Horseshoe Indianapolis Returns Tuesday, April 19th
The track formerly known as Indiana Grand will return to racing on Tuesday. The track has a new moniker, Horseshoe Indianapolis, but will offer the same great action.
While much of the horse racing world is mired in the old ways, Horseshoe Indianapolis is unafraid to push the envelope.
They have experimented with lowering takeout on certain bets which means more money back in the pockets of players. This is vital as the “vig” in horse racing usually pushes 18-25%. This makes the product less appealing to those used to sports betting which features a much lower house take.
Other successful programs include a host of free contests, the use of drones for race replays, and stewards review.
All of this means that Indiana Grand, which was rebranded to Horseshoe Indianapolis this winter is one of the best tracks for player experience.
Horseshoe Indianapolis: 2021 Early Meet Trends
Sometimes when looking at the new meet it can helpful to see what trends were successful early in last year’s meet. Here’s what the numbers show.
Favorites and Average Odds
In 2021 during the first 2 weeks favorites were solid at distances under 6 furlongs winning 12 of 33 races. This is just over the 1/3 measuring stick that is often used. However, there was plenty of value to be had as can been seen in the final column which indicates that the the 43 thoroughbred races produced winners at average odds of roughly 6-1.
The first 2 weeks saw pretty representative performances from the jockey colony. Unsurprisingly Prescott, Pompell, and Parker led the way. They are three of the top jocks at Indy every year.
The trainer race also some of the usual suspects, but one thing was clear. Randy Klopp comes into the Horseshoe Indianapolis meet ready to fire. He put up 9 wins in the first two weeks while the 6 trainers tied for second could manage no more than 2 each.
When it comes to which tracks are most successful, the greatest number of winners ran their last race at one of two places. Either they prepped in the winter meet at Turfway Park or they had been off since the end of the 2020 Horseshoe Indy meet.
It should be noted that this is where a majority of runners came from so the discrepancy could be a result of the total number of runners coming from each circuit.
Winning Posts and Run Styles
Without question the best place to start was in post positions 4-7 which won at least half of the races at every distance. The wide posts were least productive, but many races have only 1 or two runners wider than the 7 post so that is expected. It is noteworthy that under the 6 furlong distance the 1-3 posts underperformed winning under 33% of races.
Perhaps the most telling trend was where horses won from at the second call. Across all distances the average 2nd call position of the winner was less than 1 length behind the leaders. If 2022 plays anything like 2021, players will want to find horses that figure to be on or near the lead throughout.
Although Horseshoe Indianapolis does make use of their turf course throughout the meet, the opening weeks are all dirt racing. This allows the turf course to recover after the long cold Indiana winter.
Tuesday Opening Day Analysis
The opening day card is really challenging. Especially given that players need to rely on past year’s data to try to figure out the card.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 1
Post: 2:30 PM ET; Purse: $15,000 Claiming, 5 1/2 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 6
- #2 SHIPSHAPE (8-5) is a major player in today's race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & power rating.
- #6 HIGHEST PRAISE (5-2) is worth a look here given edges in class & form.
- #3 JENNSTONE (6-1) is proven as a good bet to at least hit the board under today's distance and surface conditions.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 2
Post: 3:00 PM ET; Purse: $25,000 Starter Optional Claiming, 5 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 6
- #6 RADIANTRITHYM (6-1) is really good at the 5 furlong distance and should be able to get the right trip from the 6 post.
- #2 PICANTE CALIENTE (2-1) is a tricky one in this spot. If you go back to the last dirt effort she ran a solid 76 Brisnet speed figure. That was a speed and fade, but this group might be easier. The number of past turf efforts for this one also makes me wonder if this is just a warm up race for the real target. Still she may just be better.
- #1 GRANITE CANDY (3-1) should be competitive based on the overall power rating which has it tops in the group.
- #4 STYLIN UPTOWN (12-1) is an early run type that could get back to a best speed figure returning to a dry dirt track which she hasn’t seen in her last 4 starts.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 3
Post: 3:30 PM ET; Purse: $12,500 Claiming, 5 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 7
- #3 WELL CONNECTED (9-5) has a great shot in the race given the speed & class.
- #7 BIG BELLA BROWN (3-1) should be competitive based on the overall power rating which has it tops in the group. I love that the trainer lost this one and almost immediately dipped back in to get him back.
- #5 TIZ APPROVED (5-1) has improving speed figures over the last 4 starts.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 4
Post: 4:00 PM ET; Purse: $43,000 Allowance, 5 1/2 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 8
- #7 MR CHAOS (3-1) is dropping in class. The horse has been off since October but the trainer is 21% off this type of layoff. I love the horse is 2 for 2 and has won using 2 completely different run styles.
