By Jeff Lowe
Okay, so your horse is entered, now where to go online to watch the race?
The good news is that watching a horse from somewhere other than the racetrack has never been easier, both in the availability and quality of live video, with most tracks now streaming in high definition.
But there is no one answer for where to go for access. In short, it depends where the horse is racing, as well as where you live. Some racetracks make it easy with live streams on their websites, notably Gulfstream Park, Keeneland and Laurel.
Live video from most tracks is available on wagering sites known as ADWs (advanced deposit wagering). TVG is one, and most of the major track owners have their own ADW, such as NYRABets, Twin Spires (from Churchill Downs Inc.) and Xpressbet (the Stronach Group).
The ADW video options are pretty much the same. You can watch a live race from Saratoga on Twin Spires, or a race from Churchill Downs on NYRABets. NYRABets used to have a leg up on the others in video quality, but that gap has closed in the last year or so to where there is little difference between them. I still prefer NYRA Bets for functionality and a few bells and whistles, like access to the feed shown on Fox Sports 2 when it airs NYRA races, and on-demand race analysis during a NYRA race card. Twin Spires and Xpressbet have more written content.
Unfortunately, not everyone can sign up for an ADW. These states have not yet legalized account wagering: Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Hawaii, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, and Utah, as well as Washington D.C.
We do have a special arrangement with Twin Spires providing our Partners with access to a non-wagering account to watch live races. If you go to www.twinspires.com, the user name is WestPointTB and the password is WestPoint1.
RTN is a subscription avenue to watch any track on your TV through Dish Network, Roku or Amazon or online only at www.rtn.tv.
TVG offers a similar subscription (for TV or web) for $9.95 a month that is a nice option for access to TVG’s main channel or TVG2 even if your cable system doesn’t carry them.