The 2014 Breeders’ Cup will probably not go down as one of the most memorable ones in the history of the event. Some may even call it one of the worst, however for the Racing Dudes and especially the Racing Dudette it will go down as one of the best. Saturday’s fourth race, The Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Filly, had to be one of my favorite races of all time. Not only did my favorite trainer D Wayne Lukas win, but my wife cashed in for $617. A simple $10 win bet on a 61-1 horse that seemingly had “no chance” turned out to be golden! Here was here eight step plan for hitting the biggest longshot of her life.
Step 1: Have a Love for the Underdogs
My wife always bets the longshots, and we always give her hell for it. If they aren’t 30-1 or higher she doesn’t have much interest in them. “I like to root for the underdog…I see them and I say ‘I know you can do it!’ I feel sad for them when they are a long shot and I HATE IT when somebody tells me they don’t have a shot. It makes me want to bet them even more.” You can tell by that statement that she has been told “that horse can’t win” a lot…and usually by me. However, to hit a long shot you must adopt the attitude that she has.
Step 2: Be Fearless…or Crazy
“I brought this money not caring if I lose it” is a phrase I’ve heard countless times since going to the track with my wife. Most people don’t like losing money, but she doesn’t mind it much when it comes to gambling. “I never bet a lot of money, so I’m not afraid to lose $2 or $10. I’ll still be able to eat at night…and it’s fun” No fear…and a little crazy!
Step 3: Never Count Out the Coach
I loved D Wayne Lukas when it wasn’t cool. My wife has heard my “D Wayne Lukas is the greatest horse trainer ever” speech a thousand times. My constant obsession with the racing legend has always compelled her to place a wager on him. “One of the reason’s I bet Take Charge Brandi was because it was Lukas. I’ve heard it million times…you can’t count out the coach.” Sometimes that strategy can burn you (Optimizer, Dublin, ect) but if you stick with him long enough he’ll come through for you.
Step 4: Have a 10 Hour Lunch with a Racing Legend
It pays to know great people! One of the biggest thrills of our trip to California was meeting the ever generous Jon White. For nearly 10 hours he shared stories that were both insightful and hilarious. You can bet the Dudette was listening as well. “Listening to my husband, Ryan, and Jon talk for hours reminded me that you can’t throw any horse out…especially Lukas. Jon also said something that I completely agree with: horses aren’t machines.”
Step 5: Have Solid Reasons for the Bet
Even when a horse is 61-1 you still need to come up with reasons why you should bet the horse. My wife had three simple reasons: “She comes from the same family as Will Take Charge, and I love him. She was a Lukas horse as previously mentioned. She was 44-1 when I went to bet her.” Those three reasons sound solid enough…but there is one other BIG reason she bet $10 to win. Step 6….
Step 6: Read the Past Performances Backwards
Ignorance is bliss…
“I thought to myself, she’s getting better. She’s finished 8th, 5th, 5th, 2nd, 1st! She’s improving, wow why is she 44-1? She’s going to win!”
That’s right folks…she read the form backwards! Take Charge Brandi was actually getting WORSE with each start! When explaining her strategy to Jared, the reply was priceless. “YOU READ IT BACKWARDS! She was getting WORSE” A simple “oh” was replied by the Dudette as she laughed all the way to the window. That kind of thing is what makes this game unbelievably awesome! Handicappers from across the country spent hundreds of hours analyzing the race, yet she picks up a form five minutes before the post, reads it backwards, and kicked all of our asses!
Step 7: Go to the Window Late, and Only Watch the Final 100 Yards of the Race
I’ve watched enough races at Santa Anita to know when a front runner makes the turn and starts to lengthen the lead they usually are tough to beat. When Brandi made that turn I started cheering for her not knowing my wife had went to the window on her. 100 yards out she had made it back to the group and I could tell she was rooting hard for her. “After I made my bet I was walking back to the group and saw the horses on the big screen and saw she was ahead. I thought she would never hold on and that I had lost the bet. I made it back to the group and saw she was still ahead and the wire was getting close. I saw everyone in our group cheering for her, then I saw her win and I got really excited.” The celebration was a fun one as none of us knew she had even made the bet until after the race had ended. When we found out if wasn’t her normal $2 bet, but a $10 bet we got even more excited!
Step 8: Be Humble
This is the part about her that I like the most…she has not once bragged about her win. I’ve posted it on social media, and told everyone I know…but she hasn’t said a word to anyone. “I didn’t expect it to happen, and I don’t expect it to happen again. I just got lucky. That’s horse racing!” That’s a great way to look at it. The Racing Gods will surely appreciate that kind of attitude.