Cal beeps,Nevada bleeps

August 06, 2002 4:48 AM
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I just got back from four glorious days at Del Mar, enjoying not only great horse racing, but also some of the finest weather and most beautiful women anywhere on earth.

While talking to some players, I found that most people also had telephone wagering accounts with either TVG, Expressbet or Youbet.com. When wanting to make a wager close to post time, they could just use their cell phone and call in the bet with no fear of getting shutout.

The handle for telephone and Internet betting on horses rose to six percent of the total betting on California races through July 6. As of the same date, betting via the telephone and Internet reached $66.3 million through those three companies.

Del Mar was still able to set attendance records in its 63rd season, even though these new betting options were available for the first time. Not only was the track was hurt by the competition, but the added ways to bet tapped into a new market. Regular bettors enjoyed the option of betting from home if they couldn’t make it to the track.

In Nevada, we have gone from the insane to the ridiculous. Last week the Gaming Control Board told Coast Casinos that they could no longer accept phone wagers until the origin of the calls could be verified as coming from Nevada. To do this, the person calling must wear a beeper.

This process is nonsense. California can thrive on accepting race wagers with no beepers and Nevada can’t? There are people all over Las Vegas with TVG in their homes wanting to get comfortable after a hard day’s work and make a bet. Then they could turn the TV on and watch the races from their homes.

But, instead of Nevada racking in the newfound windfall, it’s going somewhere else. Nevada needs to wake up before it’s too late. Just what is their problem?

SABER’S NFL

PRESEASON PICKS

(for Aug. 8-12 games)

Steelers —4 vs Jets

Bills —2.5 (BEST BET)

Raiders/Cowboys

UNDER 35

Bears —1

Buccaneers —3.