Saturday, October 5, 2013

Santa Anita Opening Day! My 1st Horse Racing Experience | @SantaAnitaPark @ABRLive #GetintheGame

Last week, I was invited to do something that I had wanted to do for awhile but never had the chance.  Being an avid horsewoman, I have spent most of my life around horses, much to my parents dismay.

I have ridden english, western, barrel racing, 3-day eventing, and much more but one thing that had eluded me was going to the racetrack!  Yes, I know, even non-horse people have been there!   I had not.  Ironically, I have many friends that ride at the track and even rescue and rehabilitate horses that get injured or are too slow and need a new career.  

I arrived at Santa Anita Racetrack, really feeling out of my element.  I know horses but know NOTHING about racing except that the fastest horse wins and that horse is the one you want to bet on.

How do I figure out which horse to bet on?  I had NO clue!  Luckily my friends at America's Best Racing have a few tips for beginners like me.  The first thing they tell you is to go with your gut.  Do you like the name?  Do you get a good feeling about a particular horse?  Do you like the color? All of these things seem very superficial but really... more people have won in this fashion than any other way.  

If you are a stats person, you can calculate numbers on how fast a horse has run, its best times, track conditions, and its earnings.  Also, the stable and jockey are favorites to choose.  If you have heard of a jockey, then there is a good chance there is a reason why you have heard of them.  Did you know that the top jockey's average about 90% wins?  

I don't know much about stats but I received a rundown by the experts at America's Best Racing.  The race was going to start soon.  Here goes nothing!  How did I choose MY horses? 
  1. I chose horses based upon how much they have won in past races.  
  2. Out of those horses, I chose the fastest times based on their workouts.
  3. I had to like their name... I know superficial!
How did I do?  I was only able to stay for 3 races that day due to picking up my little ones from school.  Out of my 3 races, I picked 2 out of 3 winners!  Mind you, I am a chicken.  I only made $2 bets.  I actually won about $5, total.  But hey, I won!  


Where did I get the stats that I looked at to choose my fast runners?  Every participant betting receives a list of stats for each horse running in each race a day.  The numbers looked jumbled and are quite confusing until you have someone explain them to you.  When in doubt, go with your gut.

I had a great time talking horses with the professionals and LOVED seeing the gorgeous Santa Anita Racetrack!  The horses are breathtaking and everyone is so helpful and nice!

I can't wait to return to the track and maybe get a little more adventurous!  

DISCLAIMER:  I was invited to Santa Anita Racetrack to experience racing on opening day.  I received lunch and a gift bag for writing about my experience.  All thoughts and ideas are my own.  Do not use any pictures without permission.

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