The New York Racing Association will shut off its signal to an additional six wagering outlets, claiming it has no assurances from the companies about their ownership and customer base.
The Jan. 25 move came after NYRA terminated simulcasting deals with four wagering sites that were named but not charged in an 88-count indictment by federal prosecutors involving alleged illegal gambling and race-fixing.
Together, the 10 sites handle about $300 million on NYRA races in a year, NYRA president Charles Hayward said.
Hayward told The Blood-Horse
NYRA has "no assurances" from the six entities who is involved in their ownership or who uses the services for betting.
"Inadvertently, we could be facilitating illegal bookmaking," he said.
Hayward said his office is developing new standards, which could be ready in 48 hours, to dictate precisely where NYRA will send its signals.
"There's a reason these guys are (located) off shore," he said. "We can't just turn a blind eye."
NYRA said the six new sites were identified after prosecutors named four sites last week as part of the indictment. The new sites, which will be shut off effective Jan. 31, are Racing and Gaming Services of St. Kitts in the West Indies; Lakes Region Greyhound Park in New Hampshire; Capital Sports of Canberra, Australia; Darwin All Sports of Australia; Coeur d'Alene Casino in Idaho; and Excelsior Casino in Aruba.
Hayward said NYRA's new policy would state that "unless we know who you are, and that your business practices are legal and in the best interests of the sport of horseracing, we are not going to do business with you."
Said NYRA vice president Bill Nader: "The message NYRA is delivering today is one we hope the entire racing industry will follow--we must choose integrity over revenue."
The federal race-fixing investigation that became public Jan. 13 involves a race at Aqueduct, but according to an article in the Jan. 23 edition of the New York Daily News
, the probe has spread to Belmont Park and Saratoga. The federal indictment alleges a $200-million gambling operation.