The Day the Bookies Cried

by Ed Meyer

posted on May 15, 2018 in General Discussion, Horse Racing, | No Comments >>

If you wanted to bet a sporting event you had to call your “man.” – You know, the guy who gave you some lame spread on the big game. – You had to bet 11 to win 10 and then fight the line. I guess the fun was worth it, but there may be some good news that may not only expand betting but could help other forms of gaming taking place under the same roof. – Yeah, there’s a lot of bookies out there who will need a box of kleenex today. But not to worry, if this all comes to full light they may even find themselves in line to make a wager on real lines with the rest of us.

According to the;

In a decision that was largely anticipated by the horse racing industry—as well as other gaming experts—the U.S. Supreme Court on May 14 found the federal law that had kept sports gambling in check—largely to Nevada—to be unconstitutional. The decision, as reported by a number of news outlets including NBC News and the New York Times, will open the door to allow states to determine if they want to allow sports gambling. The Times reports Americans illegally wager about $150 billion on sports each year.

The horse racing industry was largely expecting Monday’s decision and the impact of expanded legal sports gambling has been a topic at industry meetings this year, like the National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association convention and the Association of Racing Commissioners International convention.

Experts believe sports wagering could be a good fit for tracks and online advance-deposit wagering outlets, as it’s more complementary to pari-mutuel wagering than slot machines. On the other hand, it’s a similar game to betting horses and typically features a lower takeout than pari-mutuel wagering.

At the National HBPA meeting, tote company executive Michele Fischer said horse racing needs to make sure sports bettors place their wagers on-site at tracks or through ADW outlets.

“Having sports wagering at our tracks and on our ADWs is very important,” said Fischer, the vice president of sales and business development at Sportech Racing and Digital. “If they’re not in your building, they’re somewhere else.”

Think of going to the track where you’ll be surrounded by a huge sports bar. All of the traditional fare and the walls covered with big screen TV’s. – Clerks would be selling you tickets on the games of your choice and you sit and enjoy a few adult beverages watching college and professional games. – The place which has become a ghost town would come back to life. – Horse Racing taking place and for some, the VLT’s or Casino atmosphere makes your old race track an entertainment center. – No more 4-hour flights to Las Vegas as we could have everything we wanted to watch and wager miles from home. – The only loser I can see from this point are the bookies. They’ll be forced to take wagers from punters who bet today and pay next week. The rest of the bettors will be at the track or casino enjoying the electric atmosphere. – I’ve been waiting for a long time for this, and hopefully, tracks will jump in and make this happen.

Racing may benefit greatly from adding hundreds of people coming into the building every day. – Think of college Saturday’s and the all-day action. Racing couldn’t buy this type of advertisement to attract new players. – I’m optimistic and hope for the best. I am a little worried about the bookies. This may be “Black Monday” for those who enjoyed taking wagers on the cuff. – It’s just been announced and there are some that have had plans for million dollar additions to your old track and transform it into Las Vegas-style gaming. – Gaming, gambling, and betting may have just received a shot in the arm to revive and reinvent itself.