If you want to learn the complex but deeply rewarding trade of horse handicapping yourself, nothing beats reading the best horse racing handicapping books of all time.
From vintage – but still relevant – classics, to new and exciting write-ups, these horse racing handicapping books can turn a rookie into a pro and elevate even hardened experts into a new level of quality.
Below we’re gonna take a look at the top 9 horse handicapping books you can get, all of which feature a straightforward review to let you know what they’re all about. Out of the dozens upon dozens of books on the subject, these are by far the most excellent ones.
Now without further ado, let’s take a look at them!
Here you can read thorough reviews of the top 9 best horse race handicapping books of all time. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases (at 0 cost to you), so you’ll also be supporting the website and keeping the lights on – enjoy!
A classic among classics, Andrew Beyer’s (the man behind “Beyer Speed Figures”) most popular book is an excellent foundation for any horse betting enthusiast that’s interested in handicapping.
It offers 240 pages of straightforward, deeply valuable information that’s expertly written by one of the leading experts of the sport, as mentioned above, Andrew Beyer.
It’s considered by many to be one of the best horse handicapping books and I share that opinion as well. Even with its release date – 1975 (since re-released) – the knowledge remains just as fresh and contemporary as it was then.
An essential for both beginners and professionals, you owe it to yourself to buy this classic. Excellent.
The more focused and advanced sequel to the superb book seen above, Andrew Beyer’s “The Winning Horseplayer” builds upon the essentials laid out by the previous book and does its best to take you from a novice into an expert.
From track bias to pace and past performance data analysis, you’ll learn how to handicap like the legend himself – the author – in a smart, easy and entertaining way due to his anecdotes and fun writing style.
Couple this with the first book and you’ve got yourself a powerful duo of horse handicapping books that’ll instantly put you ahead of most.
Another fantastic classic straight from 1988, Tom Ainslie’s Complete Guide to Thoroughbred Racing is a must-have. Even though it shows its age on the more technological side it covers, it stays absolutely relevant on everything else.
From the basics of breeding to the calculations of speed, pace and other factors like class, weight, condition, jockeys, stables, tracks and everything in between, it gives you a comprehensive arsenal of tools to aid your handicapping.
It also features 60 tips on how to place profitable bets and at 352 pages it’s a well of knowledge – get it!
Giving you fantastic insight into how to calculate pace and comparative speed of horses in a race, Tom Brohamer’s “Modern Pace Handicapping” is worthy of a place on the list and beloved by many worldwide.
It will teach you the author’s accurate and unique handicapping system that stays just as powerful today as it did back in the 2000’s. Now, his calculations and complex ratings need a few hours of devotion in order to apply successfully so beware – only get this if you’re willing to put in the time and effort. If you do though, you won’t regret it.
It’s a fantastic system and an equally fantastic book. Recommended for more serious handicappers that want to up their game.
Drawing from his 40 years of experience to give you a straightforward guide on how to pick winning horses, James Quinn delivers a modern classic. With his thorough, clear and highly instructive style of writing, the popular and respected author makes it an absolute breeze to understand the world of horse handicapping.
Even with its concise and straightforward style, it clocks in at 695 pages due to the richly detailed step by step nature of the book which makes it perfect for beginners.
Filled to the brim with valuable tips and rock-solid guides into analysis, this book is a beautiful investment if you want to get serious and make some money at the races. Especially recommended for beginners that want to get good in an instant.
Extremely short but interesting, concise and valuable, Christian Blake’s “How to Pick Long Shots” is a great side-arm for the handicappers that already dominate the basics.
It displays 3 different scenarios where you can accurately find long shots at the race track, which allows you to make some obscene amounts of money if successful. Even though it’s short, every part of the process is presented in a step-by-step manner and the verified results of the system are impressive.
For experts only, I can’t help but recommend this book as it opens the doors for insane amounts of profit potential.
An incredible introduction to modern horse race handicapping, Brad Free’s popular book delivers a great foundation for novices.
It cuts the more technical and statistical language and theories and opts to go for a more basic and easy to understand route, which makes it super clear even for people who know nothing about handicapping.
At 228 pages and written in an extremely basic way, this book’s a solid introduction to the sport that anyone can easily read and understand.
In my opinion, the best take on modern handicapping ever written. Steven Davidovitz’s incredible book is essential for anyone that wants to get to know, learn and use modern horse handicapping techniques like software and also what the modern world brought to the sport – synthetic surfaces, super trainers, wagering syndicates and more.
At 380 pages of length, it’s as good of an introduction as it is an update into the contemporary aspect of the sport.
Recommended for both beginners that want to skip straight into the modern times of the trade and for experts that need a much needed update to up their game.
Yet another outstanding write up, Michael Pizzolla’s “Handicapping Magic” – as cheesy as it sounds – is a solid book that deserves your consideration. Yes it has a few overly promotional phrases and terms like “magic questions” and such but heck, the core information is beautifully valuable and worth the read.
At 448 pages, it’s a comprehensive and very well detailed guide into thoroughbred race handicapping that features step-by-step technique guides, real life examples, common mistakes to avoid and how to find an overlay bet (a value bet).
Straightforward, entertaining to read and offering some truly valuable information, Handicapping Magic is worth the buy even with its quirky title and terms.
Whether you’re new to the trade or a professional, you should absolutely read these horse racing handicapping books. Not only will they make it easier for you to learn how to handicap horses yourself, but the knowledge you’ll gain from them can revolutionize your strategy and most importantly – your profits – so don’t hesitate and start reading them today!