Triple stirs up trouble A DAY AT THE RACES

May 16, 1992|By Ross Peddicord | Ross Peddicord,Staff Writer

Pimlico officials called in extra police officers to help quell a disturbance yesterday after the seventh race.

A large number of disgruntled fans gathered in the grandstand after they were shortchanged in a triple payoff.

The track paid out $33.30 on an erroneous 4-2-all combination instead of paying $172.80 on the correct 4-2-1 combination.

Steward Clinton Pitts Jr. said the error occurred because new Maryland Racing Commission rules allow for coupled entries in triple races. However, track management had not yet programmed the computers to reflect the rule change.

Track operator Joe De Francis said: "We had a lot of police here anyway [to prepare for the Preakness], and when there was confusion about the payout, there was a lot of screaming and yelling. The police just helped to control the crowd, but nothing got out of hand."

The track will pay off on the 4-2-1 combination, De Francis said, and take the loss on the minus pool created by the computer error.

Pat Day, who will ride Lil E. Tee in the Preakness, came in a day early and rode even-money favorite Sky Classic to victory in the $90,000 Early Times Dixie Handicap.

The Canadian turf champion came from off the pace, caught Fourstars Allstar and won by a half-length.

NOTES: A total of $200,031 was bet in the Preakness advance wagering yesterday. The early favorite is Pine Bluff at 5-2. The Arkansas runner is also the 9-5 early favorite in the New York OTB shops. . . . As of last night, trainer Sonny Hine said he still plans to run Technology in the Preakness, even though the colt hurt his heel two days ago. "He's responding to treatment, and seems fine," Hine said.

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