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Poker Blog established in 2003 as the first stop for poker news, poker stories, and bad poker advice.

September 29, 2006

The Fight Is Over

by Luckbox

The seedy side of politics is ugly. Always has been. Always will be. What today has ensured for me is that I will never, ever vote for Bill Frist for anything. In fact, I will campaign vigorously against him.

Rep. Jim Leach (R-IA) has a great deal of sway over the Republican caucus that will help launch a potential 2008 GOP nominee. Rep. Jim Leach wanted an internet gambling bill passed this session. Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN) made this happen. Sen. Bill Frist will be running for the 2008 GOP presidential nomination. Quid pro quo is alive and well.

The Port Security Act is a long overdue piece of legislation that's designed to make this nation safer. It took Congress five years after 9/11 to finally make this happen, and in its haste to get it done before a mid-term elections, this Congress "didn't have time" to also protect our mass transit. They did, however, "have time" to add a new bill designed to curb internet gambling.

What this Congress is saying, then, is that it is more important to attack the scourge of online gaming than it is to make sure our buses and trains do not blow up. This is the Congress we elected. This is the Congress we have to get rid of.

By an overwhelming margin of 409-2, the House moments ago passed the Port Security Act. The Senate will soon vote where it will pass by a similar overwhelming margin.

On the bill itself, let's remember that it doesn't make onling gambling illegal. Online gambling is already illegal in most cases. Instead, it makes it much more difficult for existing online gambling sites to do business with Americans. It makes it harder for Americans to perform any financial transactions with online gaming sites.

However, just because it makes it harder doesn't mean it makes it impossible. I have a tremendous amount of faith in the international business community to outsmart this bill. After all, when we're ranking the collective intelligence of different groups, the U.S. Congress ranks just ahead of lobotomy patients and just behind slightly retarded monkeys.

Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

Internet Gambling Bill Revived--Updated

by Luckbox

Updated after the jump

They failed in their attempt to attach the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (H.R. 4411) to the massive defense spending bill, but that didn't stop a coalition of lawmakers lead by Sen. Bill Frist from trying again, and this time, it might just work.

Sometime tomorrow or Saturday, the Senate will vote on a major ports security bill (H.R. 4954), and because no lawmaker wants to go into a mid-term election saying they voted against port security, the bill will pass by a wide-margin. It's these "must-pass" bills that become dumping grounds for pet legislation that wouldn't pass on its own merits.

Some Senators tried and failed to tack on a bill that would protect phone companies who released subscriber information to the government as part of the surveillance program. House Speaker Dennis Hastert's pet legislation is a court security bill. Frist's is the Senate Majority Leader and is pushing the gambling bill.

It'd be easy if we could just blame the Republicans, but we can't. Our station did an interview with Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu this week and asked her about efforts to add the gambling bill to "must-pass" legislation. She told us she was in favor of the bill and would be in favor of any efforts to get it passed. Unfortunately, it sounds like the support is there to sneak it through.

So what can we do now? It's going to take action to stop this from happening, and that means you picking up the phone and calling your Senator... or, for that matter, any Senator. You have to make it clear to them that you do not support turning an important port security bill into a dumping ground for pet projects that will not get full debate. And make it clear that if they let these bills get tacked on, you will not be voting for them the next time their seat comes open. Names and phone numbers for all 50 candidates are listed below (courtesy the Poker Players Alliance):

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

September 27, 2006


by G-Rob

Thursday morning, my day off now that I work the weekend shift, I was up at 7:00 for the drive to my older daughter's school. I got to bed at 2:00 the night before and lay awake until 6. I'm not sleeping well lately. Some nights I try to lie down early but get caught up in mental conspiracy. Most nights I spend the last few hours before the alarm sounds stealing glances at the clock and counting backwards the hours 'till work. Wednesday night I counted the hours until "Doughnuts for Dads."

We chased Krispy Kreme with OJ in the school library, sitting with a girl from my daughter's class and her father. I introduced myself to the other exhausted, and ponytailed, dad. He pointed to the letters written in black ink, probably drawn from a ballpoint pen, and said, "Call me Taz."

It seems his daughter is the girl who matches mine in both good grades and poor discipline. Actually, my daughter is incredibly kind, honest, considerate and loyal. She's just a little too energetic. One night, as we got her ready for bed, she started crying about her own bad behavior. "I want to be good," she whined, "I don't know why I'm squirmy."

