HorseRacing Central December 27, 2006
WELCOME TO HORSE RACING CENTRAL!
Welcome to our inaugural edition of Horse Racing Central, a newsletter designed to provide racing fans with updated information that will include the latest in simulcasting developments, insider views on wise wagering, handicap tips and horses to watch.
In coming up with a name for this bi-monthly bulletin that is going to feature both thoroughbred and standardbred racing, we’re calling it Horse Racing Central because when all is said and done this will become the hub of information for these two great racing industries in British Columbia.
THE STARTER IS CALLING! AND THIS IS NOT CALIFORNIA DREAMIN’
We’re in! The wait is over for horse players finally being able to wager directly into the large California pools. Common pool wagering at Santa Anita is scheduled to be in place by December 28th. This means players in British Columbia will be able to enjoy the exciting wagering features offered at California tracks such as the rolling Pick 3, Pick 4, Pick 6 and the $1 million guaranteed pools on selected days.
These opportunities will be available through simulcasting outlets at Fraser Downs, Hastings Racecourse, Racebooks at Boulevard and River Rock Casinos, all of the regular TBC outlets across British Columbia as well as phone and on-line wagering.
These words of wisdom from analyst Mike Heads: “So many people get caught up in the speed of simulcasting. They find themselves wagering on far too many races in a short period of time I haven’t met a handicapper yet who can master five or six tracks at once. Be patient. If you lose a race it isn’t necessary to try getting your money back within 30 seconds. Select races that fit your style of handicapping and use simulcasting to your advantage. Slow down, wait for your opportunities and more victories will come your way.”
HORSE RACING CENTRAL ASKS: DID YOU KNOW?
Contrary to popular belief, a race track establishment does not make more money when longshots come in or if a customer loses. The fact is that a track takes a small percentage of every wager which goes to the operations of the facility and generates purse money. It is in the best interests of any race track that people win or break even so repeat customers will keep the wheels of commerce turning. That is why tracks traditionally offer tip sheets, newspaper selections and website commentary. It behooves the track – or if you’ll pardon the pun, behoofs the track – that fans maintain an interest in continuing to wager.HORSE RACING CENTRAL INSIDER:
A word to the wise to be careful when wagering on the POLY or CUSHION racetracks because of the limited data that is available. Most handicappers use speed ratings and track variants as key ingredients in selecting their bets. But with these newly surfaced tracks the normal stats are not yet established. For now, it’s a “feeling out” process.
OUR DERBY CHAMPS HEAD TO CALIFORNIA
Hastings Racecourse 2006 B.C. Derby Champion Halo Steven is currently training at Hollywood Park and is due to start at Santa Anita early in the new year. Watch, too, for another former Derby Champ – Roscoe Pito – to make his next start on the grass at either Bay Meadows or Golden Gate.
CHRISTMAS COMES EARLY FOR HASTINGS CONNECTIONS
Owners Bob Cheema and K. K. Sangara, as well as trainer Terry Jordan, brought national attention to Hastings Racecourse with well-deserved recognition as 2006 Sovereign Awards winners in Toronto last weekend.
True Metropolitan, winner of seven stakes races in western Canada before scoring a four-length victory at the Woodbine Slots Cup (G3), was named Champion Older Male in the Sovereign voting and finished second to Arravale in the Horse of the Year category.
True Metropolitan had earnings of $402,340 for the owner/trainer team of Cheema and Jordan.
K. K. Sangara's Financingavailable was named Champion Older Female after winning five stakes races for earnings of $490,000. Trained by former Hastings handler Lorne Richards, Financingavailable won at distances ranging from 7 furlongs to 1 1/16 miles and never finished worse than second in eight starts.
Winners of Sovereign Awards received trophies depicting St. Simon, an undefeated colt who raced in England in the 1880's and then went on to an illustrious career at stud.
STANDARDBRED CANADA ANNOUNCES 2006 O’BRIEN AWARD FINALISTS
On December 19th, Standardbred Canada announced the finalists for the 2006 O'Brien Awards, which honour Canada's best in harness racing over the past season. The awards are named in honour of the late Joe O'Brien, an outstanding horseman and a member of The Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. The winners will be announced at the O’Brien Awards banquet on Saturday, February 3rd, 2007 in Mississauga, Ontario.
Robert Murphy was one of two finalists for the Armstrong Breeder of the Year category. Robert Murphy, 74, of White Rock, BC, has been a dominant breeder-owner in British Columbia and Alberta for many years. In 2006, Murphy’s 62 starters, which are usually recognizable with the “Red Star” moniker, won 152 races and $1.1 million for an average of $18,643 per starter. Red Star Biggirl led the Murphy stock with eight wins and $318,951 in earnings including a victory in the Canadian Breeders Championship.
