Today, The Professor answers a question submitted by David L. He said, “My question is about post parade behavior. I usually ignore it, but should I? I’ve seen dogs who totally refuse to walk to the starting box and must be carried. I’ve seen a dog that would leap 6 feet in the air several times as he was led to the box. It didn’t seem to affect their performance. Is there a behavior that does affect performance. Wagering online, we often cannot even see the post parade.”
Excellent question. The simple answer is no, it is not important to see the post parade. The greyhounds will act the same every time they are paraded, almost without exception. I suppose if you would want to take the time to watch every dog, every time they are paraded, you might see some difference that would matter, but that rare occurrence is not worth the time and effort. If you happen to see a greyhound with a slight limp, you might want to worry, but even that could just be because of a nick in the pad, that would not affect his running. Some dogs pull hard, some don’t and, like you mentioned, some may leap into the air. There was a greyhound that ran at Multnomah in the late 70’s or early 80’s named Bobby Go, who would leap every few steps. He was a top flight greyhound, so it obviously had no effect on his performance.
This is another major difference between handicapping greyhounds and thoroughbreds. The post parade is important in thoroughbred racing as the way the horse is moving, whether or not he or she is “washed out” or sweating, if not normal for that horse, can be a bad signal. Also, thoroughbreds may have wraps on their legs, which can be a sign of being unsound, especially if the wraps are on the front legs. this kind of information can be useful, and can generally be found on thoroughbred’s past performance lines.
Thank you for the question, David L!
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