19 Mar It Came from the Outside Post!
[dropcap]I[/dropcap]f you haven’t discovered Derek Simon’s podcast at TwinspiresRadio, you should do so now. . .or as soon as you finish reading this post. Treat your ears to the racing musings of a knowledgeable host and to lots of substantive handicapping content.
A topic that arose when he interviewed me was outside post positions. Derek expressed his frustration at trying to convince people outside posts don’t automatically produce trip-related horrors for horses and horseplayers. If you’ve read my book, you know that I agree. Outside post positions don’t produce horrors, but they definitely produce toteboard monsters because bettors underfeed the beasts banished to those distant gates.
In The Lazy Bettor’s Guide to the Kentucky Derby I mention the 5 outside posts in the Kentucky Derby produced 42% of Derby winners since 2000 with only 26% of the total starters. Not stats indicative of a disadvantage. Instead, the stats suggest some advantages are gained from starting wide, with “avoiding trouble” chief among them.
To offer a fresh example, let me demonstrate with the results of last year’s Derby preps:
Goldencents wins Delta Jackpot from post 9 of 9 at 9-2.
Will Take Charge wins Smarty Jones Stakes from post 9 of 9 at 12-1.
Will Take Charge wins Rebel Stakes from post 7 of 11 at 28-1. (Oxbow 2nd by a head from post 10)
Overanalyze wins Arkansas Derby with 5-wide trip from post 9 of 10. (Frac Daddy 2nd from post 8 at 23-1)
Black Onyx wins Spiral Stakes 5 wide from post 9 at 15-1.
In addition ,Verrazano won the Wood from post 8 of 10, Vyjack won the Gotham 5 wide from post 7 of 11 and Overanalyze won the Remsen from post 7 of 10. And, after the Derby, Palace Malice won the Belmont from post 12 of 12. All in all that’s a pretty good showing for allegedly disadvantaged contenders.