Summer racing is in full swing in the northern hemisphere and with it some of the best horse racing of the year. In the United States, Saratoga and Del Mar are offering programs every week along with many other fine tracks. The turf courses are green and the horses who race over them are in the ripeness of the growing season for all things. It is a great time to be a handicapper and as you know, a great time to find horses who run true to form, which is one of the secrets of success at the races.

For people who follow horse racing it is a great time with many stakes races and thrilling efforts by great champions and future champions. Big Brown has come back from his disappointing loss in the Belmont to score a win in the Haskell. A trio of European invaders have taken the richest grass race in North America, the Arlington Million. Their performance showed why horse racing is such a great tradition in Europe and the British isles.

But these races of champions are not always the easiest ones to handicap, and though they are thrilling to watch, the most formful and profitable races may be the races for maidens and the very young starters. There are two year old races now that offer some great betting opportunities. The thing about two year olds is that some mature much faster than others and almost all of them are very healthy now and have no old injuries to overcome. They are in a word, “fresh.”

It is possible to look at the maiden races and two year old races, whether maiden, allowance, or stakes, and find some very formful horses. Because with maidens, what you see is usually what you get. It is a little known fact that maiden races offer a high percentage of winning favorites. The reason for that is that the public can spot the ones who are maturing faster than the others or who are just the more talented.

Remember this, in a maiden special weight race you may find several horses who will never win a race, a few that will win but only at the maiden claiming level, while there may be the next triple crown winner in the same race. Being able to spot the disparities between the runners will help you to find some great bets. The young horses are full of energy and rebound quickly from minor injuries, unlike older horses that require more time to recuperate.

After many years of handicapping I have come to rely on my horse racing picks in the maiden races and races for younger horses. Prove it to yourself and watch the odds and the favorites in the maiden ranks. You’ll be amazed at how accurately the odds reflect each runner’s chances.

Source by Bill Peterson