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A Speech About Horse Racing, The History, The Crime Involoved, And The Betting System.

1034 words - 4 pages

As most people know, horse racing is a contest of speed between two or more horses. Usually thoroughbred. To most people it would seem that horse-racing was the purest sport imaginable. With tracks monitored by overlapping cameras and gates controlled by computers, it seems like the honest man's game.Horse-racing is a 15 billion dollar a year industry and the 2nd most widely attended spectator sport after baseball. It started around 4500 bc in central Asia and for thousands of years was the sport of kings and nobility. The main reason horse-racing is still around today is for the legalized gambling. Horse-racing is a major professional sport in Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Western Europe, Australia, New Zealand, South America, and the U.S. The most popular form of racing is thoroughbred racing. But other forms of racing are harness racing, steeple chase racing, and quarter horse racing.The legalized gambling is the main reason for horse racings long life. All the betting done in American tracks is under the "Pari-mutuel wagering system". Under this system, 14 to 25% of the amount wagered is taken out for track operating expenses, racing purses, and state and local taxes. The remaining sum is divided by the number of individual wagers to determine the payoff or return on your bet. The odds of the next race are automatically calculated by the tracks computers and displayed to the betters on screens during the betting period. The odds are updated automatically every minute. If the odds of a certain horse winning are 2:1, you'll get 2 dollars for every one that you wager. Say, for instance, that you bet $100 for a certain horse to win, you will receive $200 back. You can bet for a horse to win, place, or show. If you bet for the horse to win it has to get 1st, for it to place that would be 1st or 2nd. And to show is 1st, 2nd, or 3rd. Other ways that a person could bet are exactas, daily doubles, quenelles, and the pick six. But those are way to complicating to explain.But there is much more to racing then TV screens and gambling. A little beneath the surface is a whole new section of murders, cover-ups, bribes, and drugs. In the world of horse racing, there are trainers pumping horses full of illegal drugs everyday. But that doesn't even begin to touch on the tons of sneaky activities that the people of horse racing pull off.Like in 1997 when Richard Sklar, or better known as Richie Fingers, admitted to fixing over 1,000 races. The trouble for Richie began in 'mid '97 when Richard Pfau was implicated in a race fixing scandal. Pfau told authorities that he'd taken $2,100 from Sklar for slowing his horse in a race at the Los Alamitos race track. When the authorities confronted Sklar he immediately admitted to fixing the scores of races in California from 1983 up to 1995. He named the top jockey at that time, Ron Hansen, as one of his clients. Ron Hansen's decomposed body later turned up under a bridge in...

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