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History – Going Back in Time

Stooping and Dutching

by SaratogaSam

I discovered the art of stooping on my first trip to Saratoga Racecourse

located in Saratoga Springs, New York.

 My grandfather, a retired NYFD Captain, loved to try his luck at the track and invited me to go with him.

I was 12 years old and stood 4’6”at that time in the summer of 1962. The tickets that you get when you bet are yours to surrender, to collect the winnings, if they are disposed of for any reason mostly because they are losing tickets, you give up the right. Now the people who bend over to look at mostly losing tickets, “stoopers”, because of their bent back position so to be closer to the floor where the tickets lay, would collect the tickets and hopefully find good tickets to cash.
The security would tell the stoopers to stand up, the chance of getting hit by other bettors was always there.

When I was looking at the tickets on the floor, I found one that my grandfather cashed for me that was worth $3.00, a small fortune in 1962.

As the years went by, the thought of that first find sticks in my mind, but others were found, larger in cash value. On some days, if there was an objection and later a reversal of the order of finish, the bettors who threw their tickets on the ground would run to the spot in hopes of the tickets being there to cash.

The modern era has people “scooping “tickets into bags to look at later but that’s a dirty job too.!!

The art of “dutching” goes back to the days before 1940 when bookmakers were used to give out the odds and take bets for all the horse players. A bettor would go up and down the corral of bookmakers until he would find the highest odds on his selection and place his marker with that bookmaker. If a bettor wanted to cover or back up his selection with another, he would go to the bookmaker who had the highest odds on his second bet.

The idea is to bet “enough” on each horse to turn a nice profit no matter which horse won.

After 1940, pari-mutuel wagering was started, which the modern era has now. Dutching still can be performed by a bettor, but the lower odds horse must be eliminated first, because too much money has to be bet to use more horses with lower odds (8-5 or less).

The Simple Example About Dutching:

Step 1 – Eliminate the favorite lower than 8 to 5 odds or less. Remember to feel that he can’t win – or that you have reasons to back it up.

Step 2 – Pick 2 or more horses to bet on that could beat him.

Example: Horse (A) 4-1 odds, you bet $7.00 to win, horse (B) 8-1 odds, you bet $4.00 to win, and on horse (C) 12-1 odds, you bet $3.00 to win.

If you collect on this race with (A) – you win $21.00; with (B) – you win $22.00; and (C) – you win $25.00 (the total bet is $14.00).

Good luck until next article.


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