Saturday, June 20, 2009


Last May 23rd, a world record in sports was broken, but was overlooked by most of the world's press. It was an event that, depending on which mathematician you talk to, occurs once in 5.6 billion times to 1.5 trillion times. You have a much better chance of winning the Lottery--at 100 million to one. It's more likely that the Chicago Cubs and White Sox would win the World Series in successive years (that actually happened!). In any case, this event hadn't happened before in the history of the world.

A New Jersey grandma, Patricia Demauro walked up to the craps table at the Borgata Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, NJ with $100.00, and the dice were pushed over to her side of the table. The time was 8:13 P.M. She had played the game only once before and didn't really understand it. Her friend John Capra stood next to her, giving her advice on how to bet. She learned the game quickly, as you'll see.

Ms. Demauro picked up the dice, rubbed her hands together, threw them across the table and established a point--8. Ultimately, she threw another "8" and then established more point numbers and made them also, while throwing every other number except "7" until 12:31 A.M.--4 hours and 18 minutes and 154 rolls of the dice later. The casino's "eye in the sky" recorded every roll of the dice.

For those of you not familiar with the game, the shooter throws the dice, and if she throws "2", "3" or "12" on the opening roll, she loses, and if she throws "7" or
"11", she wins. If she throws any other numbers, "4", "5", "6", "8", "9", or
"10", she establishes a point and, to win, must roll that number again before a "7" is thrown. If she throws a "7" during this time, she loses and must turn the dice over to the next shooter. The casino scoops up the players' money from the table and everyone starts over. Every time the shooter establishes a point number and repeats it, she wins and it's called a "pass". The 14 or so other players at the table are either betting with her or against her (hopefully with her). The "don't pass" players left the table quickly.

In some legendary rolls like Ms. Demauro's, shooters have made over 30 passes. Since it is statistically more likely that a shooter will throw a "7" than any other number, the odds are against her making a pass. But when she makes passes over and over again, she and the other players at the table make a lot of money.

In my own experience, over about 15 years, I've been at tables several times where 10passes were made, but never any more. To add money making opportunities, most players around the table will "place" the other numbers and collect every time those numbers are rolled before the "7" shows its face. They were also betting "hardways"--that double 2's, 3's, 4's and 5's would be thrown. Essentially, every time Ms. Demauro threw the dice, the casino had to pay her and the other players.

If you were fortunate enough to be at the table with her that evening, you would have been paid virtually every time she rolled the dice--"4" and "10" paid 2-1; "5" and "9" paid 7-5; "6" and "8" paid 7-6. At that point, it's better than sex, and it certainly beats working. The decibel level at the table rises as the players applaud every roll of the dice. There's no time clock--theoretically, the game can go on indefinitely until the shooter finally rolls a "7". A small Miami gambling club actually closed down the table and went out of business in 1946 when a woman rolled the dice for 2 hours and the club lost over $500,000.

That evening at the Borgata, the other players were calling out their number requests and Ms. Demauro was making them. Hardways, horn bets, field bets! Single roll bets like two-way yo's (11's), "E-T" (11 and 12), "C" and "E" (craps and eleven)!

The house was certainly keeping score, as the losses were mounting exponentially with every roll of the dice. The boxman was constantly examining the dice to be sure they weren't loaded. The casino manager was agonizing every roll of the dice. The "suits" watched closely every throw of the dice. Players came from other tables all over the casino to witness this historic event. Some offered large sums of money to buy a space at the table from other players. Keep in mind that only about 14 players could actually participate in the game.

Before Ms.Demauro, the old record was held by the late Honolulu native Stanley Fujitake, who rolled the dice 118 times over 3 hours and 6 minutes at the California Hotel in Las Vegas in 1989. (See KENSUSKINREPORT, April 22, 2007).

When Mr. Fujitake made his historic roll, the house lost over $1 million to the players, and the next day, they took the table out in the back alley and chopped it to pieces. Fukitake started out making $3 bets, and finished with $1,000 bets.

Noted gambling author Frank Scoblete had a friend, "The Captain" who once rolled the dice 147 times in Atlantic City over a period of about 2 1/2 hours. "The Captain" was alleged to be skillful at controlling the dice. He would line up the dice with the 3's showing and throw them without spin, like a "knuckleball", to the same spot every time without arousing the suspicion of the casino personnel. He practiced the technique for hours at home (he owned his own crap table).

Ms. Demauro started out the session making $5 bets, and although nobody is talking, she likely cleared thousands of dollars, perhaps over $100,000 that evening. She returned to the same craps table two days later--but only as a spectator. The new queen of gambling went home with her money. God bless her.