PICACHO, Ariz. — The Arizona Department of Gaming says it has dismantled an illegal horse track near Picacho, about half-way between Phoenix and Tucson. Gaming spokesman Rick Medina says that five people are believed to be directly involved with running the operation but no arrests have yet been made. Medina says the department got an anonymous phone call from a concerned citizen about illegal horse races. On weekends, up to three hundred people would pay a $10 fee to attend the three horse, 200 yard races at Pantoji, which were held in full view of Interstate 10. The track had it’s own website, distributed posters throughout the area, and was videos of the races were easily found on YouTube.
Of all the underground illegal gambling activities you can do setting up an illegal horse racing track I would have guessed to be the most unlikely. Just doesn’t seem practical. You need so much room. You need horses. You need a starting gate. You need jockeys. Ideally you need a camera at the wire for photo finishes so people don’t murder each other. Just seems like a logistical nightmare. So there is zero chance the AZ gaming commission wasn’t in on this. Like it took an an anonymous tip to tell you there was a bootleg horse racing track along Interstate 10? Really? That’s how you figured it out. Inside job from the word go.
PS - For some reason I’d be surprised if Manzo hasn’t been to this track at least once.