Updated on 06/12/2016 4:39PM

Belmont Stakes handle drops 37 percent


All-sources betting on this year’s Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park in New York was down 37 percent compared with wagering on the race last year, when interest in the race was buoyed significantly by the popular and ultimately successful bid for a Triple Crown by American Pharoah, according to charts of the races.

As expected, betting of $52.2 million this year did not compare favorably with wagering on last year’s Belmont, which attracted the second-highest handle figure in the history of the race. Compared with betting on the race in the last year in which a Triple Crown was not on the line, in 2013, wagering this year on the race was down 0.8 percent, according to charts.

This year’s Belmont field had 13 horses, compared with eight last year. The 2013 Belmont had a 14-horse field.

Total betting on the 13-race card this year of $99.9 million was down 26.5 percent compared with betting on last year’s 13-race card. But the total this year was up significantly compared to the 13-race card in 2013, by 12.6 percent. In 2014, Belmont officials revamped the card by adding several Grade 1 races to the slate, including the prestigious Metropolitan Handicap, and the effort certainly bolstered the figures this year without a Triple Crown on the line.

A total of 126 horses ran on this year’s card, compared with 115 last year.

The wagering figures this year demonstrate once again the dramatic impact of a Triple Crown try for business at Belmont Park and for its operator, the New York Racing Association. In 2014 and 2015, the association reaped the spoils from two consecutive Triple Crown bids, bolstering its revenue and clout. This year represents a return to normalcy.

The all-time record for wagering for a Belmont Stakes ($92.2 million, beating the previous record by $24 million) and the Belmont card ($150.4 million) was set in 2014, when California Chrome was attempting to put an end to the 36-year Triple Crown drought. Despite the presence of American Pharoah, attendance and wagering fell in 2015 compared to the 2014 marks, but attendance was capped at 90,000 last year to avoid large-scale logistical problems that plagued the 2014 running, while American Pharoah’s dominance and short fields for the undercard races dampened betting figures.

Betting on a pick six ending in the Belmont Stakes this year was $1,006,748, just past the $1 million guarantee for the pool of the race but down 45.6 percent compared to betting of $1,848,921 last year. Betting this year was likely negatively impacted by a highly competitive 13-horse race in the first leg, presenting a daunting multiplier to kick odd the bet. There was one winning ticket, sold at Lone Star Park in Texas, paying $640,034.

Betting on the pick four ending in the Belmont was $3.48 million, down 14.3 percent compared with betting of $4.06 million last year.

As reported by NYRA, attendance of 60,114 this year compared favorably with the 2013 Belmont, when attendance was reported at 47,562. On-track handle this year was $11.6 million, NYRA said, down 31 percent compared with on-track wagering of $16.8 million last year.


Chad mc rory More than 1 year ago
Hey NYRA - you have a problem...
Frank More than 1 year ago
you people that go to the race @ belmont shouldnt complain.  It is always going to be crowded and uncomfortable - stay home if you dont like that.

I was betting this card in AC on my couch at home with a nice spread and cold beers.  It was one of the best days of racing that I can remember.  

Belmont is a spectacular race course which is unlike any other in our country - be thankful we still have it!
Frank More than 1 year ago
I thought this years belmont day was better then the last 8yrs of breeders cup days -- it had spectacular betting opportunities with big competitive fields.

Belmont is by far the best race course in america - its big and most of all fair to form.

I'd like to see horse racing take the chance on the weather and hold the BC every year @ Belmont -- more Euros would come then too.

philcoforde More than 1 year ago
What a shame that people didn't understand the pari-mutuel opportunities  offered up by the 2016 Belmont Stakes. Grey trifecta paid $2700.    Nothing wrong with that.   
Frank More than 1 year ago
the bettors like us realized -- it was all the christmas catholic types (attend one race a year) that NYRA missed out on.  

It is all BS because they only contribute to one race pool - Belmont Stakes race only -- which I makes a difference only to the greedy takeout types (track, govt, etc).

For you and I it was a great day of race with great payouts and exciting racing.
Robert More than 1 year ago
People , NYRA CEO just stated that racing is now like boxing it's narrowed down to big day events only  which obviously is only to three times a year tops.   A big beautiful race track it's 1200 people or less a day the rest of the year when a shame . Racing is also losing the younger bettor meaning within 20 to 30 years horseracing will be likely extinct 
TEDK215 More than 1 year ago
would u give me 5/1 on that?
Robert More than 1 year ago
For sure think about it. You don't see any 30 or under hirse players very very few.. They're all at the poker tables. When the 50 yo plus players die off who is back filling them ?  Just look at any track look at the attendance ino one there... Calder already closed  shop and casinos are opening at most racetracks for survival
TEDK215 More than 1 year ago
relax Bob, just kiddin.
JERRY 2929 More than 1 year ago
Illinois closing most of its  O T B  also Maywood park  and Balmoral park     sure could of  had an effect on the handle  ???
JERRY 2929 More than 1 year ago
Good to hear
Chris More than 1 year ago
I will never go there again. I had a chair to bring in to set on the grass,they stopped me at the gate and told me it wasn't allowed today. I had a hard time finding a place to sit. The roof leaks,the tellers were inexperienced,the track facilities need to be updated. The place is run down.. They definitely do not cater to the average bettor... This is probably one of the reasons they haven't got a breeders cup back there.Not happy at all,and I still won,lol
TEDK215 More than 1 year ago
why are u lying C? u know u lost. lol
r More than 1 year ago
If you think that was bad, you should have been there in 2014.  Ladies in the stair wells taking a leak and the train platform almost collapsing.  
Robert More than 1 year ago
Aqueduct turned into a cheese line barrel picking dump where people go lose their SSD checks
Frank More than 1 year ago
you are always complaining on this blog - you are very negative and a liar.

This was one of the best days of racing over the last decade - again thank you for betting you help my odds.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lyin NYRA and Crooked Belmont.  
william More than 1 year ago
Sha Tin handled $180 million on their card today, with 2 less races. 
Robert More than 1 year ago
No one is on food stamps at Sha. Tin.  Look at the player