11/28/2012 2:39PM

Monmouth Park moving forward with sports betting plans

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Monmouth Park in New Jersey intends to move forward with plans to offer sports betting while a host of legal issues surrounding the practice remain unresolved, a top official of the track said Wednesday.

The plans include renovations of an area of the track’s grandstand to create a Las Vegas-style sportsbook, in the hopes of offering at least “free play” on sports contests by Jan. 9, the earliest that the New Jersey Gaming Commission will award a license to conduct sports betting, according to Dennis Drazin, chairman of Monmouth’s operating company. Monmouth will go ahead with the renovations despite legal challenges mounted by most major professional sports leagues and despite the specter that the federal government may seek to intervene, Drazin said.

A U.S. District Court in New Jersey is scheduled to hear arguments about the legality of sports betting Dec. 18. The court could decide at that time to grant an injunction to the leagues that would prohibit anyone from offering sports betting.

Last week, the court gave notice to the U.S. attorney general that it has until Jan. 20 to file any objections to the New Jersey law passed earlier this year legalizing sports betting. For that reason, it’s possible that the District Court judge may wait until late January to rule in the case.

Monmouth Park, which is being operated by the state’s horsemen under a long-term lease with New Jersey, has filed arguments in the case seeking to resolve whether sports betting in New Jersey violates federal law. Still, the track plans to give customers the ability to make promotional bets, without any live money at risk, at the earliest opportunity, Drazin said.

“Before we take a live bet, we may have to wait for the court to give us further direction,” Drazin said.

ron More than 1 year ago
please dont fallow others and forget about us horseplayers.we are tired of getting the boot.we spend lots of money also.
HorseRacingNJ More than 1 year ago
Horseplayers won't have a home for much longer in NJ without some sort of supplement for purse money. Monmouth is, and always will be, a racing facility first. I don't see any need to be concerned.
russell More than 1 year ago
sports betting is long overdue. Almost every European country allows it. And since most sports books share info on unusual handles and betting patterns they can zero in on a game almost immediately a flag a game that is suspect. Ironically, most of the cheating that was uncovered (Italian Football League) was done by the refs and not players.
mikey More than 1 year ago
I guess The Chubb Gov felt that if Romney got in he had a free pass.Now he has to fight with his new main man the O man.Good luck hope he win's this one.He has as much a chance as the J E T S HAVE.
Randall More than 1 year ago
Years ago I sent a letter to the governor of Kentucky Steve Beshear trying to offset the craze for slots inside a racetrack in KY. I believe Churchill Downs would be wise to see how this one shacks out.
Joe Rotell More than 1 year ago
go ahead and open your promo bets only, but i'll tell you what, if you piss them off enough they will close you down based on you having possession of gambling paraphernalia. i know what i'm talking about
Mark Scheider More than 1 year ago
Please tell me how gambling on sports can violate FEDERAL law in one state and not another. These laws are ancient. It is not 1776 anymore. Obama is taking apart our constitution piece by piece and every goddamned state in America cant put a bet on a football game?
Robert Pawelec More than 1 year ago
About 20 or so years ago Congress made sport betting legal ONLY in Nevada
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We had a chance to circumvent the law a way back when but the Speaker of the NJ Assembly (I believe it was Chuck Haytian) refused to post the bill as NJ had a 1 year grace period option when the Federal Bill was passed. I hope Christie truly chaallenges the law by setting up the wagering venues and the place the first wager himself This will benefit my income greatly, as my literary hero is Sky Masterson of Guys and Dolls fame
victor More than 1 year ago
Bill Bradly was the main foe of it. a former Pro basketball star. His reason was he was worried about the integrity of sports instead of what would of been good for New Jersey.
PennNatRick More than 1 year ago
Delaware has 3 team parlays and Vegas has sports betting, but NJ should have a piece. Too much money is going overseas. People will want to bet one way or another. At least this is a safer way than having your legs broken for not paying a bookie.
Mark Scheider More than 1 year ago
You shouldn't have to worry about the repercussions of not paying a bookie......if you pay him....... when you place a bet.