Final approval of a live racing schedule for 2005 in Ohio stalled again Nov. 2 and put in jeopardy an Ohio State Racing Commission-led effort to reduce dates in an attempt to improve economic conditions for the horse racing industry.
Racing interests in Ohio continued to negotiate Nov. 1 to seal the deal on a 2005 live racing schedule that would reduce dates for Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing by more than 10%. But time was running out.
The first-ever national Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick 6 "Players' Pool" introduced by AmericaTab produced five winning tickets that paid a total of $280,748.
Racing interests in Ohio continued to negotiate Oct. 27 to seal the deal on a 2005 live racing schedule that would reduce dates for Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing by more than 10%.
A plan to reduce live racing dates in Ohio by more than 10% in an effort to keep the horse racing industry afloat may hinge on an agreement between three Thoroughbred tracks and the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association.
Horsemen's groups have until Oct. 14 to state their positions on a proposed reduction in live racing dates in the Buckeye state, the Ohio State Racing Commission said during its Sept. 17 meeting.
Only one Thoroughbred racetrack would be open in the Buckeye state roughly seven months of the year under a 2005 schedule proposed by the Ohio State Racing Commission.
The chairman of the Ohio State Racing Commission is ready to tackle a long-simmering issue: reduction of live racing dates in the Buckeye state.
The Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association and Beulah Park have struck a deal on revenue splits for account wagering, but the chief negotiator for the horsemen's group called it a big-picture issue that needs attention and leadership on the national level.
The Ohio State Racing Commission Feb. 19 deferred action on a request from the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association to withhold Thoroughbred signals that originate in the state from account wagering companies. It scheduled a hearing for March 1 to further discuss the issue.
For the second time in a month, the betting handle at Beulah Park reached an all-time high. On Wednesday, the Grove City, Ohio track recorded a wagering total of $2,611,746 from all sources on its nine-race program.
Veteran jockey Perry Ouzts won his 4,500th race Sunday at muddy Turfway Park after riding Private Ambition to a 1 3/4-length victory in the third race, a $5,000 claiming event.
Citing track conditions, Turfway Park canceled races 4-10 on Sunday's 10-race card. Three races were completed without incident. Racing is scheduled to resume Wednesday, February 11, at 5:30 p.m.
The Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association has asked the Ohio Harness Horsemen's Association to agree to mediation in an effort to resolve "program and policy differences" between the Thoroughbred and Standardbred industries in the state.
Beulah Park kicked off its first four days of racing in 2004 with a staggering 96% percent increase over the same number of days a year ago. On Monday the track shattered an 81-year-old all time single day pari-mutuel record of $1,554,073.
A two-month shutdown of Beulah Park was averted Dec. 18 when the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association and track management agreed to at least negotiate revenue splits from account wagering. If no deal is in place by Feb. 10, horsemen will withdraw permission for Ohio's live racing product to be sent to account-betting providers.
Devil Time claimed the distinction as the best horse in Ohio Saturday with the largest winning margin ever in the 17-year history of the $100,000 Best of Ohio Endurance Championship at Beulah Park in Grove City.
The Ohio Thoroughbred racing and breeding industry has taken serious hits in recent years because of competition for the gambling dollar, but there should be a bright spot Oct. 4 when one of the strongest Best of Ohio championship programs in recent memory is offered at Beulah Park.
Prominent Ohio owner/breeder George Smith, barred from Beulah Park when he categorized it as the worst of Ohio earlier this year, said he isn't sure whether he'll be on hand at the Grove City track Oct. 4 for the Best of Ohio championship series. Owner Charlie Ruma banned him this spring.
America TAB, an account-wagering service whose majority owners are Beulah Park and River Downs in Ohio, said it would pursue legal action after having discovered a betting service has been pirating live racing signals from its Web site.
MTR Gaming announced it has completed its aquisition of Scioto Downs, a Standardbred track in Columbus, Ohio.
HipodromoEnLinea.com, designed to bring online pari-mutuel wagering to Spanish-speaking people in the United States, has joined the list of affiliates in the AmericaTab program.
AmericaTab and its affiliates set a one-month handle record in March with $8.3 million in wagers, the company reported April 10. It was the second consecutive month of record-breaking handle.
