOL20 and get the Daily Racing Form to get you all the information you need to be a winner.