For photos from the Meadowlands contact

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Another Screwing by Thoroughbred Horsemen

Running Aces Harness Park goes before the Minnesota Racing Commission to defend itself against charges by thoroughbred horsemen that they breached the terms of their license and should have their license to operate a race meet (and card room) revoked.

Relations between standardbred and thoroughbred interests have soured in Minnesota since thoroughbred interests 'stuck it' to the standardbred industry by ending the alliance of the two tracks to get slots when the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community paid off Canterbury Park by offering them $75 million in purse subsidies over the next ten years in exchange for Canterbury not only dropping their efforts to get slots, but to oppose any efforts for anyone (Running Aces) to get slots.  A classic

There was an agreement for Running Aces to pay Canterbury Park's purse account $150,000 a year until slots were approved in Minnesota.  Running Aces stopped the payments claiming Canterbury Park breached the agreement when they started to oppose slots being allowed at racetracks.  In addition, a cross-breed simulcast agreement between the two tracks was cancelled by Running Aces, meaning each track can only simulcast the breed(s) that race at their track.

Personally, I don't see what the thoroughbred interests are complaining about.  They screwed Running Aces and their standardbred horsemen over royally and now they are complaining about a loss of $150,000 when they gained $7.5 million?  The MRC should dismiss the thoroughbred horsemen's complaint and tell them to get lost.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Actually, Running Aces is trying to avoid paying $750K they owe to the thoroughbred interests ($600K from their card room to the MN HBPA, and $150K to Cby in order to be allowed to receive t-bred simulcasts).

The card room payment to the HBPA was a condition of RA receiving a license in 2004(this is what the hearing yesterday was about). The simo agreement is a separate deal with Cby that RA wants to back out of.

Interestingly, before they ended the agreement, 80% of the simo handle at RA was on t-breds. Seems like cutting off your nose to spite your face to me.

As far as Cby's supposed betrayal of RA, remember that from 2005-2011 Cby spent $1.9M lobbying for a racino and RA spent $80K.