08/29/2014 1:42PM

Delaware Park issues refunds after tote malfunction

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All wagers were refunded on the third race at Delaware Park on Thursday after a technical issue allowed betting to remain open after the race had started. The refunds totaled $148,376.

According to Chris Sobocinski, racing information coordinator at Delaware Park, it appears that everything was done correctly at the track but that the pools failed to close in a timely manner.

Following the race, the public was notified that there would be a “tote delay.” After about 10 minutes, it was announced that all wagers would be refunded. Consolation payoffs were made on the daily double that began in race 2 and the pick three that started in race 1.

The winner of the $15,000 maiden-claiming race, Cowboy Nekia, was 5-1 at post time. Those hurt the most by the refunds were fans who had winning tickets on the race and were only issued refunds and anyone who discarded losing tickets prior to the refund being announced.

The track’s totalizator company is Sportech PLC. Sportech’s East Coast hub is the Quantum Data Center in Mt. Laurel, N.J. According to a company spokesperson, who preferred to remain anonymous, “We are in the middle of investigating exactly what happened. We have all our key people looking into it, but it is possible that the investigation could take up to several days.”

This not the first time betting pools have been refunded at an East Coast racetrack in recent years due to tote issues.

In 2010, a race at Monmouth Park was run as a non-betting race after it was discovered while horses were warming up on the track that a tote malfunction would prevent the wagering pools from closing. The tote company in that instance was Scientific Games, which Sportech purchased in 2010.

In 2009, Penn National had pools close late on several occasions due to communication problems between the track and United Tote.