04/26/2006 11:00PM

Nevada reaches deal for Churchill signals


Bettors in Las Vegas were able to wager into the parimutuel pools at Hollywood Park on Thursday as the simulcast contract dispute between the Nevada Pari-Mutuel Association and Churchill Downs Simulcast Network, which negotiates the rights to Hollywood's signal, was resolved.

The agreement was made official just in time for Thursday's first race at Hollywood, which went off at 1:20 p.m. Pacific.

John Avello, director of race and sports at Wynn Las Vegas and a committee member of the parimutuel association, said the agreement was finalized around 11:30 a.m. But it had to be sent to each casino for approval, he said, and then to the state Gaming Control Board for final approval before the parimutuel association could tell the wagering hub for the Nevada books to receive the signal from Hollywood and "flip the switch."

Details of the contract were not disclosed. Calls to Churchill Downs and the parimutuel association office were not returned.

Two cards were affected during the impasse: Calder, owned by Churchill Downs Inc., on Tuesday, and Hollywood on Wednesday. Most casinos went ahead and booked the races themselves, with the exception of multirace wagers such as picks threes, fours, and sixes, and with house limits on exacta, quinella, and trifecta payoffs. Bettors were required to complete their wagers by two minutes before post.