That kept me up late too.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | G-Rob's Thoughts

September 26, 2006

Gambling Bill Alive Again?

by Luckbox

Over the past 24 hours, there have been a series of reports telling us that the dreaded internet gambling bill is both alive and dead. In recent weeks, we've reported that Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) had hoped to sneak the gambling bill into the massive Defense Department 2007 Appropriations Bill.

That bill has now passed through the conference committee, but it doesn't seem to be headed for guaranteed passage, nor is it clear that the gambling bill will ever be attached. Currently, House Republican leaders are holding up the bill hoping to add unrelated bills on immigration and court security.

Lawmakers are scheduled to leave Washington at the end of the week to campaign for November's midterm elections. If the bill isn't passed by then, it likely won't be addressed until later this year at the earliest. That could be a problem considering Oct. 1st is the start of the new fiscal year.

As recently as the end of last week, House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman C.W. (Bill) Young (R-FL) said he was assured by GOP leaders that it would be a clean bill with no "extraneous issues, no anomalies." It would seem that amendments regarding immigration, court security and internet gambling would be "extraneous."

At this point, if I had to lay odds, it'd be 4/1 against the internet gambling bill getting attached to the DoD spending bill. The last amendments added to the bill were added on September 7th. No additional text has been added since. Let's hope the fight over immigration and court security help keep internet gambling on the back burner.

Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

September 25, 2006

They Call Me The Luckbox

by Luckbox

Gavin Smith is a hell of a guy. Despite being a WPT player of the year with more than $3 million in tournament winnings, Gavin gave up a weekend to join a gathering of drunk degenerates in Nowheresville, Pa.

Brandon Schaefer is a hell of a guy. Despite being a EPT champion and approaching three quarters of a million dollars in tournament winnings, Brandon gave up a weekend to sling cards and drink beer with a bunch of bloggers.

How did we get so lucky? I was so lucky, in fact, that I had a chance to play a live SNG with these two world-class pros. And, as you would expect for someone nicknamed The Luckbox, my luck didn't end there.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Tournament Action

September 24, 2006

The Bash: By the Numbers

by Luckbox

12: Consecutive hands I held the nuts in the Friday night mixed game.
7: Times I failed to correctly bet the nuts during that stretch.
4: Times Heather yelled at me for it.
2: World-class pros I knocked out of the charity poker tournament.
17: Times one of those world-class pros called me a douchebag during the tourney.
0: Players who outlasted me in that tourney.
1: Hammers dropped by me heads up, beating K7o.
12,000: Dollars raised for charity by the single-table tournament.
2: Hotties I bought drinks for.
1: Set of perfect legs on one of those hotties.
14: Hours later that I learned how old the hotties were.
19: Their age.
10: Beers I consumed during the Bash.
1: Beers that I chugged during the tournament.
0: Shots that others convinced me to do.

It was a blast, but I wouldn't have expected anything less. I promise a full tourney write-up tomorrow!

Permalink | Luckbox's Thoughts

September 21, 2006

Another Ride

by Luckbox

It's pretty clear at this point that I'm the greatest WPBT H.O.R.S.E. player of all-time. In the first event, I bested a field of like 7000 or so. This time, another 4000 showed up for DADI 9: Back in the Saddle. (FYI: I'm not good at estimating the actual size of the field.)

Tonight, my stellar play launched me back to the top where only a card rack (Trauma) and O/8's answer to Jamie Gold (Drizz) outlasted me. Two H.O.R.S.E. events and two top 3 finishes. Yeah, I roool. Even when I get dealt hands like this:

Congrats to Trauma for taking it down and Drizz for winning our last longer!

Permalink | Tournament Action

Back to the Pool Table

by Luckbox

"It takes three 'Atta boys' to make up for one 'Aw, shit!'"
Mr. F#*@ the River

It was a wild night of poker at the regular game. The best part of the night is we doubled the buy-in to $20 and we added the 75/150 and 150/300 levels instead of doubling the blinds each time. It's remarkable how much more play we got with just that simple change.

I'm glad I went tonight because really needed to get some play in before this weekend. In fact, the way some of these guys play any two cards, I should be more than ready for Gavin Smith!

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Home Games

September 19, 2006

A fiction trip around the blogosphere

by Otis

What? Blogs are dead? Nah. They're just resting.

It's just after 5am and I'm trying to work off a caffeine buzz brought on by a workload that's just a little shy of WSOP proportions. The caffeine and Guinness brought on a silly idea.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Reading Material

September 18, 2006

NFL: The Post Mortem

by Luckbox

I'm not sure I'll ever watch the NFL again. You think losing to a two-outer on the river hurts? Try blowing a 17-point fourth quarter lead to your division rival. Now THAT's a bad beat. I've never felt as bad after a poker beat as I felt yesterday evening.

