Conquering Head-To-Head Matchups in DerbyWars

Players often talk about Head-To-Head games and the different strategy involved.

There is definitely a different strategy to H2H games as you only have to beat one opponent.  It’s a true one-on-one matchup, where the goal isn’t necessarily to score big, but only to score enough to win.

It reminds me of one of my favorite competitive stories, which goes like this: Two men are walking through an African game reserve when they come across a lion, one of the men calmly puts down his backpack and slips on the running shoes he has been carrying.

The other man chuckles and says, “You’ll never outrun a lion.”  

To which the other man calmly responds, “I don’t need to outrun the lion; I just need to outrun you.”

In Head-To-Head games, you only need to beat your opponent.  Looking at the scores from 20 Head-To-Head games from the weekend of July 21-23, we can see that the average winning score was $37.92 over an average 8-race contest.  That comes out to $4.74 per race for the winner.

But looking at the 2nd place scores is where it comes into focus.  You’ll that they only averaged $18.14 per contest or $2.27 per race.  A score of $18.00 is equivalent to just two 2-1 winners that pay $9.00 (assume $6.00 to win and $3.00 to place).  In fact, looking at the second-place scores, if you reached a total of just $23.00, that would be good enough to beat the 2nd place finisher 70% of the time – in 14 of the 20 contests.  Only 4 times out of 20 did a player score more than $30 and end up on the losing end.

While bigger tournament scoring can be about longshots, clearly, winning Head-to-Heads is about scoring, even just a little bit.  And given that favorites generally win 1 out of every 3 races, they play an even greater role in Head-to-Head games.


Head-To-Head Results – July 21-23

1st Winner 2nd
Sat, July 21 Saratoga $400 Head-Head $42.40 Eddie Sweat $29.40
$200 Head-Head $99.70 suffolk otb $38.30
$100 Head-Head $24.10 skibasher $20.10
$80 Head-Head $55.10 Charli125 $22.60
$60 Head-Head $57.90 fatherfig1 $0.00
Del Mar $200 Head-Head $27.40 suffolk otb $5.60
$100 Head-Head $10.80 suffolk otb $0.00
$80 Head-Head $20.80 dougefresh $16.60
$60 Head-Head $40.20 fatherfig1 $0.00
Sun, July 22 Saratoga $400 Head-Head $32.10 suffolk otb $8.20
$200 Head-Head $32.00 Eddie Sweat $14.30
$100 Head-Head $26.60 Eddie Sweat $7.30
$80 Head-Head $43.60 skibasher $28.50
Del Mar $200 Head-Head $57.40 highrider $42.40
$100 Head-Head $45.00 lefthander32 $35.80
$60 Head-Head $17.00 gojro9 $13.40
Mon, July 23 Saratoga $80 Head-Head $22.60 lefthander32 $19.50
$60 Head-Head $19.80 jeoption $8.60
$100 Head-Head $60.90 dougefresh $40.20
$40 Head-Head $22.90 suffolk otb $11.90
AVERAGES $37.92 $18.14


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