Click on the image above to download a PDF version of our February 2019 white paper.

Have you noticed the explosion of sports betting legalization around America?

As it stands now, horse racing is offered almost exclusively as a pari-mutuel wagering option, which often renders impossible the co-location of racing with other fixed odds sports bets. Be it Draft Kings, Fanduel, the new Barstool Sportsbook through Penn National Gaming, or any other provider in the growing number of states legalizing sports betting - racing is not amidst those offerings.

That puts U.S. racing at a monumental disadvantage.

In February 2019, the Thoroughbred Idea Foundation published "Horse Racing and 'Legal' Sports Betting," a white paper which suggested racing's greatest opportunity for growth through increased wagering participation will come from offering fixed odds betting on racing. That is, essentially, a sports betting-like product - with fixed prices, locked-in at the time of the bet on everything from the race itself, to props, futures, or other unique outcomes tied to the race.

"Probably our most fundamental problem, nationwide, is that racing is trying to survive a nearly two decade-long decline in handle, amidst what is the most competitive legal wagering marketplace in American history, all with a product that, mostly by design of its own industry, is increasingly uncompetitive," TIF Executive Director Patrick Cummings said this week.

Racing needs to present its product adjacent to, not separate from, that which represents the greatest growth spurt in the history of legal, American betting.

"And make no mistake, we need to get our pari-mutuel betting product re-organized, with a relentless focus on improving pricing and finding ways to increase wagering churn. Either we get serious about this as an industry or things get worse. It should be an easy choice."

With the growth experienced in sports betting and sports betting legalization over these last 20 months since our original publication, we invite you to go back and review our original thoughts and consider the possibilities for American racing.

If you have comments or ideas to share with us, please use the CONTACT form on our website.


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