- #4 JEFF THE RUNNER (12-1) is sent out by Randy Klopp and he calls on Tommy “Give ‘em Hell” Pompell. That’s a sign of confidence from the trainer.
- #1 Unbridled Victor (15-1) was cycling up in form when the meet ended last October. The trainer is 17% off long layoffs and the speed figures keep trending up this one has every right to catch a piece at a price.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 5
Post: 4:30 PM ET; Purse: $38,500 Maiden Special Weight, 5 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 10
- #10 BELLA'S PRAYER (2-1) makes a ton of sense here if he can work out the trip form the 10 post.
- #5 NO PROOF has been on a solid work pattern recently. Ramos in the saddle is a good sign
- #4 MONEY MAN BRYLAN (8-1) will get the team of Klopp and Pompell. The numbers were respectable before and this one should appreciate the cutback.
- #3 SMILE LIKE KYLE is a closing type if you believe the first race, but I don’t trust that to be the case today. I look for this one to get a little more involved. The trainer is 11% with second time starters.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 6
Post: 5:00 PM ET; Purse: $38,000 Allowance, 5 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 14
- #10 FLYING SAMURAI (3-1) is a major player in today's race edging the field in several key handicapping factors including speed & power rating.
- #7 ORO AZTECA (12-1) drops in class and cuts back. This one loves to run fast and the consistent work tab means this one may be ready to fire.
- #2 REMEMBER HYMM (4-1) has some of the best speed figures in the group and has been running against solid company.
- #5 MALIBU CLASSIC (15-1) won’t be as close as I would like, but I prefer the middle draw to some of those on the outside who are more talented. This one has at least been improving steadily in the last 3 races.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 7
Post: 5:30 PM ET; Purse: $38,500 Maiden Special Weight, 5 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 11
- #11 TOO BAD JUSTICE (8-5) is the standout of the experienced runners. The wide post is a little unnerving however.
- #8 SHINEONBRAD (3-1) will likely have the stamina to outlast these in the final jumps of the race.
- #2 SPACE FORCE WON (6-1) has a trainer who fires 25% winners on debut in a limited sample size. The dam is also 4 for 4 producing winners.
- #7 JERICHO EXPRESS (15-1) goes out for the West barn which fires at 15% with first time starters. The breeding is as good as any here.
Selections: 11-7-8-2 (BEST BET: #11 TOO BAD JUSTICE)
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 8
Post: 6:00 PM ET; Purse: $34,000 Maiden Special Weight, 5 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 10
This is by far the hardest race of the card to pin down. If you are playing horizontal wagers like the pick 5 it feels like this is where you will need to go deep.
- #4 COURTHOUSE COVE (5-2) makes sense in the race based on speed and the foes seen early in the career. This one is the likeliest winner but far from a slam dunk.
- #8 CLASSIC KING (10-1) is out of Miss Mambo who has 4 winners including a stakes winner out of 7 foals.
- #10 RUBINSTEIN (9-2) should find this group easier than the group he saw at Turfway Park back in March. I like the recency factor for this one.
- #6 BAD BLOOD (10-1) has success in the family. The dam has thrown 6 winners from 6 starters including a stakes runner.
- #3 ONYOURMARKGETSETGO (9-2) gets a bit of class relief and has speed numbers that are respectable. Oaklawn Park isn’t an easy place to run, so the races there make this one a player.
- #9 MY GOLD MIRROR (6-1) is Klopp and Pompell and I don’t want them beating me in a wide open affair.
Selections: 4-8-10-6-3-9 (+ as many as you can afford)
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 9
Post: 6:30 PM ET; Purse: $36,000 Allowance, 5 1/2 Furlongs on Dirt; Entries: 13
- #2 MISTER KELLY (3-1) has run against good company and put up speed figures that many of these haven’t proven worthy of hitting.
- #6 CHARGE THE LINE (5-1) should be competitive today based on the horse's speed & form.
- #7 BIG NICK (12-1) should be among the early pace setters and has last out speed numbers on par with the best.
- #3 ABUELO NUNO (6-1) is trained by Tom Amoss. He ships here after running this one first off the claim at Fair Grounds. He is 31% in his 2nd start off the claim.
Horseshoe Indianapolis Race 10- Quarters
Post: 7:00 PM ET; Purse: $18,000 Maiden, 250 Yards on Dirt; Entries: 10
- Quarter horse racing is a different breed. I do most of my handicapping by looking at the top speed index number and best class. Outside of that I like to look for runners that look on their toes during the post parade.
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