The Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission ordered Remington Park to stop offering its Sooner 6ix jackpot wager after a bettor complaint created a controversy over the wager’s payout.
Jeff Arthur, a Virginia bettor, filed the complaint with the OHRC last week. He argued he had the only winning Sooner 6ix ticket for the April 10 card, in which one of the six races ended in a dead heat. Arthur’s ticket included both horses involved in the tie. But Remington Park officials said that outcome changed the wager, and that they considered Arthur to have two winning tickets.
That decision nullified a $35,145 single-winner jackpot. Arthur received $8,920 instead, the total of the night’s minor pool in the jackpot-bet format. That format awards a portion of the pool whenever multiple players hit the correct sequence. A further takeout from the bet goes to a separate pool awarded when there is one winning bet.
Arthur built several non-overlapping tickets for the Sooner 6ix on April 10. One of those tickets cost him $403.20 and included 2,016 combinations. On one of the races, Arthur used the 5 and the 7 horses. Those two finished in a dead heat, which – according to Remington – created two winning combinations.
One or the Other but Not Both
Track officials added Arthur would have won the full jackpot had he used either the 5 or the 7 by themselves.
“At first, I was a bit disappointed when I saw what went into my ADW account, knowing that I didn’t win the jackpot pool,” Arthur said in a release issued by the Thoroughbred Idea Foundation, a non-profit organization that works on behalf of horse owners and bettors. “But then once I saw the chart which outlined the pool amounts and did the math, I realized I had the only winning ticket and I was infuriated. It had to be a mistake.
“If there was a late scratch that ended up giving me a favorite which won, and duplicated my combination, I totally get that it invalidates the unique wager. That is pretty clear that a scratched horse gives me the favorite. But this is not that.”
Arthur reached out to the TIF, which connected him with attorney and horse owner Maggi Moss, who filed the complaint with the OHRC. Moss and TIF Executive Director Patrick Cummings had a conference call with Remington Park officials last Thursday, requesting the full payout. Track officials maintained their stance that the dead heat created two separate outcomes.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association established the definition that a bettor’s multiple wagers into a single pool constitute a single wager. Remington Park’s decision not to pay the full jackpot appears to contradict that standard.
Complaint Led to Bet Suspension
Kelly Cathey, the OHRC executive director, said he suspended the Sooner 6ix bet after Arthur’s representatives filed the complaint.
“Right now, we’re having a legal look at it. It will have to go to a hearing unless something happens between the two parties,” Cathey said in a release.
“The horseplayer picked all six winners, he was the only person to pick all six winners, and they were all on the same ticket,” Cummings said in the TIF release. “If either horse wins by a nose, he has it. If he picks one or the other, he has it. It’s unconscionable that the track is making this judgment. There is nothing in the rules that state this should not be a unique payout.”
Located in Oklahoma City, Remington Park primarily runs quarter horses, although thoroughbreds run from August through December. Because it is one of a handful of tracks still running through the COVID-19 pandemic and the shuttering of tracks around the country, it enjoys increased interest from horseplayers throughout the world.