Beginner’s Bet of the Week: New Year’s Eve Daily Double at Aqueduct

This week marks the latest installment of a series on America’s Best Racing, the Beginner’s Bet of the Week sponsored by NYRA Bets. Each week, this blog will explore a new type of bet by explaining exactly what it is, how best to use that bet, and by putting the wager into practice in a race.

Holiday horse racing awaits at tracks like Gulfstream Park and 300+ more with NYRA Bets. With NYRA Bets, new users can enjoy a $200 Sign Up Deposit Match Bonus anytime. Just use promo code ABR200 and get in the action today! And be sure to tune into “America’s Day at the Races” running on FS2 and FS1 this weekend.

This week, we’ll shift our focus to “horizontal” bets, or bets that cover multiple races. This column focuses on playing the daily double, also known as simply “the double.” The goal of a double is to pick the winner of two consecutive races.

The double is the oldest of the so-called “exotic” bets, first introduced in the 1930s. Initially, it was offered only on the first two races of the day. Nowadays, doubles are offered on all consecutive two-race sequences. The minimum wager on a double is $1.

In a double, you are not limited to using just one horse in a race. You have the option to use multiple horses in each race, albeit at a higher cost. For example, if you like #1 and #2 equally in race 1, and #3 in race 2, you can play a #1 and #2 with #3 double on those races. If the #1 or #2 win race 1, and #3 wins race 2, you’ll hit the double. That bet costs $2 (2 X 1).

Because they are relatively low-risk, doubles do not pay as much as other horizontal bets. On Sunday, Nov. 14, the eight doubles at Aqueduct had an average return of $32.86 for a $1 bet. By contrast, the average payoff on the seven $1 pick 3s that day was $200.75.

As such, the key to success in the doubles is to zone in on two strong opinions and trying not to “spread” too much in either race. You dilute your expected payoff when you spread too much. If you “single” two horses you like, or use just one horse in each race of the double, you’ll get a maximum return while taking fullest advantage of your strongest opinions.

Friday’s Aqueduct Daily Double Bet

The late double at Aqueduct on Friday consists of the 7th and 8th race. My top pick in the 7th race, the Alex M. Robb Stakes for New York-breds, is #8 Captain Bombastic. He broke from the far outside post in his last start and was forced to race wide throughout. As a result, he stopped badly. He was in improving form prior to that race, including a win in the Polynesian Stakes at Laurel Park. His most recent workout was very sharp and he should bounce back Friday.

Race 8 is a New York-bred maiden race for 2-year-olds. In this leg, I’ll use #6 Bossmakinbossmoves. He’s run great speed figures in each of his three starts, and was a strong-closing fifth when coming from behind last out. He’s also getting better with every start and should rally for the win.

To place this bet with a teller, say “Aqueduct, Race 7, $1 double, #8 with #6”. When betting on an ADW, click the #8 box in the first column, and the #6 box in the second column.