Eighth off-track betting facility to open in Maryland

Posted: July 19, 2019

The long-awaited opening of an off-track betting parlor in Frederick, Md., is set for July 22, the Maryland Jockey Club announced July 19.

Frederick at Long Shot’s is located in the Clarion Inn Frederick Event Center on Holiday Drive, just off Interstate 270. It fills a void created by the October 2011 closure of an OTB operation in the Cracked Claw at Peter Pan, a restaurant that was located in nearby Urbana.

The Clarion Hotel is owned by Randy Cohen, a Thoroughbred owner. Plans for the Frederick facility were approved by the Maryland Racing Commission in September 2018.

“It’s a soft opening,” MJC President Sal Sinatra said of the Monday kickoff. “We wanted to open on a quiet day. It’s located in the hotel lobby and bar area (of the Clarion), and this is our first OTB in a hotel. They have several conventions there, and if you’re stuck in hotel, what else do you do? Maybe bet on horses. We’d like to see if can impact the fan base.”

The Cracked Claw, located about 27 miles from Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races in West Virginia, at one time generated pari-mutuel handle of about $20 million a year—the most successful of the Maryland OTB outlets at the time. Sinatra said projections are for Frederick at Long Shot’s to handle $10 million to $15 million a year.

It is the eighth MJC off-track betting facility in the state. The others are located at Greenmount Station in Hampstead; Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore; the Jockey Bar & Grille in Boonsboro; Hollywood Casino Perryville; the Maryland State Fair at Timonium; the Racebook at MGM National Harbor near Oxon Hill; and the Riverboat Restaurant off the shore of Colonial Beach, Va.

Year-round full-card simulcasts in Maryland also are offered at Laurel Park, Pimlico Race Course and Rosecroft Raceway—all of which are MJC properties—and at Casino at Ocean Downs, which is owned by Churchill Downs Inc.