The Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission ruled on May 19, 2017, that the results of the May 7, 2016, Parx Oaks at Parx Racing in Bensalem, Pa., would be as follows: “Miss Inclusive shall be deemed to have finished first along with the horse Eighth Wonder (the runner-up), for the purpose of both maintaining each horse's racing record and determining each horse's eligibility to enter in future races, the forfeiture of the purse will remain in effect and the redistribution of the purse will stand…”
In effect, the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission determined that the 2016 Parx Oaks had two winners, a second-place finisher and a third-place finisher.
On June 12, 2017, Equibase Company LLC issued an amended chart for the race, with both Miss Inclusive and Eighth Wonder listed as co-winners of the race.
Earlier this month, the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA) sent a letter to the head of the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission raising its objection to the commission's decision. The PA State Horse Racing Commission will hold its next meeting Wednesday, June 28.
According to the Daily Racing Form, officials from The Jockey Club and North American International Cataloging Standards Committee also sent the racing commission letters.
The following is part of the letter sent to the racing commission by Dan Metzger, President of the TOBA:
“We are writing you to express our official opposition to the course of action taken by the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission with respect to the official order of finish for the 2016 Parx Oaks. The Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA), through its American Graded Stakes Committee, assigns graded and listed status to all eligible stakes races in the United States and has done so since its founding in 1973. In addition, the International Cataloguing Standards Committee, of which TOBA is a member, is responsible for establishing black type standards for stakes races in North America. This extraordinary and unprecedented decision by the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission to make Miss Inclusive the co-winner of the race is misleading not only to the racing industry participants and its fan base, but also other significant stakeholders in the breeding and public and private sales segments of our sport.
The Commission's decision of having two winners, without a dead heat and one in which the first two horses finished a half-length apart, defies established integrity standards and transparency upon which Thoroughbred racing and breeding has long operated. Our global sport is predicated on the fundamental and accepted rules of racing, which require there be only one winner (except in the case of a dead heat), which was not the case in the 2016 Parx Oaks. Additionally, listing the third and fourth place finishers as second and third place horses is not only misleading and confusing, but factually inaccurate.
We are aware of the difficult complexities you encountered with the order of finish for the 2016 Parx Oaks, but legal expediency should never undermine the integrity of our sport, which extends far beyond the racetrack. We respectfully request that the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission reverse this decision and declare one winner of the race, either Miss Inclusive or Eighth Wonder.
TOBA takes its responsibility of maintaining the highest levels of integrity to the racing and breeding industries very seriously. By artificially manipulating the results of this race, the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission has introduced a precedent which undermines the credibility of our sport.”
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