Meadowlands Targets California Market With Pick Six

Meadowlands in New Jersey will team with Capitol Racing in California on a new Wednesday pick six designed to tie into all wagering outlets in the Golden State, where the bet traditionally has generated the most action.

Beginning March 24, Meadowlands, in the midst of its Standardbred meet, will offer a $1 pick six with a guaranteed pool of $50,000 on Wednesday evenings. In conjunction, the track will offer a pick four with a $50,000 guaranteed pool and 15% takeout rate.

The pick six, which hasn't been offered for several years at Meadowlands, will feature an 18% takeout rate. The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority said it is the lowest rate for a pick six in North America.

"This new pick six wager should appeal to serious handicappers--harness and Thoroughbred," Chris McErlean, vice president and general manager at Meadowlands, said in a release. "It is probably the most handicapper-friendly wager around--a low takeout, $1 option, and full 10-horse fields with competitive races. Wednesdays are not traditionally a popular wagering night, so this will hopefully inject some interest across the simulcast marketplace."

As part of the deal, Capitol Racing, which operates the Standardbred meet at Cal Expo in Sacramento, will ensure all six races are offered through the California simulcast network. It will serve as host for 29 wagering outlets in the state.

Because on-track simulcasting is limited in California, conventional and exotic wagering usually is quite high on the imported harness signals each night Cal Expo is open for live racing. The pick six is expected to generate additional interest, and Daily Racing Form will offer past performances on the pick six races in national editions.

"California is the largest pick six market in the nation," Chris Schick, director of simulcasting for Capitol Racing, said in the release. "We believe this wager, coupling the guaranteed pool with the low takeout, will make this very attractive to the West Coast audience. Our experience with various guaranteed pool wagers has been tremendous."

Cal Expo regularly has teamed with Balmoral Park in Illinois for the "Bal-Cal," a pick four with a guaranteed pool of up to $75,000. The wager involves two races from Cal Expo and two from Balmoral.

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