The human aspect is what keeps horse racing interesting. The trainers of I’ll Have Another made their decision to hold him out of the Belmont, and racing all together, based on the best interests of the horse. While not having a horse running for the Triple Crown won’t help the sport’s popularity, the decision to scratch I’ll Have Another should be. For a sport with a reputation of “win at all costs,” the publicity gained from a selfless decision should eclipse the negatives of running without I’ll Have Another. It won’t, but it should.
The last memorable Belmont for me was 2004, the year Smarty Jones was just shy of completing the feat. If the distance had been the same as the Derby, see wouldn’t be talking about waiting to see a triple crown winner in 30+ years. I watched that race from a hotel room in New York City with my new bride on our honeymoon following a run around NYC asking strangers where to find an OTB. Smarty Jones was easy to pull for, an undersized horse out of a stable in Philadelphia, not to be confused with a racing hotbed. Birdstone’s late charge on that day stripped an incredible headline but provided history’s first villain horse. The unpredictability is why we watch.
As far as the Siminski’s reputation as wagerers, most of us have disappointed. My cousin Marty has been the big winner, putting his money on I’ll have Another in the previous two races. The rest of the Siminski’s continue to play catch-up. I find myself ignoring the urge to cash a ticket this time, and go for the big payout. The only way to eclipse the $1000 lead is to cash a big ticket. The picks continue below.
The Railbird goes for broke with a Trifecta Key with Union Rags on top with Five Sixteen and Paynter. Clark Siminski throws his $100 behind a Street Life, Revelo’s Boy Exacta, no doubt looking for the bigger payout. My Uncle Martin Siminski, who no doubt heard from a guy who heard from a guy that Union Rags will win, puts $50 to win on Union Rags and spends the rest on a Union Rags, Dallahan, Paynter Trifecta. Our leader, Marty Siminski puts $50 to win on St. Life to compliment his $50 Trifecta of Street Life, Union Rags and My Adonis. Myself, well, I need a big win. With the amount I am behind, I am putting everything on a Superfecta of Union Rags, Dallahan, Guyana Star Dweej, and Optimizer. I fully intend to win, as unpredictable as that may seem.
I again would like to thank OTB and Batavia Downs for giving me the opportunity to talk about horse racing and stoke the competitive fire between Siminskis. I should also thank my family for humoring me in this exercise to prove that Siminskis have impeccable gambling skills. Please support OTB/ Batavia Downs and all of our sponsors as you continue to support FC Buffalo.