Nevada casinos avoid pari-mutuel blackout

Jan 8, 2009 7:51 PM
Staff & Wire Reports |

Nevada casinos on Wednesday received an 18-day extension from TrackNet Media Group, which provides horse racing signals to more than 80 race and sports books in Nevada.

Without the extension, Nevada race book operators would have lost signals from key race tracks as well as the ability to participate in pari-mutuel betting pools.

Race books faced the prospect of booking horse players’ bets themselves without the extension.

The Nevada Pari-Mutuel Association, which represents the state’s race book operators, met with TrackNet in an all-day negotiating session on Wednesday.

Scott Daruty, president and chief executive officer of TrackNet, said enough progress was made in the meetings to warrant an extension until Jan. 25.

"We believe we made enough progress to keep the signals on while we finalize a deal that everyone will be happy with," Daruty told Bloodhorse Magazine. "We made progress on both philosophical issues and economic issues. I think both sides have a better idea where the other is."

At issue are requests for higher fees from casinos, as well as other issues, including how handle is reported to TrackNet and the race tracks.

The extension will carry the signals through the DRF/NTRA National Handicapping Championship, which is scheduled to take place on Jan. 23-24 at Red Rock Casino in Las Vegas.

TrackNet is a joint content venture of Churchill Downs Inc. and Magna Entertainment Corp. Current signals that could potentially be pulled from Nevada include Golden Gate Fields, Gulfstream Park and Santa Anita Park, which are owned by MEC, and Fair Grounds, which is owned by CDI.

Related Articles:
Nevada may lose horse racing simulcasts