Betting on races already run? Tracks eye new source of cash

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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) It sounds like the ultimate sure thing – or the ultimate sucker’s bet: Wagering money on horse races that have already happened.

It’s called historical racing. The date and place of the pre-recorded races and the names of horses and jockeys remain secret until after the money is plunked down and the videotape starts.

New Jersey, whose horse racing industry is struggling, is considering legalizing such betting.

It would offer struggling horse tracks a new product and a potential lifeline. This is particularly true in the absence of slot machines or other casino games.

And though the industry has had an uneven experience in several states, it would clearly offer a new revenue stream to racetracks that say they are barely holding on.