The Happy Horseplayer / August 1, 2017

Another month in the books and “The Happy Horseplayer” enjoyed every minute. – The eternal optimist looks forward to more fun in the sun as racing is just starting to heat up. The past month left me with fond memories, nice scores, and a few bad beats. But all in all, I wouldn’t trade it for a pick-four on Derby Day. Well, let me think about that last part again.


Perry Ouzts


I watched Perry ride when I was a young man. How young? – My dad was driving, and getting a license was a dream in the distance. July 7th had Perry Ouzts turning 63-yrs-young, and there was a special day honoring him. His 43-yr career is far from over, and this is one of the most fierce competitors I have ever watched. He treats a $5,000 claiming race like it’s a stake. There is never a dull effort from “Scoot n Boot,” and I love the way he jogs his horse back slowly to the winner’s circle. I have the best seat in the house watching, and the look on his face savors every second like it’s his first win. – I’ve watched racing all of my life and never has there been a rider who loves winning as Perry Wayne Ouzts.

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The month continued to heat up and on July 22, 2017, he became the 10th all-time winningest rider in Thoroughbred racing as Perry passed Hall Of Fame retired rider, Jorge Velasquez. – The day started early as Perry was walking the track about 90 minutes to post looking over the course and thinking about his day. When he won the first race and needed three more I called down to let them know to get the sign ready as Perry rolls them off in bunches. – When he won the 3rd race and was two away, I started thinking about his journey in the saddle. He had a couple more mounts for owner Maggi Moss and trainer Tom Amoss. It was almost too good to be true as they were dropping in class and looked to fit Ouzts like a glove. He won on a first timer by Kettle Corn who had his 1st starter on the track as a winner. As he readied to ride the next one, I would have bet dollars to donuts this was the magic win. The photo below shows Silverdollardreams striding away giving Perry Wayne Ouzts his next milestone. Photo credit: Coady Photography

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Congratulations, Perry Ouzts! – Long may you ride…..


When you think of match races you’ll conjure up images of War Admiral and Seabiscuit. – The race was taken off the turf, and officially it wasn’t a match race but it was down to two horses. It had the seasoned veteran Perry Ouzts versus the up and coming Cory Orm. – They didn’t get more than a half a length apart the entire race, and Ouzts was in front only one time during the race. It was about five feet before the wire.

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I won’t cry too much on my bad beat of the month. – It was the Haskell Invitational and I came back to McCraken for a $700 pick-four payoff. – I had the gamut of emotions that only racing can provide, and boy did it deliver chills down the arm. After the race, I mumbled to myself for about two minutes before I started working on a pick-four for Del Mar. – I finally cashed a nice ticket for $1600 for a 50-cent version. But just relive a moment in time as you watch the Haskell one more time.



Until next month, this is “The Happy Horseplayer” signing off and hoping all of your photos are winning ones!