06/14/2005 11:00PM

NTRA to push account wagering

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The National Thoroughbred Racing Association will work to open up all major racing states to account wagering in the next five years, according to a strategic plan that the NTRA released on Wednesday.

The effort to expand account wagering is one of five specific goals that the NTRA has set for the years 2006-2010, according to the plan. Others include the "consistent" presence of Thoroughbred racing in a list of the top 10 sports, as ranked by fan interest in a poll conducted by ESPN; increased attendance, television ratings, wagering, and purses for major racing days; the expansion of the bloodstock market; and the implementation of procedures to ensure "integrity matching or exceeding that of other major sports and gaming businesses."

Account wagering has become the fastest-growing betting segment for the Thoroughbred industry despite prohibitions in some major racing states, including Florida, Illinois, and Texas.