Taking Your Shot

As a horse player, punter, gambler, or any other word to describe one who likes the Thoroughbred action. We have all thought about making our living at the track. Now come on, you know you have. Even if it was only for a minute or two.. How about the time when you hit the big trifecta, or cleared the card at your favorite track? As with many things, it is harder than it looks.


Ron – He was an accountant when he won $27,000 from a pick-six. Now that was a nice score, and it should have earned him a beach vacation. But he decided  he would “press” his luck and take his shot. He watched Saratoga races like a farmer watches his crops. He knew everything up and down about the historic oval. That summer, he won over $125,000 playing pick-fours, and spot plays that he targeted. When Labor Day came around, he walked in to see his boss. He handed him his two weeks notice, and hasn’t looked back. I asked him how he does overall, and he said, “it is ten times tougher than my old job. Some days good, some days REAL bad, and there are the ones that make the entire month.” But overall, he is happy and doesn’t regret a minute.

Terry – He drove a cab most of life, and you could always see it parked outside the track. He had the overnight shift, and then made his way to the track. He hit for over $50,000 one week, and played it like slow and steady. Well, he went tapped and had to take the cab shift to twice a day. When I asked him what he would have done differently. His answer was simple: ” I didn’t win conservatively. And when I took my shot, I began playing like a novice. That is when I should have turned up the heat, and tossed my cab keys away. I’ll be back, and this time I’ll treat it a bit differently.”

Tommy – He worked in the barn area, and worked horses out in the early morning. He liked the way one horse was working, and waited until they entered him. His work was not posted, and Tommy knew that he was sitting on a fit and ready runner. Well, he borrowed money, and used up all that he had saved. His horse scored by three lengths, and never looked back. After winning over $86,000, Tommy never looked back as well. He tossed away his workout license, and began playing his tracks with the skills of a surgeon. He kept track of every dollar spent, and knew what his R.O.I was at all times. The last time we spoke, he was living in a suite in Vegas. Everything comp, and he had a video feed with all of the tracks right into his room. “He told me it was hard grind, but it sure beat working out sore horses in the mornings.” He gave me a horse for the next day, and it won and paid $18.60… I didn’t win the dream, but it made for a good day.

So, no matter what your level of interest, be patient, and take your time. If you are an everyday player or a weekend warrior, enjoy the ride… There is nothing better than a day at the races. Who knows, maybe it will be your name right here next time around!

Best of luck, and “may your winners be many, and your photos be few!”