07/18/2011 10:18AM

Simulcast limit raised in California

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Racetracks and off-track betting locations in California will be able to import 18 more simulcast races each day from out-of-state tracks under a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday.

The bill raises the limit on out-of-state simulcasts from 32 to 50. Racetracks and off-track sites had lobbied for the increase, in part because account-wagering companies that take bets from California bettors are not limited in the number of simulcast races they can offer, putting the bricks-and-mortar sites at a disadvantage.

The bill also grants exemptions on the limit for the importation of races for certain high-profile race programs, such as the card for the Kentucky Derby, the two other Triple Crown races, and the two-day Breeders’ Cup event.

Although the legislation will expand the number of simulcast offering at betting sites, the bill also contains a provision that restricts Thoroughbred tracks and fair sites from importing any races after 7 p.m. without the approval of any Quarter Horse or harness tracks that are racing at the time.