Maiden races are confined to any horse that has yet to win a race. There are different age groups that can run in this type of race. Namely, races for two years old only, three years olds only, three years and older only and four years and older only. Once a horse wins a maiden it will be allowed to contest a handicap race or after competing in three maiden races.
The vast majority of horses start their trade in this type of event, and often you will find in the early part of the flat season that there is less form to go on, especially in regard to races containing only two year olds and sometimes to a lesser extent races for which only three year olds can participate.
Those that like to have a bet in this type of race would do well to familiarize themselves with which trainers operate well in maiden races, by age group and by each specific track which can give some interesting and vital clues.
Other trainer angles to explore would be to view how their runners tend to perform on their racecourse debut or after their first run. Some trainers prefer their runners to acquire a favourable handicap mark in the future, so in this scenario you would ideally use these races for educational purposes or improve their level of fitness for when the time is right.
They could also enter a runner in unfavourable conditions, knowing full well it won’t be able to perform to the best of its ability, this is another effective way of getting a good rating for when conditions are right.
A lot of people may view this as cheating, but it isn’t, connections are allowed to run their horses in races in which they are eligible, just as you would be allowed to watch a film for 18+ if you were that age or above.
I would also suggest gaining as much knowledge as you can on breeding, which would also be very useful for all types of races. So, for example, does the sire (Father) pass on his genetic traits for producing precocious 2 year old runners or do they tend to need more time and perform better with age?
Does the sire runners tend to be more efficient on soft ground then fast or do they prefer running on the all weather to turf races?
What about distance preference? Sometimes the progeny gets its distance preference from the Dam (Mother), so studying the dam’s attributes is important as well.
The more relevant knowledge you have at your disposal the better chances of you making better informed decisions when it comes to betting over the long term.