Technology, Handle Revenue on Conference Agenda

The 15th International Simulcast Conference in Kansas City, Mo., Sept. 17-19 will focus on the impact of 21st-century technology on the pari-mutuel industry and the wagering routine of North American bettors.

The introduction of Internet and other forms of account wagering, computerized betting teams, and personal wagering devices on track have enabled an increasingly larger portion of pari-mutuel pools to be accessed in the final few minutes of wagering. Dr. William Ziemba, whose contributions to the development of computer-programmed wagering and stock and equity arbitrage programming are renowned, will participate in a discussion with other panelists on the future of pari-mutuel. Ziemba, an ardent racing fan, has lectured and taught worldwide on the application of mathematical principles to pari-mutuel wagering and investing in financial markets.

In a related matter, there will be panels and roundtable meetings on the continuing problems caused by late odds shifts, as well as an update on implementation of Wagering Transmission Protocol.

Racetrack operators, meanwhile, will address an overall business model whereby handle is no longer the most relevant metric for the industry. The operators are currently analyzing wagering revenue.

In recent years, several new wager and pricing experiments have surfaced, so the conference will feature a formal discussion on tracks’ experiences with introducing new forms of wagering and pricing.

Finally, a panel of industry representatives who have explored newer markets will address the opportunities and special considerations presented by international simulcasts.

The International Simulcast Conference is co-sponsored by the Thoroughbred Racing Associations and Harness Tracks of America  in association with the American Greyhound Track Operators Association. Conference registration with the TRA can be made through Sept 1.

For more information, including the conference registration form, visit the TRA Web site at www.tra-online.com.

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