From UT San Diego
DEL MAR — One of the big reasons Del Mar hosted its first-ever Barretts Paddock Sale Sunday after the races was to bring new horses and possibly new owners to the seaside racetrack.

In Mark Nichols, the sale turned a long-time gambler into a brand new horse owner who will race his horses at Del Mar this summer.

Nichols nearly did something that arguably has never been done before. On Sunday, Nichols hit the Pick Six at Saratoga. He was one of 31 bettors who won $28,666. He nearly hit the Del Mar Pick Six, but lost when trainer Bob Baffert’s 2-5 favorite, The Brain, didn’t win the last race.

Nichols took his winnings from Saratoga and from the consolation tickets for five out of six in the Pick Six at Del Mar and hustled his winnings over to the Del Mar Paddock Sale. He bought two horses, Jones Destiny, a 2-year-old gelding by Seneca Jones, for $20,000, and Tullos, a 3-year-old colt by Count The Time, for $8,000.

“I’m a gambler,” Nichols said. “That’s what I do for a living. But I can tell you I’ve never hit the Pick Six and parlayed it into two horses on the same night. But now I’m a horse owner.”

Nichols said he and his good friend, Robert Warren, who owns the Website, www.resumebear.com. They will race their two horses under ResumeBear Racing LLC. Their horses will be trained by Doug O’Neill, the trainer of I’ll Have Another, the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner.

“They say the game needs new people,” Nichols said. “I’m an old gambler, but now I’m a new horse owner.”