08/30/2009 11:00PM

Canterbury handle falls; attendance up slightly


SHAKOPEE, Minn. - Canterbury Park concluded its 2009 meeting on Sunday, posting some expected declines in handle, though seeing an increase in average attendance this season.

The 2009 Canterbury Park race meeting featured 62 days of racing, five fewer than in 2008, and attracted 339,852 fans for an average daily attendance of 5,481, a 1.7 percent increase from the previous year's daily average at a 67-day meet.

Live ontrack wagering on the 2009 meet totaled $12,180,534, a 12 percent decrease from the 2008 live handle. The average daily ontrack handle was $196,460, a 4.9 percent decrease from the 2008 average.

Wagering at offtrack facilities on the Canterbury Park signal in 2009 totaled $13,712,076, a 30.7 percent decrease from 2008. The daily average of $221,163 was down 25.1 percent.

Wagering on full-card simulcasting also dropped at Canterbury Park during the 2009 season, with $10,495,187 being wagered on live race days, a 25.2 percent drop from the previous year. The daily average of $169,277 bet on imported signals was a 19.2 percent drop.

Total handle from all sources during the race meeting was $36,387,797, a decrease of 23.7 percent from the previous year's total, with the daily average of $586,900 a 17.5 percent decline.

Mac Robertson concluded the meet as the leading trainer with 75 wins to earn his fifth consecutive training title. Trainer Edward Ross Hardy topped the Quarter Horse standings with 29 victories to win his ninth training title. Ry Eikleberry, who finished second in the Thoroughbred jockey standings with 64 victories during this meeting, also won his second Quarter Horse riding title with 17 victories. Dean Butler won his first Canterbury Park riding title this season with 71 victories. The Bleu Valley Farm's horse Chick Fight, also trained by Robertson, was named Horse of the Meet following her three stakes victories, which included the Frances Genter Stakes, the Minnesota Distaff Championship and the Minnesota Oaks. Stolis Kool Chick was named Quarter Horse of the meet after going undefeated in four consecutive races at this meeting, including victories in the Northlands Futurity and the NCQHRA Futurity. Stolis Kool Chick is owned by LMR Racing and is trained by Edward Ross Hardy.