Sunday, November 12, 2006

The slots effect

The slots go live in Pennsylvania on Tuesday. Bill Ordine of The Baltimore Sun wrote an interesting article about the effects of Pennsylvania's slot machines on Maryland racing and breeding. Below are a few interesting quotes and statistics from his article.

"Pennsylvania's thoroughbred and standardbred industries expect to net about nine cents of every dollar of slots revenue. When Pennsylvania's 14 slots casinos are fully operational, that could mean as much as $270 million of additional cash for the horse industry under the most optimistic projections. That's nearly a fourfold increase over current purse and breeder incentive cash."

"total racing handle in Maryland has dropped 16.2 percent to $505.3 million from 1994 to 2005, according to Maryland Racing Commission data. In a similar period, from 1994 through 2004, the number of thoroughbred stallions, mares bred and foals in Maryland has plummeted."

"In Maryland in 1994, there were 152 sires, 2,175 mares bred and 1,159 foals, according to Maryland Jockey Club data. By 2004, those figures had dropped to 75 sires, 1,597 mares bred and 889 foals. In contrast, the foal count has risen more than 16 percent in Pennsylvania and nearly 130 percent in West Virginia in the same period."

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