Three Ways to Get New Players Involved

by Ed Meyer

posted on April 10, 2022 in General Discussion, Handicapping, Horse Racing, | Comments Off on Three Ways to Get New Players Involved

We live in times of putting our masks away only to pull them out again at a later time. During this time many yearned to try and get back to normalcy and enjoy the things the pandemic put on hold.

As I watched the opening of Keeneland yesterday, I think we may have a new opportunity to engage and entice players to try their hand at horse racing. Oh, it won’t be easy, but at the end of the day, it may be more surprising than we would think. – Just think, people going back to the races. Wouldn’t that be nice? Keeneland once had eight live races with one daily double. Now they lead the pack on where racing is going and how to get players involved. Genius. We have come a long way baby.


During the pandemic, we learned to social distance and stay in our lane. – We all got pretty good at hands-off deliveries, and even my pizza comes from a box that the delivery person has been gloved and masked and payment was done online. This got me thinking. Players from all walks have come to embrace hands-off life. – When guests arrive at the track, have them pre-purchase a pack for the day. – $20 includes a program, food and beverage voucher, and a $10 betting voucher. – Not versed at the game? We’re going to toss in a private tip sheet that can be downloaded from a QR Code as you enter. – All done pre-visit and having vouchers will give a sense of a hands-off experience. Let’s get them comfortable coming and we’ll evolve from there. – Just think, arrive at admissions gate and track pack for the day awaits. Good start!



Tracks have the ability with broad Wi-Fi for the entire property. Good move. Now, let’s have the tracks take it to the next level of using a phone or device where real-time wagers can be made. – We can load this onto the track pack, or players can download money onto account wagering at any mutual clerk. You can wager from the convenience of your device without leaving your seat. – The only time you would see a clerk is to download money to your account or cash them in at the end of the day. – ADWs are tricky about carrying over money, and that starts a new conversation. – But, betting from your seat, box area, or standing in the sun is a convenience that most would enjoy. Not to mention no more standing in lines, and you bet when you’re ready. – What are ya waiting for, it’s almost post time!



People enjoy learning with tutorials at their own pace.- Tracks need to create a library educating with short “how-to” videos that can be accessed anywhere at any time for free. -No more embarrassing “first time player” lines, and the new player can assimilate right into the betting process. – Allowing people to bet when they are comfortable may be the new way of retaining the attention of the gamblers. – If it sounds complicated, that’s ok. You can purchase a regular track pack with admission and a program and go about your way.

The trick is not forcing seasoned players to take part in the system. – We can reach them with betting seminars, handicapping contests, and drawing for track merchandise. – There is something for everyone, and all tracks have to do is plan accordingly in advance and advertise the same. – Let the fans get acquainted and prepare for a day at the races. – Long ago, people would plan their entire week around getting to spend a day at the races, and we can try and do the same. make it an outing where guests plan to enjoy the day. No more are the days of one choice to wager. The track has become an entertainment destination, and fans can enjoy everything the facility has to offer. -Use cross-promotion to send racing fans to try their hand at the slot machines, and vice versa. At the end of the day, the bottom line may reflect a nice bump, and new players are grown and tended by giving them the tools they use daily.