After 23 years at Beulah Park in Ohio, Mike Weiss has formed his own consulting business with a focus on horse racing, concerts, and events.
Racetrack management and horsemen in Ohio struck an agreement Dec. 16 that will reinstate more than 160 Thoroughbred racing dates at Beulah Park and River Downs in 2009, and save more than 1,000 horses at Beulah Park from being forced out of the track's stable area by Dec. 27.
With a little more than two weeks remaining before the scheduled shutdown of the barn area at Beulah Park, management and horsemen still have no deal to continue live racing in January. But developments on a national level could quickly turn things around.
About 1,000 Thoroughbreds could be forced to leave the grounds of Beulah Park by the end of this year if the racetrack and horsemen's association don't have a deal for advance deposit wagering revenue in place by Nov. 21, the day the Ohio State Racing Commission will award racing dates for 2009.
Beulah Park and the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association have "agreed to disagree" on contractual issues, but a temporary agreement has allowed the track to restore previous purse levels and export its signal.
Barring fruitful negotiations -- and that scenario currently doesn't appear possible -- it could be months before decisions on Thoroughbred racing dates in Ohio are made.
Officials with two Ohio racetracks indicated they hope to offer Thoroughbred meets in 2009 and could be close to a deal with local horsemen on revenue from advance deposit wagering.
The Ohio State Racing Commission indicated Aug. 21 it will have a difficult time approving requests by two racetracks that call for only four total days of Thoroughbred racing in 2009.
Beulah Park and River Downs, two Ohio Thoroughbred tracks that race more than 200 dates combined, have requested only Quarter Horse dates for 2009, a track official said Aug. 18.
The Southern Racing Cooperative has a new multi-year deal with the New York Racing Association on signal rates, a cooperative official said.
Another group of racetracks won't be importing the signal from Belmont Park beginning April 30 because they collectively have failed to strike a deal on signal rates with the New York Racing Association.
A decision by the AmericaTAB account wagering consortium to join TrackNet Media Group is a sign of support for efforts by Churchill Downs Inc. and Magna Entertainment Corp. to end exclusive contracts, an official said.
Beulah Park again is importing signals from two California racetracks, and purses at the Ohio track have been restored to previous levels after an agreement was reached with the Thoroughbred Owners of California.
WinTicket.com has added live video-streaming to its mobile Web site, which means users can watch races on mobile devices.
McKay Smith, formerly director of product development for the National Thoroughbred Racing Association and Breeders' Cup, has joined AmericaTab as senior director of marketing.
On the heels of an announcement by Beulah Park officials that the track's winter/spring meet produced an all-time record handle, the Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association claims the success did little for purses.
Beulah Park in Grove City, Ohio, set an all-time handle record during its 75-day winter/spring meet that spanned Jan. 7-May 6.
Beulah Park racetrack announced Monday that jockeys riding at the Ohio track and at River Downs are now insured under a newly-developed racetrack workers' compensation program.
Racetracks and horsemen in Ohio have signed an agreement that allows River Downs to offer its signal to account-wagering services effective Sept. 2, a track official said.
With the 2005 season only a month old, Beulah Park is reporting a blistering start to the meet with large increases on its live racing.
AmericaTab followed the success of its first Players' Pool on the Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick 6 with its second hit in a month. Bettors had one winning pick six ticket and 28 consolation tickets Nov. 28 at Hollywood Park.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Account wagering services continue to post handle gains through their betting hubs in Oregon.
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.
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 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.
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