By T. D. Thornton
Monmouth Park realized $2,279,166 in sports betting revenue (total handle minus the paid-out winnings) during its first 17 days of operation since New Jersey legalized sports betting June 14.
Total handle at New Jersey’s three sports bet-taking properties for the partial month of June was $16,409,616 according to the first sports-wagering revenue report released July 12 by the state’s Division of Gaming Enforcement.
Borgata Hotel Casino and Ocean Resort Casino were the two other properties that reported sports betting revenue. The sports book at the Meadowlands racetrack is scheduled to open this Saturday.
Although the handle figure for each individual property was not included in the state’s report, the Asbury Park Press reported Monmouth’s total sports betting handle was $8,176,212.
It is unclear, however, exactly how the money bet on sports at Monmouth will translate to purse enhancements for Thoroughbred horsemen.
When TDN inquired as to what the splits might be or if a sports betting revenue-sharing agreement for purses is formally in place, Tom Lucci, the track’s media relations director, replied “Monmouth Park officials will not be making any statement.”
The New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association’s advisor and attorney is Dennis Drazin, who helped to lead the state’s long-shot United States Supreme Court battle to have the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA) declared unconstitutional. Drazin is also the chairman and chief executive of Darby Development LLC, which operates Monmouth Park
“We are extremely pleased with our numbers,” Drazin told the Asbury Park Press Thursday. “We think they show there is a huge appetite for sports betting. To be generating these numbers early, and it’s not even football season yet, speaks enormously of the potential for when football season comes around. So we’re thrilled by the early numbers.”
The Asbury Park Press also speculated that the live racing product could be a beneficiary of crossover horse betting handle now that the track is open daily for sports betting. On nine weekend/holiday racing dates between June 14 and July 12, the Asbury publication reported that Monmouth’s on-track handle was up 3.4% over the same dates in 2017.