A New Jersey Senate committee Dec. 9 approved legislation that would authorize historical race wagering, also known as Instant Racing, at the state's racetracks, off-track wagering parlors, and casino race books.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation to create a statewide standard for rebate programs at racetracks and off-track betting corporations.
- By Tom LaMarra
Despite 25 fewer racing programs, commingled wagering on United States races increased 8.3% in October versus the same month in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators.
Strong wagering on Nov. 2 fueled an 11% increase in total commingled pari-mutuel handle for the two-day Breeders' Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park, according to figures released by the organization.
Breeders' Cup reported that total commingled pari-mutuel handle for its Nov. 1 program at Santa Anita Park on Friday was up 8% from 2012.
When the overnight sheets for Nov. 1-2 at Santa Anita Park were released, Breeders' Cup officials couldn't help but be satisfied. And they're hoping it means strong pari-mutuel wagering on this year's World Championships.
Despite 12 fewer live racing days, all-sources pari-mutuel handle during the Delaware Park meet was only down about $1.5 million, while average daily handle increased 13.2%.
As the Breeders' Cup World Championships approaches its 30th edition, some things have become standard from an operations perspective, while others continue to change. As questions are answered, new ones are asked.
Pari-mutuel takeout rates and other issues were discussed during a lightly attended meeting of the New York State Racing Fan Advisory Council Oct. 19 at Belmont Park.
Racing executives indicated Oct. 9 there is little chance of the Thoroughbred racing industry developing a comprehensive analysis of lower pari-mutuel takeout rates.
- By Tom LaMarra
By 2016 the number of starters in Thoroughbred races is projected to be about 39% less than it was in 2003 based on Equibase statistics discussed Oct. 8 during the International Simulcast Conference in Lexington.
Upgrading the on-site customer experience, be it for live horse racing or full-card simulcasts, is critical to the growth of the business, panelists said Oct. 7 on the first day of the International Simulcast Conference.
Portland Meadows in Oregon concluded its short summer meet Sept. 29 with substantial increases in pari-mutuel handle.
Tampa Bay Downs finished first again in August in Florida for host-track revenue on import simulcasts, and it appears that questions about the track's year-round eligibility for host status will remain unresolved for now.
The Florida Senate Committee on Gaming was told Sept. 23 it will review multiple scenarios prepared by a consultant in regard to the possible expansion of gambling in the state.
- By Tom LaMarra
Wagering on United States races was strong in August, with a 4.69% increase from the same month in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase Sept. 4.
Southeast Florida began its fourth head-to-head racing weekend July 27 with Gulfstream holding an almost 2-1 edge in pari-mutuel handle and Calder rejecting speculation it might soon cancel racing dates.
The first weekend showdown between Calder Casino & Race Course and Gulfstream Park had both tracks claiming some wagering success.
A New Jersey lawmaker has introduced a bill to authorize historical race wagering, also called Instant Racing, at racetracks, off-track wagering facilities, and casinos in the state.
Seven more live racing dates during the spring meet at Pimlico Race Course led to an increase in total pari-mutuel handle, but the daily average declined, the Maryland Jockey Club reported June 11.
The inaugural $500,000 Penn Mile June 1 helped Penn National Gaming Inc. continue a trend of sharp gains in pari-mutuel handle on "big event" programs at the company's racetracks.
The Oregon Senate May 23 passed legislation authorizing Portland Meadows to install historical racing machines. The measure now goes to the governor for his consideration.
An administrative law judge in Florida ruled May 6 the state can't allow pari-mutuel barrel racing under current law.
Wagering on United States racing in April registered a small year-over-year gain, but purses were down from April in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase May 5.
A New York lawmaker May 4 said he will introduce legislation authorizing off-track betting at New York City bars that offered it before New York City Off-Track Betting Corp. went bust and closed in 2010.
Illinois racing dates may be vacated and laboratory operations curtailed if the state legislature does not quickly reauthorize advance deposit wagering, Illinois Racing Board officials said April 30.
Though total pari-mutuel handle during the recent winter/spring meet at Turfway Park fell almost 30% from the same meet in 2012, average daily handle was down 4% because of 11 fewer live racing days.
For the fifth consecutive year, Keeneland, which begins its spring meet April 5, topped the 2013 racetrack ratings produced by the Horseplayers Association of North America.
- By Tom LaMarra
Commingled pari-mutuel handle for March was $983,428,969, down only 0.11% from the same month in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase April 4.
Purses paid at six racetracks in Pennsylvania in 2012 increased 1% while wagering on the live product was up 12% from the previous year, according to the latest benchmark report prepared by regulators.
- By Tom LaMarra
Pari-mutuel wagering, purses, and race days all declined in February compared with the same month in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase March 4.
The Kentucky House Feb. 27 passed legislation that in part would take revenue from historical race wagering to fund pensions for state workers, but one lawmaker questioned the bill's impact on the horse industry.
Wyoming became the second state to enact wagering on historical races via legislative action and the signature of the governor Feb. 27.
Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort, which begins its 2013 meet March 1, has been cleared to offer mobile wagering.
The Oregon horse racing and breeding industry is making a push for historical race wagering at Portland Meadows, which last year raced in the summer and fall with mixed results.
The Kentucky House Appropriations and Revenue Committee passed legislation authorizing a tax on advance deposit wagering Feb. 12, but it remains to be seen if all parties agree on the language in the measure.
- By Tom LaMarra
Wagering on United States races dropped 2.02% in January when compared with the same month in 2012, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators released by Equibase Feb. 4.
Legislation authorizing use of mobile devices for betting on horse races was signed into law by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie Jan. 28.
Wagering on historical races in Kentucky generated more than $3.8 million for purses and the state Thoroughbred Development Fund from September 2011 through December 2012.
Live and simulcast wagering on races at Delaware Park in 2012 totaled $116,771,915, down 22.08% from $149,862,434 in 2011, according to statistics released by the Delaware Thoroughbred Racing Commission Jan. 17.
Despite a slight decline in wagering in December, total pari-mutuel handle on United States racing in 2012 was up 0.96%, the first increase since 2006, according to the Thoroughbred Racing Economic Indicators.
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course reported a 19.4% increase in all-sources pari-mutuel handle for 197 live racing days in 2012. Meanwhile, total purses jumped 11.6%.
Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races reported that, for the first time in the track's 79 years of operation, average daily pari-mutuel handle topped the $1 million mark.
Sportech PLC has enhanced its position in the online wagering market by acquiring eBet Online Inc., a California-based provider of technology and services to 20 outlets across North America.
Considering there were 13 fewer race days during the month of November compared to 2011 due to the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, pari-mutuel handle was down only slightly while purses showed a small increase.
Operators of online racing and sports fantasy games said Dec. 4 the time is now for the horse racing industry to capitalize on them to develop fans and generate new revenue.
Churchill Downs Inc. hopes to improve returns for its already successful online segment while drawing new customers to pari-mutuel wagering with its new on-line wagering site Luckity.com.
- By Tom LaMarra
Racetracks are beginning to implement mobile wagering at their facilities with positive results, but officials said Oct. 3 they don't expect it to chase away tote machines and advance deposit wagering systems.
The Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau plans to roll out what it calls the "Tote Security System" in the fall of 2013, officials said Oct. 2.
Horse racing risks the chance of being left behind again if it doesn't position itself to participate in Internet wagering outside the advance deposit wagering arena, officials said Oct. 1.
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