01/11/2008 1:34AM

Q&A 1/11/08


bob_mcgeehan says: Do you think that after the official approval at NYRA, whenever that is, that there will be some consideration to adding more superfectas to the cards? I dont know why they cant have a super on all races with 9 or more horses, or maybe a cap of 4 per day? It seems all other tracks can do whatever they want and New York has to have three years of voting before they can approve anything...

One of the nice things about settling the franchise mess one of these days or years will be that the track operators and regulators can finally stop spending all their time on politics and attend to a long list of wagering issues overdue for reform. Many of them are no-brainers, like fixing the rules for pick-4 scratches, minimum starters in tri and super races and, as you suggest opening up the betting menu. There's no reason every race with six or more starters shouldn't have a superfecta.

c says: Not that I really care about the Eclipse awards, but I'm more surprised that the vastly overrated Pyro is nominated in that category. What has he ever won? War Pass clobbered him 3 times. At least Kodiak Kowboy put together some convincing winning efforts during the summer. Pyro is a nose away from being 0-4. What qualifies him to be a nominee?

Pyro's a nose from being 0-for-4, but he's also one poor start and one horse (War Pass) away from being undefeated. Running second to the undisputed juvenile champion in the Champagne and the BC Juvenile is a pretty solid campaign. I voted War Pass-Court Vision-Pyro as my 1-2-3's in that order. I thought Court Vision's Kentucky/New York duo of victories (Iroqouis/Remsen) was more impressive than Kodiak Cowboy's (Bashfor Manor/Saratoga Special.)

dave says: Have you made or thought of any personal wagering resolutions for the coming year?

I've resolved to try to solve my turf-sprint problem by undertaking a study of these races before they resume in May. I found myself passing or missing a lot of NYRA pick-4's and pick-6's last year because of the increased presence of these races. I can't duck them, so I'm going to try to figure them out.

jim_brown says: I had a question about the third race at Aqueduct. I noticed that there was 32,768 in the super pool. The payoff listed the super paying 427,000 and change. Even if there was one .10 winner that would be 42,000 can you explain how this works.

The third race superfecta pool at Aqueduct on Dec. 28 was actually $31,498. There was one winning dime-super ticket sold that got the whole pool, and after the 25 percent takeout, that amounted to $23,609.30. Multiply this by 20 and the $2 price was reported as $472,186.

Some people object to this kind of payoff-reporting but I am not one of them. Personally, I think ALL parimutuel prices and odds should be posted and reported based on a $2 payoff for consistency's sake. I find it very annoying that some tracks now post exacta probables in $1 rather than $2 units. Why, if I'm looking at an exacta probable paying $17, should I have to wonder whether this particular track uses a $1 or $2 system and whether I'm getting 7-1 or 16-1? There should be one standard and it should be the return for a $2 bet.

cjdstable says: Are you an Odd Couple fan? I received the second season for Christmas and (coincidentally) watched the dog racing episode just before I came down and read the blog. Oscar wins a greyhound named Golden Earrings in a card game off a guy named Salty Pepper (sweet name), sneaks the dog to Miami to race over Felix's objections, and the laughs ensue from there.

The Golden Earrings episode is a classic. Speaking of racing greyhounds in popular culture, I've run across two other recent examples: The all-black version of "The Honeymooners" was widely (and correctly) panned as a terrible movie, but featured a black-and-white greyhound as a key player in Norton and Kramden's big scheme. And in the recently-released "Charlie Wilson's War," Julia Roberts's character, an eccentric right-wing fundraiser, is constantly trailed around her mansion by her two greyhounds.

--Those promised further thoughts on my Gulfstream trip ended up being my Saturday column. Don't tell anyone, but since I said I'd share them in this space, here's a free copy: Download 0112column.doc

And here are a few pictures to illustrate it: