06/19/2008 11:00PM

Management investigating error on TV tote board


FORT ERIE, Ontario – An error on the grandstand television odds screen occurred in the final minutes preceding the running of the eighth race on Tuesday.

With less than four minutes to post time, the No. 6 horse, Golden Quill – one of the race favorites – was suddenly listed as scratched. However, the infield tote board indicated that the horse was still in the race.

The horse was never scratched, but the information on the television screens caused some players to reassess or change their wagers in the last couple of minutes prior to post time, thinking that Golden Quill was no longer in the field.

As the horses began to enter the gate for the final race of the day, the TV screens properly indicated that Golden Quill was in the race, and his post-time odds replaced his “scratched” status.

Golden Quill broke sharply from the gate and led the field throughout. He paid $11.10 to win and set off a $2 triactor payoff of $1,546.80.

“Track management is currently reviewing all aspects of the TV tote screen error,” said Daryl Wells Jr., director of communications, “and we are actively seeking the underlying cause of this incident.”

Father’s Day lures festive crowd

Last Sunday’s Father’s Day bash here had perfect weather, and families came out in droves to enjoy the sunshine and the Thoroughbreds.

The picnic area was packed and resembled a mini-version of an August Saratoga crowd.

One-dollar hot dogs were the food item of the day. Reservations for the Prince of Wales dining room were filled long before the week began, and the lunch buffet was a big hit.

The draft beer machines were in full swing, and even general manager Herb McGirr had to fill in and help pour as thirsty race fans waited patiently in line.

“The crowd was in a great mood,” said McGirr, “and it was nice to see them enjoying the entertainment and the racing.

“A happy and boisterous crowd adds vibrancy to any track, and it sure made our day at the Fort.”

The good attendance bodes well for the upcoming $500,000 Prince of Wales Stakes on July 13.

Cup races, which are restricted to horses who have started at the Fort a specific number of times in 2008, begin July 19.

Long Head relishes soft course

Heavy downpours softened up the turf course for last Monday’s starter allowance.

Long Head, trained by Jimmy Nemett, went to post at odds of68-1 and proceeded to win his second turf race in six tries.

“He loves the soft turf,” said Nemett. “Kris Robinson had him in contention all the way and then got him up in time. He is a nervous horse, and it has taken a lot of patience to get him settled down and relaxed.”

Long Head triggered a $12,736 triactor payoff and a $1,122 exactor. The upset resulted in nobody hitting the Win 4. The bet paid $62.30 for three out of four.

Wholelottabourbon re-claimed

Wholelottabourbon was claimed from M.A.D. Stable and Martha Gonzalez for $4,000 on June 8. The partnership had owned the much-loved 6-year-old gelding throughout his career and made more than $430,000 since he debuted in 2004.

On June 17, Wholelottabourbon’s new trainer, Julie Robillard, ran him in a $5,000 claimer, and his former owners took the speedster back out of the winning effort.