by Cyrus Rahimi
Today was a different atmosphere than Saturday; I had more of an opportunity to explore the different ways to place a wager at the racetrack. As I walked up to the counter to buy my program I saw an iPad sitting on the counter and asked what it was for. I was told it was a system called Mbet that allows you to place your bets directly at any of the tracks offered at the Meadows using the iPad or even your personal mobile device. This caught my curiosity and I immediately asked for an iPad to try betting with it. I was given a slip with an account number and pin, which allowed me to log into the Mbet system and start placing wagers. I funded the account using cash and was told not to lose my slip with my account number and pin on it. At the end of the day you take the slip back to cash out your account.
My first bet was a Win, Place, Show; with this wager you are betting the horse will come in 1st, 2nd, or 3rd. If your horse wins you get the money from the win plus the other 2 wagers. If it comes in second you get the place and show money, and third you just get the show money. It is a little expensive to place this wager since you have to bet on each finishing place and the payout is not high unless you have a horse with high odds. Luckily the horse I liked was 12-1, meaning you get 12 dollars for every 1 dollar you bet on the horse. I put $5 dollars on the Win, Place, and Show bets totaling a $15 dollar ticket. Luckily I won and was paid out quite handsomely. I was also happy because if I hadn’t used Mbet I would not have been able to place my wager due to the long line for the cashier.
For my next wager I used the self-betting machine at the track, this allows you to place wagers through a stationary machine that resembles a computer. You can either use cash or a credit voucher to place your bets. I used a voucher to place a trifecta bet on the machine, I was worried when I approached but it was actually quite simple to use. The trifecta requires you to pick three horses that you think will win, you can either pick them straight which requires them to finish in the order you bet, or you can box them. I boxed them, betting the three horses to win and the eight, nine, four to place in second or third. This allows for the eight, nine, and four horse to finish in any order in the two and three spots. I win as long as this happens along with a win by the three horse. Another great wager and I won two bets in a row!
I didn’t want to lose any of my winnings so I asked if I could go back to the paddock where the horses and drivers are located. I had become friends with a few drivers after my match race on Saturday where I actually was in the horse cart and raced 3 other people along with their drivers. I saw Tony Hall, the driver who led me to victory in the match race. He recommended that I ride in the pace car, I was weary at first but decided to do it. The pace car has gates on it that pull back and release the horses to begin the race, it is a very difficult process to properly release the horses and get out of the way. This was very exciting to be a part of and led to another wonderful day at the track.