Len Ragozin, whose Ragozin Sheets revolutionized handicapping of horse races more than 50 years ago, died peacefully in Vermont on Thursday at the age of 92.
The eldest child of Sarra and Harry Ragozin, Len lived most of his life in Manhattan. He was frugal and devoted much of his efforts and the profits of the business he founded, The Ragozin Sheets, to anti-racist, pro-worker causes.
Len attended City & Country, a ground-breaking, progressive elementary school in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village, and provided a life-saving mortgage in the 1970s when it faced financial difficulties. He also attended The Horace Mann Lincoln School and Harvard University.
In the pre-computer era, Len developed the algorithms that became The Ragozin Sheets, the outstanding individual thoroughbred horse performance records used by major owners, trainers and handicappers. He described that experience and his methods of handicapping in a book: “The Odds Must Be Crazy.”
When the now computerized company producing The Ragozin Sheets was sold, Len donated most of the sale proceeds to fund the Len Ragozin Foundation, which provides support to groups and individuals working on innovative ways to put progressive ideas into practice.
Len is survived by his sister, Nikki Keddie, his brother David Ragozin, a daughter, Alexa Manning, granddaughter, Adeline Manning, and ex-wife and longtime best friend Marion Buhagiar, who was with him during his final days.
As he wished, Len was cremated without ceremony. No memorials are currently planned. Donations from friends and comrades who remember Len and share his ideals are welcome at the Len Ragozin Foundation (lenragozinfoundation.com).
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