Interruption of Hollywood Signal on TVG Averted

A dispute between TVG and the Thoroughbred Owners of California was resolved Wednesday afternoon allowing transmission of Hollywood Park's signal on the racing network just minutes before the track's first race of the 2006 season.

A TVG spokesman said the problem arose when the TOC, which has proprietary rights over television signals from California tracks, "dropped four pages of conditions" on TVG for televising the Hollywood meet.

Hollywood Park is one of TVG's exclusive racetrack clients.

Drew Couto, TOC's president, said there was a misunderstanding. "It was the exact same application that we have sent them the last four years," he said. "I wasn't aware there was a problem until I saw an e-mail from a reporter this morning at 6:45."

TVG pulled Hollywood Park off of its list of available tracks on its wagering Web site and didn't restore it until the issue was resolved in a meeting at the track.

Couto says the horsemen and TVG remain at odds over what account deposit wagering companies can charge on out-of-state races imported into California. The issue is on the California Horse Racing Board's agenda at Hollywood Park April 27 as part of a larger discussion on ADW hub rates and the obligations of the wagering companies and racing associations to the TOC, but Couto said he didn't expect any decisions.

"There are no negotiations going on," Couto said. "We have not had one sit-down with them."

He said the issues would probably be put over until a June 5 special hearing to be convened by State Senator Dean Florez on the California racing industry.