08/04/2003 12:00AM

Prairie: Patton's Victory wins by DQ

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ALTOONA, Iowa - Patton's Victory ($5.20) was outgamed by Northwest Hill in the final hundred yards of the 1 1/8-mile $75,000 Prairie Meadows Handicap, but won anyway, on a controversial disqualification by the stewards.

Patton's Victory, under Alex Birzer, stalked pacesetter Northwest Hill to the second turn and moved up alongside that rival approaching the stretch. Northwest Hill's rider, Glenn Corbett, struck Patton's Victory in the face with his whip, according to the stewards, who reversed the order of finish after a claim of foul by Birzer.

Patton's Victory stuck a head in front entering the stretch and appeared to have his rival beaten, but Northwest Hill fought back in the final yards to finish a head in front in 1:48.06.

The Prairie Meadows Handicap field was reduced to five runners after three late scratches.