The Handicapper's Book List

Fast Track Simulcapping:

In Association with

A number of you have requested information regarding handicapping theories and systems. For your convenience we have listed below a number of reference books, and later will include some other resources. We have attached a brief review outlining our thoughts on each. If you have any specific questions about any of them please contact us at "".

If you are interested in purchasing any of these items we recommend that you do so through the internet's largest bookstore "", and we have provided you with a direct link to their website. If you are interested in ordering a particular book you can just click on the item below directly. Or if you want to search for something else (by subject, title or author for instance) you can try the search box. Once there you can browse through their larger selection of books on handicapping and other subjects.

Search: Enter keywords...

by Andrew Beyer

This book is one of the better treatises on speed handicapping, and is well written by the always entertaining Andy Beyer. It is good from a technical view point for those wanting to understand speed figures and speed handicapping in general, and to gain an insight into the famous Beyer figures in particular. He goes into a clear explanation of the theory behind the calculations. Although some may take issue with some particular aspects of his theory there is little doubt that, with all the care invested into the preparation of Beyer's speed ratings, they have become the standard against which all others are measured. Beyer also takes a stab at trying to explain the workings and shortcomings of pace handicapping. Although his bias in favor of speed handicapping must be kept in mind, some of his criticism of the assumptions behind pace handicapping are worth noting.

BETTING THOROUGHBREDS: A Professional's Guide for the Horseplayer
by Steven Davidowitz

Davidowitz has written a comprehensive text that covers all of the essentials of handicapping in one volume from the basics for beginners to thoughtful analysis of pace and speed handicapping, trainers, track bias, key race theory and practice, workouts, dosage and betting strategies for exotics. A must read for the novice and professional alike, this is the second revised edition of his classic work of the same title.

by Tom Brohamer

Although this book gets off on the wrong foot with its fadish (and now rejected) reliance on feet per second calculations it is nevertheless the best introduction to pace handicapping available. Most of the text relies upon consideration of pace rankings rather than the actual figures calculated, and so the reader's aversion to feet per secondism is not much of a drawback. It provides a very readable explanation of the "Sartin Methodology" and the pace versus speed argument from the pace side.

by William L. Scott

Written in 1984 this remains our choice as best introduction to understanding the mysteries of form cycles. Many of the guidelines Scott proposes are still valuable today, and he presents a method of play that does not depend upon complicated calculation of speed and pace figures.

DAVE LITFIN'S EXPERT HANDICAPPING: Winning Insights into Betting Thoroughbreds
by Dave Litfin

Liftin is a long time and well respected columnist for the DRF. He introduces the reader to many novel angles showing how to use speed figures, whether the Beyer figures, or the figures provided in the "sheets" of Ragozin or Brown. His insights into how to spot horses ready to run breakthrough races, and how to read the past performances for hints of trainer intentions are invaluable.

WINNING AT THE RACES: Computer Discoveries in Thoroughbred Handicapping
by William L. Quirin

Although written in 1979, it is our opinion that this is possibly the best book written to date on throughbred handicapping. It would certainly be at the top of our list except for the fact that it is out of print. Quirin was the first to make proper use of computers in the analysis of horse racing, and many of his insights and methodologies are still used today, often by those who do not know where they originated. If you can find a copy read it.