The Belmont Stakes [A Day at the Races]

This past Saturday was the Belmont Stakes and it was my first time going to the races.  It was looking like it was going to be a pretty exciting day with I’ll Have Another making a run for the Triple Crown.  Unfortunately he scratched the day before the race due to injury that forced him into retirement.  In any case, it was still a lot of fun and I even won some money my first time betting on anything.  I never win anything.

The racetrack is located out on Long Island in Elmont, New York, and they have a Long Island Rail Road train that takes you straight to it.  That makes me happy.  We were going on the cheap and went in under general admission, so we had to stake claim to some picnic space in the back.  There was a threat of rain, but after a few sprinkles, we got some sunshine and ice cream.  Everyone hangs out in the picnic area and then walks through the building to watch the races.

The Picnic area- the umbrellas are protecting TV screens with all the races playing.

There are 13 races that start at 11:35 AM.  I did not know that there were other races before and even after the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes or Belmont Stakes until a Derby party last year.  Shows how much I know.  We got there around noon and my first live race was number fuve.  I had to place a bet on my favorite number seven race and naturally on horse number seven known as Caixa Electronica.  I almost didn’t pick him because of his name, but the number won out in the end and it’s a good thing it did because he came through at the last second to win.  I won $14.  That made me happy too.

Early day racing.

Now, despite my previous choice of horse by number and name, I did do some research on my Belmont Stakes picks.  I wasn’t exactly sure what I was doing other than it was called an exacta box.  All I know is that I could pick as many horses as I wanted and any of them had to come in first or second place in any order for me to win.  I had the winner Union Rags, picked and I had the fourth place horse, Street Life in my list, but I didn’t have the second place horse, Paynter in the mix, so I lost.  Boo.  They do this horrible thing during the races where the have big screens telling you the order of the horses.  Until they come around the final corner.  When ever thing changes and if it’s close, you can’t tell who was in what place until minutes after the race when they determine the win with the photo.  Couldn’t they just boost my hopes until they know for sure? I knew I had two horse that were in the top four, but not in the order I needed. Oh well, I won with my sevens earlier in the day!

The Belmont Stakes!

After the race, those who won went straight to get in line to cash out and we headed back to Brooklyn.  It was a pretty long day in the sun and with all the excitement.  I meet up with a friend when I got home at Quarter Bar for a tasty treat before heading home and falling straight to sleep.  Next year we are talking about paying $20 so we can have actual seats in the stands.  The picnicked is fun, but for $10 more, I’d rather have a seat back part of the day and go hang in the picnic area when I want :)