02/05/2014 2:31PM

NYRA, Churchill Downs Inc. remain without simulcast contract


A New York Racing Association official predicted Wednesday that the association’s signal would not be blacked out as of Friday on the country’s largest account-wagering platform even though negotiations between NYRA and the platform’s owner, Churchill Downs Inc., had not yet resulted in a simulcasting agreement.

“Both sides are continuing to negotiate,” said Eric Wing, a spokesman for NYRA. “We don’t anticipate that there will be any interruption of the signal on Friday.”

Despite several extensions to a contract for 2013, NYRA and Churchill have been unable to reach a deal on NYRA’s signal for 2014. The latest extension expired Monday, and if the two sides cannot agree to a deal by Friday, when racing resumes at NYRA’s Aqueduct, the association’s signal would be blacked out on twinspires.com, the largest account-wagering site in the United States.

NYRA has acknowledged that they are seeking a higher rate for their signal from all simulcast brokers this year. The association, which is controlled by the state of New York, has been directed to demonstrate that it can turn a profit on racing operations without subsidies from a casino located next door to the track.

Churchill Downs officials did not respond to a request for official comment on Wednesday, but a spokesperson said earlier in the day that the company would decline comment unless a deal had been reached.