I hate football. Thank goodness it's still baseball season so I have something to focus on this week (Go Phils!).

But I digress... here come the results. I finished a strong 10-6 with BG close behind at 9-7. We also nailed our Locks of the Week and suggested a three-team parlay that would have made you money.

Just some notes: Only 5 dogs beat the spread this week and four of them won outright (favored Denver won but did not cover). Only 5 road teams were winning bets this week (all winning outright except, once again, Kansas City).

Next week, you may not get any picks from us since we'll be otherwise occupied (The Bash!!!), but you never know. If you want a recap of last week's picks, they're listed below.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Other Gambling

September 17, 2006

Betting the NFL with CJ and the Boy Genius

by Luckbox

Each week we're able, BG and I will get on the girly chat thingy and show off our sports betting expertise. (Full disclosure: I'm a terrible sports betting.) In fact, we're so secure in our manhood, we'll repost the entire chat for your sports gambling enjoyment!

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Other Gambling

September 15, 2006

Old Blogger, New Poker Player

by Luckbox

Fellow Syracuse University alum Paul Katcher has been blogging since 2002. He also writes occasionally for ESPN Page 2, so you know he's got skillzzz. In fact, he's one of my favorite reads, and I highly recommend him for your bloglines.

Well, it seems Paul is becoming a bit of a poker blogger, as evidenced by his latest post "My First Week Playing Online Poker (For Real Money)." Go give it a read, if you've got a chance, but please be gentle. He's even got a few bad beat stories (he's not aware that he owes us all a dollar).

He also asked in his comments for some advice on where a low roller can get the most for his buck at the poker table. If you got suggestions for low limit playing or cheap buy-in tourneys, let him know!

Permalink | Poker Blogs

September 14, 2006

Dealing Off the Bottom of the Deck

by Luckbox

If you thought the internet gambling bill was dead in the U.S. Senate, you're sorely mistaken. It seems that we have a mechanic on Capitol Hill. The deck may be stacked against us. Okay, I've run out of poker cliches.

Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist may be attempting a legislative trick to get this bill passed. The Associated Press is reporting that Frist is planning to tack the internet gambling bill onto a massive defense authorization bill that deals with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Why would he do this? It's simple.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

South Carolina poker and gambling case in court

by Otis

At long last, South Carolina's antiquated gambling laws are being challenged in court. Last year, some friends of Up For Poker were playing a friendly tournament in a neighborhood clubhouse when they were raided by a suburban swat team that didn't have any drug dealers to bust that day. Under 1802 South Carolina law, the guys could've been playing Monopoly and been charged with the same crime.

Now, a local attorney has taken up the case of five of the players and is currently appealing to the good senses of a local magistrate judge to take a hard look at the law and question how it can be that playing Euchre on a table in my local watering hole can be illegal.

The local players, one of whom likes to play big pots with AQ on an AK8 board, were charged with violating this part of the South Carolina gambling law:

SECTION 16-19-40. Unlawful games and betting.

If any person shall play at any tavern, inn, store for the retailing of spirituous liquors or in any house used as a place of gaming, barn, kitchen, stable or other outhouse, street, highway, open wood, race field or open place at (a) any game with cards or dice, (b) any gaming table, commonly called A, B, C, or E, O, or any gaming table known or distinguished by any other letters or by any figures, (c) any roley-poley table, (d) rouge et noir, (e) any faro bank (f) any other table or bank of the same or the like kind under any denomination whatsoever or (g) any machine or device licensed pursuant to Section 12-21-2720 and used for gambling purposes, except the games of billiards, bowls, backgammon, chess, draughts, or whist when there is no betting on any such game of billiards, bowls, backgammon, chess, draughts, or whist or shall bet on the sides or hands of such as do game, upon being convicted thereof, before any magistrate, shall be imprisoned for a period of not over thirty days or fined not over one hundred dollars, and every person so keeping such tavern, inn, retail store, public place, or house used as a place for gaming or such other house shall, upon being convicted thereof, upon indictment, be imprisoned for a period not exceeding twelve months and forfeit a sum not exceeding two thousand dollars, for each and every offense.

While you try to soak up the intricacies of the law (and start your Google search for whist), wrap your head around this section of the same law (my emphasis added).

SECTION 16-19-70. Keeping gaming tables open or playing games on the Sabbath.

