New sports book ready for license

Jun 10, 2008 7:08 PM

By David Stratton | Nevada’s Gaming Control Board last week recommended for approval a new statewide, race and sports book operation, Lucky’s Race & Sports Book.

Except for the ill-fated Sport of Kings, the new race and sports book would be the state’s first independent operation since Leroy’s was approved by regulators 30 years ago.

Initially, Lucky’s Race & Sports will operate a sports book at the High Desert Inn in Elko, and a full race and sports book at Elko’s Red Lion Inn. It will also manage the race and sports operation at Reno’s Grand Sierra Resort, which would serve as the operation’s hub.

Lucky’s will be operated by Brandywine Bookmaking, LLC, based in Las Vegas, with Joe Asher as its president and chief executive officer.

Asher, when contacted by GamingToday, respectfully declined to comment on the application process since it is still ongoing.

"Obviously, we are pleased with the Gaming Control Board’s recommendation, but I don’t believe it is appropriate to comment further until after the Gaming Commission hearing on June. 19."

According to observers at the GCB meeting, Asher told regulators he expected the new operation would be a "major player" in the race and sports industry.

Asher also noted that Brandywine would be filing future applications for race and sports operations at Casino Fandango in Carson City, and the Plaza in Las Vegas.

Also associated with the new operation is Tony DiTommaso, formerly the director of the Cal-Neva race and sports book chain, who will serve as operations manager.

In addition, long-time Nevada race and sports director Jimmy Vaccaro will handle the operations’ public relations, and Joe Bertolone, the former chief of the GCB’s technology lab, will serve as the company’s director of compliance.

The Nevada Gaming Commission will review Brandywine’s application and rule on it next week in Carson City.