Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Much as Commissioner Ford Frick attached an asterisk to Roger Maris' single-season home run record, history will reflect that NJ Horseplayer, bib No. 61,000 in the 2012 NYC Marathon, never quite met muster for a great lifetime achievement.

Organizers should have cancelled the marathon immediately after Superstorm Sandy hit (and, in my opinion sounded rather disingenuous on Friday about their needs to postpone), so I did not feel the kind of dejection that Roger Maris presumably felt when denied of the all-time single-season home run record in 1961.  Plus, hosts of generous individuals contributed to what was nearly a $4,000 fundraising campaign for the LAM Foundation, Alstrom Syndrome International and Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund!

A heartfelt "Thank You" to everyone for your support during my marathon training and fundraiser!

On the other hand, I feel rather dejected about Friday's Breeders Cup Marathon, where my top long-shot selection of the day, Grassy, ran so gamely and got a great ride from Garrett Gomez but finished second to a late-running Calidoscopio to scuttle my hopes for a sizable daily double and Pick 3.

Granted, I managed to turn my $50 bankroll for Friday into a $350 profit -- hitting back-to-back exacta wagers on the BC Marathon ($1 box paid $252.50) and BC Juvenile Fillies Turf ($2 box returned $85.50), but because of my frugality left Calidoscopio off my Pick 3 ticket.  Including the Argentinian horse would have given me a monumental $3,495 Pick 3 score, considering I went all in the first leg and got the best scenario with 15-to-1 Hightail an upset winner in the BC Juvenile Sprint 

By the same token, had Grassy been able to somehow hang on, I would have similarly profited, as I went ALL-Grassy in the Race 4 double (will-pays were enormous).  Lamenting my frugality is a bit of armchair quarterback, but on the other hand I take solace as a horseplayer in making a bullish call on a long-shot single who simply got chased down a by great horse and rider (Aaron Gryder) that day.

Saturday's $100 bankroll netted a mere $23.20 profit, as Little Mike cost me a shot at a decent Pick 3 payout in the final leg.  However, my best bet of the day, Mizdirection, topped an $80.20 exacta payout in the BC Turf Sprint over Unbridled's Note and I lucked out with Shanghai Bobby holding off He's Had Enough in the BC Juvenile to fill out my $43 daily double.  In all, good to come out ahead and put some toward Red Cross disaster relief efforts.

Brimming with confidence, I played in Sunday's NHC Qualifier at HorseTourneys.com but came up empty.

I figure I've got maybe one more tournament in me, and any freebies that the NHC Tour may run before year-end, but have resigned myself to missing out on the National Handicapping Championship for a third-straight year.  Time's running out, and in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, I simply feel blessed that my family and our homes were unscathed and only subjected to power outages.   I hope you're well. 

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