Chicago Barn to Wire
Home | News | Bloggers | Forums | Resources | Links | Marketplace | Gallery | Contact Us | Search
Chicago racing newsletter sign-up
Upcoming events
Arlington Million

News Updates

Previous stories

Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Tribune
Daily Herald
Daily Racing Form
Harness Link
Illinois Racing Board

Arlington Million
Triple Crown
Illinois Derby

Breeders' Cup
Arlington Million
Triple Crown
Illinois Derby

Breeders' Cup
Hawthorne Gold Cup
Arlington Million
Triple Crown
Illinois Derby





Balmoral Park

Balmoral Park (2/14/12)

Contact: Tom Kelley
(708) 672-1414

Wednesday Players Guide

An inside look at Chicago harness racing

By Michael Antoniades, Chicago Racing Analyst
Available on the web at


The first six weeks of 2012 are in the books and judging from recently compiled statistics the average payouts on Balmoral wagers have increased greatly since last year. The Pick Five and High Five are clearly two of the hottest bets in racing. The two wagers combined with larger purses, guaranteed Pick Fours, low minimum fifty cent trifecta and ten cent superfecta wagering have clearly helped the handle figures explode in 2012.

Through February 12, eighteen Balmoral programs have handled $19,101,118 for a nightly average of $1,061,173. A total of 202 races have been contested with an average of $94,559 wagered per race.

With the help of the USTA strategic Wagering Initiative and Track Master, the Pick Four pools continue to climb. Players have wagered $500,476 on the eighteen Pick Fours for a nightly average of $27,804. The average one dollar payout is currently $2,401.72 for the 2012 season.

The original ten cent High Five is offered on the final race of the night. The bet has become the most popular ďget outĒ wager for many players across North America.

Although the High Five is a ten cent bet, the average payout has been $1,918 for a dime. The average 2012 High Five pool is $18,119.

The 50 cent Pick Five has been producing big numbers as well. With the help of a $10,000 guaranteed pool on Sundays, players have bet over a quarter of a million dollars on the Balmoral Pick Five for a 2012 average pool of $14,181. The average payout thus far in 2012 has been $4,097 for fifty cents.

Speaking of the Pick Five, The Meadowlands will have one of the best multi race pools of the year Thursday night because of a Pick Five carryover of $27,470. I have estimated a final pool of $145,000 so come out early for the Thursday Maywood card and play into one of the largest multi race pools of the year. Program pages for The Big M are included in the Maywood Park and Balmoral Park programs.

Maywood Park has also been enjoying success this winter. Friday handles are averaging over $1,000,000. The Maywood Pick Four pools are guaranteed nightly and have surpassed $14,000 the last two Fridays. 50 cent trifecta and ten cent superfecta wagering is offered every night.

Balmoral Park and Maywood Park are part of the USTA Strategic Wagering Initiative. Pick Four wagering has guaranteed pools every night with a low takeout of 15 percent. Free program pages are available courtesy of Track Master at the handicapping section of

Welcome to the Players Guide

We will give you an informed look at tonightís racing program in Chicago. We have tailored the Players Guide for several types of betting style. What is your style? For me personally, it means being a contrarian and taking some chances. I will bet against the favorite whenever possible, if I think there is VALUE in another selection. Sometimes the play is to key a favorite on top of the overvalued horses in exotics. If you are going to show a profit in this game, you must get value when you are investing your money. In the long run, creating this discipline is the difference between winning and losing.

The ratings list our top selections in order of their probability of winning. These ratings give no credence to the odds, although horses with value are included in these selections throughout the evening. It is our opinion of the top contenders, listed in order of their probability of winning. If you are a risk taker or value player, then Michaelís Plays should be of considerable interest to you. I will take calculated chances, selecting horses with more wagering value and higher odds. My plays may select fewer winners than my top-rated selection, but in the long run, I believe Michaelís Plays will give you a higher return on your investment.

In closing, I remind you that the name of the game is not selecting the most winners. The name of the game is making money. Our goal is to have a profitable year. For the serious player, we know that is your goal as well.

Wednesday, February 8 Balmoral Park selections

No. Michael's Ratings Top Rated Horse (Conservative Choice) Michael's Play (Speculative Opinion)
1 8-1-2-9 8 Spurs Linda 9 Bubbalou
2 8-5-7-2 8 Obermeierzilla 7 Tone
3 4-6-9-3 4 Twenty One Below 9 Iím Seducible
4 7-2-1-3 7 Little L 1 Fox Valley Shelbie
5 6-2-4-3 6 Linda Kay 4 Justafrendlygestur
6 3-1-5-7 3 Hoosier Evangelism 5 Sue From Peru
7 8-7-5-6-2 8 Boiler Heidi Ho 2 Kitty O Brien
8 3-10-5-1-2 3 Itzalassi 5 Kimberley R
9 5-2-10-9-6 5 Bursting Blaze 6 Jo Jo Spur
10 6-7-1-4-9 6 Maximus Meridius N 7 Johnny B Cool N

Free program pages are available at the handicapping section at

My selections and harness racing news are available at

For more information visit or call (708) 672-1414.

About Balmoral Park: Located in Crete, IL just 12 miles south of 80/94; Balmoral Park has been one of the nation's premier horse racing facilities since 1926. Balmoral Park features live racing every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Admission and parking is always free.

index sitemap advanced
search engine by freefind



Recent headlines

Hawthorne summer harness stall apps due April 1 (3/23)

IRB March 2016 meeting agenda (3/10)

Running Aces 2016 stall applications are now available (3/2)

R. Craig Kelley, 72, dies (2/28)

Hawthorne announces spring late closers (2/26)

IHHA President David McCaffrey named as ITHA Executive Director (2/15)

Change can be good (2/13)

No place like home for Casey (2/12)

Watch and Bet Harness Racing at



Home | News Updates | Bloggers | Forums | Search
Resources | Links | Marketplace | Gallery | Advertising | Contact Us

Copyright © 2000-2017 Chicago Barn to Wire. All rights reserved.
Privacy policy