As Kentucky’s third historical horse racing parlor opens to the public today, the most recent monthly statistics show there’s still growth being seen in the slot-like games previously in use at two of the state’s tracks.
As The Red Mile and Keeneland open their joint parlor at the standardbred track, the most recent numbers released by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission show gains for the game that state officials implemented as a less lucrative alternative to the expanded gambling that failed repeatedly in the legislature.
The $38 million wagered in Kentucky in August on historical horse racing represented a 9.39 percent gain over the previous August and was the second best month for the state since the games went in at Kentucky Downs in September 2011.
At the original track in Franklin, Kentucky Downs saw $32.38 million wagered, up 6.39 percent from a year ago and its second best month ever. The other track with the game, Ellis Park in Henderson, saw $5.66 million wagered on the games, up 30.44 percent from the previous year and its second best month as well.
The Red Mile parlor opens at noon with 902 machines under the banner of KRM Wagering LLC, the joint venture between the Keeneland Association and Red Mile. Keeneland moved its simulcasting to The Red Mile this summer and leases space there – the legal work around that allows half the money wagered on Instant Racing and all on thoroughbred simulcasting to go to Keeneland purses. Technically, Kentucky law says purse supplements from wagering taxes on historical horse racing benefit the breed racing where where the wager takes place. To avoid Red Mile getting all the extra purse money from the devices, Keeneland leases space. So, when at The Red Mile, patrons can rightly claim they’ve been to Keeneland. Keeneland and Red Mile unsuccessfully sought a change in the law this past legislative session to avoid the legal gymnastics.