Massive Record Pick-6 Pool Possible for Saturday 2/2

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SANTA ANITA TO GUARANTEE $2 MILLION IN FRIDAY’S 20 CENT SINGLE TICKET RAINBOW PICK SIX JACKPOT AS ALL SIGHTS REMAIN ON A MASSIVE MANDATORY PAYOUT THIS SATURDAY

ARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 31, 2019)–With a massive mandatory payout looming on Saturday, Santa Anita Park will again guarantee $2 million in Friday’s 20 cent Single Ticket Rainbow Pick Six Jackpot, with first post time for a nine-race card set at 12:30 p.m.

Even though Thursday’s Rainbow Six sequence endured a total of 14 program scratches, mainly as a result of heavy rains, $199,909 in “new” money was bet today, creating a total live money Rainbow Six pool of $1,699,756.

There were 117 consolation tickets today with six winners, each worth $910.30. (Through 21 racing days, the average daily payout on Santa Anita’s 20 cent Single Ticket Rainbow Pick Six Jackpot has been $7,560.60.

With no rain forecast for Friday, Rainbow Six field size stands at better than eight horses per race. Friday’s Rainbow Six will begin with race four, which has an approximate post time 2 p.m. PT.

Although rain is predicted for Saturday’s 10-race card, all 10 races will be run on the main track, including the Grade III, $150,000 Robert B. Lewis Stakes, which has been carded as race six and the Grade II, $200,000 San Pasqual Stakes, which goes as the ninth race.

Should there be no Single Ticket winner on Friday, track officials project Saturday’s mandatory payout Jackpot pool could reach $15 million.

For additional information, including entries for both Friday and Saturday, please visit santaanita.com or call (626) 574-RACE.

Time Is Running Out for a Beloved Mechanical Horse-Race Game in Vegas

End of an Era

Sigma Game Inc.’s Derby machines started appearing on casino floors in 1985. The rules were simple enough for anyone who had already enjoyed a number of complimentary drinks to follow, and the display compelling enough to hook even the soberest of minds: A series of odds ranging from 2-1 to a maximum of 200-1 are displayed before each race. You have 30 seconds to insert your quarters and place your bets on one of 10 possible quinella combinations—which two horses will place first and second—at one of the 10 stations surrounding the toy track. Then you cheer on your chosen ponies as an elaborate series of gears hurtles them around the track for 60 seconds. If your chosen horses come in first and second, you win the corresponding odds.

(For example, if you bet on the combination with 2-1 odds, you’ll get two quarters for every one that you bet. If you have money on the 200-1 and it happens to come in, you’ll win 200 quarters per quarter bet, and the infectious communal joy of winning the big one with your fellow players.)

Bryan Wagner, Trey Stiles Selected For NHC Hall of Fame

Wagner, Stiles Selected For NHC Hall of FameLAS VEGAS, NV (January 31, 2019) – Bryan Wagner, a 14-time National Horseplayers Championship (NHC) qualifier, and David “Trey” Stiles, who has qualified for every NHC since 2003, have been selected for induction into the NHC Hall of Fame, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced today.

Wagner and Stiles represent the fifth class of NHC Hall of Fame inductees and will be recognized during the NHC Champions Dinner on Sunday evening at the conclusion of the 20th NTRA NHC Presented by Racetrack Television Network, STATS Race Lens™ and Treasure Island Las Vegas, set for Friday to Sunday at Treasure Island. Since its launch in 2014, the NHC Hall of Fame has inducted two impact figures each season, making Wagner and Stiles the Hall’s ninth and tenth members.

The Wagner name is already part of NHC lore. The husband of 2001 NHC Champion and 2016 Hall of Fame inductee Judy Wagner, Bryan Wagner earned the distinction of 2009 NHC Tour Champion and earned more than $100,000 at the annual NHC finals in Las Vegas. In addition to their handicapping proficiency at other NHC-sanctioned contests, Bryan and Judy Wagner were among the Tour’s most popular figures. Bryan Wagner, who died in August of 2018, was particularly known for his gentlemanly ways and was described in a Rolling Stone feature as holding court “like a John Grisham character.”

