beat / beaten (verb)


Senior Member
French, France
I have just heard this sentence : "The abolitionists were sadly beat by 163 votes to 88". I would have instinctively said "were sadly beaten". Can "beat" be a past participle? I have seen it very, very rarely on "Google" and I thought it might be a mistake at first.
Who would rather say "beat" than "beaten" in this context (regions of the world, socio-cultural background, age...) ?
Thanks for your help.
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