Benter’s model required his undivided attention. It monitored only about 20 inputs—just a fraction of the infinite factors that influence a horse’s performance, from wind speed to what it ate for breakfast. In pursuit of mathematical perfection, he became convinced that horses raced differently according to temperature, and when he learned that British meteorologists kept an archive of Hong Kong weather data in southwest England, he traveled there by plane and rail. A bemused archivist led him to a dusty library basement, where Benter copied years of figures into his notebook. When he got back to Hong Kong, he entered the data into his computers—and found it had no effect whatsoever on race outcomes. Such was the scientific process.


Big favorites inexplicably lose. Underdogs with seemingly no shot rise up unexpectedly (the Buffalo Bills were 17-point underdogs against the Minnesota Vikings on Sept. 23, yet won the game 27-6.) Games that appear set for high-scoring shootouts end as low-scoring affairs. A star quarterback or running back gets injured early in a game and never returns.
There are three founding sires that all Thoroughbreds can trace back to in the male line: the Darley Arabian, the Godolphin Arabian, and the Byerly Turk, named after their respective owners Thomas Darley, Lord Godolphin, and Captain Robert Byerly. They were taken to England, where they were mated with mares from English and imported bloodlines.[19] The resultant foals were the first generation of Thoroughbreds, and all modern Thoroughbreds trace back to them. Thoroughbreds range in height, which is measured in hands (a hand being four inches). Some are as small as 15 hands while others are over 17. Thoroughbreds can travel medium distances at fast paces, requiring a balance between speed and endurance. Thoroughbreds may be bay, black, dark bay/brown, chestnut, gray, roan, white or palomino. Artificial insemination, cloning and embryo transfer are not allowed in the Thoroughbred breed.[20]
Hard Rock is a bit of an anomaly in that its brick & mortar casinos don’t all offer the same player rewards program. For instance at its Las Vegas hotel, the scheme is a four-tiered program called Backstage Pass, while players in Florida will be treated to the two-tiered Seminole Wild Card. Players visiting Hard Rock Resort and Casino in Biloxi will find that the loyalty program is called Encore Club. And so on.
Hard Rock is a bit of an anomaly in that its brick & mortar casinos don’t all offer the same player rewards program. For instance at its Las Vegas hotel, the scheme is a four-tiered program called Backstage Pass, while players in Florida will be treated to the two-tiered Seminole Wild Card. Players visiting Hard Rock Resort and Casino in Biloxi will find that the loyalty program is called Encore Club. And so on.

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Ireland has a rich history of horse racing; point to pointing originated there, and even today, jump racing is more popular than racing on the flat. As a result, every year Irish horse racing fans travel in huge numbers to the highlight event of the National Hunt calendar, the Cheltenham Festival, and in recent years Irish owned or bred horses have dominated the event.[citation needed] Ireland has a thriving Thoroughbred breeding industry, stimulated by favourable tax treatment. The world's largest Thoroughbred stud farm, Coolmore Stud, has its main site there (in addition to major operations in the U.S. and Australia).

Horse racing was banned in the Republic of China from 1945, and the People's Republic of China maintained the ban after 1949, although allowances were made for ethnic minority peoples for whom horse sports are a cultural tradition. Speed horse racing (速度赛马) was an event in the National Games of China, mainly introduced to cater for minority peoples, such as the Mongols. The race course was initially 5 km, but from 2005 (the 10th National Games) was extended to 12 km. The longer race led to deaths and injuries to participating horses in both 2005 and the 11th National Games in 2009. Also, with the entry into the sport of Han majority provinces such as Hubei, which are better funded and used Western, rather than traditional, breeding and training techniques, meant that the original purpose of the event to foster traditional horse racing for groups like the Mongols was at risk of being usurped. At the 2009 National Games, Hubei won both the gold and silver medals, with Inner Mongolia winning bronze. As a result of these factors, the event was abolished for the 12th National Games in 2013.

Ireland has a rich history of horse racing; point to pointing originated there, and even today, jump racing is more popular than racing on the flat. As a result, every year Irish horse racing fans travel in huge numbers to the highlight event of the National Hunt calendar, the Cheltenham Festival, and in recent years Irish owned or bred horses have dominated the event.[citation needed] Ireland has a thriving Thoroughbred breeding industry, stimulated by favourable tax treatment. The world's largest Thoroughbred stud farm, Coolmore Stud, has its main site there (in addition to major operations in the U.S. and Australia).
To be registered as a Thoroughbred, a foal must be the product of a “live cover,” meaning a witnessed natural mating of a stallion and a mare. Though artificial insemination and embryo transfer are possible and common in other horse breeds, it is banned with Thoroughbreds. The population of the breed is thereby controlled, assuring a high monetary value for the horses in the process. Because each foal is assigned an official birth date of January 1, to facilitate the age groups that define Thoroughbred races, it is important that mares foal as early as possible in the calendar year. This assures maximum development time for the foal before training and racing.

Historically, equestrians honed their skills through games and races. Equestrian sports provided entertainment for crowds and displayed the excellent horsemanship needed in battle. Horse racing of all types evolved from impromptu competitions between riders or drivers. The various forms of competition, requiring demanding and specialized skills from both horse and rider, resulted in the systematic development of specialized breeds and equipment for each sport. The popularity of equestrian sports through the centuries has resulted in the preservation of skills that would otherwise have disappeared after horses stopped being used in combat.[8]
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