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Froggy

Updated: Feb 24

Last week we wrote about how I bailed out the late Prince Ahmed bin Salman of the Saudi Arabian royal family, and became the object of being summoned at any place, any time, since I turned him from a frog to a prince at the windows, with one well played superfecta ticket.


''The prince summons you''. Big pick 6 carryover over $3 million in the carryover pool at Del Mar, must have been around 1999 or so.


I am summoned to put a pick 6 ticket together for $5k.


I am not too keen on such practice, I like doing my own thing, let players take the info and shake it out and play tickets based on style of wagering


Betting is a very personal part of the game, what I favor, may not be yours.


Give man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.


It bears true in racing, you give a man, or a woman a winner they can make money today, but give them information and they can pick winners for a lifetime.


While some the industry still treats players like mushrooms "leave them in the dark and feed them bullshit'', we believe, give them the information they need to succeed.


Giving people the right info doesn't alter your price, because in order to alter a price, they have to cash, thus, the individual personal aspects of betting is of the upmost importance.


Some players, play every bet known to man in a race, diluting their monies through all the pools and others are judiciously finding key ways to maximize their plays.


To each his own.


So, I put a ticket together and delivered it to the Prince in his suite.


Fast forward, that afternoon, I had a date. We got a table in the turf club, good day in front of us.


The first couple of pick 6 races go uneventfully with our horses performing, the 6th and 7th races were key.


The 6th race was very good for us as I had used a $20 winner from the Jean Pierre Dupuis barn. My date and I cashed, and she was also betting with both hands, not just me.


The 7th race, was a maiden, Baffert had a maiden in the field hanging around about 9-1. I loved him, my date and I bet on him. Few minutes before post I glazed at the toteboard and there was an 8-5 favorite, curiously I looked at the program, and much to my shock and horror:


The favorite was a Wally Dollase trained first timer, for Thoroughbred Corp.


Yes, the prince's horse. I didn't use him at all on the pick six, ooopsie!


My date looks at me and says "What's wrong, all the color drained from your face''.


I explained to her that I had given a pick six ticket to the Prince of Saudi Arabia and didn't use his horse.


She didn't say but it was that look of ''you big dummy''.


Down the stretch the 9-1 Baffert inside, and outside, the Dollase Thoroughbred Corp runner, head and head, stretch battle. Baffert gets his nose down at $20 to win.


"After the next race, let's get out of here before they come down from their suites'' I told her.


"He can't have your head taken off, can he?'' she quips with a devilish smile, 'lets not find out'.


She had scored for over $500 herself. So what if I can't keep my head on my shoulders.


By this time, the 8th race had gone off and the ticket is 5 for 5, heading into the last leg.


We pay our tab and head into the turf club, moving to the exit.


There, at the bar, the Prince, and his entourage. The horror!


From a distance he raises one finger and moves it side to side, like in 'No' you are not leaving.


My date is getting a kick out of this, and she says ''you going to introduce me to a prince?''


We walk over and the first words out of his mouth "I use my horse!''


I didn't have the courage to ask if he had kept the Baffert on the ticket.


To this day I don't know that answer, Baffert had not yet started to train for the Prince so he would have taken pleasure in beating him and even thrown him a curveball or a change up if he had asked. Baffert, back then, wasn't scared of losing his head, he was a gunslinger.


He buys my date a drink, he didn't ask me. Fine by me but didn't even ask if she was for sale, which he had done in the past. Was that respect or he didn't like blondes?


My guess the way he was looking at payouts, he was still alive, he had something else on his mind. I knew the numbers of the horses I gave him in the last and the payoffs were monstrous.


I don't know, if I was happy or sad, when a Jim Cassidy 30-1 runner wires the field in the last. He wasn't in my numbers, darn!


We excused ourselves from 'his highness' and left the turf club, with all my fingers, toes, limbs and my head still attached to my neck, you know because, you hear stories.


So, if ever you have a Prince from a far away land ask you for a pick six ticket make sure, he and his family, doesn't have a horse in the sequence.


Walking out my date was so happy, she met a prince, giddy about $500 in her purse, I was just glad to be her frog.



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