Monday, January 21, 2008

Horse Racing (Part 2)

The continuing adventures of an amateur horse racing gambler.

It began early as a knock on the door was followed by the entrance of Hong, one of our Korean friends. The blurry-eyed and stumbling roommates, Pete and Steve, put on their coats and shoes (at 8am, on a Sunday! I should be sleeping.) Into the SUV and off they zoomed, beginning their adventure into the unknown.

After avoiding psychotic madmen and suicidal pilots (or "driving") through Seoul and through a mountain (by tunnel), we arrived at our destination: The KRA Seoul Race Course. For Horses.

You may recall that I have a weakness for horse racing. See my York Races post from last summer... which is Part 1 of this story.

Last time in York, I won the first three races (I talk as if I was riding the horse myself! I mean to write that I bet on the winning horse...), netting me over $40 profit.

This time would be the same. I could feel it. The smell of victory filled my nostrils. Or was that the manure? Anyway, when we arrived we were ushered into the "Foreigner's Section," complete with comfy chairs, English horse info, and identifying tags. All the Koreans had hard chairs. Or they sat on the floor, or anywhere else.

Soon it was time for the first race. Here are my picks for the four races we bet on. Prepare to be amazed at my horse picking skills:

Race #1: I picked Changdaehan to win (1400 m). He lost. ("To win" means he has to come first.) Ugh! My horse-picking-skills have disappeared! Would I still come out on top?

Race #2: I picked Red Sky to win (1200 m). He came 6th. Aahh! Two down, no wins! What was going on?!

Race # 3: I picked Hot Spot and Shining Gold to place (1200 m). "To place" means that I win if either the two horses come first, second or third, thus increasing my odds of winning. It was a cunnin and, foolproof plan...

But they came in fourth and fifth. Mwaaah! I had lost the first three races. That's the opposite of my York racing experience! Hmmm, I thought. Perhaps, if it is an opposite experience, then I would lose the first three races (which I did) and then win the next three!!!

I would be a winner after all!

Here goes everything! With my new found confidence, I bet big! $10 bucks!

Race #4: I picked Small Jet and Southern Express to win (1200 m)! After a poor start, Small Jet was in second place! Southern Express exploded and died somewhere in eighth place, but Small Jet had a chance... Free Hugs was in the lead, followed by Jet. Small Jet then burst in front of Hugs and lead the pack! I was going to win! That great euphoric feeling was creeping into my throat. Jet was winning! Jet was winning! Jet was slowing!... Jet was..

Free Hugs roared past Small Jet and came first. My throat clenched and I knew it was over. Hong and Steve were making winning noises, but I wasn't listening. My skill was gone, as was my money.

All $16 of it.

So it wasn't a huge loss, but I didn't win! My Horse Races Story (Part 2) ends in tragedy. What will the future hold? You tell me. But like all good movies series, they come in three's. So there will have to be a sequel to this post in the future. Hopefully one where I win a lot of money.

Don't you agree?!


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