‘Instant Racing’ Ruling Being Appealed

scales of justiceA circuit judge’s ruling last month that said it was okay to use slot machine-like devices to bet on old horse races is being appealed to the Kentucky Court of Appeals by the Family Foundation of Kentucky.

Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate ruled Dec. 28 in an opinion sought by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission and the state’s racetracks,  that the state’s plan for wagering on such machines is not an illegal expansion of gambling because the machines technically allow users to bet on old horse races. His logic is that since horse racing is legal, using machines to bet on old races is also legal.

The racing commission authorized the games for Kentucky’s horse racing tracks earlier in 2010 and then asked for the judge’s ruling on its constitutionality.

The Family Foundation has contended that the game is a slot machine and represents an illegal expansion of gambling.

Racetracks are seeking to find a technicality or loophole to allow them to have slot machines at the tracks after failing to win approval for the devices in repeated attempts in the General Assembly.

This particular game works by allowing players to make wagers on videos of past horse races. (In many instances, the actual horses are long dead.) They are provided handicapping information but the names of the horses, the date of the race and the track are not revealed.

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