It's a family tradition. Once a year, my stepfather and I go to the Albuquerque Downs to get some fresh air and, more importantly, gamble.
We arrived in time for the first race. I picked up a program and we settled down at a bench. Richard, the stepfather, picked his horse purely from stats and horse history on the program. I like to watch the horses when they are paraded out in front of the grandstand before making my selection. Whatever horse looks the most pissed off is usually the one I go with. This works best on short races, 350 or 400 yards. On the longer races, the mad ones come in third. (Of course, a jockey friend of the family says it's all a sucker game.)
Richard told me his pick and I went inside to place the bets. This is our system as Richard requires oxygen and the smoky inside of the track is not the best place for him. He traverses it coming in and once again when we leave.
I won the first two races and picked the show (third place) on the last three races. I would have won had I picked “show” but I get greedy for the winner. Richard didn't fare
as well but won on the fifth race. Then we headed home.
The track is open for live racing until Nov. 14. You should go. Sure, it's gambling, but it's also like a day at the park. There are kids running around and a beautiful view of the Sandias. This is no Kentucky Derby and the crowd looks pretty rough. I call it the Ken-Thuggy Derby. But who needs aristocrats in white suits when you can have cowboys in long-toed boots. I love this town.