Whoever shall keep or suffer to be kept any gaming table or permit any game or games to be played in his house on the Sabbath day, on conviction thereof before any court having jurisdiction, shall be fined in the sum of fifty dollars, to be sued for on behalf of, and to be recovered for the use of, the State.

Seriously, under a strict reading of this law, I can't play football with my kid during the Chiefs game this Sunday without fear of being fined. Reasonable people would say, "Well, the cops aren't going to waste their time busting you for a game of Pinochle." I'd say, "The cops have a lot of time to waste, apparently. Several of them were caught playing poker on shift a few months back." (Note: If you read that article, pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. The game was poker.)

So, the current case is the one that has appeared in CardPlayer several times in the last year or so. It's a case that pretty much defines the silliness surrounding the Raging Assault on Poker's Emergence.

Based on what I know about the current case and the judge, I'd say there is a 35% chance the judge, Hank Mims, will take any sort of stand here. Hank is a reasonable guy and a little on the eccentric side, but probably doesn't want to get involved in the fight. That will likely mean the poker players will have to stand trial. This will not be the kind of thing you see on Court TV. It will be held in a small courtroom in Greer, SC and likely last for just a couple of hours.

The real action, if there need be any, will happen when the verdict comes in. Guilty or Not Guilty, this case will be headed for an appeals court faster than the Greer Swat Team can storm suburban clubhouse. It will be in that appeals court where the law and the people who support it will face the most important scrutiny. Simply put, no person who considers himself reasonable can read the South Carolina gambling statute and with a straight face declare it constitutional.

For more on the case, you can read today's article from the local daily news or the other article that ran yesterday after the hearing.

Perhaps my favorite passage from the entire hearing:

"As avid poker players, they knew Texas Hold 'Em was gambling, the records say. One of them had a license plate that reads, "THENUTZ," a poker term for the best possible hand, the prosecutors filing says."

Where's the wit of Wicked Chops Poker when you need it?

Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

September 13, 2006

Anti-Poker Legislation

by Luckbox

Some of you know my sister, Jen. Some of you have played with her in the WWdN. She's trying to do her part to knock some sense into our Representatives, starting with her own, Congressman Solomon P. Ortiz. She emailed him to ask why they were spending so much time on a small issue when there are more important issues in the world, and to ask why he was in support of the bill at all. Here's his response (surprisingly, it doesn't read like a form letter!):

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

September 12, 2006

Dead October

by G-Rob

I've had a good year with the cards. I need a break. So, here goes.

I will not play poker, at all, live or online, in the month of October. Not at all.

I'll post much more on this in a bit, probably tomorrow, but it feels good to get it up in writing.

I'm taking a poker holiday. Honestly, I'll probably post MORE often ABOUT poker once I take some time to step away.

For now, there's just this.

Of course, I'm still playing Wednesday. I have a few weeks before the curtain falls.

Permalink | G-Rob's Thoughts

September 11, 2006

PPA Phone March on Capitol Hill

by Otis

In case you're not a forum reader or missed the announcement at PokerStars, you should be aware that this is going on tomorrow. I find this to be one very cool effort. Many kudos to the PokerStars, P5s, Wicked Chops, and PPA folks.


Fom the PokerStars Poker Blog:

PokerStars is joining with the Poker Players Alliance to give its American players the chance to tell their Senator what they think about the efforts to ban online poker. On Tuesday, September 12, between 9:00am ET and 5:30pm ET, you can call 1-800-289-1136, listen to the recording from Greg “Fossilman” Raymer, punch in your zip code, and you will be transferred to one of your Senators’ offices free of charge. You don't have to be a member of the PPA to use this number. Click here for more information.

PokerStars will also be running $1 PPA membership drive tournments with a $5,000 added prize pool. You can find the tournaments by clicking "Tourney" and "Special." Click here for more information.

Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

September 8, 2006

Online Crackdown Update

by Luckbox

For background on this story, please start here.

The arrest of Peter Dicks of has opened a number of questions, some of which we won't get answers to until a trial, or perhaps never. I've tried to get the answers to some:

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Poker Law and Legal News

Bloggers spank Harrahs

by Otis

A thank you to Amy Calistri & Tim Lavalli for taking the time to apparently figure out where all the extra chips in the WSOP came from. While we will never see definitive proof of the muck-up, Amy and Tim provide the best explanation yet, and it ain't pretty for Harrahs or Jeff Pollack.

