Crunching the numbers from the past week ending yesterday (Tuesday) shows that the recent drop in takeout on the Pick 4 from 26.2% to 14% has become very popular amongst Horseplayers.
There was improvement in handle on Sunday, as $8,900 was wagered in total for both Pick 4s. That is compared to $8,200 from a year ago. But this increase was nothing compared to Monday and Tuesday when $20,000 and over $19,000 was wagered respectively, compared with $10,100 and $11,800 last year.
Comparing the total for all 6 Pick 4s, handle was up over 59%. That is amazing considering there has been very little written about the increase.
There is obviously a group of Horseplayers paying attention to takeout these days.
Unfortunately for Fort Erie, there has been no sign of spillover to other pools, as total handle for all pools was down over 20% the past three days.
It looks like that many Horseplayers have become aware that the Pick 4 at Fort Erie is a great deal, while the rest of the exotics suck big time, as the takeout on these bets remain at a minimum of 26.2%.
Maybe it is too early in the season for the 4 PM post time, or maybe the 4 PM post time on Mondays and Tuesdays is a little too late and should be changed to 2:30 or 3:00.
A ninth race on Mondays and Tuesdays would probably pay for themselves.
And what is with short field allowance races that attract horses who should be running at Woodbine? Those relatively high purse races aren't being bet, and they aren't good for the local economy if the winner is stationed at Woodbine.
Anyway, lets hope Fort Erie comes to the realization that some of their takeouts are ridiculously high. Lets also hope that Woodbine is paying attention, because some of their takeouts are relatively on the average to low side (exactors and doubles), and a low takeout Pick 4 could create lots of spillover into other pools.