08/28/2004 12:00AM

Saratoga cancels last race

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The severe thunderstorm that rolled into Saratoga Springs as the horses were approaching the starting gate for Saturday's $1 million Travers caused the post time of the race to be moved up by several minutes to 6:22 p.m. The storm also resulted in the cancellation of the 12th and final race on the card.

The rain, which was accompanied by frequent lightning, began in earnest after the Travers runners crossed the finish line and rendered the track a sea of slop. Track announcer Tom Durkin announced the cancellation of the final race - for the safety of the patrons, riders, and horses - about 10 minutes after the Travers was run.

The cancellation of the final race resulted in the pick 6 becoming a pick 5, with a payout of $1,991. The pick 6 consolation payoff, for four winners, returned $16. The late double combining Birdstone, the winner of the Travers, with any of the runners in the canceled 12th race, returned $12.60. The final pick 3, with King's Bishop winner Pomeroy, Birdstone, and any of the runners in the 12th race, returned $11.50.

The track said that a total of $440,371 was refunded to bettors.