Updated on 10/27/2011 5:46PM

Keeneland: Human error caused pick three mix-up


LEXINGTON, Ky. – Keeneland officials said on Thursday that “human error” led the track to improperly calculate a pick three payout on Wednesday that should have paid all ticketholders who were live going into the last leg.

Jim Goodman, Keeneland’s director of mutuels, said that the mutuel staff failed to realize until the last race in the pick three was over that the wager should have paid out to all in the third leg, which was switched from the turf to Keeneland’s synthetic track after betting on the pick three had closed. Under Kentucky racing rules, a surface switch in a multiple-leg wager following the close of betting requires the race to be treated as a pick all.

“We just missed it,” Goodman said. “I can promise you that it will never happen again. It was partially my fault, partially my staff’s fault, but I’ve got a lot of good people working for me, and we will not let it happen again.”

Keeneland first notified bettors that the pick three payout was miscalculated just before the ninth race on Wednesday.

On Thursday, Keeneland said that the bet should have paid off at $7.40 for a $1 wager. On Wednesday, the bet paid off at $154.30 to a $1 wager, under the sequence of 2/10/9.

The first two legs of the pick three were won by favorites, but the third leg was won by a 44-1 shot who was 8-1 on the morning line.

Goodman said he has already notified all of the track’s simulcast outlets that it will reimburse them for payouts made on the wagers. In addition, the track is reimbursing account-wagering companies that paid out on the wager twice.

Also, anyone who has a ticket with the specific 2/10/9 combination will receive the payout posted after the sixth race, Goodman said.

The pick three pool for the races was approximately $34,000. If all of the wagers are cashed, Keeneland would be required to pay the pool twice, minus the takeout.

The incident will likely require an investigation by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, which hired a supervisor of parimutuel wagering in 2010. The supervisor, Greg Lamb, had not returned a phone call as Thursday afternoon.