11/27/2002 12:00AM

Business booming for Sunland signal


Sunland Park's racing has steadily improved since the introduction of slot machines in 1999, and the rise in quality has translated into wider distribution of its simulcast signal and increased ontrack business.

Sunland's ontrack opening week average daily handle of $92,535 was up 13 percent from last year's $81,610.

Sunland's simulcast signal was up even more dramatically, with offtrack handle averaging $231,694 per day, an increase of 42 percent. Full fields have been the norm, and with purses averaging over $200,000 a day and a full slate of stakes races coming up, Sunland management expects the upswing in business to continue.

* Garrett Gomez, taking a working vacation from his base in Southern California, is leading the jockey standings after one week with eight wins, while Ricardo Jaime, another newcomer here, is right behind with seven. Gomez plans to leave in time for the traditional day-after-Christmas opening of the Santa Anita meet. His departure will result in a wide-open local jockey race.

* Redalo, owned and trained by Luis Flores set a world record of 16.315 seconds for 330 yards in winning Sunday's fourth race under jockey Jerry Rodriguez. The old world record for the distance was set by Crash Thru Traffic at Sunland Park in 1998.