06 June 2008

The secret of my success

Last year, the King and I had a fabulous day at Belmont. We both wagered a substantial amount on the Stakes race, and the King hit the exacta pretty big, while I won the superfecta. Since then, I've been letting all of my friends believe that yes, we're just simply fabulous handicappers.

Well, that might not be exactly accurate. I can't speak for the King, whose mind works in mysterious ways, but after playing the Belmont for three years, I've figured something out: pedigree expert Lauren Stich owns this race. At least she has for as long as I've been following racing. If she talks about three horses being bred for the distance, I'll hit the trifecta. If she mentions four, do not leave one out (as I did in 2006) -- just go with a superfecta box. Works like a charm. Sure, it feels a bit like cheating, but we librarians are always evaluating information sources, separating the wheat from the chaff. I'm simply applying a bit of the same principles to racing tips, and when it comes to the Belmont Stakes, Stich is tops in my book.

So imagine my dismay when I learned that the Daily Racing Form no longer carries Lauren's wise and wonderful pedigree columns. She has been "let go," according to blogger SilverCharm.

I'm simply shocked; though I'm still struggling with her book, Pedigree Handicapping, her columns for the Daily Racing Form have always been helpful, informative, and lucrative. Stich has been included in a number of handicapping guides, most recently Bet with the Best II: Longshots, published by the very same Daily Racing Form that has now terminated her contract.

Fortunately for my reputation as an ace Belmont handicapper, I've discovered that Stich has posted her Belmont picks at Today's Racing Digest. I'm still debating whether I can afford them, as I'm not used to paying a separate charge for picks -- but I am truly glad to see that Stich's information is still available somewhere.

On a related note, I've noticed that DRF will be holding a book signing at Belmont on Saturday. Co-authors Steve Crist, Dave Liftin, and Mike Watchtower will be on hand to sign copies of Bet with the Best II. Maybe if I gush about the Lauren Stich chapter, Crist will think about hiring her back.


Rising Rainbow said...

It doesn't matter where you get the info.....it's how you use it. I think that still qualifies as fabulous handicapping to me.