Going To The Office

by Ed Meyer

posted on May 10, 2009 in General Discussion | No Comments >>

I have worked in racing for the majority of my life. Nothing seems to ever surprise me. I think I have heard, and seen it all. Until today…

I see all types of players. Those who go for the day at the races, those who go to win some money if they are lucky, and those who push all of their chips in and try to make a go of things.

Today I was chatting with a gent I have seen at the races for years. He would mainly come on weekends, and stay for the live racing card. He would throw in a few simulcast races for good measure, but he enjoyed the action.

I asked him how things were, and it was at this time I learned more about my friend.

He said you probably have not seen me the last few weeks as much. He had started playing on the computer from home. He said it kept him undisturbed. I asked him why he seems more serious. He then answered the million-dollar question. I have been downsized. I cashed in my retirement, and I am playing the races for a living.

I was all ears as he told me of the meticulous records he keeps, and that he makes between three to four bets per week. His standard wager would range between $1,000 – $2,000 and he would focus on place wagers. He didn’t fool with the Pick-3 anymore, and chasing the “big long-shot” was over. He wanted to play the margins.  You know, where you can make sixty- eighty cents on a wager.

I loved his theory, and had to ask how it was going. I wanted to know how he was doing. Not to be nosy, but seeing myself in his shoes. I have always wanted to push in all of the chips and go for it. But I guess I’ll never be as bold.

The end result he told me was that he made three wagers so far that week, and the results are as follows:

$1,000 to place on a horse that paid $2.80 = $1,400

$2,000 to place / paying $2.40 = $2,400

$1,000 to place paying $3.00 = $1,500

His profit for the week so far was = $1,300

He said he flies under the radar, and avoids the tax man. No IRS forms, and nobody knowing his business. It was at this time he was going to make his big play of the week, and I am going to watch the race. He wagered $1,300 on a runner. He selected a seven horse field where the favorite was 8-5. His horse ran a beautiful second, and paid $2.80. His bring-home profit for the week was $1,820.

After he cashed his ticket and was walking toward the gate, he told me of the tough economy, and how it probably will keep him out of his profession for quite awhile. Just then as he walked away, he smiled and told me “you know, I think I may never go back.”