The Ohio Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners has issued a serious call to the state's racing and breeding industry as it pushes for alternative gaming: Nothing will be accomplished without a strong grass-roots campaign, and should gaming be approved, track operators must invest revenue to promote horse racing and revitalize aging facilities.
The owner of Beulah Park in Grove City, Ohio, said he is surprised at the bid made for the purchase of neighboring Scioto Downs.
Turfway Park was forced to cancel its live race card on Wednesday following the forth race due to unsafe track conditions.
Racetrack executives at Thistledown and Beulah Park agreed Friday afternoon to revive the "seven and seven" shared race card in the fall.
The costs of problem gambling could outweigh the economic benefits if Ohio's seven racetracks were permitted to install slot machines, according to a draft report by a committee studying the impact of gambling in the state.
One jockey was killed and two others were injured Saturday when a horse stumbled coming down the stretch at Beulah Park. Arnold Ruiz, 33, of Arlington Heights, Ill., fell with Winds of Sonora and was run over by the two horses behind him, track steward Joe DeLuca said. Ruiz was pronounced dead of head injuries at Grant Hospital.
The majority owner of a growing account-wagering service based in Ohio said exclusive contracts that govern betting could cripple the pari-mutuel industry at a time when it is poised for explosive growth. The comments came on the heels of a spirited debate between the TV Games Network and Magna Entertainment over exclusivity, an issue that won't go away.
Two Ohio racetracks that have gone head-to-head in the full-card simulcasting arena have agreed on a way to split the Columbus market in 2002.
AmericaTab, an online wagering company owned by two Ohio racetracks -- Beulah Park and River Downs -- has added Northfield Park to its stable. The northern Ohio harness track has been approved as an equity partner in AmericaTab by the Oregon Racing Commission.
An agreement struck over the weekend will allow all online and telephone account wagering services to put the World Thoroughbred Championships on their menus Oct. 27.
Last year, the day before the Breeders' Cup, officials from the organization and the TV Games Network traveled to Ohio to strike a deal allowing Winticket.com, Beulah Park's account-wagering subsidiary, to accept wagers on the eight races. Eleven months later, with the Oct. 27 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships asoon approaching, no agreement is in place to cover the same situation.
The general manager at River Downs in Ohio said more than $7 million in purse revenue generated at the racetrack has gone to other tracks in the state the past 4 1/2 years through a formula that disperses dark-day simulcasting funds.
The Ohio Senate has begun research to see whether the question of racetrack video lottery terminals can be put on the ballot in the seven counties that have tracks. The state needs money to fund its education program and, as the newspaper reported Thursday, also needs revenue to offset a decline in tax receipts. Income from taxes is expected to be $850 million short of projections through early 2003.
The Ohio-based online wagering service has been approved to operate in Oregon, where other entities such as NTRA Services and US Off-Track have set up betting hubs that return a portion of revenue to the horse and Greyhound industries.
Beulah Park's online wagering service called Winticket.com got full approval by the Ohio State Racing Commission before the service was developed, said an Ohio judge. Therefore, the judge said, state officials cannot arbitrarily decide they want the service stopped until online wagering is further evaluated.
Beulah Park and Scioto Downs, both located in the Columbus market, will be open year-round for simulcasting, though Ohio law will limit the schedule on certain days.
Breeders' Cup Ltd. and the TV Games Network allowed Beulah Park's Winticket.com interactive wagering subsidiary to accept bets on the Nov. 4 Breeders' Cup at Churchill Downs after the owner of the Ohio racetrack filed a lawsuit just days before the championship. Beulah Park general manager Mike Weiss said Winticket.com secured the rights to offer wagering through its automated account-wagering system, but the terms were not disclosed.
Breeders' Cup Ltd. and TVG officials have granted permission for Beulah Park's WinBet interactive wagering subsidiary to accept bets on Saturday's Breeders' Cup championship day card.
Having failed to renew an agreement that has kept them from competing against each other for simulcasting dollars, two Ohio racetracks located only five miles apart seem poised to go head-to-head in 2001 in a battle that could prove bloody.
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