02/13/2009 12:00AM

TrackNet reaches Nevada deal


TrackNet, the simulcasting-marketing partnership owned by Churchill Downs and Magna, has reached an agreement with a consortium of Nevada casinos that will end a blackout of the partnership's signals beginning Friday, the chief executive of the partnership said late on Thursday.

The agreement will restore the signals from Santa Anita Park, Gulfstream Park, Golden Gate Fields, Oaklawn Park, and Laurel Park to more than 80 casinos in Nevada. The signals were blocked from the casinos as of Jan. 26 when the two sides could not agree on a new simulcasting contract.

Scott Daruty, the chief executive of TrackNet, said on Thursday night that the two sides reached a multiyear deal, though he would not provide any specifics.

"There was compromise on both sides, and we ultimately came up with something we both could agree with," Daruty said.

TrackNet was seeking a higher rate from the casinos, which were believed to be paying some of the lowest rates in the country under the previous contract. That contract also allowed the casinos to pass on some of its simulcasting expenses to the racing industry, a concession that racing officials said was unique to that contract.

"If you ask them, I'm sure they would say they are paying too much," Daruty said. "If you asked us, we would say they aren't paying enough."