Two Million Questions (Part One)
Two Million Questions (Part Two)
Two Million Questions (Part Three)

Permalink | 2006 WSOP

Breaking News! Louisiana Attacks Onling Gambling

by Luckbox

The Chairman of SportingBet PLC, Peter Dicks, was arrested Wednesday night after he landed in the United States on a flight from London. The arrest happened after Customs ran his name through a database and found an outstanding warrant from Louisiana.

Dick faces a warrant of gambling by computer. It stems from an investigation back in January performed by the Louisiana State Police Gaming Enforcement Division. In May, a judge in St. Landry Parish signed the warrant, and perhaps others, but ordered them sealed. The clerk of courts can not even tell us which judge signed the warrants.

Gambling by computer is a felony which is punishable by a fine of no more than $20,000 and/or imprisonment with or without hard labor for not more than five years. This is for anyone who "designs, develops, manages, supervises, maintains, provides or produces" any online gambling. For your typical user (i.e. me), the charge brings a fine of not more than $500 and/or imprisonment for not more than six months. If you'd like a good laugh, go ahead and read the gambling by computer law. Bottom line: It's all about the kids.

More on this developing story to come... (Also keep an eye on Wicked Chops Poker, who are, as usual, on the case.)

Permalink | Other Gambling

September 5, 2006

Bloggers on ESPN

by Luckbox

Okay, so it's not like I busted Jesus or something...

But ESPN found it in their collective hearts to include me in tonight's WSOP coverage nonetheless. As many of you know, I closely followed Dmitri Nobles during my time with Team PokerStars Blog (picture from PokerStars Blog). Well, with him on the TV table, I got a little TV time myself.

The first time, Dmitri had just dumped more than 2/3rds of his massive stack on some tough beats and some admittedly bad plays. He took a break to call a friend and steam. I tried to help calm him down and he told me, "I'm tightening up... Next hand I play will be Aces, Kings or Queens."

Well, he lied to me, but he's a poker player, so I forgive him. His next hand was A8, and he ended up massively sucking out on KK after an 8-high flop. And it was after that hand that Dmitri called out, "CJ!!!" and came over to give me a hug. I wasn't sure ESPN would include it, but they did. And it brought a smile to my face.

That's the Dmitri I remember. The fun-loving guy. The guy who wanted the rest of the table to have fun even if he was taking their chips. I feel like ESPN decided to set him up as a bit of a jackass donkey. That wasn't Dmitri. He certainly didn't play like he read Harrington on Hold 'Em, but he played really good big stack poker and he was a really nice guy. I won't forget that no matter what ESPN decided to edit.

Permalink | 2006 WSOP

Moron Me

by G-Rob

There are consequences for every rule, and not just the ones we break. In the news biz we are paralyzed by the search for the elusive "other side" on stories that have just one or as many as a dozen sides. The sky is blue. Democrats and Republicans are BOTH wrong. Sometimes the coin lands on its side.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | G-Rob's Thoughts

September 3, 2006

The Pick 6 Redux... Again

by Luckbox


So you thought Saturday was close? Today we missed out on the Pick 6 payday by a nose. In the very first race, our 5/1 shot #5 Micky's Doll tried to wire the field, but got edged by the longest shot on the board at 19/1. It was a rough way to start.

Had #5 held on, I think our payout might have been in the $50,000 range. As it happened, the consolation prize was $378. Since we had two horses in the race we missed, it looks like our ticket paid twice so we cashed our $1000 ticket for $756.

For a full write-up, check out Boy Genius' live-blogging.

Without further ado... the picks:

Race 5:
#5 Micky's Doll, #6 Tug o' War
Race 6:
#4 Miura Bull, #5 Silver Wind, #6 Afleet Spy, #9 El Bambino Huey
Race 7:
#5 Udriga, #7 Windy
Race 8:
#1 Rateau, #4 Get Funky, #5 Lightning Hit, #8 Union Avenue, #9 Point Determined, #10 Porto Santo
Race 9:
#9 Dilemma
Race 10:
#1 Jolly Spirit, #4 King Rohan, #7 Majestic American, #8 Kinoko Man, #9 Sylvan Hill

If you'd like to know how we arrived at these picks, head on over to read Boy Genius' analysis. That's also where you'll need to go for live updates since I'll be away from home. I won't even get to see the races, dammit. Wish us luck!

Permalink | Betting the Ponies

September 2, 2006

Emergency Request!

by Luckbox

We aren't curing cancer. We aren't stopping MS. We aren't doing a damn thing for any kids.

