Shaking my head at Dover judges
I’m trying to figure out how #1 Shipnstrol Hanover wasn’t taken down from the mutuel payouts in the Matron Stakes at Dover on Thursday night (Nov. 4, race 10). It was an unfortunate and confusing last turn and into the stretch run for multiple horses, and #1 did finish second. But as the announcer said just after the race finish, “There will be a judges inquiry into the order of finish due to the #1 going off the track and inside the pylons.”.
I totally understand the race announcer has no input into the judges’ decision into the final placings. And in most cases an announcer will wait till he has received some kind of clarification or guidance, into what the judges are investigating during a race. But this incident was so blatant, he immediately said to everyone who was watching and listening “#1 was off the track and inside the pylons.”
The facts of the incident, as I saw it were, the driver of #1 clearly had no choice but to go drastically inside the pylons and off the course because of the events to his outside, and also the event in front of him. No inquiry sign was posted on the board, as we viewers waited and waited, and finally the announcer said, “the inquiry does not affect the first three finishers.” To this fan, the decision was perfect example of “the Good O’le Boy system.”
And just to clarify the #1 had no choice but to drastically go off the course and inside the pylons, but just because he had to, does not take away from the fact that the number 1’s, unavoidable reaction to the events around him, undeniably gained him and advantage over the other horses competing in this 173k stakes race. And he did finish 2nd. I almost think that Dover hierarchy must have rationalized, “Nobody’s watching anyway, just leave the #1 in the second position” he couldn’t avoid what happened.
Well, this fan will not be watching or participating in anything Dover anymore.