Ernie Mason, Lucky Louise and the Chinese System

Meet Mr. Chu (not his real name), who has discovered a betting method that is a twist on the old Chinese system and which he claims has shown consistent success over the last few years.

First, a little backstory. In the glory days when crowds packed Santa Anita and Hollywood Park, one of the first things you would hear as you passed through the admission gates would be someone yelling, “Ernie Mason, Lucky Louise!”

They were selling the Pasadena Star News, which had a full front page of handicappers, with ex-mailman turned handicapper Ernie Mason leading the way. Right next to him was Lucky Louise, who put the female spin on the picking the ponies.

While there was an actual Lucky Louise (she was Ernie’s ex-wife), she didn’t know a furlong from a daily double and her selections was actually a brilliant invention by the marketing-savvy Mason to sell papers to the fairer sex.

Among the many other selections on that page was something called the Chinese System, giving out just one horse in each race. Mason explained that this was really a simple number/name system that worked as follows: You took the program and started with the number #1 horse, and if that horse started with the letter A, you had the selection.

If not, you went #2 and if that horse started with a B, there was the winning pony. You kept doing this until you got to the last number in the race. For example, if there were eight horses the #8 had to start with H. If no matches were found, you went right back to the #1 and were looking for the letter I. Eventually you were going to find a match.

Fast forward to the present and Mr. Chu, a 40-something former resident of Taiwan who after extensive research came up with his own “Chinese System” that he claims has won him tens of thousands of dollars over the last three and a half years.

“I can’t go into details, but the system involves the birthday of the jockey, the month and year the horse was born and the Chinese astrological signs. I make only win/place and exacta bets, depending on how the numbers come out.”

As you can imagine, we were skeptical until Mr. Chu showed us his wagering log for the last three months. There it was in black and white: a $27,402 profit in September; plus $38,326 in October and a $9,575 profit last month.

He explained that up until recently he did all his wagering offshore while enjoying nice rebates, but become worried about the safety of his funds and switched to the United States ADW for peace of mind.

By the way, 2014 is the Chinese year of the Horse, if you were wondering.