Having secured a multiyear deal with Cox Communications Inc. in San Diego, TV
Games Network is champing at the bit to land more carriage pacts.
The horse-racing channel -- which features online- and telephone-wagering
components where in-home betting is legal -- is slated to launch on Cox's
digital sports and information tier in April, according to Ray Hopkins,
executive vice president of the affiliate sales and marketing group for parent
Gemstar-TV Guide International Inc.
Hopkins said TVG would be available to "70 percent to 75 percent of Cox's
digital universe" in that market.
TVG currently counts about 10 million subscribers, and it is available in 14
million cable and satellite homes through contracts with Insight Communications
Co. Inc. (Kentucky), Adelphia Communications Corp. (Southern California),
Comcast Corp. (Maryland) and EchoStar Communications Corp.'s Dish Network, plus
simulcasts on Fox Sports Net regional channels, Hopkins said.
Magna Entertainment Corp.'s HorseRacing TV, which came out of the starting
gate early this year, provides competition. It gained a post position on Time
Warner Cable's digital tier in San Diego and has 900,000 analog homes in western
Pennsylvania, where it replaced Meadows Racing Network.
Other TVG distribution pacts could be announced soon with Cox and Adelphia in
Cleveland, according to Hopkins, who predicted "lots of deals over the next 18