Texas cracks down on online horse race wagering

by | 10.27.2011 | 4:18pm

The Texas Racing Commission has sent letters to online wagering companies informing them that under a state law that recently took effect, it is illegal to accept online horse racing or greyhound bets from Texas.

Letters were sent to Advance Deposit Wagering companies including Twinspires.com, XpressBet and AmWest Entertainment, reports the Houston Chronicle:

“According to SHRP president Andrea Young, neither Sam Houston nor Lone Star Park officials lobbied for HB 2271. Young said there were attempts to include Texas tracks in the ADW revenue stream, not to eliminate ADW accounts.”

“The TRC's letter cautioned of “enforcement proceedings to impose penalties for violations.” In addition, the letter said the Texas comptroller “may examine the books, records, officers and employees of any company authorized or permitted to do business in Texas that is involved in pari-mutuel wagering.”

  • Watcher

    This is Rick Perry’s idea of promoting a healthy business climate?

  • ASL

    Purely state law issues. Texas is controlled by the Bible Beaters who believe gambling is a sin.

  • Picksburg Phil

    Two Democrats sponsored this bill designed to protect the Texas Trust Fund Horsey Set from people residing in Texas who may have the audacity to bet on non-Texas racing. When are the friggin’ idiots in the racing industry going to learn that prosperity is not advanced by protectionism and slot machine welfare?

  • ITP

    They actually think this will bring people back to the track.

    This would be like Harrahs being given rights to internet gaming but turning it down because they want people to come to the casino and think it will be better for their bottom line.

    Complete Bozos

  • DrDeath

    People should be going to church, not gambling!

  • BuckyinKentucky

    DrDeath # 5 great idea! They should go and get their savings sucked out of them by church sanctioned gambling called B-I-N-G-O !!!
    Happening nightly in church properties across our great nation!
    Everyone has a hobby, bingo, bowling, horse wagering, it is all just part of life and what one chooses as a pastime.
    Get it?
    Don’t be a hypocrite, get real and wake up.

  • “Lubbock Or Leave It” Dixie Chicks nailed it with that song. Sources tell me it`s illegal and sinful in Texas to listen to a Buddy Holly song never mind betting on a horse race online from your PC. Yeah Natalie, temptation`s strong.Just ask Reverend Leroy, he wants to get down on TCU -13 tonight,Can anybody help him out?

  • I won’t miss TX when it secedes :)

  • Ron Hale

    George W. Bush and Rick Perry. Dumb and Dumber.

  • Picksburg Phil

    This bill is not about gambling being right or wrong, or going to church or going to hell. It’s a misguided economic measure designed to protect Texas horse owners by preventing Texans from betting on non-Texas races. Unfortunately, this type of competition limiting legislation is prolific in the US and around the globe. California horseman lobby to limit wagering options and signal access. Florida horseman are trying to limit other gambling options. It’s the ignorant Texas horseman that wanted this bill, not Bush or Perry.

    • Atxiceman

      I agree Texas horseman are the worst business men on earth.

  • David

    When it comes to ADW states fall into one of three categories – expressly legal, expressly ill legal or neither. Some ADW operators would take a bet from someone on the steps of the Norman Tabernacle Choir steps (those who have no balance sheets to speak of) while others (there are some criminal penalties and in addition to attendant fines) tow the line and not touch states like Texas (prescribed statute against). Most operators take from those states that are expressly legal and the ones grayer than black or white. It’s a states’ right issue and these guys (in TX) are simply covering their behinds.

  • texoma

    I dont get it, no gambling, but they have had the lottery game for years now??

  • David

    Some have wine only on the weekends while others are on the 6-7 day-a-week plan.

  • Larry Ensor

    One of these years, if we have many ahead of us, the Industry will understand the term; United we will flourish , divided we will perish.

  • Ellen Z.

    I live in Texas, and bet almost exclusively online. The track is a hassle to travel to, and I don’t have time to go to the track every time I want to make a bet. If my online account is closed, the industry will lose me as a fan. I hope it doesn’t happen!

    • Dave Rex

      This really pissed me off… I do online bets

  • Get The Facts Straight

    “I live in (insert state where ADW is illegal), and bet almost exclusively online. The track is a hassle to travel to, and I don’t have time to go to the track every time I want to make a bet.”

    That attitude is what is killing racing in states where ADW is illegal. The tracks can’t do it for risk of losing their licenses and the ADW companies come in and pillage off customers with the above attitude. Local tracks and horsemen see nothing from those wagers. ADW was supposed to HELP racing not destroy it for the benefit of the likes of CDI, Stronach, BetFair or the many other leeches that own ADW companies and allow accounts to be opened in states where it is illegal.

