Santa Anita to move quickly to fix inaccurate multi-race 'will-pays'

Dec 28, 2017 9:27 AM

Tim Ritvo, Santa Anita Park CEO, says the track will move as quickly as possible to fix an issue involving the posting of inaccurate multi-race "will-pays” after a late scratch in the last race Tuesday, caused significant confusion for bettors.

The Bloodhorse magazine, via its website, reports that because wagers from scratched horses in the Pick 4 and Pick 5 automatically move to the final favorite in the win pool, bettors were confused because Santa Anita's tote system shows the money from the scratched horse on each horse in the will-pays to reflect what the payout would be if that horse ended up as the favorite.

The Pick 3 that ended with the final race Tuesday was not impacted the same way, because money on scratched horses for that wager results in consolation payouts instead of being moved to the win-pool favorite.

Ritvo said, following discussions with his own staff and the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau, that said the current policy at Santa Anita was a change from past practices, which didn't include scratched money into the will-pays. Previously, when favorites won the payouts were less than what was displayed in posted will-pays.

Ritvo, according The Bloodhorse, said he will now seek a tote system revision allowing the scratched money to be put on whichever horse is favored in the win pool, and have it change live, should the favorite change.

He added that it could take some time to do this, so to avoid confusion, he will instruct track announcer Michael Wrona to advise patrons that the posted will pays for the Pick 5 and Pick 4 cannot be precisely determined until the race is off and the favorite is determined.