February 18, 2020 was President’s Day, a holiday in the United States. Several horse tracks around the country were open for racing to take advantage of those who had Monday off. I was able to add to my bankroll on Friday and Saturday, my usual days for watching the races. I took a break on Sunday, but saw several good races scheduled for Monday, so I decided to make a few wagers. I was mainly interested in Gulfstream and Oaklawn Park.
This year, I’ve been looking for horses that have potential and are going off at long odds. My second bet of the day was a small win bet on race 4 at Oaklawn, which paid $6.60. It’s always good to hit smaller bets to keep money coming in. The next four wagers at Oaklawn did not produce anything, so I switched to Gulfstream and started looking at race 8. This was a 7 furlong starter stakes race with 11 horses. Looking over the past performance stats for the runners, I found a horse that I thought had potential. I decided to put a small $2 win bet on #4 who was 40 to 1 on the morning line.
The name of the horse was Scarto and the jockey was Hector Barrios. There were 10 other horses in the field, with the favorite (Disc Jockey) being ridden by Irad Ortiz. It’s hard to not go with Irad, especially when he is on the favorite. Just a few days before he had won 6 races in one day. But, I was going for the big score! I knew Barrios was a good jockey and Scarto was improving with every race. When the race finally got underway, the odds on Scarto had jumped to 75 to 1.
As I watched the race, Barrios quickly moved Scarto into the lead. I couldn’t believe it was going down just like I had envisioned. All he had to do was stay in the lead and hold off 10 other horses. As they came around the turn for home, Scarto was still in the lead. Barrios cut the corner and quickly got his horse on his right lead with Irad close behind. Scarto had a one length lead going down the stretch and was the clear winner. I had picked one horse to win and it was my only bet on the race. My $2 wager paid $153.20. The $1 exacta with Irad’s horse in second paid $234.30.