02/02/2007 1:00AM

Aqueduct signal still restricted


A number of popular wagering outlets, including the account-wagering organizations AmericaTab and BrisBet, remained cut off from the signal of Aqueduct racetrack on Friday and will likely be unable to offer the track until Wednesday, racing officials said.

AmericaTab and BrisBet were two of approximately two dozen wagering outlets that were prohibited from offering Aqueduct beginning on Tuesday because of delays in the approval of Aqueduct's simulcasting contracts. On Friday, a spokesman for the New York State Racing and Wagering Board, Dan Toomey, said that an official in charge of the approvals had to take Friday off unexpectedly, leaving the unapproved contracts in limbo for the weekend. Aqueduct is dark on Monday and Tuesday.

"Unfortunately, the attorney heading the issue had a personal matter and had to take the day off," Toomey said. "We think there's still about 15 or 20 contracts out there, but I don't know for certain without talking to him, and he's unavailable."

On Thursday, approximately two dozen contracts had yet to be approved, but, according to New York Racing Association executive vice president Bill Nader, five contracts were approved late on Thursday, and two, for Las Vegas Dissemination Company and XpressBet, were approved early on Friday.

Nader said on Friday that of the sites that still cannot show the signal, AmericaTab, BrisBet, and the Lewiston, Maine, bet-processing hub were the largest. The Lewiston hub handles wagers from a variety of domestic offtrack betting sites, Nader said, not from offshore betting shops, as reported yesterday in Daily Racing Form.

Nader said that the delays had cost Aqueduct approximately $700,000 in handle on Thursday.