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Jersey Boys

Posted by on 6/25/2014 10:42:38 PM

Clint Eastwood directs the movie about the Four Seasons named the Jersey Boys but if online sports betting site enthusiasts really want to ‘make your day’ take in the action at Monmouth Park this summer.

Okay, it’s not Saratoga and it’s not Del Mar but educated players know that Monmouth Park on the Jersey Shore is a little slice of heaven that needs to be explored.

I cut my teeth at Monmouth Park, but more on that later.

Nestled in the little hamlet known as Oceanport, Monmouth attracts a lively group of casual fans, transplanted New Yorkers and core players.

Close to Long Branch, the home of Monmouth College, this track is close enough to the water that the surface can be affected.

As far as the players involved, Jersey Joe Bravo owned the jockey room for decades but he has been plying his trade atGulfstream until recently. He made them remember in a hurry as he won with half of his first 16 starts to already be tied for 4 th in the standings and only 7 away from second leading rider Eddie Castro.

Paco Lopez has done his best to unseat Bravo and he has a nice head start. He has won with 41 of his first 117 mounts to take a commanding lead in the standings.

A relatively new face has made the lead in the trainer standings; at least he is pretty new to Jersey. David Jacobson has been near the top of the list of New York trainers for years now and he is now entrenched at the shore.

Jacobson is doing it with numbers as he has 14 more horses than any other trainer and he won with 11 of his first 41 starters. Jersey fans are well aware of Todd Pletcher and when he ships in from New York, he means business. He is second in the current standings with 9 winners from his first 27 starters.

J. Willard Thompson used to have a huge string but he won at a small percentage. He has changed his tact and has won with 5 of his first 18 starters. A smaller outfit that also must be followed is the stable of Bobby Dibona, who won with 3 of his first 5 runners this meet.

Monmouth has been a speed-conducive track for years but just like anywhere, if there is a plethora of speed in a race, they all could fold their cards.

Watch runners from Tampa and runners that drop, because since they will be running for more money, the drop may not really be a drop.

Personally, I have something invested in this track.

I made my first bet at 8 through a friend of my father’s. Pops was a big shot at General Motors and once a year he got a perk at Monmouth Park and was allowed to utilize a special box. It was not just some chairs in the Turf Club but a fully staffed area for about a dozen at the very top of the track. To put it in perspective, Princess Grace Kelly owned the box next door.

All of dad’s friends would gather for drinks at the house before the track and one of his buddies asked me whom I liked in a particular race. After glancing at the sheet, I offered my opinion and broke the piggy bank for the $2 bucks needed.

About 10 hours later, the gang was home and I got $16.80 back and the rest as they say is history.

One thing I’ve learned is that this game is a work in progress and if you can’t improve or learn something every day, you are not paying attention. Bettors cannot just do their work in their room, go to the track, be ignorant about scratches, the weather or the environment at the track and expect to win. There are far too many variables that make up a race that need to be scrutinized.

Hope some Shore things come through for bettors this season.

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