Cary Fotias

Cary Fotias is the Founder and President of Equiform, a New York City firm that produces The XTRAS and The SHORTS, handicapping products for evaluating current condition and form cycles. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed handicapping book, Blinkers Off, which describes an innovative numerical approach to form-cycle analysis.

After spending eight years as a currency trader on Wall Street, Fotias has spent the last 16 years as professional handicapper. He is a member of the NTRA Players Panel and was chosen to give a presentation to the Ad Hoc Committee on the Future of New York Racing on behalf of New York horseplayers.

Fotias is a vocal proponent of lower takeouts. He also has a strong interest in the cutting-edge concept of betting exchanges and how they might be developed in the U.S. He feels the game would prosper if it would only adapt to the economic and technological realities of the information age.

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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Well, here I go again

I am going to beat this “dead horse” ‘til more of you wake up. Ellis Park has a 4% take on the Pick-4 – YES, 4%. I am ashamed to say that my fellow horseplayers have not yet supported this wager with the handle it deserves. This bet should be handling $300,000-$500,000 per day.

Just last week, horseplayers bet over seven million dollars into a big carryover pool at Hollywood. I invested thousands that day and, let me tell you, it was not vintage racing. The Pick-6 sequence started with a bottom-of-the barrel $8,000 Claiming Race and continued with a cheap Starter Allowance for horses who had broken their maiden for $40,000 or less, a NW1 Allowance, a Cal-bred Maiden Special Weight for fillies, a small Stakes, and the usual So Cal Maiden Claimer in the finale. What a card!! And yet over SEVEN MILLION dollars was poured though the mutuel machines.

This Hollywood pool was the biggest Pick-6 pot in US pari-mutuel history and made thirteen (twelve if you only count the Los Alamitos guy once) lucky winners very happy. It left the rest of us poorer and, apparently, none the wiser. Chasing big Pick-6 payouts provides a lot of entertainment value and, once in a blue moon, a life-changing score. But day-in and day-out, it is LOWER
TAKEOUT RATES that will keep us in action and give skilled handicappers a real chance to win in the long run.

If you don’t get involved in the Ellis Park Pick-4 as often as you can and for as much as you can, you are obviously not a card-carrying member of the Horseplayers Union. If Norma Jean can create change, we can too – but only if we take this golden opportunity to speak with our pocketbook. SEND IT IN on the Ellis Park Pick-4 and show the industry that TAKEOUT RATES DO MATTER. Let Ellis Park and innovative owner Ron Geary be a beacon unto an industry that treats its customers like cattle being led to slaughter.

Are you tired of horseplayer/handicappers being referred to as bums and compulsive gamblers. Well, here’s your chance to show the powers that be what we are really all about. We love the intellectual stimulation of handicapping and that, when coupled with the majesty of the thoroughbred, we are playing the greatest game in the world. We will not all die broke. But certainly, many of us will give up playing the game seriously if takeout rates and other issues are not
concretely addressed in the not too distant future.

I am doing all I can to promote the Ellis Park Pick-4. Along those lines, I am offering all HorseRaceInsider viewers free Equiform product for the rest of the meet. That’s right, just e/mail and we will send it out every day.

I am doing all I can to show the industry that SERIOUS PLAYERS REQUIREE CHANGE. Ron Geary and Ellis Park are doing all they can do. The question is, dear horseplayer, are you doing ALL YOU CAN DO?

I Hope So..

Written by Cary Fotias Provides the Most Accurate Thoroughbred Handicapping Data
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