11/12/2005 12:00AM

'Chips' prevails after inquiry


There was big trouble in a small field in Saturday's $70,250 Bien Bien Stakes at Hollywood Park, but after 1 1/16 miles, a stewards' inquiry, a jockey's objection, and a rare trainer's objection, the original result stood, with favored Chips Are Down prevailing.

Chips Are Down ($4) beat Yes He's a Pistol by one length, with Becrux 4 1/4 lengths back in third. Take a Chance finished last in the field of four, but an incident that caused Take a Chance to stumble going into the first turn resulted in a lengthy review by the stewards.

At issue was what caused Take a Chance to clip the heels of Chips Are Down and stumble. Felipe Martinez, who rode Take a Chance, and Patrick Valenzuela, who rode Becrux, claimed foul against Garrett Gomez, who rode Chips Are Down. Nick Hines, the trainer of Take a Chance, lodged a complaint against Corey Nakatani, who rode Yes He's a Pistol.

The stewards ruled there would be no change. Darrel McHargue, one of Hollywood Park's stewards, said that Take a Chance initiated the contact with Chips Are Down, causing Chips Are Down to tip out into Take a Chance. "He caused part of his own problem," McHargue said of Take a Chance. "Therefore, there was no disqualification."

Trained by Bob Baffert, Chips Are Down completed 1 1/16 miles on the fast main track in 1:43.30.