“I am thrilled to hear Bryan is being voted into the Hall of Fame,” Judy Wagner said. “Bryan was almost a lifelong handicapper. It started when he learned to sneak into Fair Grounds in New Orleans as a young teenager. He had an unbelievable mathematical/analytical mind that was a perfect fit for handicapping.

“When the NHC Tour kidnapped him a few years ago he accepted the challenge and fought long and hard to achieve his goal of winning the Tour. Although he had many memorable handicapping experiences winning the Tour is near the top. This honor of Hall of Fame is another that I am sure would be at the top.”

Stiles, an attorney in Houston, TX, began visiting the racetrack in his teens at Delta Downs and has gone on to become one of the most recognizable faces on the NHC Tour.

A self-taught handicapper, Stiles played in his first handicapping contest in 2001 and began his record-setting streak at the NHC with a win at a contest at Retama Park in his native Texas in 2002. His knowledge serves both himself and other horseplayers well as he is also a NHC Mentor, teaching new Tour members the ins and outs and strategies involved with contest play.

“It’s a pretty amazing group so it’s quite an honor,” Stiles said of his Hall of Fame induction, adding that his first NHC experience lit the fire for his 16-year run. “I would say it would be my first time (at NHC that stands out), not because I did my best, but I enjoyed it so much that it made me want to get back there. It was such a cool experience. It hooked me and it made me want to learn and I’ve done that.”

Wagner and Stiles join Steve Crist (2016), Mike Mayo (2015), Chris Larmey (2018), Ron Rippey (2015), Paul Shurman (2017), Judy Wagner (2016), Steve Wolfson, Sr. (2017), Steve Wolfson, Jr. (2018) as Hall of Fame inductees. The honorees are chosen by the NTRA in consultation with the NHC Players’ Committee.

The main criteria for the NHC Hall of Fame are as follows:

· Competed in NHC-sanctioned tournaments;

· Played consistently well over an extended period of time;

· Gained the respect of peers;

· And, contributed to the overall growth and success of NHC tournament play, with indelible positive and lasting results.

10 Facts You might not know about Horse Racing in Australia

#7 There have been many great trainers in British Flat racing over the years, but nobody has dominated quite like Tommy Smith did in Australia. For 32 years he won every single Trainers’ Premiership, from 1953 until 1985, earning 282 Group 1 wins along the way. He died in 1998, but his legacy lives on in the $2.5 million TJ Smith Stakes ran at Randwick in the Autumn. He is the father of 2013 Melbourne Cup-winning trainer Gai Waterhouse.

#8 Vegas Showgirl is well known in the world of bloodstock as the dam of Winx, but the queen of Australian racing isn’t the only Group winner the 16-year-old has produced. El Divino was born in October 2013, two years after Winx, and has gone on to compete in a number of Group races in Australia. In April 2016, he was a dead-heat winner alongside the Godolphin-owned Astern in the Group 3 Widden Kindergarten Stakes at Randwick.

#9 Very few horses have the distinction of claiming victory over Winx, but First Seal has the honour of boasting four occasions in which she bettered the world’s joint-best turf horse. Wins in two Group 2s and the Group 1 Coolmore Flight Stakes all came at the superstar’s expense, before a hoof injury placed First Seal on the sidelines. When she returned to battle Winx once again, the narrative was very different. The wondermare bested her by four and three quarter lengths in the Group 1 George Ryder Stakes, before First Seal finished more than 13 lengths behind her rival in the Doncaster Mile. They never faced off again, and First Seal was retired in …

Two bills in Pierre focus on South Dakota’s horse racing industry

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO.com)– At least two of the so far 300 bills filed during this year’s Legislative session are focused on South Dakota’s horse racing industry.

Senate Bill’s 105 and 128 are tied to South Dakota’s horse racing industry.

