Where others in Las Vegas hold back, Michael Gaughan plunges boldly forward. Using its iView platform, Bally Technologies has been holding virtual horse races, streamed across the slot floors of various tribal casinos. Pechanga Resort & Casino in California and Barona Valley Ranch Resort & Casino have been quick out of the chute, as has mammoth Mohegan Sun Casino. (As usual, tribal casinos continue to outpace industrial ones in their deployment of new technology.) So far the only private-sector adoptee has been little Valley Forge Casino Resort, the baby of the Pennsylvania market. The only one until now, that is. On Thursday, South Point Hotel Casino & Spa inaugurates virtual racing with its first-ever “South Point Stakes.” In best Barona tradition, there will be a trumpeter to play pre-race fanfares and track announcer Frank Miramahdi will call the digitized action. (I’d show up for the action and especially the mystery Grey Goose cocktail but I have “parenting” duties that night.) Gaughan is one of the few real mavericks in Vegas, so you can be darn sure the rest of the industry is watching how virtual racing plays at South Point before gingerly taking it up themselves.
By David McKee ~ July 24th, 2012 @ 2:11 pm