Mr. Bill Benter did the impossible: He wrote an algorithm that could not be lost on the track. Close to a billion dollars later, he told his story for the first time.
More than 10 million combinations are possible. When no one chooses correctly, prize money revolves into the next race series. On that cool November night, the pot has disappeared six times. About one million people place bets - equivalent to one in seven city residents.
This is an evening atmosphere in the Happy Valley racetrack in downtown Hong Kong. The audience cheered the champion's host jockey, Joao Morreira. Tony Ho tonight bet for Moreirra and he wins.
On the ground floor of Happy Valley, young women in beer tents passed foaming jugs for laughing expats, while local Chinese, who gambled were more serious matters, grabbed the racing newspapers and bent over their handrails. At the opening of the gun, the voice of the announcer was heard on the loudspeaker: "The Last Three Legs," he shouted in Australian accented English, "and just leave!"
When the backpack rumbled at the last corner, two muscular horses in front. "This is a long treasure mascot up front, but Bobo Duck fired him," said the announcer, a voice rising. "Bobo Duck in front. Mascot fight!" The crowd roared as motorists drove across the finish line. Bobo Duck Mascot Treasure, and Frat Rat was in third place.
Mr. Bill Benter and a colleague named Paul Coladonato had their eyes fixed on a bank with three monitors, which featured a matrix of bets that their algorithm had made on the race-51,381.
Mr. Benter and Mr. Coladonato watched the software script filter losing bets, one by one, until there were 36 lines left on the screen. 35 of the bets they have correctly called the finishers in two races, qualifying for entertainment prizes. And one bet correctly predicts all nine horses.
Mr Edward Thorp (who still writes about gambling in the 80s) insists in a 2017 book that Mr. Benter has a "multimillion-dollar business bet around the world on horse racing".
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