When was the last time you spent a day at the horse track? Whether you like to bet or not, a good time can always be had at the horse track. Try standing around and watching the folks placing their wagers at the window--see if you can decide which ones are lifetime gamblers and which ones are just having a good time for the day. Or hang out by the bar and play "pick the alcoholic." If you can spare a few bucks, try placing a bet or two yourself.
Scroll down for contact and schedule information for Southern California race tracks.
Where to Find Southern California Horse Tracks
Fairplex Park Horse Racing, Los Angeles County
Fairplex Park hosts live horse racing only during the annual Los Angeles County Fair--which is held in September. During the rest of the year, visitors can watch and wager from the clubhouse.
Fairplex Park Contact Information
1101 West McKinley Avenue
Pomona, California 91768
Hollywood Park Race Track, Los Angeles County
Hollywood Park has two racing seasons, the first running from the latter part of Apri to the middle of July and the second running from November through most of December. The track also offers off-season satellite wagering.
Hollywood Park Race Track Contact Information
1050 South Prairie Avenue
Inglewood, California 90301-4197
Santa Anita Park, Los Angeles County
Santa Anita Park hosts racing events from December 26 through April 20 and then again between September and November. When there aren't live racing events going on, the park is often open for wagering and closed-circuit TV simulcasts.
Santa Anita Park Contact Information
285 W Huntington Drive
Arcadia CA 91007
Los Alamitos Race Course, Orange County
Los Alamitos features year-round Quarter Horse, Arabian, Thoroughbred, Paint and Appaloosa racing. Races are held every week, Thursday through Sunday.
Los Alamitos Race Course Contact Information
4961 Katella Avenue
Los Alamitos, CA 90720
Del Mar Race Track, San Diego County
The racing season at Del Mar occurs between early July and September. Satellite wagering is available year-round at Surfside Race Place at Del Mar.
Del Mar Race Track Contact Information
2260 Jimmy Durante Boulevard
Del Mar, CA 92014
General Information on Horse Race Wagering
So here's a quick lesson on horse wagering lingo. If you bet on a horse to win, that horse has to come in first place for you to win the bet. You can also bet on a horse to place, and if that horse comes in first or second, you win. And finally, you can bet on a horse to show, meaning that you'll win if the horse finishes in the top three. You can also bet "across the board," which means you're placing the win, place and show bet. If your horse wins, you collect all three bets. If your horse comes in second, you collect the place and show bets. And if the horse is third, of course you'll collect the show bet.
Surfside Race Place offers a great summary of what to say at the window when you're placing your bet. Go here to check it out.