Thoroughbred Owners of California chief executive officer Greg Avioli said the in-state signal has been restored to the Churchill Downs Inc.-owned advance deposit wager company TwinSpires in time for Saturday's Santa Anita Derby program from Santa Anita Park.
On Thursday, TOC officials withdrew consent for TwinSpires to accept wagers from California residents on California races after they told the California Horse Racing Board TwinSpires missed a deadline to begin geolocation tracking of customers wagering within licensed facilities. TOC contends purse funds and track revenues are being hurt when horseplayers at tracks and satellite facilities use their ADW accounts because they receive a smaller percentage of each ADW wager than they do from an on-track bet. Geolocation software – similar to that used by Uber and GPS devices – can identify when an ADW wager is made on-track, thereby allowing horsemen and track owners to receive a larger percentage. Three other ADW companies – Xpressbet, TVG and NYRA Bets – were in compliance with an agreement they signed with the horsemen's organization.
Despite TOC's consent withdrawal, published reports indicated TwinSpires continued to accept wagers from California residents and a company statement issued Thursday night said TwinSpires already was in compliance with the geo-tracking agreement. The California Horse Racing Board, which licenses ADW companies in California, apparently disagreed, sending a cease and desist letter to TwinSpires on Friday.
Avioli said on Saturday TOC now is satisfied that TwinSpires has taken the necessary steps to geolocate its on-track ADW wagers.
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