Keeneland Signal Back at Mid-Atlantic Tracks

The Mid-Atlantic Cooperative, which represents 17 Thoroughbred and Standardbred racetracks, will begin taking the Keeneland signal effective Oct. 10.

Late Tuesday, Keeneland issued a statement from track president Nick Nicholson and Martin Lieberman, executive director of the cooperative. It said the "agreement was made in the spirit of compromise for the benefit of the many people in the Mid-Atlantic region who wish to wager on and watch Keeneland racing."

There were no financial details.

"The parties agreed to maintain the terms and conditions in confidence," Lieberman said Tuesday evening.

Bruce Garland, senior vice president of racing for the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, confirmed that Meadowlands and Monmouth Park would import the signal from the Lexington track beginning Wednesday, and referred questions to Keeneland and the cooperative.

Most tracks in the six-state Mid-Atlantic region dropped the Keeneland signal effective with the start of the fall meet Oct. 5. The cooperative said Keeneland's reduction in takeout from 18% to 16% would impact revenue at receiving sites. Keeneland's takeout for all wagers will remain 16%, the Tuesday release said.

The receivers had wanted Keeneland to lower its 3% host fee and share the burden the reduction in takeout could create, but it couldn't be determined whether Keeneland had done so given the confidentiality agreement.

It wasn't known whether the five off-track betting corporations in New York, which also pulled the plug on Keeneland, would begin taking the signal Oct. 10.

The only Mid-Atlantic tracks that took the Keeneland signal for the first three days of its meet were Mountaineer Race Track and Gaming Resort and two Greyhound tracks, Tri-State Racetrack and Entertainment Center and Wheeling Downs. Those three West Virginia tracks aren't members of the cooperative.