Mixed Ruling by Judge in New Jersey Lawsuit

Edited press release

U.S. District Court Judge Mary L. Cooper denied a request for a restraining order but granted a show-cause order on a lawsuit by the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey against the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority for issuing an exclusive contract to TVG to broadcast and accept interstate wagers on Meadowlands harness races.

The SBOANJ, which announced its lawsuit Jan. 5, claims the NJSEA violated harness horsemen’s rights under the Interstate Horseracing Act of 1978 by awarding the contract without its approval. At a March 2 hearing, the NJSEA and TVG will be asked to demonstrate why a preliminary injunction should not be granted to stop the exclusive contract that took effect Jan. 5, opening night of the Meadowlands harness meet.

Cooper declined to issue a temporary restraining order to halt broadcast of and wagering on the signal, stating there was no urgency to act immediately. Action on a motion by the NJSEA to dismiss the SBOANJ lawsuit was deferred until the March 2 hearing.

TVG won the NJSEA contract through a bidding process. The network also has exclusive rights to the Monmouth Park signal this spring, summer, and fall; the SBOANJ noted earlier Thoroughbred horsemen agreed to their terms under the deal.