Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A story only a horseplayer could love...

So there I was stuck in a late November Portland downpour. Smack dab in the center of downtown P-town at about 1:45 delivering some RFP for "The Man."

When I emerged from my delivery, I realized I was one short block away from the OTB I usually visit.

"Hey," I thought, "I'm so close, I know it's Tuesday, it is probably closed, but I'll just walk by and see what's up."

When I get there, the place is basically deserted except for the degenerates of the degenerate crowd-all three of them. The only races on the screen were Turf Paradise and Beulah. TP (which I love) had what looked like a competitive race with double digit runners and no clear favorite. The only problem was that post was about 12 minutes away. Too long for my visit.

But wait...BAM!! Good ole' Beulah park was 0 MTP so I pulled up a chair and shook off the excess rain drops.

Looking at the tote board, I notice the 6 (turns out its Halo de Oro) is 1-5. The 9 (turns out its Slew City Max) goes off at 5-1.

The bell sounds (I guess it was a bell, there was no sound in the joint. And as a sidebar, for some reason all of the tote-machines were shut-off for the day, that's how slow it was!)

Anyway, the 6 jumps out to a first-quarter lead in like 22.4 and is starting to look huge as they get to the they get around the turn, the 6 starts to completely freak out. I could see all that well, but it looked like the jockey was completely pulling the horse up due to injury or maybe equipment malfunction. The 6 (who actually went off at .20-1) is just being yanked backwards ad to the outside as 4 other horses-led by second favorite Slew City Max-continue to pass on by.

I remarked out loud "Jeez, folks are gonna be pissed. 1-5 and he breaks down/gets pulled up."

Well wouldn't you know, just as the 9 starts to turn for home looking like an extremely lucky winner, the 6 comes roaring back. Down the stretch, about a dozen paths out from the rail, the 6 absolutely runs away with the race winning by what Equibase says was 2 1/4, but really looked (and felt) like more.

The point of my story is this...if there is some system available to you all out there....go out and watch the 9th race from Beulah Park. You will be amazed and I think thoroughly entertained. You can also let me know if you see anything that gives more indication than just "bolted approaching stretch"-as per Equibase.

I think you will find this $5K claiming race to be pretty enjoyable.

  • 9th Race Chart from Beulah Park 11/29/05
  • Tuesday, November 22, 2005

    I'm back....

    Sorry for the delays in between posts. There IS nothing more annoying than visiting a friendly site, only to find out the lazy bastard(s) hasn't taken the time to update it in, oh, about 6 months!!

    O.k., so I exaggerate a little bit, but the fact remains-I am sorry to the loyal 3 readers who may have been missing my attempts at entertainment.

    What better way to jump back into the blogging mix, then to combine my two favorite passions-all revolving around my favorite city.

    I've pasted in a little tease from the article(see below).

    This is from one of my favorite websites of all-time: Jambase ( below)

    ...."Besides drinking, Vlautin's only other major vice is horse racing, a fact reflected in Post To Wire's title, which is a track expression referring to a horse that leads from start to finish.

    Vlautin observes, 'I just started betting horses when my friends would go out gambling because it takes a lot longer to lose your money. Maybe I am kind of a gambler (laughs). I go every weekend to a local track in Portland called Portland Meadows. I love it. When we're not touring, I spend the summer following a bush league country fair circuit in Oregon. I just go camping and watch all the races. I'm a pretty pathetic handicapper, but I have a good friend who's a professional handicapper and he's also an agent for jockeys. I wrote an instrumental on Winnemucca called 'Twyla,' and that's for a jockey named Twyla Beckner. She and I have become friends over the years. I get to hang out and see the harder side of horse racing. It's an interesting sport, although brutal for both jockeys and horses. I have a love-hate relationship with it, but I do go out every weekend' (laughs)...."

    Who is (Willy) Vlautin? Well if you really care, then read the entire article here.
  • Meet Richmond Fontaine

  • If you are too lazy, I'll just say this:

    It's hard to find an interesting music article with worldwide appeal, whose main subjects are from my adopted hometown, and the subjects somehow manage to mention horse racing AND Portland Meadows.

    This my friends....made my day.

    Friday, November 04, 2005

    High-dee Hoe, Neighbor...

    Well, it’s good to finally get some time to post an entry.

    The last time you all heard from me, I was posting my now infamous BC wagers. Needless to say, I had one exacta (Juvenile) that minimized my overall losses by about 33%. I won’t revisit the entire day, as my compadres in blogging and horse journalism have aptly covered all of the highs and lows of racings biggest and brightest day.

    Sticking with the horse scene, (this IS a horse blog, don’t forget) I am extremely happy to welcome Brad from the city by the bay who is our most recent “joinee” of the Thoroughbred Bloggers Alliance.”

    Check out “Tote Board Brad’s” blog here:
  • Tote Board Brad

  • If you’ll notice, Brad is an owner. And if you’ll take even a closer look, Brad posted on Tuesday about “his” horse running at Golden Gate on Wednesday in a $17,000 claiming race. Upon further review (hindsight really) you can see that Brad’s horse took the 8th race at GG yesterday and paid a VERY handsome price. Congrats and welcome Brad!
  • Tote Board Brad's a WINNER!

  • Currently, I am riding the ol’ Amtrak from Seattle to Portland. Known as the Cascade line, this three hour journey usually takes place around the first of the month, every month.

    I am actually so happy to finally have some free time to work on this blog. It is sometimes demoralizing how little time I get to spend doing the things I love.

    Maintaining this blog has (as anyone and everyone who maintains/has maintained a blog knows) been-and continues to be- a labor of love.

    Recently though, I have struggled to devote as much time as I would like to contributing to both the blog community at large, and more importantly the world of horse racing.

    Rest assured, although I may not be posting as regularly as my co-horts, I still actively pursue and peruse the various blogs and news stories pertinent to the sport/life I love.

    Once again, I applaud my fellow Bloggers in their persistence, creativity, and sticktoitiveness.

    There are so many issues facing the sport of kings these days (as is WELL documented via the TBA and other horse racing media outlets). The sport we all love is facing so many challenges; both locally AND regionally; financially and politically.

    Thoughts and ideas bouncing around my brain very much like the old science videos showing neutrons or atoms careening off of each other when heating up. (Since I never could follow anything going on in any of my science OR math classes, please bare with me on the previous analogy! Hopefully you got the image I was trying to portray).

    From NY (NYRA) to San Francisco (Bay Meadows), and north to my adopted hometown of Portland (Portland Meadows) trouble is a foot.

    Alan, over at Left at the Gate does an amazing job of detailing the daily travails of the hapless NYRA. Click below to read some of his entries regarding the current debacle that is the NYRA.
  • NYRA Preparing for Bankruptcy

  • For a glimpse into the troubles surrounding the current meet at Porltand Meadows, and racing in the state of Oregon in general, I highly suggest you read this:
    (please note exactly WHO started the thread)
  • A Trainer Stars an Interesting Topic Thread

  • Cheers to Jolene and Michael for maintaining such a vital piece of the Oregon racing communities heart and soul.