With this column's hobby horses being retired faster than Wall Street investment bankers, Monday's season opener did remind us that at least one remains on all fours. After the alterations to place-pool betting this season, along with (at last) some sanity returned to the calculation of dead-heat dividends, we were wondering what deficiency to target next. As one expatriate trainer once colourfully nudged this column: it's the wolves that make the caribou strong by constantly nipping at their heels. We don't want pudgy caribou now do we? But when the second Double Trio was not won on Monday, the announcement of the consolation dividend - for backers of one leg - was a stern reminder that there is always work to be done. And giving back part of the 'not won' dividend pool - 50 per cent, mind you - hardly seems a way to encourage the bigger pools on which such exotic bets thrive. Punters who collected HK$15,224 for every HK$10 bet were probably happy to get anything out of the DT, despite fellow punters receiving HK$26,306 for the same bet in the Trio pool, but the remaining HK$700,000 and change for the jackpot is not likely to make a real impact on next weekend's second DT. The Double Trio once boasted raw dividend pools of HK$10 million, without jackpots. Now those fresh pools are rarely over the HK$3 million mark. Perhaps having three a day now is stretching the friendship, but larger jackpots certainly do the job for the other big exotics.