Del Mar Online Racing Community
Chat about horses, racing, and the industry.
6 posts • Page 1 of 1
watching bio the other night a documentary about the beginnings of las vegas i learned that horse racing had a huge impact. legalized in 1931, the mafia realized they could get the horse racing betting wire into vegas and controled it at all the saw dust casinos. as a result of that wire came all the big casinos not what we saw in the movie bugsey.
It's true, back in the 40's we had the wire wars between the groups who wanted control
Interesting story on how one man tried to get a track opened in LV.
Its nice to see shows like that. There are quite a few people who had a major influence on the the strip becoming a place to bet sports and horse racing.Lefty Rosenthal had a vision for the sports books to be in the casinos. Roxy Roxborough brought point spreads and betting college and the NFL to the main stream.Bob Martin was a big shot who had a tv show in Vegas and it eventually was shown on UHF channels in major cities. Moe Dalitz was very instrumental in bringing the Stardust,The DI and other casinos up to a classy place to gamble instead of the usual sawdust joint. He was more of a visionary than Bugsy Siegal imho.I remember when he built the Sundance in downtown Vegas in the early 80'sAt the time the hotel was the tallest in all of Vegas. Now its called Fitzgeralds filled with dealers who speak very little English.From what I can remember of the sawdust race books on the very north end of the strip, there was the Rose Bowl,Churchill Downs and Del Mar. Seriously when you walked in it reminded you of a Damon Runyon story. People arguing,cutting in line,elbows to azzes everywhere. The great thing was you could bet all the major tracks in the country.As I said before once the Feds decided they could make some money and tax the books 8-10% on the profit brand new joints like the Stardust book flourished. To bet and watch a football game and then to be playing craps at the same time was gambling bliss. I once had an uncle of mine who's name I wont mention said to me" Youz see all of this,enjoy while you can"
The Fitz downtown just changed its name to "The D". They are redoing the 2nd floor into all retro gaming machines. Slots from the 60's and 70's, added one of the old Sigma Horse Racing games, etc.
The tiny poker room upstairs in the Fitz has a special place in me heart..where I got my one and only Royal..was dealt Qc10c..flop come AcJcXx..and Kc on the turn..
when i was a little kid my family would take our motor home down to tj. i remember being amazed at the future book at caliente. no video just some guy calling the races after the fact. then when i moved to lake tahoe in 1977 same thing, no video just some guy up stairs at the casino recreating the race after the fact. my 1st day at lake tahoe at harrahs i bet $100.00 to win on a horse named marks place who won and paid $14.00 he broke the track record that day. that was april 1977. that 1st weekend i lived there i won about $2,000.00 which was a fortune to me at that time, im like who needs to work this is easy, i have been chasing that weekend ever since.
6 posts • Page 1 of 1
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