We are, however, trying to round up enough investors to take on the whopping $245,000 carryover in tomorrow's Pick 6 at Del Mar. Here's the deal. Boy Genius and I were within a half-length and a nose of winning more than $100,000 today. In fact, had things broken the right way, we might have had the quarter million all to ourselves.

Our Pick 6 ticket had a total of 17 horses spread over the six races and 11 of the 17 finished in the money. We were on our game, but being on our game doesn't pay the bills.

Tomorrow, we plan on paying the bills. It's $50 per person and I need to know ASAP if you're in. Transfers can be made to Up4Poker at PokerStars or UpForPoker at FTP. We're going to make it this time. I can feel it!

In so far: Me, Boy Genius, Absinthe, Falstaff, Gracie, April, Joanne, Imperfect, ToddCommish, FTrain, GRob, Otis, JoeSpeaker, AlCantHang, bobby (Run Em Twice), F%$^ the River, Jen, Lefty, Dad. (Investing is CLOSED.)

Permalink | Betting the Ponies

September 1, 2006

The Pick 6 Redux

by Luckbox

Update! Results below!

Here we go again...

First, I'd like to thank our investors: Joe Speaker, Absinthe, Otis, Falstaff, Drizz, Maudie, FTrain, April, Gracie, Bobby, AlCantHang, Jen, Lefty, Dad and F%$* the River.

Boy Genius and I are grateful that so many of you have shown faith in our handicapping abilities. Now, it's time for us to deliver. I'd like to say this is a sure thing, but anyone who's bet on the ponies know that's just not the case. Still, BG and I feel pretty good about what we've come up with.

Race 5
#4 Chief's Magic, #6 Edwardian, #7 Forward Commitment, #8 Newsworthy
Result: We're alive! #4 Chief's Magic ran away with it. #6 Edwardian placed and #8 Newsworthy showed, so we were pretty solid on this one. In fact, #4 was 7-1, so that's a great start to our ticket!
Race 6
#1 Silber, #1A Vatchesvendetta, #6 Special Heather, #7 Star Voyager
Result: We're rolling! #6 Special Heather and #7 Star Voyager dueled the whole way with the 3/2 favorite (#6) holding off the 5/1 choice (#7). We've have preferred the price, but we're taking the win!
Race 7
#1 Hilogold, #1A Gotta Have Her, #7 Smokin Anne, #9 Sekira
Result: Well, dammit. We stayed away from the heavy 8/5 favorite, which worried us, but didn't end up hurting us. #7 Smokin Anne went off at 8/1 and was attempting to go wire-to-wire in an impressive performance, but an 11/1 shot came out of nowhere to end our hopes of big riches. #1 Hilogold got up for show. We're still alive for a consolation prize, especially if one of our big prices comes in down the stretch.
Race 8
#9 Shining Energy, #11 Mea Domina
Result: More good news! #11 Mea Domina went off at 5/1 and ran wire-to-wire from an outside post position in a very impressive race. Our #9 Shining Energy was the tepid 3/1 favorite and made a good closing run, but couldn't get through traffic and finished 4th. If things finish well for us, we might make at least get our money back.
Race 9
#4 King Mobay, #7 Chester's Choice
Result: Make that 4 out of 5. Unfortunately it was the 8/5 #4 King Mobay and not the 5/2 #7 Chester's Choice who showed. Both our horses were in the money again. We knew we weren't getting a price here, but we got the win nonetheless. Now we need everyone to root for #4 in the last race and we could get a little money back.
Race 10
#1 Tumbaga, #2 Awesome Gem, #4 City Swagger
Results: Well, we were alive to win as much as $3621 with a win by #4 City Swagger. That would mean a carryover for the bulk of the pool and a nice consolation prize. With a win by either #1 Tumbaga or #2 Awesome Gem, someone would win the Pick 6 prize of either $245K or $122K, and we'd get a small consolation prize. Unfortunately, the longshot #3 beat our #2 by a nose, leaving us empty handed. No one won the Pick 6 leaving a carryover of $245,000. We missed out on a HUGE pay day by a half-length in the 7th and a nose in the 10th. Not the way we'd want to go out, but we were close.

There you go. After each handicapping the races individually, we compared notes and found a lot of agreement. There are a few random horses we wouldn't have minded including here or there, but our finances are not unlimited. We've picked the horses we feel most confident about and have included a few horses we think could bring pretty good prices.

With a little bit of luck, in a few hours, I'll be figuring out how to split up a six-figure pay day! The post time for the 5th race at Del Mar is about 7:00pm ET. Wish us luck!

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