TOC tables exchange wagering for year, approves Stronach Group proposal giving TVG, HRTV all California tracks
At its board meeting today, the Thoroughbred Owners of California (TOC) achieved one of its major goals of recent years – broadening television distribution of California racing – when the board approved a proposal whereby Stronach Group Racing (SGR) offered to enter into a reciprocal agreement with TVG. According to the agreement, SGR would permit TVG to broadcast the Santa Anita Park and Golden Gate Fields race meets in return for HRTV having the ability to broadcast the Del Mar and Hollywood Park meets.
Additionally, the TOC board tabled a vote on exchange wagering in California for one year.
“The concept of exchange wagering has been a polarizing issue among the stakeholders in California racing, and this action will give us additional time to study this betting alternative and consider if it is in the best interests of the industry in our state,” said Mike Pegram, Chairman of the TOC.
“The inability to showcase all the race meets in California on both TVG and HRTV has long been an area of contention for the California Horse Racing Board,” Pegram added. “Moreover, the lack of uniform distribution of the California product both in the Golden State and nationwide has been a primary concern for the TOC as it seeks to increase revenue for purses, especially in Northern California, where the horsemen race for considerably less money than in the South. Hopefully expanded distribution of the Golden Gate Fields races on TVG would be a shot in the arm for those racing in the North.”
“While we are pleased to have accomplished this long-sought-after goal, we will continue to seek alternative revenue sources and have not slammed the door closed on the concept of exchange wagering,” said Lou Raffetto, President of TOC. “We are simply putting this contentious issue on the back burner until we can analyze it further and, hopefully, build a consensus within the industry.”
It should be noted that both Del Mar and Hollywood Park are currently under exclusive broadcasting agreements with TVG and, as of this date, none of these parties have agreed to the terms proposed by SGR.
TOC is the official organization serving new, veteran and future Thoroughbred owners in the state. It represents, advances, and protects owners’ interests and rights in legislative, administrative and business matters. www.toconline.com.