SB128 would attempt to retrieve money moved from the live horse racing fund around 20 years ago for other uses and return it to District 24, where it was intended for use at the Stanley County Fairgrounds in Fort Pierre

SB105 would establish new mechanisms for funding horse racing in the state. Representative Tim Rounds says he plans to bring a version of SB128 to the House for safekeeping…

“Just in case, something doesn’t come across, I want the discussion to be held over in the House too. Both of them, in their demise over in the Senate that means we won’t have that discussion.” Representative Mary Duvall says the bills bring up a separate valid discussion. “The Legislature has a habit of sweeping funds that were established for a certain purpose. And budgets get tight or we have a pet project, so we sweep those funds into our general fund for whatever purpose. We’ve done it with the state highway fund, the aeronautics, fund the railroad fund. Shame on us.”

Nearly six million dollars was in the live horse racing fund to help promote live horse racing in both Fort Pierre and the Brown County Fair in Aberdeen. The bill, if passed, would mean roughly three-million dollars each for Stanley and Brown Counties for support of live horse racing…

NY OTBs could shed horse racing operations

Off-Track Betting agencies in Nassau and Suffolk counties and across New York could shed their horse racing operations – their main function for nearly 50 years, but also a source of deficits in recent years – under proposals unveiled by the POS Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo last week.

OTBs would have greater flexibility to operate under Cuomo’s proposed 2019-2020 budget, as they contend with declining racing revenues. The budget proposal would allow OTBs to decide to get out of horse betting entirely or merge with other OTBs, officials said.

OTB officials and experts say Cuomo’s proposal, which must be approved by the state Legislature, may make it possible for betting agencies to pursue bigger moneymakers, such as video lottery terminals and, perhaps eventually, sports betting.

But at this point Cuomo’s proposals are general, and do not set guidelines for what the changes would look like.

“The whole industry is on the phone, trying to figure out what does this mean,” said Phil Nolan, director of Suffolk Off Track Betting.

OTBs were established in six locations in the 1970s to pass along profits from horse betting to local governments and to reduce illegal gambling. In Nassau and Suffolk, the OTBs have significant numbers of patronage employees.

OTBs simulcast races, take telephone and internet bets and operate automated betting machines. In Batavia in Genesee County, Western OTB manages a racetrack at Batavia Downs.

But the OTBs have struggled in recent years as horse racing has declined in popularity and competition has grown from casinos in other states, officials said…

Pegasus World Cup Soars

For racing media, one of the fun parts of the job, believe it or not, is waking up at ungodly hour, rain or shine, and visiting the barns of the players from the previous day’s big race.

As expected, mostly the winners laugh, tell stories, and the losers say deal. Temporarily sidelined myself, I wonder what happened when my colleagues this morning only to find nobody was home.

That didn’t happen, of course. With winners and losers celebrating or commiserating over dinner late into the South Florida night, Mike McCarthy and John Sadler still needed to show up and check on their horses before watching them be loaded onto a Lexington-bound van.

So it’s not likely that City of Light or Accelerate would have been among this missing this am, but they won’t be around for long, leaving the racing’s stage forever–fertility issues notwithstanding.

While City of Light separated himself from the 2018 handicap champion in the gloaming at Gulfstream Park on Saturday, both will soon arrive at the same stud farm to begin a second career.

Some guys have all the luck.

On a day better suited to Netflix binging than going to the races, the building was hopping despite the elements. Stakeholders, horseplayers and fans showed up brought money, and weren’t shy about spending …

Racino Failure: Monticello Raceway casino closing

Monticello Harness track remains open

MONTICELLO – The casino operation at the Monticello Casino and Raceway will soon close, but the harness racing track will stay open for now.

Empire Resorts, the Monticello racino’s parent company, will close its electronic gaming operations at the track “on or about” April 23, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing on Tuesday.

Forty employees will remain at the raceway, while the operation’s other 160 can take jobs at the nearby Resorts World Catskills casino, also owned by Empire Resorts, or receive severance packages.

