23 January 2009

HANA Begins To Unveil Top 20 Bettor Friendly Race Tracks

HANA presents the first annual HANA Track Ratings
65 thoroughbred race tracks in North America have been rated in order of how appealing they are to the average bettor. There is a countdown right now at the HANA blog, starting with the 20th rated track, Sam Houston.
If anyone expects Woodbine to make the top 20, let me put you out of your misery right now. It aint gonna happen. Not with a track takeout on triactors of 28.3%.
Check the Hana blog every day to view the top 20 countdown.
If anyone is interested how the ratings were calculated, read here.

Internet Poker Still Legal For Kentucky Residents
'The appellate court ruling said Kentucky lacks jurisdiction to block online gambling because state law does not define an Internet domain name as a gambling device subject to state authority.'

Betfair is rumoured to be buying TVG. They plan an aggressive marketing campaign in Canada as they try to lure poker and sports bettors.
They are also looking to sign deals with horse racing organizations in North America, which will give USA and Canadian tracks a chance to get some of the Betfair profits.
Woodbine will never sign with them unless they stop taking bets from Canadians, and that isn't about to happen I would think.

Federal Government To Give Summerside Raceway in PEI $1.5 million in funding

TrackNet about to cut off Las Vegas signals
Like Vegas gives a flying fark. They will still have the other tracks available for their customers, and lets not forget Vegas has a few other ways in which their customers can lose their money and still have a good time.
TrackNet is going to lose out big time because of their actions.

TwinSpires To Offer Free Video of this Weekend's Handicapping Contest In Vegas.

Long time Ontario trainer Norman Bowles, 69, dead of a heart attack. R.I.P.

Nick Kling asks if new steroid rules responsible for early speed horse's inability to win races at Aqueduct and Gulfstream
H/T Equidaily

Feds Say Buffalo Casino Can Remain Open
Not good for Fort Erie even if the track stays alive. This means slot revenues may continue to dwindle. Hopefully, the government will make the OLG change the revenue distribution, and somehow make Fort Erie an exception (border town yadda yadda the only other thoroughbred track in Ontario yadda yadda yadda).

Sources say that there will be a positive announcement come Monday regarding racing at Fort Erie.

All the government has to do is OK 3.2 million dollars if Nordic is still the owner for 2009 to keep racing going for at least a year.

A long term solution of course is sought.

Three possibilities.

A sale. EDTC $35 million? I doubt it. $100,000 per acre? Found a property near the track for $61,000 per acre (note: not sold). Woodbine, possibly.

Government gets Nordic to lease out the track for say 3 years to management that attempts to make Nordic profitable, where the government guarantees any losses in the meanwhile.

The OLG gives Fort Erie a different deal. 17.5% of the slot profits to the horsemen and 17.5% to Nordic would be acceptable and make sense.


Anonymous said...

It is quite doubtful that Nordic is losing money operating Fort Erie.

There are many acounting manipulations that can turn a profit into a loss with a simple book entry.

Its time for Nordic to make their financial/operating staements public for all to see. As a former auditor, I can guarantee there will be some very very questionable and manipulative expenses on those statements.

Anonymous said...

I find it hard to believe they lose so much. I still think they are losing money, or they wouldn't be in extortion mode.
The claims are that it takes 11-12 million to operate the track. This includes salaries, pensions, insurance, property taxes, keeping the backstretch open etc.
Their revenues are around 8-9 million which includes $4 million for their share of the slots.
Of course, the 11-12 million looks suspicious because they aren't even responsible for anything to do with the slots operation. And when you figure that tracks in Ohio like Beulah and River Downs run more dates without slots, you have to scratch your head.

Anonymous said...

I think they make a tiny profit. 12 Million and 200 employees would be $60,000 per employee, most of whom only work 6 months a year.

I think they are in extortion mode because the thing that really killed the slots, the smoking ban, was entirely avoidable.

Anonymous said...

Salaries are just one component of expenses. It is very difficult without seeing the books to guess whether Nordic is showing a small profit, which I doubt, or a moderate loss, which is more probable.
I'm sure that if an independent came in to put in an offer on the joint and peeked at the books, the books would not be that bad, but I'm convinced that they are operating at a small loss, or they wouldn't be going to this trouble right now.