Boat Trip Win Includes Triple Dead Heat
December 08, 2013 08:30am
Turf Express Finish 615 X 400
Photo: Benoit Photo


A return to Betfair Hollywood Park proved the tonic for Boat Trip, a last-to-first winner of the $99,998 Hollywood Turf Express Sunday.

Some five weeks removed from a 12th place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, the 4-year-old son of Harlan’s Holiday took full advantage of a three-pronged pace duel to win for the fourth time in five starts over the local grass.

Given the fact No Silent, Chips All In and Unbridled’s Note were involved in a battle that lasted the entire six furlongs, it was fitting they finished in a triple dead heat for second.

It was only the third triple dead heat in Hollywood Park’s 75-year history. The other two were for first.

Challenger Tom, Joe’s Pleasure and Leaful finished on even terms in a $5,000 claiming race July 3, 1957.

More than 40 years later, the photo finish camera couldn’t separate Chans Pearl, Cool Miss Ann and Tina Celesta in an $8,000 claimer for fillies and mares Dec. 7, 1997.

Able to save ground most of the way under jockey Joe Talamo, Boat Trip angled outside for the final eighth of a mile and was up in the final strides for his fifth lifetime victory.

Out of the Seeking the Gold mare, Boat Trip, who won by a half-length, increased his earnings to $253,196 in 14 starts.

Bred in Kentucky by Galleria Bloodstock and Samac, Boat Trip compled the distance in 1:08.45 in a race returned to the Autumn stakes calendar for the first time since 2008.

The 7-2 fourth choice in a field of five, the bay colt paid $9.60, $2.10 and $2.10. No Silent, Chips All In and Unbridled’s Note, the even-money favorite, all returned $2.10 and $2.10.

“He’s going to be sad to see (Betfair Hollywood Park) go, that’s for sure,’’ said Pender. “He just likes this layout, there’s no question about it. Whenever there’s a paceless race, there’s always three of them dueling up there. Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to work?

“No, that really helped. I was hoping he’d get a setup because he’s kind of one dimensional. I’ll be interested in seeing how this horse runs going a mile. He won the Tsunami Slew (June 22, 2012) going a mile.

“As he gets older, that’s where we’ll start looking. He’s a big, handsome colt.’’

Jonny’s Choice, the lone California bred in the lineup and the longest shot in the race at 22-1, trailed. He finished 2 ¼ lengths behind No Silent, Chips All In and Unbridled’s Note.

Racing resumes Thursday. Post time is 12:30 p.m. Track gates at Betfair Hollywood Park will open at 9:55 a.m. for simulcasts.






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Older Comments about Boat Trip Win Includes Triple Dead Heat...

