Not wishing to blow this chance of a windfall – those stats you read about how little the average author earns are bang on – I placed the bet on what I thought was a cert: my team, Aston Villa, of the Premier League, to beat Blackpool, then in meltdown in the division below, in the FA Cup at odds of 4/9. Typical Villa left it late, nabbing the winner in the 88th minute. But a win’s a win.
Chariot racing was one of the most popular ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine sports. Both chariot and mounted horse racing were events in the ancient Greek Olympics by 648 BC and were important in the other Panhellenic Games. It continued although chariot racing was often dangerous to both driver and horse, which frequently suffered serious injury and even death. In the Roman Empire, chariot and mounted horse racing were major industries. From the mid-fifteenth century until 1882, spring carnival in Rome closed with a horse race. Fifteen to 20 riderless horses, originally imported from the Barbary Coast of North Africa, were set loose to run the length of the Via del Corso, a long, straight city street; their time was about 2½ minutes.
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Finally, Benter sent an anonymous letter to the Jockey Club’s directors explaining his intentions. But the organization never shared it with the public. (Club spokeswoman Samantha Sui told Bloomberg Businessweek, “We are not in a position to disclose or comment on matters related to specific customers due to privacy and confidentiality concerns.”) At the time, head of betting Henry Chan told the Morning Post that there was no way of knowing who the ticket holder was. “Although this is bad luck for one winner,” he said, “it means there will be a lot of winners through the charities.”
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Some handicap races are major sporting events. For instance, the Melbourne Cup, a handicap inaugurated in 1861, is the most important race of the Southern Hemisphere. In the United States the Metropolitan, Brooklyn, and Suburban handicaps—all dating to the 19th century—were once the most valuable American events and remain reasonably comparable to the classics. The Santa Anita Handicap, first run in 1935, pioneered among such races with $100,000 or more purse value.
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Horse racing is one of the oldest of all sports, and its basic concept has undergone virtually no change over the centuries. It developed from a primitive contest of speed or stamina between two horses into a spectacle involving large fields of runners, sophisticated electronic monitoring equipment, and immense sums of money, but its essential feature has always been the same: the horse that finishes first is the winner. In the modern era, horse racing developed from a diversion of the leisure class into a huge public-entertainment business. By the first decades of the 21st century, however, the sport’s popularity had shrunk considerably.
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. 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.
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Horse racing is a significant part of the New Zealand economy which in 2004 generated 1.3% of the GDP. The indirect impact of expenditures on racing was estimated to have generated more than $1.4 billion in economic activity in 2004 and created 18,300 full-time equivalent jobs. More than 40,000 people were involved in some capacity in the New Zealand racing industry in 2004. In 2004, more than one million people attended race meetings in New Zealand. There are 69 Thoroughbred and 51 harness clubs licensed in New Zealand. Racecourses are situated in 59 locations throughout New Zealand.
If, that is, the model were accurate. By the end of Benter’s first season in Hong Kong, in the summer of 1986, he and Woods had lost $120,000 of their $150,000 stake. Benter flew back to Vegas to beg for investment, unsuccessfully, and Woods went to South Korea to gamble. They met back in Hong Kong in September. Woods had more money than Benter and was willing to recapitalize their partnership—if it was renegotiated.
In most horse races, entry is restricted to certain breeds; that is, the horse must have a sire (father) and a dam (mother) who are studbook-approved individuals of whatever breed is racing. For example, in a normal harness race, the horse's sire and dam must both be pure Standardbreds. The exception to this is in Quarter Horse racing, where an Appendix Quarter Horse may be considered eligible to race against (standard) Quarter Horses. The designation of "Appendix" refers to the addendum section, or Appendix, of the Official Quarter Horse registry. An Appendix Quarter Horse is a horse that has either one Quarter Horse parent and one parent of any other eligible breed (such as Thoroughbred, the most common Appendix cross), two parents that are registered Appendix Quarter Horses, or one parent that is a Quarter Horse and one parent that is an Appendix Quarter Horse. AQHA also issues a "Racing Register of Merit," which allows a horse to race on Quarter Horse tracks, but not be considered a Quarter Horse for breeding purposes (unless other requirements are met).