08/19/2014 1:02PM

All-sources handle down at Saratoga meet


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – All-sources handle is down 5.3 percent, while ontrack handle is flat, through the first 28 days of the 2014 Saratoga meet compared with last year.

Having run nine fewer races to this point than last year – 283 compared with 292 – all-sources handle is $377,794,344, down from $399,127,720 wagered through the same period last year. The New York Racing Association has conducted 129 turf races at the meet – including eight steeplechase events – while forced to take 19 races off the turf. Last year to this point, Saratoga had conducted 151 turf races – six of which were steeplechase events – and had taken only 11 off.

Ontrack numbers are mixed, as handle is up less than 1 percent while announced attendance is up 10.5 percent. Ontrack handle through the first 28 days is $101,017,049, up 0.07 percent over last year’s figure of $100,275,678. Ontrack handle figures include money wagered on Saratoga at Aqueduct and Belmont Park, which are both open for simulcasting.

Reported attendance is 672,645, up from last year’s 608,495 through 28 days. This year, NYRA is counting approximately 6,400 season-pass holders in its daily attendance whether they attend the races or not. NYRA is not, however, counting spinners, those fans who purchase more than one admission on days when there is a promotional item being given away with each paid admission.

Two weeks, or 12 racing days, remain in the 40-day meet, which runs through Labor Day, Sept. 1.