12/17/2007 12:00AM

Kentucky to probe past-post allegation

EmailThe Kentucky Horse Racing Authority will form a committee to study an incident on Oct. 25 in which a bettor at Keeneland claimed he was able to wager on a race from Fair Grounds until almost one minute after the gates opened, authority officials said on Monday.

The committee, which will comprise several authority members, racing officials, and bettors, will attempt to determine how the incident occurred and whether the authority can take any steps to prevent any similar incidents, according to Lisa Underwood, the executive director of the authority.

"I've wanted to look into wagering integrity issues for some time," Underwood said. "We want to be able to have independent supervision over the totalizator system, and this incident is a good way to start looking at those issues and finding solutions."

The incident became public on Dec. 6 at the University of Arizona's Symposium on Racing and Gaming, when Mike Maloney, a high-rolling horseplayer who bets at Keeneland, contended he was able to make four bets on a Fair Grounds race after the race had started. Maloney said that he made the bets only to prove that the bet-processing system did not recognize the automatic stop-bet command, and said that he lost all the bets he placed after the race started.

Fair Grounds officials have contended that the incident was isolated and resulted from a malfunction of the bet-processing system. All bet-processing systems are supposed to issue the automatic stop-bet command when the gates open, and stewards at the host track are expected to issue a manual command if the computer does not.

Suspicions that some bettors are able to wager after a race has started have plagued the racing industry since the Breeders' Cup Pick Six scandal of 2002, in which an employee of a bet-processing company altered a pick six ticket after four races in the sequence had already been run. Racing officials have maintained since then that the suspicions are groundless.

Underwood said she has asked Maloney to be on the committee, and that other positions will likely be filled by racing officials with technical expertise on the bet-processing network.

* Also at the authority meeting, Turfway Park received approval to change its post times on Wednesday and Thursday race cards to 1:10 p.m. Turfway had previously started racing on Wednesday and Thursday at 5 p.m.