The 9th Race at Turfway Park on December 5th, 2009 provides and interesting introduction to Key Races. Silver Time won by 1-1/4 lengths, beating 8 other horses. She won in a respectable time of 1:10 for 6 furlongs and, although it doesn't show in the results chart, was awarded a Speed Rating of 94 for her performance. Although Silver Time won pretty much wire-to-wire, the race was fairly well contested with the first five horses coming in within about seven lengths.
What makes this a Key Race? Well, the place horse, Vegas Wedding, ran 12 days later to win the 2nd at Turfway Park on December 17th, 2009 and the fourth horse, Wedding Diamond, won 3 days later, taking the 8th at the same track on December 20th, 2009. So, here we have two horses from the 9th on December 5th, who have gone on to win their next races, making this one a Key Race.
Let's say you're scanning through the past performances for the 9th at Turfway Park on January 3rd, 2010. You might notice the 2 horse, Lavenham, who ran a decent fifth in the 12/05 race. So, she's coming out of a Key Race and is definitely worth a closer look. Running the race through the MyWay Handicapping Program I found that she had excellent Sartin Velocities in her last race and the second highest BRIS Power Rating. The only question mark was her move from 6f to 1-1/16m, but she showed a good mile race at Churchill Downs several months back. Going off at 6/1 she was definitely the value bet. She went wire-to-wire to win by 5 lengths, paying $14.60
Silver Time was the next winner coming out of our Key Race. Running in the 10th at Turfway Park on Jan 8, 2008, she took control of the small field of 4 at the ¼ and never looked back. Of course, as the winner of our Key Race it's not surprising that she was the favorite, going off at even odds and paying just $2.20. Sweet Gladys, the show horse in our Key Race also went on to win her next race, the 7th at Turfway Park on Jan 15, 2010. She demolished the field, winning by 5-3/4 and paying $6.00. So we see that the first five (5) finishers in our Key Race went on to win their next races. In addition, Go Lydia Go, who was 7th and about 16 lengths back, went on to win the 5th at TPX on Jan 10, 2010, paying $11.40
If, after watching Vegas Wedding and Wedding Diamond win to establish the Key Race, you had bet on each of the remaining horses next time out, you would have wagered $12 and collected $34.20. A nice little 185% profit!.
Perhaps this explains why I am such a believer in the Key Race concept!