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Racing could pay heavy price in gambling reform


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Affordability checks will hit revenues but there is a world of difference between online slot machines and sports betting

A couple of hours after the government’s White Paper on gambling reform was finally published last week, Julie Harrington, the British Horseracing Authority’s chief executive, was asked whether the proposed legislation took into account the fundamental difference between betting – on racing and other sports – and gaming, on fixed-margin casino products.

“There is some good language in there, accepting that there is a difference between sport and evidence of faster losses on those casino-based games,” Harrington said. “I think on a more detailed reading, you’ll see that it may not be the headlines, but the language below really does differentiate that, so it’s clear that that has landed.”

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