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Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Difference Between a Racino and a Racetrack

As earlier mentioned today, the Northeast had its first real winter snowfall.  About 4" to 6" of snow fell.  By late morning Yonkers Raceway had cancelled but the Meadowlands is racing tonight.  How can tracks a mere 18 miles (by road) come to different decisions?

Cleaning the track? Yonkers is a half mile track and the Meadowlands is a mile track.  One would think it would take longer to clean a track that is twice in size so that can't be the problem.

Getting the horses to the track?  Some of the horses come from the Goshen area of New York which did not have any more snow than the Yonkers-Meadowlands area, but some of those same horses race at the Meadowlands.  Besides, most of the horses come from the farms in New Jersey for both tracks.  If they can get to the Meadowlands, they can get to Yonkers; perhaps having to leave a little early.  So that can't be the problem.

Simulcasting problems?  True NYRA (Aqueduct closed for the day) but I am sure their ADW was operating as would their television channel in New York City.  As for the Meadowlands, I am sure they have been simulcasting all day.  That can't be it.

Parking Spaces?  Well, the Meadowlands has to clean parking spots for the customers to park in and they need to be able to get to the track so that takes some resources.  As for Yonkers Raceway, the same would need to be done but they also need to make sure their slot customers have parking spaces available for as sure as racing was cancelled at Yonkers, you can rest assured the casino kept on humming.  Could it be Yonkers cancelled to make sure enough parking spaces were available for their slot players?  That's a possibility.

Priority of Racing?  The Meadowlands is racing.  They handle on a Saturday night at least two million dollars via simulcasting and live racing.  No racing, no money coming in (even if the track has historically been losing money).  Yonkers?  Oh that's right, racing is the loss leader.  They actually lose money on racing so by being able to cancel racing, there is no need for tellers, or track crew for the night hours.  The betting they would have received would not cover the expenses of racing tonight plus the purses.  The money stays in the purse account and will get paid out another evening, jacking those purses up.  So the snow gives them an excuse to cancel racing tonight and reduce the losses from the racing side of the business at Yonkers.

So for racing fans, now you know the difference between a racino and a racetrack.  The racetrack will try to race if possible.  The racino looks at a snowstorm as an opportunity not to race.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

having been a long time yonkers patron...when NYC OTB was still open i never put a bet in at Yonkers Racino. it is the most unfriendly place to go for racing..horseplayers are treated like second class citizens there...why no simulcasting 7 days a week like every other track ?..why....cause they dont care. now mon. tues..and weds. nite .there is no place to make a wager because NYRA is closed...such a shame