FEEL LIKE AN OWNER FOR A RACE
Here's your chance to feel like an owner for a race with no risks. Patrons attending the races at FRASER DOWNS RACETRACK & CASINO on DECEMBER 26th will be given an entry form for a chance to be one of nine selected to root on a randomly selected horse. You must be in attendance to qualify. A purse of $1,000 will be offered and will be distributed to the patrons whose horse finishes in the top five. Just as a real purse, payouts will be 50% to the winner, 25% for second, 12% for third, 8% for 4th and 5% for fifth. In real money that's $500, $250, $120, $80 and $50. Whether or not your horse receives a paycheck, all nine will receive dinner for four on January 6th in the fabulous Fraser Downs Clubhouse.
NEW YEAR’S DAY
On New Year’s Day FRASER DOWNS RACETRACK & CASINO will make a draw for a $1500 travel voucher from all who participated in the MARGARETAVILLE contest. To qualify for a chance to win the travel voucher you had to purchase an umbrella drink from the start of the 2006 live season until the December 30th. Also on that day the prize money will be presented to the winners of the 2006 FRASER DOWNS HARNESS POOL.
2006 FRASER DOWNS HARNESS POOL WINNERS
Usually the Fraser Downs Homestretch area is very noisy during a live race, but one section got extremely so in the first race on Sunday, December 17th. It was only one person – but for Dolly Lemke getting her horse Lil Dudes Keeper to win the opener gave her a commanding lead in the 2006 FRASER DOWNS HARNESS POOL. Lemke, who finished with 61 points from the 8 week contest, would hold off Kare Weme who finished second with 58. Tied for third with 56 were Darcy Smith and Fernando Ciarniello. Dolly's stable of horses struggled early but by week four she was in the lead, a position she never gave up. Throughout the eight week competition, Lemke never waivered in her picks as she didn't make a trade at any point. A long time patron of Fraser Downs she will be presented with her winnings on New Year’s Day. What a way to start of 2007! The result is unofficial, subject to challenges on the points award.
CALIFORNIA DREAMIN’ HANDICAPPING CONTEST
For the sixth consecutive year racing fans at Fraser Downs will be able to test their Southern California handicapping skills for a chance to win a trip to the 2007 Santa Anita Derby on April 7th. Saturday January 6th will kick off the nine week California Dreamin' competition. Each week a winner with the most money will have a chance to compete in the finals for that dream trip to the Great Race Place in April. The finals are set for March 3rd to crown the champion.
The contest is simple. Contestants are allowed to pick any three races using races 3–8 on the designated Saturday cards from Santa Anita. Each selection will have a mythical $20 across the board wager on it. If you have the most money from your three races, you will be off to the finals. Prices will be capped at $42.00 for a win, $22.00 for a second and $12.00 for a third. Each weekly winner will receive $100.00 as a prize.
The finals this year have a slight twist to them. Each of the nine finalists will have a live bankroll of $180.00 to play with. Six races from Santa Anita will be selected and each contestant must place a $10.00 across the board wager on each of the races. The twist, if you end up making money for the day, regardless if you are the grand champion, you get to keep your proceeds.
Entry ballots will be available starting at 10:00 on Friday morning and must be handed in before the start of the 2nd race at Santa Anita. One entry per person. For start times of the Santa Anita cards please check your monthly simulcast schedule. Good luck and maybe it will be you that is off to the warm climes of California in April!
To Sign up, please visit Fraser Downs Guest Services.
HOLIDAY HOURS – FRASER DOWNS RACETRACK & CASINO
Regular Casino hours will not change over the Holidays, including Christmas Day.
Racing Hours will be as follows:
Sunday, December 24 - Simulcast only; Racebook opens at 8:30 a.m. and will close at approximately 3:00 p.m.
Monday, December 25 – No Racing; Casino opens at 9:00 a.m.
Tuesday, December 26 – Racebook opens at 8:30 a.m.; Live racing at 1:15 p.m.
Sunday, December 31 – Racebook opens at 8:30 a.m.; No Live Racing, Simulcast
only until the end of Hong Kong Racing.
Monday, January 1 – Racebook opens at 8:30 a.m.; Live Racing at 1:15 p.m.
HOLIDAY HOURS - HASTINGS RACECOURSE
Sunday, December 24 – Jerome’s opens at 9:00 a.m. and will close at approximately 3:00 p.m.
Monday, December 25 – CLOSED
Tuesday, December 26 – through Saturday, December 30 – Regular Business Hours.
Sunday, December 31 – 9:00 a.m. to 1:45 a.m. (January 1, 2007)
Monday, January 1 – 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.