I made plans with family and friends to go to the local OTB that afternoon to place some bets, have a beer, and then head to the local sports bar to take in the race later that day. I was amped up! I made a few small bets but I did bet on one winner, a win ticket and I have my wife and my Aunt to thank for that one.
My Aunt texted me the morning of my birthday (Derby Day) with this message, "They have a horse named I'll Have Another, we have to bet on that one!". I couldn't agree more and that was that. Then, I realized I'll Have Another was #19 that day, my wife's lucky number. So I doubled my bet. Not a lot, but more than I would've bet just for the horses names sake.
We all watched the Derby together and went nuts when I'll Have Another was announced as the winner. At that moment I knew I was hooked (side note: I'm not addicted to gambling, I swear). Of course it's always fun when your "winning", but the atmosphere and story lines drew me in more. Heck, I even made my wife watch the movie "Secretariat" with me, which is a great movie by the way!
A few weeks later my parents, my wife, sister and her boyfriend and I were all at Arlington Park to celebrate the Preakness (the second race of the Triple Crown). It was my first time there and I can't think of a better way to spend a Saturday afternoon. It's such a beautiful park and the atmosphere is amazing. Needless to say we all had a blast.
While we were at Arlington three weeks ago and after I'll Have Another won the Preakness, my Dad, sister's boyfriend and I started planning our trip back to Arlington for the Belmont Stakes (third race of the Triple Crown). We were convinced this was the year for a Triple Crown Winner and we wanted to make sure we all watched it together.
We were wrong. As I said before, I started to write as I got the breaking news text message telling me I'll Have Another is scratched this Saturday. I had to read it twice. It sucks, but there's nothing you can do about it. I'm sad for the horse, his trainer and owners. But I'm also excited to see another horse rise to the occasion and splash around in the winner's circle. The Belmont might not have the same feel to it this weekend, but it doesn't mean we aren't going to see a great race.
Thanks for listening!
My Picks: Dullahan, Paynter, Union Rags