“We’re happy about the fact that they have offered jobs to laid-off members, and we’re constructively talking with the company about adding additional severance,” Hotel Trades Council, the union that represents most of the workers, said in a statement.

Empire Resorts Inc. said horse racing will continue. But, in a written statement and in an SEC filing, it made no guarantees about the track’s long-term future.

The goal for now, the company said, is to avoid cannibalizing revenues from the 2,157 slot machines and 150 table games at Resorts World Catskills in the Town of Thompson.

Plus, Empire Resorts, which has averaged losses of between $10 million and $13 million per month since it began its phased opening of the Resorts World Catskills last February, is looking to improve earnings…

Big Guaranteed Pools for Pegasus World Cup 2019 Day

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Saturday’s 12-race program at Gulfstream Park, highlighted by the $16 million Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series, will offer guaranteed pools for the Late Pick 4, the Late Pick 5 and the Rainbow 6.

The pool for the Late Pick 4 (Races 9-12) will be guaranteed at $1 million, while the Late Pick 5 (Races 8-12) and the 20-cent Rainbow 6 (Races 7-12) will offer guaranteed pools of $750,000. The Rainbow 6 pool will be guaranteed as long as the popular multi-race wager isn’t solved before Saturday.

Belinda Stronach countersues father, cites 'unprofitable projects'The multi-race sequences for all three wagers will include the $9 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1), North America’s richest race; and the $7 million Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1), North America’s richest turf race.

The third running of the Pegasus World Cup field will be headlined by $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner and 2018 Horse of the Year finalist Accelerate. The Pegasus World Cup Turf will feature an international field of grass stars, including Yoshida, a Grade 1 winner on turf and dirt, and Aerolithe, a multiple graded stakes-winning mare in Japan making her first start in the U.S.

Should the Rainbow 6 go unsolved through Saturday’s program, there will be a mandatory payout of the entire pool of the popular multi-race wager Sunday.

Saturday’s card will offer seven other stakes, including four additional graded stakes: $200,000 W. L. McKnight (G3); $200,000 La Prevoyante (G3); $150,000 Fred Hooper (G3); $150,000 Fasig-Tipton Hurricane Bertie (G3), $150,000 Gulfstream Turf Sprint; $150,000 Ladies Turf Sprint, $125,000 South Beach.

First-race post time for Saturday’s program is set for 11:30 a.m.

Source: Gulfstream Park

Japanese Invader a Major Threat in 2019 Pegasus World Cup Turf

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL.–The new $7 million GI Pegasus World Cup Turf S. has attracted a diverse international array of runners and Japanese invader Aerolithe (Jpn) (Kurofune) may be one of the most intriguing of the group as a relatively unknown commodity on these shores.

A three-time group stakes winner in Japan, including the 2017 G1 NHK Mile, the 5-year-old mare has never raced outside her native land. Aerolithe’s journey took a total of 21 hours and 25 minutes, traveling from Tokyo to South Korea to Anchorage to Miami.
When asked how the mare handled the long ship and her new surroundings at Gulfstream, Kate Hunter, Pegasus World Cup field representative and translator for the Japan Racing Association, said. “Absolutely fabulous! She has never traveled this far. She has never traveled internationally, so we weren’t sure how she was going to handle it, but she was a natural.”
Owner Sunday Racing Co. and trainer Takanori Kikuzawa had originally intended to run Aerolithe in the GI Breeders’ Cup Mile Nov. 3, but travel issues derailed those plans.

“The connections had been targeting the Breeder’s Cup Mile and once [The Stronach Group] announced the fact they were going to have this [Pegasus Turf race], they were actually thinking about racing her in both,” Hunter said. “Then airplane trouble happened and they weren’t able to get her to the Breeders’ Cup, but they kept this in mind. We were able to get the airplane sorted this time.”
In her previous races in Japan, Aerolithe has run both clockwise and counter-clockwise, but her team feels counter-clockwise is her preferred direction, making her well-suited for American racing.