Updated on 11/30/2015 4:15PM

Business up at Gulfstream Park West meet


MIAMI – The 2015 Gulfstream Park West meet concluded Saturday showing big gains in average and overall handle compared to the previous year.

Average daily handle during the 40-day session was $3.56 million, compared to $2.99 million a year ago, an increase of 19 percent. Total handle climbed from $131 million during a 44-day meet in 2014 to $142 million in 2015, a gain of 8 percent.

The 2015 meet, billed the Gulfstream Park West Fall Turf Festival, was the second conducted by Gulfstream Park at Calder Race Course. The last fall meet when Calder ran unopposed and before Gulfstream took over the racing there, the 2012 Tropical at Calder meet, attracted total handle of only $58 million over 40 days.

Gulfstream management cited large, competitive fields and an earlier influx of Northern based horsemen to south Florida as the major reasons for the gains. Gulfstream management also credited the popularity of two wagers offered for the first time this year, the rolling super high five and the early pick five.

“We‘re pleased with the increase in betting at Gulfstream Park West,” said P.J. Campo, general manager of Gulfstream Park and vice president of racing for the Stronach Group, which operates Gulfstream. “We continue to see great support from horsemen throughout North America. Our efforts to continue to build a strong year-round program shows in the growing interest in Gulfstream Park West.”

The 2015-16 Gulfstream Park Championship Meet begins Saturday.