VIP 2017 Archive
January: It's a New Year!A New Year stretches before us and with that I already hear the pitter patter of the Derby trail, the grumblings of the Eclipse Award favorites and the chatter of the rematch in the Pegasus Cup. On tap a new list of VIP trips as well as some great promotions!
Our first trip is for the dogs- literally! The BetAmerica Daytona 550 will be held on January 21 and we hope to see a lot of you there!!! If you are interested please shoot me an email, we would love to have you!
A few of us will be attending the Pegasus Cup and we might be a group divided! Chrome or Arrogate? Chestnut or Gray? Old or new? It is set up to be thrilling with $12 million on the line.
Please keep a close eye on the calendar for both promotions as well as hospitality events for our Turf Club and Winner’s Circle Members. Monthly emails will be arriving with our VIP exclusive promotion every 1st of the month and of course we will continue with those DayMakers every week!!
As always if you ever need anything please feel free to drop me a line at VIPServices@betamerica.com
February: A $12 Million Dollar DayOur first horse based VIP trip was a small group that I took to the Pegasus which was supposed to be a rematch of the best older horses around and instead was a display of domination and a disappointing ending to a spectacular career that spanned an amazing 4 years.
9 of us fought the Miami traffic to be seated in the Christine Lee at Gulfstream Park which looks right down on the stretch. Our table was crammed in with lots of others but everyone was in good cheer and the atmosphere was an excellent, electric feeling.
As our waitress keep food coming non-stop including shrimp, spare ribs and stone crabs, our players enjoyed watching the bevy of stakes races that Gulfstream had lined up for the undercard. There was screaming, cheers and tears. We had action on Aqueduct, Fair Grounds and Santa Anita as well as Gulfstream so it seems we were always cheering somewhere!
For the main (mane) event we pushed up against the floor to ceiling windows to watch the horses make their way around the track. Due to the crowd, we opted not to head down to the paddock area, instead staying in our seats (in the air conditioning). Our view was spectacular as the crowd was half in awe and half in disbelief at the outcome.
After Arrogate pranced off to the backside, we made way across the paddock to the Village Mall and had a lovely dinner at III Forks. We tried to mingle the group up a bit so that everyone got a chance to speak to someone different. I was very pleased that a few VIPs had brought their girlfriends! We don’t always have a lot of estrogen on the trips so that was nice and we had some lucky ladies as they were cashing tickets left and right!
After dinner, wine and dessert it was time to hit the hay. Another great VIP trip in the books!
Our next trip will be Keeneland in April. There isn’t a better track or meet in my opinion, so I can’t wait!!! If you’re interested in a trip shoot me an email and I will keep you in mind! http://firstname.lastname@example.org.
March: March Madness - My Way
I hope everyone enjoyed my Daily DayMakers last month! It was challenging and fun and overall profitable for my VIPS!! I did hear some griping about the prices but I can't control the off odds and I did my best to find value! If you think you can do better, March is your month! I am going to be doing a weekly Handicapping Challenge for a great prize so feel free to come and try to take me down!
As Spring approaches trip season is about to begin! Our first big outing is scheduled for Keeneland in April. As usual keep your eyes peeled for events that may interest you. I love these opportunities to meet and spend the day with my VIPs.
Enjoy the March promo of Monday Madness where I boost all your Monday winnings. Also look for those weekend NO LOSE DayMaker Star Selections to continue. And as usual, if there is anything you need you can reach out to me at VIPservices@betamerica.com
April: Lucky in KentuckyThe annual pilgrimage to Keeneland in Lexington, Kentucky is one of my favorite trips every year. As usual we were booked up and my lucky attendees got a special surprise. On Friday we had a prive tour of Ashford where we got up close and personal with American Pharoah, Giant’s Causeway and others. We got not as close to Uncle Mo (who is apparently not sweet and loving like horses should be!)
After a leisurely lunch at Wallace Station (a must do if you are in the area!) we headed to our next stop- an impromptu visit with California Chrome! Taylor Made was wonderfully accommodating as we got to see him up close and they even provided cookies for us to give him. We also had a stallion complex tour where we got to see studs like Mshawish, Astrology and even Mind Your Biscuits- who was in for a little R and R.
Saturday loomed brightly and our party van dropped of our group in time for the opening of 11- yes, 11!- races including 4 stakes.
