MALE ROUTS FEMALE FIELD IN race MIXUP
A 3-year-old filly named Ruby Queen had never won a race until she appeared to blow past the field as a 110-1 longshot at an Ohio horse track.
But it turns out that she was really a he.
Track stewards suspended three people and fined another after determining there was no intentional wrongdoing in a chain of mistakes that allowed the wrong horse to run under a different name last month at Hollywood Gaming's Mahoning Valley Race Course near Youngstown.
A stable worker went into the wrong stall on Nov. 4 and brought out a male horse, Leathers Slappin, instead of Ruby Queen, who was in a neighboring stall.
A track employee, known as an identifier, then failed to properly check the horse.
The horse that won by nearly 8 lengths was disqualified — after bets were paid out.
mixed martial arts
UFC: Rousey gets first shot at Holm
Holly Holm's first defense of her Ultimate Fighting Championship bantamweight title will have to come in a rematch against Ronda Rousey, who is recovering from a Holm knockout Nov. 14. The rematch, mandated by the UFC, might be July 9 in Las Vegas, president Dana White said. Holm's manager, Lenny Fresquez, said Holm did not want to wait, especially if Rousey is not ready by July. He said Holm would like to face No. 2 contender Miesha Tate in the interim. White: "We're real concerned with his opinion."
ARENA FOOTBALL: The Storm kicks off its 25th season in the Arena Football League with a home matchup against rival Orlando on April 1, the team announced Thursday. For more information on the 16-game schedule and tickets, go to tampabaystorm.com.
figure skating: Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan broke his points record for a men's short program to take a commanding lead at the Grand Prix Final in Barcelona, Spain. He earned 110.95 points for his skate, surpassing his record short program worth 106.33 from last month's NHK Trophy. World champion Javier Fernandez of Spain was second (91.52). The women's short program and the short ice dance are scheduled today.
soccer: Karim Benzema was indefinitely suspended from the French national team because of his involvement in an ongoing blackmail case. The Real Madrid striker has been charged with conspiracy to blackmail relating to an extortion scam over a sex tape involving France teammate Mathieu Valbuena. Benzema, 27, denies wrongdoing.
youth football: The St. Pete Silver Raiders play in today's 59th annual Pop Warner Super Bowl at Disney World's ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The Silver Raiders, a Division II Jr. Midget team comprised of 10- to 13-year-olds, play the Colorado Springs War Dogs at 1:15 p.m.
autos: Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing said Steak 'n Shake is back for a second season of sponsorship for Graham Rahal. The chain will be the primary sponsor of Rahal's Honda at five IndyCar Series events, including the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg scheduled for March 13.