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'Protection' of NSW racing industry is an outdated concept

The most arrogant state in Australia, New South Wales and in particular its Department of Racing and Gaming, has long had a policy of screw the rest, we will do whatever we like. Protectionist legislation in breach of the Federal Constitution, banning competition or technology from racecourses etc... Back in the 70s and 80s, these policies might have worked, but in the technological age, they are being shown up as using a Commodore 64 when everyone else is using iPhones and iPads.

NSW players under the whip and still looking for clear running

There it was, in the last paragraph of Tabcorp's full-year results flyer sent out on Thursday. Overall, the figures don't look good for the NSW racing industry. The push for a deregulated betting market must surely be stepped up.

The paragraph in the Tabcorp release mentions the impending arrival of ''cartoon racing'', which is about to hit NSW TAB outlets, but that wasn't the eye-catching remark.

No, this one is all to do with fixed-odds betting. Or as is the case in these parts, the lack of it. It is farcical.

''In NSW, the wagering business performed well considering that it did not have access to some of the products that are available to consumers in Victoria, such as Trackside and Fixed-Odds betting in the retail network …''

For the betterment of all concerned, Tabcorp should be inserting a rocket in the relevant NSW government regulatory department.

Betting in NSW is under siege but the players - the TAB and on-course bookmakers - are playing with arms firmly bound behind their backs.

..

This column has long argued for an open and level playing field. What is good for one is good for all. Why hamstring the locals with antiquated betting restrictions? The fence erected around the state to protect NSW racing's income streams is driving out punters, not keeping them in.



The NSW govt and Racing NSW are completely ignorant of what punters want, and how modernisation can improve the industry for everyone. Punters have worked out they get far better choice by going online, so now the betting operators who have stayed loyal to NSW and not moved to Darwin are being penalised by a department of numpties who still wear brown suits and drive Kingswoods...ra

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