A couple of weeks ago, there was some fellow sitting next to me at the race book. He was a chatty little guy who continually kept me abreast of his handicapping prowess as well as his dietary restrictions. Somewhere is in his diatribe he kept touting jockey Martin Garcia. I lost count as to how many times he repeated, "Just bet Martin Garcia" ... "Baze and Garcia" ... "Anything that Garcia rides is a sure thing" ... "Jerry Garcia was in the Grateful Dead, but Martin Garcia is a live one" ..."Hey, lady! You need to bet on Garcia if you want to make some money! Are you even listening to me?"
I seldom bet Golden Gate, or Bay Meadows or Portland Meadows or Emerald Downs for that matter. It's what I term the Time Zone Phenomenon. It would require me to purchase a PM simulcast of the Daily Racing Form and come up with some plausible excuse as to why Mommy can't come home to have dinner with her children on Saturday night, then clean up the kitchen, give her children a bath, and watch Veggie Tales' Minnesota Cuke and the Search for Samson's Hairbrush. And, I dare say, I don't pay close enough attention to jockeys, including apprentice jockeys, at tracks that I don't watch.
However, toteboardbrad posted a tidbit on Martin Garcia. The Bug Boys, who blog about the Maryland racing scene, extolled their praises and reverence to apprentice jockey Rosie Napravnik, emphasizing the Bet-On-The-Jockey handicapping methodology. So maybe ol' Chuckles from a few weeks back should be taken somewhat seriously ...
Yesterday, one of my horses that I had previously touted in a post, Movie Star (Brz) was running in the 7th at Santa Anita. Due to the Time Zone Phenomenon, post time would be at an inconvenient 6:15 p.m. Aha! I had to go to work around 4:30 and the track is sorta kinda maybe halfway on my way to the lab, and if all the lights remain green, I could swing by Lone Star Park, place my wagers for the 7th at Santa Anita, put the tickets in my wallet, get to work on time, and see if I was a big winner after work. What a plan!
The plan was executed with precision. I placed all my wagers, but wouldn't you know it, I had $2 left on my voucher. Now, I could place the voucher back into my wallet for later use, running the risk of losing it or accidentally using it for a wad of well-chewed bubble gum, or I could do what any horseplayer would do. Wager.
I looked around the various monitors and I needed a race that would be posting rather quickly. I had no form or other race information. But Golden Gate was 5 minutes away from post. (grr) Oh, look, Martin Garcia is riding the number 4 horse. (grr) He's going off as a strong second favorite. (grr) "Alright already," I mumbled to the past voices of Chuckles, Brad, and the Bug Boys, "Let's bet on the 4. Martin Garcia."
It was a winner. Admittedly, not a big win but enough to cover parking and entry with a whole whopping $1.20 left over. But the point of this story, besides inserting a number of links into my blog, is that by just betting on a touted jockey other that Johnny V. or Edgar Prado proved profitable.
I did take the time to see what exactly I wagered on other than Martin Garcia. Pragmatico (Arg), a 6 furlong 20000 claiming for 4-year-olds and up. But did it really matter? It was the jockey, after all.