Published: March 2, 2023

S.C. bill moves forward to legalize horse race betting

We’re days away from the first leg of the Aiken Triple Crown.

A bill is making its way up the ranks again that would create a commission to legalize horse track wagering.

The House Judiciary Committee passed the South Carolina Equine Advancement Act out of the subcommittee unanimously.

“I usually get a table at the track for every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and go for the six weeks that it’s going on,” said Danie Gosier, Aiken resident.

Gosier is used to the horse track in Saratoga, New York, but in Aiken, he has to settle for off-the-books.

“We all put $1 in, and we’ll draw numbers out of a hat for who’s going to win the race. We just do that ourselves,” he said.

Bill Gutfarb is the president of the Aiken Training Track. He said, “People have big gentleman’s bets between each other here. The wagering thing is like putting us behind the eight ball when it comes to other states that make revenue off of their racing industry.”

The effects are visible.

“There used to be 400 horses here and eight racehorses in Aiken. And now we’ve got about 150, a little more than 150,” he said.

It has tracks ready to race into a new era through Advance Deposit Wagering or ADW.

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