Preakness won for us back in 1995

May 19, 2015 3:00 AM


Twenty years ago GamingToday columnist Joe Marcin handicapped the Preakness down to four horses and he was spot on.

Marcin grouped the eventual winner Timber Country with Kentucky Derby champion Thunder Gulch, Tejano Run and Jumron. Gulch wound up finishing third as Timber Country paid a modest $5.80 to win.

The big money came with the second place horse Oliver’s Twist paying $16.80, resulting in an exacta payoff of $266 and a nice trifecta of $909.60.

In Las Vegas a hot new table game was emerging called Let It Ride. Basically the game was five card stud poker with a twist.

The new game brought about a tournament featuring the top 50 players in the world in the $1.3 million playoff. The finals were held May 20 at the Four Queens.

Each of the finalists had to win at least a four of a kind or a royal flush during the elimination rounds, which were held over the previous 90 days at eight Nevada casinos.

There was also a major announcement in Vegas with Caesars Palace landing the semifinals of the Davis Cup men’s tennis Sept. 22-24 at the 13,500 seat outdoor stadium.

Caesars Palace had a rich tennis tradition having hosted the Alan King Classic, a signature event at that time on the men’s tour. Las Vegas native Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras represented the USA in Davis Cup singles. Sweden was the defending champion.

Jim Feist came out with his pick for the American League pennant winner in the May 20 issue, giving the nod to the New York Yankees. The Yanks were good but, unfortunately for Jim, the Cleveland Indians went on to win the AL title.

However all was not lost. The Sahara was running a breakfast special that included two eggs with bacon or sausage, hash browns and toast for $1.99 from 8-11 a.m. at the Turf Club Deli.

That was a bargain everyone could agree on.

Mark Mayer has over 35 years covering sports events and is the sports editor at GT. Reach him at

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