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Thursday, May 8, 2014

You Be The Judge

Time fort another edition of 'You Be The Judge'.  Today, we will be testing your (and my) eye sight using the second race at Bangor Raceway contested on May 6, 2014.  Your mission is to determine who was the winner of the race (If you want to skip the whole race, you can jump to the 1:58 mark on the replay to see the stretch drive and/or 2:39 for the slo-mo finish).  Was it #1 Late In The Night, or #6 Cams Recess?  Don't look at the photo yet.

A real close finish indeed.  I called it for #6 Cams Recess, though if you thought it was  #1 Late In The Night, you couldn't be called blind.  Indeed, calling it a dead-heat would be a valid call before you see the photo.

If you go to the 3:44 point, you will see the original photo finish and I still feel #6 won; it seems to me his nose was further in the line than the #1, but I could be wrong.  In fact the judges called for a closer view to determine the winner.  So after calling the race for #6, the judges put the deciding photo up for all to see.  After all, if you thought the #1 won, you want proof that you lost.  So when the video gets to the 4:27 mark, odds are your initial response will be "WTF"?

No need to explain what WTF means, but it is kind of hard to tell who crossed the wire first when they covered up the #1 horse with the unofficial order of finish.  Unless you are a psychic you will be hard pressed to figure out how the #1 lined up.  It goes without saying if you are showing the photo finish, one doesn't put the unofficial results up over the photo; certainly not where it makes the photo worthless.

So if you thought the #1 won, you probably are thinking you got burnt.  If you had the #6, you collected your bet but may be wondering how close was the finish.  Probably the only thing keep conspiracy theorists from getting ready to storm the judges' stand is realistically someone going to risk the possibility of going to jail by committing a crime for the paltry amount of money wagered into the pools at Bangor?  It is highly unlikely.

Regardless of who you thought the winner was, we can all agree the track made a boneheaded move by posting the order of finish over the photo.  I'm not here to put blame on the photo finish man, the person in charge of putting up the graphics, or even the judges.  However, management needs to have a chat with everyone involved to make sure it never happens again.

In the meanwhile, let this episode become part of the curriculum of "Operating a Track 101" in the section titled, "Things Thou Shalt not do".

UPDATE: Copies of the photo finish pictures were received and it indeed was the #6 who was the winner.  Here is the photo finish for the second race on May 6.  Note it is the #6 who is on the line and the #1 who has ever so slight a gab between the nose and the line.

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