06/26/2011 6:44PM

Hollywood Park: Purse redistributed for race with ineligible winner


INGLEWOOD, Calif. – The winner of a starter allowance race at Hollywood Park on June 10 has been disqualified, and the $35,800 purse ordered redistributed, after stewards Scott Chaney, Kim Sawyer, and Tom Ward ruled Sunday that race winner Doc Can Dance was ineligible for the conditions of the race.

In their one-page ruling, the stewards said the purse will be redistributed to the second- through sixth-place finishers – Preferred Behavior, Uncle Greg, Lewdawg N Paradise, Starcatter, and Warren’s Warehouse.

Doc Can Dance won a starter allowance over 1 1/16 miles on turf that was limited to horses that had won their maidens for a claiming price of $40,000 or less, or Cal-bred or sired horses that had won their maidens in a statebred race for $50,000 or less and that had never won two races.

Doc Can Dance entered the race with one win in nine career starts. He won an optional claimer for maidens at Turf Paradise on Jan. 28, but was not listed as eligible to be claimed for $30,000 in that race. The absence of an optional claiming designation essentially made the race a maiden special weight race for Doc Can Dance. Maiden special weight race winners are not eligible for starter allowance races.

The day after the June 10 race, Richard Rosales, trainer of Preferred Behavior, filed a protest. By then, the stewards said they had launched an investigation into the race.

A hearing in the case was heard Saturday. Paul Aguirre, trainer of Doc Can Dance, was present at the hearing.

The ruling issued Sunday read, in part, that “it is the decision of the Board of Stewards that the protest is valid and that Doc Can Dance was, in fact, not eligible under the conditions of the race.”

In the ruling, Doc Can Dance was disqualified from purse money and deemed to have been unplaced. Doc Can Dance is listed as owned by a partnership that includes Peter Accardy, Gloria Ryan, and John Xitco. The partnership must forfeit the winner’s share of $21,000.

Ward said Sunday that the race is still under investigation. Hollywood Park racing officials expressed regret in June that Doc Can Dance’s status was not caught by members of that department. Aguirre said June 12 that he thought the horse was eligible to be claimed in the maiden race on Jan. 28, but did not elaborate.

Doc Can Dance is entered to run in a $25,000 claiming race for nonwinners of two lifetime in the fifth race at Hollywood Park on Thursday.