Don't know how many times a leg, or flapping tongue is well ahead of another horse, yet the nose is the standard
Forgotten in all this discussion is that the findings of the judges is final, so if they say dead heat, that is what it is. We did have one, on the turf mid-summer where the nose was blocked on both the main and mirror view, and the stewards did the right thing: called it a dead heat. Without exacting evidence (sort of like the review process in the NFL play evaluations) they call the most equitable result
this ridiculous logic that there is something inherent to turf racing that creates more dead heats is on par with due process wagering: "well it has not hit the last 40 times, so we are DUE." Ridiculous: each race, and the placings, are imutually exclusive of one another.
ANOTHER LIVING IN FANTASYLAND and not reality. The camera is dead set at 90 degrees to the wire, it is callibrated regularly based upon alignement marks that must coordinate onto the scan or the position has to be redone....The MIRROR image,(reverse camera at some tracks like Arlington) give the opposite side of the positioning. The CAMERA NEVER MOVES from that standard postion so that turf or dirt we have the same placings. We have two turf cameras (functioning differently than the polytrack cameras) one being at a very sharp angle so as to decrease the horse overlap. During the season this no overlap view is used more often to differentiate the body postions from the nose...Before you make up stories that have NO EVIDENCE it would be wise to contact someone, which obsiously is not you, who knows what they are talking about!!
Dead heats for the placings are more common in races like this where the winner wins by about half a length, especially on the turf, because of the positioning of the camera. The winner's jockey blocks the view of the other horses from one side, making it harder to separate noses of the placers with 100% confidence. You can see this in the actual photo:
  • · It appears in that photo that the horses have in fact triple-heated, but the resolution between the three horses (and especially of the most outside horse's nose on the wire) is obscured by the winner. It's safer to declare a dead heat than to make a guess that this particular piece of flesh belongs to one horse's nose and not the one behind it. · 2171 days ago
  • · In fact, the more closely I examine the photo (magnified) the more it looks like the horse in the middle in fact finished fourth. But I'm not a placing judge. · 2171 days ago
Laz, I've always heard the saying, "He won by a flaring nostril". With your recent post about the thickness of the nasal skin, that "flaring nostril" could also prevent a horse from losing, but, get 'up' for the photo finish tie!!! Nice info on both parts for this debate. I have to admit, I was standing on my toes, but some of it went over my head. Nevertheless, I was born yesterday, but I stayed up all night. Thanks, guys.
Travel Vic the information in my post above (the one before Sullivan’s now deleted post where he told me to do a blasphemous thing that is much too vulgar to repeat) was first noted in an article in the New York Post. They stated that that triple Dead-Heat at Belmont was the 19th in the past half century. The 18th was noted in the following article in the Chicago Sun times: “””One day after winning the Preakness Stakes, jockey Pat Day shared in a triple dead heat victory Sunday, May 21, 1990, only the 18th in modern thoroughbred history, at Arlington International Racecourse. In the ninth race, an $18,000 allowance for 3-year-olds, Day rode 9-5 favorite All Worked Up, which tied Marshua's Affair and Survival for the win over seven furlongs. All three bay colts were timed in 1:24 4/5. The triple dead heat was the first at Arlington since Aug. 10, 1963, and the first at any American track since Dec. 31, 1981, at Suffolk Downs. The first triple dead heat was in 1944 in New York.””” Now if you want to split hairs, taking into consideration the thickness of the skin on a horse’s nose, the realistic chance of an exact dead heat between two horses, never mind three, when dividing the thickness of the skin into the distance ran would be mind boggling. It is quite possible that there has never been even a single true or exact dead-heat. However, with whatever equipment that is used to determine dead and triple dead heats, it is a fact that there were 19 recorded triple dead heats in that 50 year period. Saying that, maybe you can take a leadership role in telling the various racing jurisdictions that they are all wrong.
Looks like tv brought the facts, and hey, Northport, that's my line, K?
facts are like anaphylaixis to this group
it might be time for bed, vic
What we would do today without a high speed camera to help find the winner in tight races? Each race result has to be viewed and verified by the stewards before it is official. Many very close contests would never be accurately reported if it were not by a specialized camera which takes a photo of the entire field every race. In days gone by, horses were required to win at least two heats (separate races, like is still done in harness racing’s Little Brown Jug) before being declared the winner. When the judges were unable to separate two horses by the naked eye, that particular contest was not going to produce a winner that could go on to the next heat, so it was discarded, or “dead.” This is the origin of the term DEAD HEAT, or a tie. I am sure many of those close races could have been determined if the photo finish camera had been available. The use of a camera over the human eye to make placings in horse races was long an idea that did not become really practical until the 1930’s. “The earliest known photo of the finish of a race to survive was taken on June 25, 1890 by John C. Hemment in New York in the borough of Brooklyn at the Sheepshead Bay Race Track. The track was the site of races sponsored by the Coney Island Jockey Club.” ( The problem, in getting all tracks to follow suit was technical: the horizontal shutter and film speeds were not reliable to install this idea. In 1937, an engineer for Paramount studios (Lorenzo Del Ricco) solved the major problem with a new invention, the strip camera. Del Riccio's camera solved the problem by eliminating the shutter entirely. It featured an optical, vertical slit about .0080 of an inch wide. When the field approached the wire, an operator flipped a switch, and the film inside the camera moved at an estimated 55 feet per second, which is just about the speed of the horses (this could be altered for the slower, standard bred races). The leading parts of the horses were recorded by the moving film sequentially in direct proportion to the exact time that each part crosses in front of the slit. Because horses closer to the camera are often blocked from view by a horse near the rail, a mirror was placed along the inner track to capture a mirror view. Think of how a Xerox machine works, except in this case, the camera is stationary and the horses are in motion, as compared to the copy machine where the object is stationary and a copy light moves over the paper. This camera worked very well except for the requirement of needing all those smelly chemicals at a certain temperature, and the time necessary to not only develop the negative, but make prints for the crowd to view. Today many tracks use digital photography as it is very quick, reliable and can be readily viewed by both the stewards and televised to the fans. Hastings (and the company that does all the video for the track, Telephoto Technologies) uses the Finish Lynx camera system ( Each race, each day, is archived and copies are made available to the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency which oversees wagering nationally. To assure the camera is calibrated properly, targets are aligned on both sides of the finish line and, periodically, a member of the CPMA comes by to check to see that the camera is exactly perpendicular to the finish line. Being off axis could favour the inside or outside horses.
Hye Laz how much experience do you have with the photo finish situation??
Oh poor LAM he so wants to graduate from garndstand observer to inside player....
I read that same thing and you have it WRONG..Someone thought that with the higer accuracy of the camear that WOULD BE MORE, but there were far far less..IT defies logic that it could be any other way
THINK OF THE PHYSICS and you will se, that eyeballing it will NEVER outperform the photo finsih camera...I don't give a poop about rookies who make statements about things they do not know a thing about..because it is an opinion does not make it fact
Congratulations to the site censor for using good judgement and removing last post. We all get into heated debates or arguments(whetever one wants to call them). But no place here for four letter words. Park that vehicle outside the door before entering.
I forgot, the great knowledgeable Travel Vic is going to argue with the official annals of racing. Wow. I know that you're arrogant, but you seem to have risen to a new level. All hail the king of racing knowledge.
t_v, the reason I remember that is because it didn't make sense to me. I do not have a copy on hand but I ask that you please look that up. Perhaps there were not more, but I distinctly remembering that it was expected there would be less dead heats and that there were the same or close to it. Wait -- I think I actually read it in Eisenberg's book on Native Dancer. I do not have a copy on hand of that either but I will attempt to reference that and stop by the library on my way home from school.
TWICE in all my years taking the photo finish (now over 5 at harness and thorogubred tracks) the photo finish image was somehow corrupted and the placing judges had to use video tape (or later Trakus) in BOTH situations, eyeballing it could not differntiate the winner so dead heats were given as the result.
that is a crock and stupid too about their being more, there was FAR less. Think about it: you had PLACING judges before using eyeballing and now there was a camera that could differentiate differences of less than a quarter or an inch from over 100 feet away..Think about that and you recognize that statement is ludicrous!!

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