We were set up with glass side seats in the Phoenix Room which meant front row views to all the color and excitement of racegoers flooding in the gates. Also air conditioning which is key! Food was awesome as usual and our group settled in quick with mimosas and snacks to begin handicapping. An excellent contest ensued where I took on a VIP in a head to head handicapping contest. Which I won.
Unfortunately our syndicate was unable to manhandle the pick 4 but luckily enough several players had their own going on and we had a lot of celebrating at our tables. After the races, we made a quick pop into the lavish gift shop for some souvenirs and then we headed to dinner.
We had a room booked at the historic Merrick Inn and while we had to wait for a slow party we got to do some hobnobbing with Lexington’s elite including Shug McGaughey and Rusty Arnold. Dinner was long but fun and delicious but as the clock chimed late we packed up to head back to the hotel. Eleven races are draining!!!
From the smiles of our VIPs I think that they had an amazing time. I know I did.
May: JOCKTAILS - The Perfect Pre-Derby Party!The premier event leading up to the Kentucky Derby is Jocktails. A night of drinking, dancing and hobnobbing where the Derby riders jump behind the bar to benefit PDJF. While they might not be cocktail craftsmen, the jocks poured a stiff drink and had smiles for all!
BetAmerica was thrilled to be a sponsor this year and we were pleased to have nearly 20 VIPs on hard to experience the event. Right when you walked in the paparazzi was there for photos in front of the step and repeat where everyone was thrilled to see our logo!!! A quick tour through the oodles of people that showed up to see the jock sling drinks and we all headed upstairs to our private table.
From our vantage point we watched Florent Geroux and Julien Leparoux add some flair to their service and Jersey Joe Bravo master the art of pouring a beer. One of our VIPs loved Julien and we were able to get him to stop by for some phot ops with our gaggle of girls!
The best part about industry events is rubbing elbows with our favorite connections. Jockeys of course were on hand but there were trainers, gallop boys, owners….it was a perfect place to say hi to your favorite horse racing celebrity! I can’t count the number of times our VIPs went “look its Bob Baffert!” or “Oh my gosh I’m standing with Ramon Dominguez!”
Since the track is up before the sun we called it an early night but left full of smiles and memories. We’ll be back Jocktails, we’ll be back!
For more information on the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund log on to https://pdjf.org/.
Side note, we had a small but fun group at the Kentucky Oaks this year! Thank you to our VIPs for braving the rain and the coldest Oaks in over 40 years!!
July: South Beach Style Heads to Kentucky!The Stephen Foster program at Downs After Dark was a popular event on the VIP itinerary last year and it was a red hot hit again this year! Our VIPs checked into the Seelbach Hilton downtown and had a little pre-party before flagging down the party bus for our trip to the races! And yes, I mean flagged down! Who wants to Uber when a party bus is there for the taking? So we made our way to Churchill in style.
The theme for the night was South Beach but walking into Millionaires Row I thought more “senior center casino night”. But hey, we were there for the racing and the company not the decor. With all the seating options at Churchill I feel we made the right choice by picking an inside venue. The weather was hot and humid and we were well situated with copious TV screens, balcony access and AIR CONDITIONING.
Our group consisted of a racetrack virgin, some harness fans trying TBs and some Downs veterans so it was a fun mix of stories, experiences and tips! In addition to our regular wagers, we put together a few syndicates as had a head to head contest that resulted in….lets say interesting results!!!
For the Fleur De Lis our group headed to the paddock where yours truly made a guest appearance on the Big Board for the pre-race commentary and then we were able to watch the race from next to the Winners Circle. For some of our VIPs, they had never been so close to the action!!!
A special request to meet Calvin Borel sent us up the stairs to the jocks room where the 3 time Derby winner graced us with his presence for a few minutes, chit chatting and taking photos. Sweaty and a little star struck we headed back to the Row to finish out the night.
A little giddy, the night wound up with a Little Mermaid costume competition, a sparkly group photo and a pickles v cucumbers debate. I swear this all made more sense when you take into account the number of mint juleps consumed. After the Downs, we headed back to the Seelbach to close it down (It wasn’t really that hardcore- in a town with a 4 am last call the bar closed at 1).
Overall, while short, the Churchill Downs trip was sweet, filled with fun, inside jokes, access and I think memories. Thanks to those of you who joined us and I can’t wait til our next trip! In July we head north to Saratoga for our annual summer pilgrimage.