More stuff you just couldnt make up (Okay, so most of this actually is made up, but not the most unbelievable part.)

The Internal Revenue Service believes that the New York Racing Association and presumably every other racetrack in the United States should be taxed on gross receipts rather than net profit, which in NYRAs case has been less than zero for roughly the last quarter century.

The $1.64 billion bankruptcy claim filed by the IRS exceeds NYRAs total revenue for the period in question, 2000-2005 and claims that purses are not legitimate operating expenses. On Thursday, NYRA president Charlie Hayward called the IRS claim, ludicrous, which may have been an understatement, and estimated the actual liability at about $15-16 million.

It is farfetched that a tax court will uphold the IRS claim. But, as any horseplayer will tell you, never say never.

Were the IRS to prevail in this dispute, NYRA and every other racing organization in the nation would be forced out of business, the breeding industry would collapse along with several others, horses abandoned by owners no longer capable of supporting their demand for food and shelter would be roaming the streets and hundreds of thousands of people would be bankrupt, unemployed or, at worst, homeless. Many would turn to crime. Frank Stronach would flee to Canada, where racing thrives, riding The Green Monkey across the Peace Bridge to Fort Erie, where the $16-million horse wins a $4,000 maiden claiming race in the 25th start of his career.

In Kentucky, where Churchill Downs, Keeneland, Ellis Park and Turfway Park would stand dark and overgrown, thousands of young feral horses left at bankrupt breeding farms would forage the countryside. Similar circumstances prevail in Florida, California, Maryland, Virginia and New York. Indiscriminate mating produces a hardy, durable horse in subsequent generations.

Just before turning off the lights, the New York Racing Association, Churchill Downs and Magna Entertainment sell the rights to the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes to the Maktoum Family, which announced that the Triple Crown will continue uninterrupted at Nad Al Sheba, in Dubai. Most of the stallions standing in the United States and every Grade I winning broodmare are relocated either to a Godolphin, Darley, Shadwell and Coolmore breeding facility in Europe or Australia. Sha Tin Race Course, in Hong Kong, becomes permanent home of the Breeders Cup.

NYRA trustees finally succeed in selling the art collection and deposit the proceeds in several off-shore betting accounts.

Six off-track betting corporations in New York remain in business without the loss of a single job while taking bets on races in Canada, Europe, Asia and Latin America.

In upstate New York, Saratoga Springs civic groups led by state Sen. Joe Bruno, Jack Knowlton (Mr. Funny Cide) and Marylou Whitney support a cessation move and return to the days of the lake-house casinos. Hunger-striking protesters chain themselves to railings at the Saratoga Race Course. Eventually, they die. The city, its racing heritage lost, adopts the slogan: Birthplace of the potato chip.

Thousands of illegal immigrants, former grooms and hotwalkers carrying New York State driving licenses, flee on horseback across the Mexican border, straining the social welfare institutions in that country and elevating international tensions.

Remember, when the government is involved, never say never.