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Old 06-22-2016, 02:01 PM   #1
Light
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Absolute Bull FL2

In the 2nd race @ FL, I bet against the 3/5 who had $5000 to show. I bet the 2nd choice to show who had only $900 to show. The big favorite hops at the start on his own and finishes out of the money while my horse wins. Two bombs come 2nd and 3rd in this 6 horse field. They make an inquiry and there is nothing there but the stewards rule this big favorite a "non starter". There is no reason given and all wagers are refunded on this big favorite. My show comes back a miserly $2.30.

Two weeks ago I also bet against a big favorite in the show pool @ EMD and it was the same exact scenario. Hops at the start on his own and and is declared a non starter after finishing out of the money.

So here is the existential question. Would they have declared either of these horses non starters if they won? Absolutely not.

This is one of the low life manipulations that track officials put on their own customers as a thank you for your patronage.
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Old 06-22-2016, 02:24 PM   #2
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Don't tracks lose money when a horse is declared a non starter?
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Old 06-22-2016, 02:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cj
Don't tracks lose money when a horse is declared a non starter?
Especially an odds-on favourite.
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:29 PM   #4
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What were the reasons these two horses were declared non-starters?

I think there's only been a couple since I've been watching races and can't recall the reasons for those instances. I thought one of the standard reasons is a gate malfunction or something related to the gate.

Last edited by whodoyoulike; 06-22-2016 at 03:31 PM.
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:34 PM   #5
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I think tracks make more money (in most cases) when the favorite wins or finishes in the money because of breakage. The more winning tickets the tracks sell the more breakage the tracks collect.

Now in this case, eliminating the money that was bet on #2, probably cost Finger Lakes a little cash. I'm not smart enough to do the math.
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:46 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by whodoyoulike
What were the reasons these two horses were declared non-starters?

I think there's only been a couple since I've been watching races and can't recall the reasons for those instances. I thought one of the standard reasons is a gate malfunction or something related to the gate.
Today at FL the starter clearly had a hold of the horse still when the gate opened, easy call by stewards
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cj
Don't tracks lose money when a horse is declared a non starter?
The only thing they lose is the handle of course, but I believe the reason why they declared this horse and the other horse at Emd a non stater is because there was well connected money bet on the big favorite to show. Someone well connected to the management covered their ass if the horse ran out. I play show bets mostly and it looks like someone had $2k to $3k to show on this horse. Also note that the people who bet my horse to win had 5/2 odds on him when the gates opened. They got $3.70 on the win after refunds on the big favorite. Today I should have got $4.60 to show on my horse and I got $2.30. At Emd I had the exacta which was paying $36 for $1 and when they declared the big favorite a non starter I got $18 for the $1 exacta. So besides the handle, the tracks make sure they don't lose money by taking it out of the bettor's pockets.

If the gate doesn't open properly or the gate handler doesn't release the horse properly I have no problem declaring the horse a non starter. But when they can't give me a reason, to which Tony Calo had none, and I can't see one on the replay it's way too fishy. Many horses hop at the start and they are rarely declared non starters. I now have 2 horses in 2 weeks with big show money, and no reason given or seen for declaring them non starters. You don't have to be Sherlock to figure it out.
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:54 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moneyandland
Today at FL the starter clearly had a hold of the horse still when the gate opened, easy call by stewards
Watch the head on, on TS and you can clearly see the starter is clear of the horse, not even touching him.
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:59 PM   #9
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$2.30 at Finger Lakes is pretty good.
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Old 06-22-2016, 04:24 PM   #10
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I know.
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Old 06-22-2016, 04:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Light
... I now have 2 horses in 2 weeks with big show money, and no reason given or seen for declaring them non starters. You don't have to be Sherlock to figure it out.
We used to call this "bad racing luck". And, if it happens to you a lot then let me know which horse you like so I will avoid them until this passes.
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Old 06-22-2016, 05:33 PM   #12
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My video feed of the FL head-on looks like a 3-bit Coleco game but it appeared that the horse was getting light up front for a few seconds and then just as the gate opened and the asst. starter did what he should to keep the horse in line, head straight, may have even had the left ear, but it was just bad timing that he got a good hold as the gate opened. If anything the way the two was acting I'm a little surprised the starter kicked it since it never looked as though he was fully settled.

If they had left it stand there would be a billion times as many complaints that they deliberately got the horse off bad and the stewards bet on it and all that nonsense so under the circumstances and based on what I see - no problem with that decision.

edited - I've watched it again a few times and going to amend the part about the starter kicking it when he did. He took a shot when the horse came down for a second that he could catch them and it was probably the right call to go. The horse just didn't cooperate.
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Old 06-22-2016, 09:00 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Light
Watch the head on, on TS and you can clearly see the starter is clear of the horse, not even touching him.

So I just watched the head on and simply put nothing you wrote in any of your posts is accurate.

First, off the horse didn't stumble. He reared straight up in the air.

Second, when he rears you can see the assistant starter still has him in his hand. On the slow mo you can watch the guy clearly releases the horse a couple seconds after the field breaks.

Third, stewards always ask the assistant starter on these. Being that they declared him a non-starter I can assure the guy told them he held him. And the video reflects that.

Fourth, I'm not 100% sure but different states have different rules on this but NY is one of the more conservative ones. Some states let them count if they cause their own trouble. New York I believe is if the guy is still holding the horse for any reason its a refund.

Fifth, This refund cost the track more money than it cost you. Your accusation lacks any motive. Are they altering the outcome to lose money?

Six, Didn't you still cash? Yeah it was less but you cashed, right? You didn't lose?
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Old 06-22-2016, 09:31 PM   #14
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Well, I've had much worse luck than this and if as some of you say that the horse was held then so be it. I didn't see that and wonder why Tony Calo wouldn't announce that the horse was held by the starter if that was the case? Why is it such a secret, especially to those that got significantly lower payouts in WPS,ex,and tris? I wrote FL customer service. Maybe I will get an answer. Fortunately I got compensated for this bs with my next 2 bets. And as I said before, if the horse won, it probably would not be declared a non starter. I was not surprised when either of these odds on horses broke poorly because I knew they had peaked in form and were going into a downward form cycle. And these gate problems is what I see at times with these type of false favorites who are starting a downward form cycle. I hope this isn't some new trend of declaring certain horses with a lot of show money as non starters when they flop.
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Old 06-22-2016, 09:54 PM   #15
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That horse reared a split second before the gate opened and was obviously being restrained as a result by the gate crew member. I don't know how anybody watching the head-on replay could argue otherwise.
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