Legislation designed to encourage Atlantic City casinos to offer full-card simulcasts -- or at least protect them at the one casino that still offers wagering on horse races -- was signed into law April 27.
- By Tom LaMarra
- Handicapping, Northeast Region, Midwest Region, Southeast Region, Southwest Region, West Region, Kentucky, Mid-Atlantic
The lengthy dispute that has kept members of the Mid-Atlantic Cooperative from offering wagering on racetracks represented by Monarch Content Management has ended, an official confirmed March 27.
With time running out for Suffolk Downs to continue offering full-card simulcasts, the Massachusetts House of Representatives March 26 passed a bill that extends the current rights for one more month.
The New England Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association posted a statement on its website Mar. 24 discounting the likelihood of a 50-day meet operated by horsemen at Suffolk Downs in 2015.
"This action is being undertaken in a prudent and a proactive step to prevent the loss of two days of racing, and to prepare the track for Saturday's inaugural Claiming Championships," read a release.
Meadowlands, which contracts with Monarch Content Management to negotiate host fees for its signal, issued a statement Feb. 27 on the ongoing dispute that is blacking out its signal from 23 racetracks.
After a dispute, the Nevada Pari-Mutuel Association and Monarch Content Management struck a temporary agreement Feb. 19 to allow Monarch-controlled simulcast signals to be offered.
The Stronach Group remains optimistic about the future of the horse racing industry in North America and will continue to push for what it believes are fundamental structural changes needed to move the business forward.
Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races has partnered with TVG to become the first full-time Thoroughbred track in the evening simulcast market to broadcast its races in high definition on the network.
A subsidiary of Tampa Bay Downs has a contract to purchase the assets of Tampa Greyhound Track, according to a Jan. 7 release.
Twenty-three racetracks and their affiliated wagering outlets began 2015 without the signals from Gulfstream Park, Santa Anita Park, and Laurel Park as a simulcast-fee dispute entered its second month.
Suffolk Downs, slated for closure Dec. 31, will be allowed to remain open for simulcasting only under the terms of a bill that cleared the Massachusetts Senate on Dec. 29.
Two Chicago-area harness tracks with the same ownership voluntarily filed for bankruptcy protection Dec. 24 "to ensure continued operations," officials said.
A war of words in a dispute between two cooperatives that negotiate simulcast fees continued Dec. 8 when the MidAtlantic Cooperative, which represents 23 racetracks, said Monarch Content Management misstated facts.
Suffolk Downs, which ended live racing for good earlier in the fall and laid off the majority of the track's remaining employees on Nov. 20 is now investigating ways to remain open as a simulcast-only facility in 2015.
The first of six programs Yonkers Raceway is sending to France for wagering purposes generated solid pari-mutuel handle and could be used to spark similar racing industry endeavors.
Tampa Bay Downs presents its second annual Summer Festival of Racing June 30 and July 1, featuring an approximate 25% increase in purses from last year's inaugural two-day event.
Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad May 31 signed into law a bill that will allow casinos to buy out dog racing, but there could be legislation in 2015 to hammer out simulcast revenue splits for Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing.
Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad said he is unsure whether he will sign legislation that would allow casinos to buy out Greyhound racing because of an objection raised by horse interests over full-card simulcasts.
Tampa Bay Downs and Hialeah Park haven't amended their plans for live racing dates for the 12-month period that begins July 1, though they have until Feb. 28 to do so.
Canterbury Park is making headway with its plan to expand full-card simulcasts of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing to tribal casinos in Minnesota.
An agenda for the Jan. 15 New Jersey Racing Commission meeting lists the following item for discussion and information: a shutdown of four Atlantic City casino race books.
Gulfstream Park moved ahead of Tampa Bay Downs during November in Florida's three-way competition for host-track simulcast business, according to data released Dec. 12 by the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering.
The New York Racing Association is finalizing a "fresh look" budget for 2014 that will hike fees imposed on simulcast partners and raise prices for racetrack admission and parking while cutting a number of expenses.
Three New Jersey racetracks will receive the largest share of almost $1 million accrued in the Casino Simulcasting Special Fund in 2012.
The 67-day Thoroughbred meet at Prairie Meadows Racetrack & Casino will run from April 18-Aug. 9 in 2014, but its racing week is still in dispute.
Calder Casino & Race Course is planning a mid-December move of its poker room from its racing building to its casino building, perhaps in an effort to increase revenue.
Racing executives indicated Oct. 9 there is little chance of the Thoroughbred racing industry developing a comprehensive analysis of lower pari-mutuel takeout rates.
Horse racing's decades-old video production of live racing through the pan shot was panned, and otherwise described as unimaginative when compared with other sporting events, during an industry conference Oct. 8.
- By Tom LaMarra
By 2016 the number of starters in Thoroughbred races is projected to be about 39% less than it was in 2003 based on Equibase statistics discussed Oct. 8 during the International Simulcast Conference in Lexington.
Upgrading the on-site customer experience, be it for live horse racing or full-card simulcasts, is critical to the growth of the business, panelists said Oct. 7 on the first day of the International Simulcast Conference.
Tampa Bay Downs finished first again in August in Florida for host-track revenue on import simulcasts, and it appears that questions about the track's year-round eligibility for host status will remain unresolved for now.
Calder Casino & Race Course said it will reduce overnight purses 12% effective Aug. 30 because of changes in the Florida Thoroughbred racing landscape.
The deadline for entries for the best simulcast production is Aug. 16, the Thoroughbred Racing Associations said. The winner will be announced at the International Simulcast Conference scheduled for Oct. 7-9 in Lexington.
Southeast Florida began its fourth head-to-head racing weekend July 27 with Gulfstream holding an almost 2-1 edge in pari-mutuel handle and Calder rejecting speculation it might soon cancel racing dates.
Gulfstream Park president Tim Ritvo said June 14 it appears Gulfstream and Calder Casino & Race Course will race head-to-head on weekends beginning July 6.
Tampa Bay Downs is moving ahead with a two-day meet it calls the Summer Festival of Racing.
Hialeah Park Casino announced May 14 the return of full card simulcasting on Preakness Day, May 18, and every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday thereafter.
Calder Casino & Race Course and the Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association May 9 reached an agreement that extends their purse contract through the end of the month.
The Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association said it revoked simulcast approval for Calder Casino & Race Course April 30 when the two parties failed to agree on a purse contract.
The Ohio Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association has informed Thistledown it won't grant the track approval to export its signal when live racing begins April 19 because it has no deal with horsemen on VLT revenue.
Simulcast wagering operations at Churchill Downs will shift Wednesday, March 27, from the track's new "Parlay" venue back to its former location on the second floor of the track's clubhouse.
The Alabama Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association and Jefferson County Racing Association have struck a deal on a one-year contract that could lead to a return of live horse racing to the state.
The Delaware Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association said Jan. 31 it is "at an impasse in negotiations" with Delaware Park on a new contract.
Churchill Downs will open its new multipurpose, on-track simulcast venue The Parlay Jan. 16.
On the day the recently forged 10-year agreement between stakeholders in the Maryland racing industry received a formal presentation before the Maryland Racing Commission, a little Christmas bonus was included.
Representatives of horse racing in foreign countries said Dec. 4 there are some issues with importing simulcasts of races from the United States, but when it comes to bettors, field size usually wins out over everything.
Horse racing risks the chance of being left behind again if it doesn't position itself to participate in Internet wagering outside the advance deposit wagering arena, officials said Oct. 1.
Deadline for entries for the racing industry's best simulcast production is Aug. 13.
A simulcast marketplace has been added to this year's Global Symposium on Racing & Gaming in Tucson, Ariz.
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