Rampart has sweet deal for March ‘maniacs’

Mar 5, 2002 10:21 AM

The new Rampart Casino in Summerlin (formerly the Regent) tapped veteran Las Vegas bookmaker Sid Diamond as its new sports book director, and Eric St. Clair as his assistant.

Together, they bring decades of sports booking experience to the revamped Summerlin casino.

Diamond ”” who opened the book at the Excalibur in 1998 ”” says he’s ready to shake things up. “We’ll give high players something to shoot at,’’ he promises. For starters, he’ll bring back his trademark lottery, which attracts lines of Monday morning bettors.

He also has put together a “sweet” promotion for the upcoming March Madness basketball tournament.

Starting from Selection Sunday (March 10), when the tournament brackets are announced, and continuing until the tip-off of Thursday’s first game, players can enter Rampart’s Sweet 16 contest, a free shot at winning up to $5,000.

“All you have to do is pick the Sweet 16 teams,” said Eric St. Clair. “Pick them all and you win $5,000, while picking 15 out of 16 pays $1,000, 14 out of 16 pays $500, 13 pays $50 and 12 pays $25.”

St. Clair added that the payoff is not an aggregate amount, so Rampart will pay off in full as many winners as there are.

“The only thing we recommend is that players get their entries in as soon as possible,” St. Clair said. “It will be pretty hectic around here by Thursday.”

In addition to the Sweet 16 contest, Rampart will also offer regular betting on the NCAA tournament, including future betting up to the Final Four teams.

The free contest is the brainchild of Diamond and St. Clair.

A longtime Las Vegas icon, Diamond gets high marks by his past and present boss, Bill Paulos. “Sid and I have enjoyed a long career together and he’s absolutely the best bookmaker in the business,’’ said Paulos, who will lead the new management team at the casino.

Diamond is equally enthusiastic. After leaving the Excalibur in 1998, he landed at SportXction, a play-by-play sports betting system. But after that company fell on hard times, the veteran handicapper says he’s glad to be back in a casino. As he puts it: “We’re going to have some fun.’’