  • David

    Again, a state can elect to make its own rules. Some rules/regulation/statutes/laws against are grounded in the belief the activity is contrary to the federal wire act which, of course, it’s not; others likely do believe its counter to attracting a live audience; but, the over-riding reason for those states that have prohibitions deal with the belief its citizenry can’t be left alone to make such a moral decision about how to gamble within their homes. I feel safer.

  • Picksburg Phil

    David, we’re all familiar with the 10th amendment. Some even have a passing aqaintance with the commerce clause. But this particular bill, and I repeat myself, was not about morality. It was a bill to limit Texans from betting on out of state races in an effort to protect Texas horseman. Texas horseman want all betting dollars in their pools so they can get their “fair share”. It’s obvious that states can pass just about any law they want, this one was misguided, that’s all.

    • Atxiceman

      Thats dumb

  • bookiebuster1

    In Texas its ironic because you cant bet local tracks online anyways but if you go to the local corner store you will see rack upon racks of lottery ticket dispensers.

    Hmmmm….isnt gambling, gambling or does the “flavour” truly make a difference? opps my bad this only applies if the state thinks they are not getting a cut on the action. I can also garentee that for your $20 you have a far better chance winning a horse race then lottery anything…


  • & AMEN #19…ty…

  • biggestal

    Texas should have started up it’s own ADW like NJ.
    profits stay at home. No fuss no muss.

  • tom hadley

    nice work boys open the flood gate before its too late

  • Bottom line on this is, if U.S. ADWs succumb to Texas’ new law, ALL tracks in the U.S. will lose ALL handle generated from Texas residents via ADW wagers. So, not only are Texas tracks going to close their doors, as a result of residents not being able to wager on Texas tracks, via an ADW, all tracks that are currently receiving revenue via ADWs from Texas residents, will now lose all that revenue.

    The U.S. racing industry has been in decline for years and this recent law will likely cause many other tracks to close their doors.

    This could be the “straw that broke the camel’s back” for the entire racing industry, nationwide.

    Industry wide, internet wagering is the ONLY growth segment. All other segments are in decline. Texas, and all other states who receive revenue from horse wagering, should “embrace” internet wagers, not make it illegal.

  • bookiebuster1

    raybo i can assure you the majority of ADW Texas bettors are way more savvy then anything the state can legislate at this time.

    This is typical saber rattling in an election year that will go nowhere. Don’t forget this is the same state that gave a horse racing operating license to a facility that doesn’t even exist. Why? It is an early money grab to get in on slot revenues once that opens up in Texas and it will eventually.

    • Codewizard

      Slots have NO chance in Texas. If horsemen want better horse racing in Texas, they need to stop pimping the “one armed bandits.” They won’t fly in Texas, and I am glad. House backed gaming has NO place in Texas, or any place other than Vegas, A/C.

  • David

    Regardless of the motivation or end play one does have to question its wisdom. Certainly the current model of ADW does not favor TX in that their signals have limited appeal and source market fees have gone the way of the dinosaurs. TX can’t tax the host track signal or the hub any more than can Amazon for Plano residents buying books but building a wall would seem counterproductive.

  • OldSchool

    There are too many cheap tracks running QH races, maidens and South American races as a main menu already. Texas can keep its racing. The outhouse that is this industry still has a huge menu of cheap tracks to steal from the online fans money with.

  • Screwyoutexas

    I guess i’ll just have to bet in Europe…off shore account bitches.

  • Screwyoutexas

    I guess i’ll just have to bet in Europe…off shore account bitches.

  • Atxiceman

    Thats dumb

  • Atxiceman

    I agree Texas horseman are the worst business men on earth.

  • Steve boeder

    Lets allow Texans to bet online at tvg.com like most of the country. Who can I contact to express my request ?

  • tommi

    With all the others things that are going on. They have to mess with this….. Does this include sports betting and texas poker?

  • GW

    Well, guess the lottery should go too. Cynic.

  • stew316

    these idiots in texas might even close the borders to stop us from gambling anywhere but here

  • Bill Wingfield

    another show of ignorance within our state!,already lost me as a horse owner and breeder, now as a horse race fan and player,

    • jnewbyii

      Hey, Bill, we are on the same team. How can we put together folks who feel the same way and get into the 21st century with internet parimutuels?

  • TUM

    D ont worry , just search horse racing online in Texas & will see several website, let You play.(Texas cannot stop horse racing fan online , just lost tax for federal )

  • Thomas McNeil

    Fantasy Football is the same thing. You have to know the horse just like you have to know the player in Fantasy Football and that skill is why they say it is legal.

  • HogtiedXX

    So I live in Texarkana, Texas….I drive to Arkansas (Hot Springs) and Louisiana (Shreveport) to spend my money. Texas doesn’t get a nickel. How stupid is that ? By banning betting on-line in Texas the Texas Legislature has only cut it’s nose off to spite it’s face. Brilliant legislators, brilliant. Stupid fux.

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