01/19/2008 12:00AM

Suit filed over ruling in Delta Jackpot


A lawsuit contesting the order of finish of the Grade 3, $1 million Delta Jackpot was filed against the Louisiana Racing Commission on Tuesday in Lake Charles, La., by the connections of the third-place finisher, Golden Yank, according to Byron Bonck, an attorney representing the horse's owner and trainer.

Bonck, who along with William Marshall Jr. represents Golden Yank's owner, the Millard R. Seldin Revocable Trust, and trainer, Gary Thomas, said he had no further comment on the case.

The Delta Jackpot was won in a dead heat by Z Humor and Turf War on Dec. 7, with Golden Yank a neck back between horses in third. Golden Yank's rider, Gerard Melancon, claimed foul for bumping in the stretch, but it was disallowed by the stewards. The horse's connections appealed the case to the commission, but the stewards' decision was upheld unanimously. The lawsuit seeks a reversal of that decision and asks that Golden Yank be placed either first or second in the Jackpot, alleging he was impeded by both Z Humor and Turf War.

The result was worth $400,000 to both Z Humor and Turf War and $100,000 to Golden Yank. The lawsuit points out that the Jackpot earnings could be important in gaining a spot in the Kentucky Derby field should that race overfill.

Golden Yank, a two-time stakes winner, was freshened after the Jackpot. He is based at Oaklawn Park.