04/07/2014 11:36AM

Aqueduct: Handle for Wood Memorial card dips sharply

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OZONE PARK, N.Y. – Attendance was up slightly, but handle was down sharply on Saturday’s Wood Memorial card at Aqueduct, possibly owing to the lack of turf racing.

Attendance for the 12-race card was 12,719, up 600 people, or 4.9 percent, from last year’s crowd of 12,119.

Ontrack handle was $2,718,962, down 16.6 percent from last year’s $3,258,632. All-sources handle Saturday was $18,097,037, down 16.2 percent from last year’s total of $21,601,671.

In 2013, the 12-race card had 109 betting interests, with five fields of 11 horses or more, including two turf races. On Saturday’s 12-race program, there were two races with 11 betting interests, and turf racing was unavailable as winter weather delayed preparation of the course.

Saturday’s all-stakes pick four, with a guaranteed pool of $500,000, handled $928,877, compared with $822,676 last year.

Walt Gekko More than 1 year ago
What I think was overlooked was the fact there was a service interruption on the (A) train between Jay Street and Utica Avenue that likely discouraged many people who live in Manhattan from going to The Big A for the Wood. While NYRA did encourage people to take the (L) train to Broadway Junction for the (A) there, the (L) is a line that is notorious, even on weekends for being overcrowded and likely cost NYRA a considerable number of people who otherwise would have been there.
Robin Dawson More than 1 year ago
That 15% local handle is the reason that the sport is in such trouble. There should be less and better quality racing, with larger fields. In England, for example, Group races with small fields attract far less wagering than competitive handicaps with big fields, where the favourite goes off at 6/1.
rahman Williams More than 1 year ago
How the handle at Santa Anita
Walter More than 1 year ago
Attendance up, handle up for SA Derby day. You can find it was written in a small article a couple days ago. But it seems people just like to focus more on the negative items.
SpirosArion More than 1 year ago
The undercard was horrible. Who wants to bet that crap when better races are going off at other tracks?
John Burton More than 1 year ago
Wow! That is a big surprise to me! I thought the Wood Memorial field and finish were outstanding! I am a Marylander living in PA but NYRA tracks and racing are my preferred tracks - especially Saratoga which I will visit this year during Opening Weekend and the Travers! Anyway, WICKED STRONG looks like a "wickedly strong" contender for the derby this year! (pardon the play on words!) P.S. - Get better Steve!
Shawn Britton More than 1 year ago
I wonder why! People blowing their brains out in casino!
David G. More than 1 year ago
How is attendance calculated at Aqueduct if admission is free?
sjm80s . More than 1 year ago
David. You are a genius. Yes NYRA, please explain how you came up with 12,719 people when you have no way of registering that! Is everything in horse racing a deception?
johnd More than 1 year ago
"THE TOY MAN" and his policies seem to be working: make the "customer experience" more enjoyable is working!! Look at the attendance: it's up a whooping 6.9% or 600 people in a city of over 12,000,000!!!!!! While more importantly handle on track handle is down an incredible 16.6% and overall handle down a whopping 16.6% from last year!!!! The first tangible sign of the Toy Man's steering the NYRA in oblivion. The Board of Directors of the NYRA does not have a clue of what they're doing. Disaster looms and they whistle, smile and tell everyone all is well as they walk past the cemetery. What a hideous farce!
Elaine Parkinson More than 1 year ago
I didn't play on Saturday at all. I don't have the budget for taking risk/s even though I wanted to. I am sure there are many others who feel the same. Does anyone on this blog feel that the PETA/Asmussen issue might have been a reason or at least a contributing factor?
Bugsy Anderson More than 1 year ago
Not really. looking at the comments in the polytrack removal threads.... most gamblers complained about something that clearly is better for horses. The horses well being was back seat to "its harder to handicap"
sjm80s . More than 1 year ago
Elaine, just how did you end up here with a posting like that?
Elaine Parkinson More than 1 year ago
sjm80s - I don't have a drf.com plan so these free news articles are the only thing I can post about. What is odd about my post? I posted about the Casner regarding poly as well, however; these are not related as the Wood is run on dirt. I thought it may have been a factor and asked others that posted. I have no proclivity or alliance to PETA campaigns and make my own decisions.
St . Patrick Reid More than 1 year ago
Do u have any sense! !!!
Boyd Cord More than 1 year ago
Never been to Aqueduct, but I was at Pimlico Saturday. $3 20oz budweiser/miller beers with a $3 cup, so 3 beers costs $12. $12 for a half-gallon, Can't beat that. And the 10 cent Pick 5 paid well. (If you ALL the last leg) over $1900 with Ben's cat winning a leg. Does Aqueduct have cheap beer sales? weekend tournaments? Decent local bands? People always come out for a party, you have to get them to come back in the door somehow. At Houston they used to bring in upcoming stars like Miranda Lambert back in the day, saw her a couple of times.
mikey More than 1 year ago
Aqueduct has nothing.But when the sun goes down you better have the MARINES get you to your car.
Nicholas Briglia More than 1 year ago
Yeah, beer is the answer. Let's just sell more beer. Genius!
SpirosArion More than 1 year ago
I didn't know that having a half-gallon of beer was needed. I don't go to the racetrack to drink. I hear that you can go to a bar and do that. Also, you didn't count the admission fee.
sjm80s . More than 1 year ago
So Boyd, how was your ride into the track? Because when I went there I drove through some of the most downtrodden land in all of the lands. Aqueduct isn't in Paradise but please don't lead people to think that Pimlico is a happy place to be.